Easy Chocolate Layer Cake


I found this recipe on the back of a container of cocoa powder bought at Trader Joe’s. The title of the cake was the Greatest and Easiest Chocolate Cake. I admit, the title had me intrigued. So I copied down the recipe and threw away the container. When I went to bake the cake I decided the ingredients/directions didn’t make sense and I must have copied them wrong. How can you dump everything into a bowl (sticks of butter included) and come out with a nice lump-free batter?

So I googled Trader+Joe’s+easy+chocolate+cake and found several bloggers who successfully baked this cake and raved about it. None of them mentioned melting the butter or having a hard time mixing the ingredients. I was even more stumped.

So I departed slightly from the directions and mixed all the dry ingredients first, then added the buttermilk. Then I stood over my Kitchenaid butter sticks in hand watching the rotation of the mixer, closed my eyes and dropped one stick of butter into the mixture. The stick disappeared into the brown batter. I repeated that action two more times for the next two butter sticks with the same results. I was amazed. Then I added the eggs and some vanilla extract. And voila! Fifty-five minutes later the greatest and easiest cake emerged from my oven.


  • 3 1/3 c. flour
  • 1 1/3 c. cocoa
  • 3 c. sugar
  • 1 T. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 12 oz butter or margarine
  • 3 c. buttermilk
  • 5 eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease and flour two 9″ round baking pans.
  3. Place all ingredients in electric mixer bowl and beat on high speed for three minutes, scraping down sides of the bowl once during mixing.
  4. Pour into prepared pans. Bake for about 55 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

At first glance, this seemed like an unusually long time to bake two 9″ pans. However, when I poured the batter into my square baking pans I realized from the height of the batter that this recipe most likely makes a tall cake. And, yes, it really does take at least 55 minutes to bake.

I got so many rave reviews about this cake. And here’s a secret. I made it on Sunday and finished frosting it on Monday. I served it to people at work on Wednesday (and ate my last piece of cake Friday night) – the cake was still moist!

I used a Cooked Chocolate Frosting for the filling in between layers (and did a very thin layer of all over frosting) and then frosted it with Special Chocolate Buttercream Frosting. I would definitely suggest serving this cake to anyone who loves chocolate-chocolate-chocolate cake. I think it would easily be a best seller at my future bakery!

Recipe rating: 


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