Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake

Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake

Texas takes full credit for creating the Texas sheet cake.  While they have every reason to be proud of this delightful cake, the actual origins are a bit fuzzy and there are competing claims to title of first Texas sheet cake.

A Great Recipe For Texas Sheet.

Some bakers think that the Texas sheet cake is actually a variation of a German sweet chocolate cake but with a different frosting.  Instead of using a boiled coconut and pecan topping, this cake uses a boiled chocolate and powdered sugar frosting that is applies while the cake is still warm.  Buttermilk is a key ingredient in both recipes.  While both cakes look different the actual Texas sheet cake component without the topping is very similar to the German sweet chocolate cake.  Regardless of who created this dessert first, the bottom line is a delicious cake with an addictive frosting.

Using A Baking Sheet

Most cakes are baked using a cake-specific pan.  It may be a square pan or a round cake pan.  You might use a bundt pan or an angel food cake pan.  This recipe goes in a different direction and uses a rimmed baking sheet.  Every kitchen should have a few baking sheets and you want to make sure you are using a sheet that has not been used to roast meats or vegetables.  They can leave some unwanted residue, despite your best cleaning efforts.

You will want to use a greased baking sheet that is 15″ X 10″.  Some bakers call this a jelly roll pan but it is actually a baking sheet and this size is very common. Don’t use parchment paper or a silicone mat to line the sheet, you need to grease and flour the bottom and sides for best results.

One point of contention is how to mix the batter.  Most purists insist that the right way to mix this cake is with a wooden spoon, not an electric mixer.  I have used my stand mixer at times and the results were fine.  However, you can over beat this recipe easily with a stand mixer, you may want to use a wooden spoon and spatula.

Texas Sheet Cake Ingredients

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 cup water

4 tablespoons cocoa

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla

Texas Sheet Cake Directions

Heat your oven to 350 degrees.

Grease and flour and 15″ X 10″ baking sheet.

In a 3 quart saucepan mix the butter, oil water and cocoa and bring to a boil.

In a separate large bowl add the flour, sugar, eggs, cinnamon, buttermilk, baking soda and vanilla.  Mix well.

Gradually blend the butter mixture into the flour mixture, stirring until all of the liquids are incorporated into the flour.

Pour into your grease baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Let the cake cool only for 5 minutes before topping with the frosting.

A Texas Sheet Cake Before Frosting.

Texas Sheet Cake Frosting Ingredients

1/2 cup butter

6 tablespoons milk

2 tablespoons cocoa

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 box powdered sugar

1 cup chopped nuts (optional).  Pecans are the most commonly used nut.

Add the butter, milk, cocoa and vanilla to a 3 quart sauce pan and bring to boil.

Once the mixture has started to boil, remove the pan from the stove and stir in the powdered sugar and optional nuts.

After the cook has cooled for only 5 minutes you need to pour the frosting over the cake and spread evenly.

Let the cake and frosting cool completely before attempting to cut.

A Texas Sheet Cake Frosted Without Nuts

A Few Tips

You can make your own buttermilk by adding 1 teaspoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to 1 cup of milk.  I prefer to use buttermilk as opposed to this shortcut but making your own buttermilk will work just fine.

It’s important to pour the frosting on the cake within a few minutes of pulling the cake out of the oven.  If you delay your frosting won’t set very well and the end result might be a gooey mess.

Most recipes call for dark unsweetened cocoa powder.  Don’t use semi-sweet, you are adding sugar to the recipe.