Perfectly Chocolate Cake with Nutella Buttercream Frosting

Homemade chocolate cake…that tastes like it’s from a box,but it is free of MSG and preservatives. Just a few simple ingredients blended together to create the moistest, fluffiest chocolate cake you’ll ever make. I promise!


Having said that, make no mistake about it: this is not health food. This is a rich, indulgent dessert that should be made sparingly to preserve it’s appeal. And maybe your waistline. But I digress…


I have experimented with several chocolate cake recipes in the past, all of which left me slightly disappointed because they came out too dense or too dry.


And then, I stumbled upon this recipe! I will never go searching for another chocolate cake recipe again. It really takes only slightly more time to make than using a boxed mix, and the taste is even better. The almost black color of the batter alerts you to the intense chocolate flavor awaiting you once it bakes.


One important note to make here: the batter will be super dark, and very runny when you pour it into your baking tins. You may think you have done something wrong, but I assure you, it will come out perfectly. Because it is so liquid-y, do NOT try to use a cake pan with a removable bottom. You know, the kind with the latch on the side so it can come apart. Use a plain, normal, run-of-the-mill cake pan.

Unless you want chocolate batter dripping all over your kitchen as you frantically try to salvage the cake.

No? I didn’t think so. That may or may not have happened to me the first time I made this cake, so please learn from my errors and save yourself some cleaning time!

Scroll down for an exquisite, unique frosting recipe: Nutella Buttercream!!


Perfectly Chocolate Cake

(recipe adapted from Hershey’s)


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup reduced fat buttermilk (or milk + 1Tbsp lemon juice after it sits for 3-5 minutes)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.

2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans, and flip over onto wire racks. Cool completely. 10 to 12 servings.

ONE-PAN CAKE: Grease and flour 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Heat oven to 350° F. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely. Frost.

THREE LAYER CAKE: Grease and flour three 8-inch round baking pans. Heat oven to 350°F. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake 30 to 35 minutes. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Frost.

BUNDT CAKE: Grease and flour 12-cup Bundt pan. Heat oven to 350°F. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 50 to 55 minutes. Cool 15 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely. Frost.

CUPCAKES: Line muffin cups (2-1/2 inches in diameter) with paper bake cups. Heat oven to 350°F. Fill cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22 to 25 minutes. Cool completely. Frost. About 30 cupcakes.

Servings: 18. Nutritional Information: Calories: 140 Fat: 6g Carbs: 21g Protein: 1g Sugars: 16g


Now for the Nutella frosting…

It really deserves an entire blog post all to itself, but I love how well it compliments the chocolate cake above, so I will post it here. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I might spare the details of how fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth delicious, and Nutella-y this frosting is and just hope you will make it one day. It’s totally worth the extra miles you may have to run the next day!

IMG_20130325_202558 (1)

Nutella Buttercream Frosting


  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup Nutella or other hazelnut spread
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tablespoons heaving whipping cream

1) In the bottom of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together on low until well combined. Add the Nutella and increase speed to medium. Beat for two minutes.

2) Add the vanilla extract and salt, beating for an additional 30 seconds.

3) Last, add the whipping cream and continue to beat for about one minute, or until frosting lightens slightly in both color and texture.

*This made more than enough to frost an entire cake, however that may be because I do not pile on frosting as much as most people!*

Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 279 Fat: 21g Carbs: 21g Protein: 2g Sugar: 20g

Recipe adapted from: 


11 thoughts on “Perfectly Chocolate Cake with Nutella Buttercream Frosting

  1. Hi Carleigh! Thanks for stopping by! I had enough for a 2 layer cake, with quite a bit leftover. You can see in the top picture I did not use very thick layers of frosting (especially in the middle), but that’s personal preference. Depending on how much frosting you like on your cake, you may be able to get by with just 1 batch or 1.5 the recipe. You can always double it to make sure you have enough though! Let me know if you try it! 🙂

  2. Hi,
    Have you baked this in a square pan? Was going to make a birthday cake for my daughter with 2 cakes from a square pan to make a rectangle. Just wondering about baking times and temperature? My square pan is 9×9 inch.
    Also, do you think this cake will freeze well?

    • Hi! Thanks for stopping by! I have not tried baking in a 9×9 so I can’t say for sure, but based off some research I did as well as the variation for the 9×13, I would leave the temperature the same (350F) and reduce the baking time by about 10-15 minutes. Since I’ve never tried it I can’t say exactly how much time but I would start there and check it often. When a toothpick comes out clean you’ll know it’s ready! Your daughter is going to LOVE her birthday cake this year! : )

      I haven’t tried freezing it (honestly there is never enough left!) but I do think it would do well! Let me know how it turns out!

    • Hi Lheyanne! It really depends on how tall you like to frost your cupcakes. For me, it can frost about 30 cupcakes (one recipe’s worth of the chocolate cake above). I don’t pile it on sky high, though! I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions! 😉

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