Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner
18 servings (serving size: 1 piece)

Here's a moist, buttery dessert that can make any occasion a celebration. It was a favorite with our staffers, receiving top scores for its taste. Fresh edible flowers, such as mums, make an easy, pretty decoration; most people remove the flowers before eating the cake. If you're offering the cake at an informal gathering, serve it right from the pan.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

To prepare cake, coat bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with cooking spray (do not coat sides of pan); line bottom of pan with wax paper. Coat wax paper with cooking spray; dust with 1 tablespoon flour. Set aside.

Step 3

Combine 1/2 cup butter and sour cream in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Add granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Beat with a mixer at medium speed 3 minutes or until well blended. Add egg substitute; beat 2 minutes or until well blended.

Step 4

Lightly spoon 2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 2 cups flour, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring well with a whisk. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix after each addition. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sharply tap pan once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pan. Carefully peel off wax paper; cool completely on wire rack.

Step 5

To prepare frosting, place the cream cheese, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until fluffy. Add cocoa, milk, and 1/8 teaspoon salt; beat at low speed until well blended. Gradually add 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar; beat at low speed until creamy. Gradually add remaining 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar. Place cake on a serving platter. Spread frosting over top and sides of cake. Store cake loosely covered in the refrigerator.

Ratings & Reviews

NutsinNormal's Review

January 01, 2010
I'm not the world's best cake baker, but had good luck with this one! Flavor was rich, buttery and decadent. My only complaint was that it didn't rise as much as I would have liked-- might have been my pans or oven. The frosting is the best ever-- who knew you could improve on chocolate buttercream? I used low-fat milk instead of evaporated, which seemed to work fine. Made for a happy birthday...

July 15, 2015
Thanks for the egg amount,I don't use substitutes! Good to know from a tried a true baker!

November 22, 2016
agree completely~

lostgirl's Review

January 08, 2011
This cake was FABULOUS! I made it as a layer cake in 2 - 9 inch pans. I baked it for about 27 minutes at 350 and it rose beautifully. I made it for a family get together and I got rave reviews about it. I definitely recommend it.

tculauren's Review

November 10, 2011
My family absolutely loves this cake. They request it for every birthday. It is moist buttery and delicious. The frosting is rich and full of fudge flavor. It is a definite keeper!

THarris's Review

July 26, 2012
This cake is fabulous! Easy to make and delicious. So much better than box mix (which I use all the time) and I can't go on enough about the frosting! I made as directed but I used light ingredients instead of fat-free and light butter. It will definitely be a regular in my house.

d1i2a3n4e5's Review

August 03, 2013

smd1212's Review

February 04, 2014
This is a family favorite, and I've made it as a 13x9 and as a layer cake in two 8-inch pans. I use low-fat sour cream, Neufchâtel cheese and fat-free buttermilk, and 2 tablespoons regular milk in the frosting; I also use 3 large eggs instead of egg substitute. Easy to make and so yummy, especially with a cup of coffee for dessert - the cake is moist, buttery and delicious and the frosting is the perfect chocolate-y, creamy finishing touch (although I find 2-1/4 cups or so of powdered sugar is plenty for the frosting).

laurentcu's Review

June 05, 2013
This is the most requested birthday cake in our family/ Wonderful flavor , texture, and pretty too!

EmmaLee75's Review

March 22, 2013
Will definitely make this again. Like the other reviewers said the frosting is really delicious and rich. Also the serving size was good.