This easy-to-make Double Chocolate Snack Cake is quick and perfect for any time you get a snack attack for chocolate cake.
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Chocolate cake is one of our family’s favourites. I have so many different recipes for chocolate cakes. But this recipe for Double Chocolate Snack Cake is the one I make the most. Easy to make and bake in 30 minutes*, this cake is definitely one of my most requested cakes and one I don’t mind making.
Why is this a snack cake? Well, it’s because it is great for snacking. It is not a fancy cake that I serve for special occasions. It can be served anytime including birthdays and celebrations but I prefer fancier cakes for those occasions. This cake is more of an everyday kind of cake.
Moist and Delicious
The addition of buttermilk in this cake is what makes it so moist by breaking down the gluten in the flour. Buttermilk also adds a slight tang to the cake. If you don’t have buttermilk, sour cream or plain yogurt can be substituted. Full-fat milk can also be used. Less oil is used in this recipe because of the use of buttermilk.
The use of freshly brewed strong coffee also brings out the flavours of the chocolate. I like to use espresso coffee because it is stronger than the coffee I usually drink, extra dark coffee is also a good choice. Since I have a single-serve coffee maker, I always keep my favourite espresso k-cups on hand. It really tastes better with coffee added but if you prefer, you can use hot, not boiling, water.
Both unsweetened cocoa powder and semi-sweet chocolate are used in this recipe. This is where the double chocolate comes into play. The two chocolates combined in this cake along with the coffee are what bring out the rich chocolate flavours.
Almond extract is used to add just a slightly nutty flavour. If you are allergic to almonds or do not have almond extract, it can be omitted or you can add an additional 1 tsp vanilla extract.
The frosting for this snack cake is made from butter, shortening and buttermilk, making it a rich addition to a moist cake. It is creamy but not overly sweet. This chocolate frosting really compliments the flavours in the cake.
There is less confectioner’s sugar in this frosting than in a usual frosting recipe. It is smooth, creamy and less sweet than other frostings. This frosting has a more buttery flavour that doesn’t overpower the flavours of the chocolate in the cake.
(I make the frosting using a hand mixer but it can also be made with a stand mixer. When it comes to my recipes I like to try the recipe using all the appliance options to make sure the results will be the same with different appliances.)
There is usually leftover frosting when I make this cake. Other times I make a double batch of the cake and turn it into a layered cake. Any leftover frosting can be refrigerated in an air-tight container for use within two weeks. My kids like using leftover frosting for making cookie sandwiches with chocolate chip cookies.
This recipe makes a 9″ x 13″ cake. It can also be baked in two 8″ x 8″ square pans for sharing with friends and family.
The cake can be cut into squares for serving. Usually, I like to cut the cake into 16 pieces while my kids will cut it into 12 pieces.
When baking in 8″ x 8″ pans, there is enough frosting in this recipe to make a layered cake with frosting between the layers.
In summer when berries are in season, I top this snack cake with fresh strawberries or raspberries. The sweetness of the fresh berries adds extra flavour and makes a great summer dessert.
*Ovens due vary. 30 minutes is just how long it takes to bake in my oven.
Double Chocolate Snack Cake
- 1¾ cups all purpose flour
- 1¾ cups white sugar
- ¾ cups unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs
- t tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup freshly brewed strong coffee
- 3 oz semi sweet chocolate, melted
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- ½ cup all vegetable shortening
- 4 cups confectioner's sugar
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 13" x 9" cake pan. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk eggs and vegetable oil together.
- Add buttermilk, vanilla extract and almond extract to egg mixture and whisk until just blended together
- Add dry ingredients to buttermilk and egg mixture and stir until flour is just incorporated.
- Stir in freshly brewed coffee and melted chocolate and stir until blended and smooth
- Pour into prepared pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or until a toothpick or fork inserted in centre of cake comes out clean.
- Cool in pan for 45 minutes before frosting
- In a large bowl, beat together butter and shortening until smooth and creamy
- Add 2 cups of confectioner's sugar and beat on low until all sugar is blended in.
- Add remaining 2 cups of confectioner's sugar and cocoa powder, ad continue to beat until smooth
- Beat in buttermilk and vanilla extract. Frosting should be thick, but smooth and creamy
- Spoon half of frosting onto cooled cake.
- Spread frosting evenly over cake, adding more frosting to cover the top of cake completely.
- Cut into squares and serve.