Chocolate Sour Cream Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Chocolate cake
Ray Kachatorian/The Image Bank/Getty Images
  • 55 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 35 mins
  • Yield: 12 to 16 Servings
Ratings (5)

This sour cream chocolate cake is baked in 3 layers and frosted with a creamy chocolate butter frosting. 

Beaten egg whites are folded into the cake batter to incorporate more air make the cake lighter in texture. Use the included chocolate butter frosting or frost it with a vanilla or cream cheese frosting.

What You'll Need

  • 4 large eggs, divided
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, 9 ounces
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Butter Frosting
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 pound sifted confectioners' sugar (about 4 1/4 cups sifted, 3 3/4 cups unsifted)
  • dash salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 squares melted unsweetened chocolate
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream or half-and-half (more or less)

How to Make It

  1. Heat the oven to 350 F (180 C/Gas 4). Line three 8-inch layer cake pans with parchment paper or wax paper.
  2. Separate 3 of the eggs as follows:
  3. Put one yolk in a separate bowl.
  4. Put two of the yolks in a bowl with the remaining whole egg.
  5. Put the three egg whites in another bowl and set aside. 
  6. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, whisk the cocoa, 3/4 cup of the granulated sugar, the one egg yolk, and the milk until well blended. Cook until thickened, stirring constantly to prevent sticking. Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool.
  1. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, cream the 1/2 cup of softened butter until light and fluffy; add the remaining 1 cup of granulated sugar, beating until well blended. Add the whole egg and 2 egg yolks; mix well.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; stir or whisk to blend thoroughly. Stir the dry ingredients into the batter, alternating with the sour cream. Add the vanilla and cocoa mixture and blend thoroughly
  3. Beat the 3 egg whites until stiff; fold into cake batter.
  4. Divide the batter evenly among the three prepared baking pans.
  5. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.
  6. Turn out onto racks and peel off the parchment paper. Cool.
  7. Frost with the included chocolate butter frosting or this  Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting. Or use your favorite frosting.

Chocolate Butter Frosting

  1. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, cream the 1/2 cup of softened butter; gradually add sifted confectioners' sugar. Add a dash of salt, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, the melted chocolate, and about 3 tablespoons of cream.
  2. Beat until smooth and spreading consistency, adding more cream if necessary.

Reader Comments

  • "Love this cake. I didn't think the frosting was going to work with the cake but it does. I used evaporated milk as I was out of half and half and it was perfect. My 8-year-old daughter helped to make it and she loved the results...a lot!" E. Burton
  • "I didn't actually make the cake, but I needed a chocolate frosting recipe. This one was FANTASTIC! Very smooth and sweet without being overpowering." A.C.

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