Here's the Authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe

Grandma loved this authentic German chocolate cake recipe. It makes a moist chocolate cake from scratch that tastes absolutely amazing. Some claim it's the best  chocolate dessert cake ever. It might even turn out to be your all-time favorite!

However, this wasn't the first published recipe for a German-style chocolate cake. There were others, and you'll find them below such as the Chocolate Loaf with its creamy chocolate frosting, and the Brod Torte that doesn't call for any flour at all.

You will be proud to serve these moist easy-to-make dessert cakes on special occasions or anytime you fancy treating yourself to something really special. Make one of these amazing German cakes today!

Authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe

Mom's Recipe Scrapbooks (c. 1920s)

German Chocolate Cake Served on a PlateEnjoy Homemade German Chocolate Cake With Frosting
(Source: ©bhofack2/

Grandma's Tip

Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate (48% cacao) might be unavailable in some grocery stores and locations.

You can substitute 1 ounce of Baker's Bittersweet Chocolate (66% cacao) plus 1 teaspoon sugar for each ounce of German's Sweet Chocolate called for in the authentic German chocolate cake recipe.

4 ounces Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk


For this authentic German chocolate cake recipe, melt chocolate in boiling hot water, then allow to cool. Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add 4 egg yolks to sugar mixture, one at a time, and beat well after each. Add melted chocolate and vanilla extract and mix well.

Sift together flour, salt, and baking soda into a large bowl and add alternatively with buttermilk to chocolate mixture, always beating well. Beat cake batter until smooth, then gently fold in 4 stiffly beaten egg whites. The sides of the cake were traditionally NOT frosted.

Pour batter into 3 round cake pans (deep 9-inch layer pans), lined on bottoms with parchment paper. Bake cake layers in moderate oven (350°F) 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Ice "top only" with the coconut pecan frosting and sprinkle a few pecan halves for decoration.

* German's is a trademark of General Foods Corp.

Coconut Pecan Frosting

Closeup of Coconut Pecan FrostingCoconut Pecan Frosting
(Source: ©bhofak2/

Authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipes call for this coconut pecan frosting to be spread on the top only, as the sides of the cake were left uncovered to display the golden filling between the layers.

1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup confectioners' sugar
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/3 cups flake coconut
1 cup chopped pecans

Combine evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, butter, and vanilla. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened, about 10 minutes. Add flake coconut and chopped pecans.

Beat frosting until thick enough to spread between cake layers and on top of the cake. Makes about 2-1/2 cups.

Good Pennsylvania-German Chocolate Cake Recipes

Mary at The Farm and Book of Recipes (1915)

Homemade Chocolate Loaf CakeMake an Old Fashioned Chocolate Loaf Cake
(Source: ©liv-friis-iarsen/123RF)

Delicious Chocolate Loaf Cake

Grandma's Tip

To maintain a moistness after baking and cooling, cover your cake with plastic wrap or keep in an airtight container until ready to serve.

1/2 cake of Baker's unsweetened chocolate (grated)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoonful vanilla
1/2 cup butter
1-1/2 to 2 cups flour
2 eggs
2 teaspoonfuls baking powder

Boil together chocolate, sugar and milk in a large saucepan. Add butter and when cool add yolk of eggs; then the flour, flavoring, and stiffly beaten whites of 2 eggs. Beat all thoroughly and bake (350°F) in a loaf or layers till done. Ice with creamy chocolate frosting, if desired.

Creamy Chocolate Frosting

Boil together 5 tablespoons grated chocolate, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons milk, and 1 egg in a medium saucepan. When the mixture begins to thicken and look creamy, spread on cake. If baked in layers, ice on top and between the two layers.

A Good, Cheap Chocolate Layer Cake

One cup of flour, 1 teaspoonful of baking powder and 1 cup of granulated sugar were sifted together into large bowl.

