Extra moist, richly chocolatey, smothered with a glossy fudge frosting, this Texas Sheet Cake recipe takes the classic you know and love and amps it up a notch. I’ve tweaked this recipe to absolute perfection and I think you’ll love my take on this well-loved sheet cake. Recipe includes a how-to video!
I’m so in love with this cake. The tender chocolate crumb, the sleek, fudgy, shiny frosting, how simple it is to make…
Chocolate lovers, you’re going to want to try this one.
Chances are you’ve had or at least heard of Texas sheet cake before (fun fact: Texas sheet cake didn’t actually originate in Texas, just like German chocolate cake isn’t from Germany!). It’s a southern classic, baked in a jelly roll pan and perfect for bringing to a party or potluck. Or polishing off by yourself, I don’t judge.
Texas sheet cake is a classic, and the age-old recipe was almost perfect as-is. Almost. You know I can’t resist tweaking anything I try, and this recipe was no exception. I wanted the crumb to be just a bit softer, moister, more flavorful, and richer than the original, and oh did we get there. I took a few notes from my (best ever) chocolate cake recipe:
- Brown sugar in addition to granulated adds both moisture and a depth of flavor.
- A splash of vanilla extract, for added flavor of course.
- A sprinkle of instant coffee enhances the chocolate flavor without making the cake taste like coffee.
- Extra cocoa powder, for an even more intense chocolate flavor.
These small modifications make this cake a chocolate-lover’s dream.
And that frosting! That beautifully glossy blanket of chocolate fudge frosting is simple to make and absolutely heavenly. It’s made on the stovetop like a ganache, but it’s not quite as heavy, instead it’s light and melts in your mouth, giving way to that perfect chocolate crumb.
Chances are you won’t have any leftovers. But just in case you want to make it in advance:
Texas sheet cake can be stored covered or in an airtight container at room temperature for several days. It will keep longer in the refrigerator, but keep in mind that the fridge tends to dry out cakes, even if they are covered. This cake can also be frozen. Allow it to cool completely and then cover tightly with plastic wrap and freeze for up to 2-3 months.
Enjoy! For a peanut buttery variation, try my peanut butter sheet cake!
More Chocolate Recipes to Try:
Let’s bake together! Head on over to my YouTube channel where I’ve already uploaded over 200 recipe videos that you can watch for free!
The Best Texas Sheet Cake Recipe
- 1 cup unsalted butter cut into 8 pieces (226g)
- 1 cup water (235ml)
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder (33g)
- 1/2 cup sour cream (125g)
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (250g)
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar (300g)
- ½ cup light brown sugar, firmly packed (100g)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee optional
- 6 Tablespoons whole milk
- 1/2 cup salted butter cut into pieces (113g)
- 6 Tablespoons natural cocoa powder
- 4 cups powdered sugar sifting is recommended (after measuring) to avoid any lumps (500g)
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup toasted pecans optional, see note
- Preheat oven to 350F (175C) and thoroughly grease and flour a 10x15 jelly roll pan (or spray with baking spray).
- Combine butter, water, and cocoa powder in a medium-sized saucepan over low heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted. Increase heat to medium and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool for 15-20 minutes.
- While butter/cocoa mixture is cooling, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and instant coffee in a large bowl.
- In another bowl, whisk together sour cream and eggs and vanilla. Stir this into your dry ingredients until combined.
- Once the chocolate mixture has cooled for at least 15 minutes, stir into your flour/sour cream mixture until mixture is smooth and completely combined.
- Spread batter into prepared jelly roll pan and bake on 350F (175C) for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs.
- Once cake has finished baking (or several minutes before), begin preparing frosting.
- Combine milk and butter in a medium-sized saucepan and cook over medium/low heat until butter is melted. Once butter has melted, remove from heat and whisk in cocoa powder until combined. Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract and whisk until smooth.
- Pour over cake while cake is still warm. If using pecans, sprinkle over frosting now.
- Allow frosting to harden (about one hour) and then slice and serve!