Recipe type: DESSERT
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • ¾ cup natural unsweetened 100% cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¾ cup neutral oil (canola, light olive oil or vegetable oil)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature (set out butter for few hrs)
  • 4 cups/16 oz box powder sugar, sifted
  • ¾ cup natural unsweetened 100% cocoa powder (sift with power sugar)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup cold heavy cream (or use milk, half/half)
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray two 8" round cake pans & line bottoms of pans with a ring of parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and cocoa powder. Whisk together until there are no more lumps.
  4. In a separate large bowl whisk together: eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Mix well.
  5. Add the dry mix in increments to the wet ingredients and mix well.
  6. Add the hot water to the batter, mix well.
  7. Equally divide batter between the pans. 2½ cups in each pan.
  8. Bake in center of preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until toothpick comes out clean or with crumbs. (baking time varies with all ovens keep eye on cake)
  9. Let the cakes cool completely in pans on a wire rack.
  10. Take out cakes from pan and wrap in plastic wrap and keep in fridge to chill. (chilled/frozen cakes are much easier to handle)
  12. Use a handheld or stand mixer with the whisk attachment.
  13. Sift the powdered sugar and cocoa powder together to get all the lumps out.
  14. Beat the room temp. butter on medium speed until creamy and light in color. This will take few minutes.Add salt and whisk again. Than start adding the sugar and cocoa powder in increments. Add vanilla and heavy cream. Whip for few minutes scrapping sides of bowl as needed. Frosting should be silky, smooth and fluffy not stiff. Add more powdered sugar if frosting is too thin or add more heavy cream a tablespoon at a time if frosting too stiff or thick. It should be spreadable. Make sure to give it a taste and adjust salt to taste.
  16. Once the cakes have been chilled. I prefer to chill cakes overnight.
  17. If cakes have dome on top you want to level the cakes. Take a serrated knife and gently slice a thin layer off the tops to give the cake a flat surface. Just try to do your best, practice will make it better.
  18. Take a cake board if using one and take a small amount of frosting and spread in center of cake board before placing 1st layer of cake. This will help the cake stay in place as you are frosting.
  19. Evenly spread the top with frosting (I used about 1 full cup of frosting ) Just keep in mind you want enough frosting in the center.
  20. Top with 2nd layer of cake. Adjust it so it's even and gently push down on cake so it sits properly.
  21. Frost the sides and top of the cake with an offset spatula or use butter knife.
  22. Use back of small spoon to create swirls all over the cake to give it a rustic look.
  23. Decorate with what you like: candles, sprinkles, fresh fruit.
  24. I would definitely chill the cake before serving at least an hr. This holds the shape and will be much easier for you to slice. But since it's only 2 layers it should be fine without chilling for too long.
Recipe by Cooking With Shazia at