The “You’ll never need boxed cake again” Chocolate Cake Recipe

The “You’ll never need boxed cake again” Chocolate Cake Recipe

Growing up, if we wanted chocolate cake, it came from a box. My mother is a cookie queen, she can even make a chiffon cake explode a mile high, but never made a chocolate cake from scratch. Chocolate cake wasn’t a traditional dessert for our family, so the box it was when we had a craving!

Chocolate boxed cake has a distinct texture and taste, the right amount of chocolate, while still moist and fluffy, basically it’s delicious. Once I have a slice it’s an immediate nostalgic feeling overcomes me. It is why when finding the right recipe, it was important to emulate that exact feeling, or else it wouldn’t be the same.

The trick with decadent chocolate cake is a cup of hot coffee.

The problem with boxed cake is that there are unnecessary additives that we don’t think about. Once I actually took the time to research what each ingredient was in these boxed cakes, it was quite alarming what we have been putting into our bodies all these years. Once I realized making the cake from scratch really didn’t involve much more work and that I can feel good about knowing what the ingredients are, it was a no brainer for me.

With this cake, I don’t add as much sugar as other recipes call for and it’s not really missed. If you’re looking for a rich decadent chocolate cake, the secret ingredient here is a cup of hot coffee. Coffee and chocolate go together like two peas in a pod. It enhances the richness of chocolate, making it that dark decadent treat.

A caffeine free alternative to use instead of coffee is roasted chicory root powder.
It is a great healthy alternative that you can feel good about.

However, I don’t feel comfortable adding coffee to a dessert that children will be eating, so I have a great alternative, roasted chicory root. This is something my parents used to drink growing up and is a great caffeinated beverage that tastes like coffee without the caffeine. It even has some health benefits, but I won’t get into that now, we are here for chocolate cake.

This is from my daughter’s birthday, check out the recipe for a kid-friendly version for a decadent cake.

The “You don’t need boxed cake” Chocolate Cake Recipe

This recipe will make one fluted cake pan, 2 – 9″ round pans or a 9×13″ pan.


  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil (sunflower, vegetable work too)
  • 1 cup milk (dairy free milk works too)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup organic unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup hot coffee (Caffeine Free: 1 tbsp chicory root coffee + hot water)


  • 400 g marscapone cream
  • 4 tbsp Nutella or chocolate hazelnut spread


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a bowl, sift all the dry ingredients together (flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa powder)
  3. Whisk eggs, sugar, oil and milk in a separate bowl.
  4. Add the dry mixture into the wet mixture and combine with a wooden spoon or spatula, until fully combined.
  5. Add the hot coffee and mix for several minutes until smooth.
  6. Add batter to cake pan of choice and bake according the pan size. The fluted cake pan or 9×13″ will take about 45 minutes and the two 9″ pans will bake for about 30 minutes.
  7. If you are unsure if it is ready, stick a toothpick in the centre and if it comes out clean, you are good to go!


I allow the cake to cool down completely, even add it in the fridge too. Combine the marscapone and Nutella together with a mixer to allow it to combine smoothly. Layer generously in between and you’ve got a delicious cake!

Antonietta xo

Antonietta Ferretti
Antonietta Ferretti

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