Chocolate Dump-It Cake
An old-fashioned recipe for chocolate dump-it cake mixed together in one pot, topped with a tangy cream cheese-chocolate frosting.
Since we talked about chocolate yesterday, I thought today would be a great day to share this new-to-me chocolate cake recipe – chocolate dump-it cake!
I saw this recipe from the New York Times pop up in my Facebook feed a couple of weeks ago and immediately bookmarked it to try. It’s called a chocolate dump-it cake because the entire batter is mixed together (i.e. “dumped”) in one pot, which is very similar to Texas sheet cake, which I love so much. I was also smitten with the recipe since, after reading the comments, it became apparent that this is a very old recipe, dating back to the 1930s or ’40s… I am a huge sucker for old-fashioned recipes (the wacky cake is similar!), so making this one was a no-brainer!
I read through all of the comments on the recipe and ended up making a few tweaks based on recommendations from those who had already made it. The changes I made:
- The original recipe calls for using a 9-inch tube pan, which is apparently a very old-school type of pan that isn’t sold anymore (it’s different than tube pans that we’re used to for things like angel food cake), so I went ahead and kept with the simple theme of this cake and baked it in a 9×13-inch pan. I think this would also be perfect as a Bundt cake!
- Instead of using whole milk and vinegar, I used buttermilk. I had a quart in the refrigerator so easy substitution! If this was a very old recipe, I’m guessing that buttermilk wasn’t always readily available.
- I increased the amount of chocolate in the recipe from 4 ounces to 5 ounces to give it more of an oomph.
- The original frosting recipe was simply melted semisweet chocolate stirred into sour cream, and the overwhelming majority said it was just way, way to tangy to be enjoyable. I swapped it out with a chocolate-cream cheese frosting – still a bit of tang from the cream cheese, but way sweeter than just chocolate and sour cream would be.
- Another suggestion that I didn’t do, is to swap coffee for the water to help boost the chocolate flavor even more. I love this idea, and will try it next time!
The final result? An absolutely phenomenal, sky-high, moist chocolate cake, and this was my first time trying a chocolate-cream cheese frosting – it might be my new favorite! DELICIOUS!
You’ve probably heard me say a million times that I prefer a high frosting to cake ratio, and this cake turned that on its head. It was great with a big ol’ scoop of vanilla ice cream, and everyone else thought the massive pieces were heaven.
This is a fabulous recipe when you need a quick and easy dessert that is sure to please – I was able to throw it together between Joseph going to bed and hitting the couch for a Netflix binge on Friday night!
Chocolate Dump-It Cake
For the Cake:
- 2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar
- 5 ounces (141.75 g) unsweetened chocolate
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter
- 1 cup (250 ml) water
- 1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Chocolate-Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 8 ounces (226.8 g) cream cheese, at room temperature
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 cups (360 g) powdered sugar
- ½ cup (43 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Make the Cake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- In a medium saucepan, stir together the sugar, unsweetened chocolate, butter and water. Place over medium heat and stir occasionally until all of the ingredients are completely melted together. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
- Whisk in the buttermilk and egg. Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt into the pot in three additions, whisking gently to combine after each addition. Add the vanilla and whisk briefly to blend.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread into an even layer. Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 to 40 minutes. Allow the cake to cool completely before frosting.
- Make the Frosting: Using an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until creamy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed. Sift in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder, then add the salt. Mix on low speed until well combined, scrape down the bowl, then increase to medium-high speed and beat until smooth and whipped, about 1 minute. Add the vanilla extract and beat on medium-high for an additional 1 minute.
- Spread the frosting evenly over the top of the cake. The cake can be stored, covered, at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.