Best Chocolate Cake

Serves: 10Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 1 hourDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 10


  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 2⁄3 tsp. vanilla extract, divided
  • 1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 1⁄4 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1⁄8 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1⁄4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, divided
  • 2 oz. semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 2 Tbsp. light cream


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of 3 round cake pans (9 inches) with parchment paper and grease the sides.
  • In a large bowl, stir the shortening to soften. Gradually add the granulated sugar, creaming until light and fluffy. Mix in 2 teaspoons vanilla and chocolate. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and 1 teaspoon salt. Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Pour into the prepared pans.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. Cool on racks.
  • Meanwhile, in a bowl, cream the butter until light. Gradually stir in 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, then the melted chocolate, and then the rest of the sugar. Stir in remaining 2⁄3 teaspoon vanilla, remaining 1⁄8 teaspoon salt, and enough cream to create a good frosting consistency. Blend well.
  • Stack and frost the layers as desired.