Two eggs were broken into a cup, also 1 large tablespoonful of melted butter, then fill up the cup with whole milk, add to sugar mixture, and beat all ingredients well together. Flavor with vanilla extract and add 2 extra tablespoonfuls of flour to the mixture. Bake (350°F) in two round layer cake pans.

Creamy Chocolate-Coffee Filling

Place the following mixture between the two cake layers: 1/2 cup of grated chocolate, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/4 cup of liquid hot coffee. Cook together a short time in a medium saucepan until the consistency of thick heavy cream, then spread as filling between layers.

Mary's Chocolate 3-Layer Cake

One-half cup of brown sugar, 1/2 cup of sweet milk and 1/2 cup of grated, unsweetened chocolate. Boil all together until thick as cream; allow it to cool.

Mix 1/2 cup of butter with 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Add two beaten eggs, 2/3 of a cup of sweet milk and vanilla flavoring to taste.

Beat this into the boiled mixture and add 2 cups of flour sifted with 2 teaspoonfuls of baking powder. Bake (350°F) in three layers and put together with cocoa cake filling.

Cocoa Cake Filling

1-1/2 cups pulverized sugar
1 tablespoonful butter, melted
2-1/2 tablespoonfuls cocoa powder
Cold coffee, enough
Vanilla extract

Place sugar, butter, and cocoa in a bowl and mix to a smooth paste with cold coffee. Flavor to taste with vanilla and spread on cake.

Chocolate Brod Torte Recipe

Six yolks of eggs and 1 cup sugar, creamed together. Beat about 15 minutes. Add 1 teaspoonful allspice, 1 teaspoonful cloves, 1 cup Baker's bittersweet chocolate, which had been grated, melted and cooled; 1 cup stale rye bread crumbs, crushed fine with rolling-pin. Lastly, add the stiffly beaten whites of 6 eggs, a pinch of salt and 1/2 teaspoonful of baking powder sifted over the batter.

Put into a small cake pan and bake half an hour in a moderate oven (375°F). When eggs are cheap and plentiful and when you have left over rye bread, this is an economical cake, as NO flour is used. It is a delicious and resembles an ordinary chocolate cake.

About the Authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe

German Chocolate Cake With Coconut Pecan FrostingThe Original German Chocolate Cake With Frosting
(Source: Adapted from Vintage Magazine)

Who invented the German Chocolate Cake? The amazing thing is this is NOT of "German" origin at all, it's an American creation! Believe it or not, the authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe had its origins in the American Midwest.

In 1957, Mrs. George Clay from Dallas, Texas published a recipe for "German's Chocolate Cake" that called for Baker's sweet chocolate.

A Walter Baker & Company employee, an English immigrant named Samuel German, invented "German's Sweet Chocolate" back in 1852, and "German's Chocolate" became associated with the cake, and it simply became known as the German Chocolate Cake.

Vintage German Sweet Chocolate WrapperGerman Sweet Chocolate
(Source: Chocolate and Cocoa Recipes, 1909)

The delicious moist cake has a Sweet Chocolate flavor, a crunchy gooey coconut pecan filling, and a topping of coconut-pecan frosting which is its traditional frosting.

This famous cake is perfect for birthdays when served with a favorite ice cream, and it's a classic dessert cake to serve and enjoy anytime. For more information about its history, see Wikipedia.

However, the authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe wasn't the first of its kind published in North America, as there were numerous others that also called for Baker's Chocolate, including Mary's traditional Chocolate Loaf Cake with its creamy chocolate frosting.

Homemade Chocolate LoafChocolate Loaf Baked to Perfection
(Source: ©liv-friis-iarsen/123RF)

These homemade German chocolate cakes are easy to make, and they call for all-natural, ingredients. You'll love making them, and you'll love eating them even more. They're chock full of goodness, and they are sure to become family favorites.

So by all means, try the authentic German Chocolate Cake Recipe, but try the other cake recipes also.

* German's is a trademark of General Foods Corp.

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