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Perfect German chocolate cake recipe

Perfect German chocolate cake recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Cake
  • Chocolate cake

A light chocolate cake is topped with a rich, caramel flavoured, coconut and pecan icing.

179 people made this

IngredientsServes: 24

  • 115g dark baking chocolate
  • 125ml water
  • 250g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 225g butter, softened
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 250ml buttermilk
  • 4 egg whites
  • 340ml evaporated milk
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 175g butter
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 225g desiccated coconut
  • 165g chopped pecans

MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:45min ›Extra time:3hr cooling › Ready in:4hr15min

  1. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4. Line bottom of 20x30cm baking tin with baking parchment.
  2. Microwave chocolate and water on high for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Stir halfway through. Stir until all is melted and smooth.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, cream 225g butter and 400g sugar until light and fluffy. Add 4 egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in chocolate and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk. Beat after each addition until smooth.
  5. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites on high until soft peaks form. Gently fold into batter. Pour into prepared tin.
  6. Bake at 180 C / Gas 4 for 30 minutes or until skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean. Allow to cool.
  7. Combine milk, 300g sugar, 175g butter, 4 egg yolks and 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla in large saucepan. Cook and stir on medium heat for about 12 minutes or until thick and golden brown. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut and pecans. Cool to room temperature and spreading consistency. Spread over cake.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(196)

Reviews in English (159)

Very nice chocolate cake, moist and very tasty; i have made it a few times now as well and it always goes down a treat with everyone-28 Feb 2011

by Jay Eubanks

A couple of pointers if you're considering trying this recipe for the first time. ICING-1.) Make the icing FIRST. You're essentially making candy (creamy caramel) with this icing, which means it will be very hot when done. It takes a LONG time to cool to spreading consistency. If you make it first and then put it to the side, once your cake layers have cooled, it will be ready to spread. 2.) For a nice texture, cut the chopped pecans in a food chopper to small pieces. 3.) Is my icing thick enough? Don't follow the 12 minutes exactly. Instead, stir constantly and remember, think candy. Once the sauce has thickened and begins to come to a soft-rolling boil, it's ready. It should have a creamy caramel look and coat the spoon completely when you dip it and take it out. 4.) Use room temperature egg yolks and mix them well. Cold egg yolks may curdle and cook. You'll see them, they'll be the yellow pieces of rubber swimming around in the sugar mixture. CAKE-5.) Use cake flour and sift the dry ingredients together (take pride in your cake!). 6.) The same ingredients will make and frost a 3-layer 9-inch round cake. 7.) This is a light & moist cake, so remember that the layers will crack easily. Don't worry, just use the icing to "spackle" it back together. Your guests will be too busy licking the cake off-26 Dec 2008

by JeniG

This cake turned out really well. I had gotten sick of paying $2.50 per slice at the grocery for German Chocolate cake so thought it was about time I made my own.The sponge is light and moist. The frosting is yummy and I had to be careful not to eat it all before it went on the cake.Just a word of warning, make sure you seperate the egg yolks really well for the frosting. I got a little white in the mix and ended up with boiled egg type lumps in the frosting. Fortunately they were big enough to pick out and didn't spoil the frosting.The recipe is a little fiddly compared to a standard sponge and take a little while, but the texture makes it worth the time investment. I would recommend making this recipe.-28 Mar 2007

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Preheat your oven and prepare your pans for this German chocolate cake

The best way to begin any recipe is by reading it in full before doing anything. That way, you know what to expect and can mise en place ahead of time, minimizing any room for mistakes.

Okay, so now that you've read your German chocolate cake recipe and you're ready to begin, step one is always preheating your oven and preparing your pans. For this recipe, we need three six-inch cake pans lined with parchment. The easiest way to do this is to simply trace the pan onto the parchment and then cut out your circles. Coat each pan with cooking spray, and then set them aside as we begin the cake.

How to Make a Chocolate Cake

First, I recommend reading through the ingredients and making sure everything is out and ready. The eggs and buttermilk should be room temperature so getting them out of the fridge ahead of time will solve that for you. (Same with the butter in the chocolate buttercream recipe.) Here are some egg substitutes you could try if needed.

Make sure dry ingredients are sifted and measured properly. When measuring flour, get out your container or bag. Open it and use a fork to stir it, or sift it, loosening it up. Spoon the flour into a dry measure cup then use the back of a knife to level the cup off. (Or you can measure your ingredients on a scale.)

Use the proper tools. For instance, this recipe used a stand mixer. You can use a hand-held mixer (or even stir by hand) but make sure the ingredients are fully mixed and incorporated before moving on to the next step in the recipe.

Use the best quality ingredients if you are able! Dark cocoa’s or high-quality cocoa, fresh eggs, and good quality vanilla make a difference! Feel free to upgrade to all organic ingredients. When it comes to substitutions though, I do recommend making the recipe as-is first, then altering it to make it yours. If you are making adaptations at a higher altitude, be sure to check out my High Altitude Baking Tips .

This is one of the best chocolate cake recipes I have ever had the pleasure of eating. It’s moist and fudgy but still has a light cake crumb. It’s got a depth of flavor (which I would attribute to the coffee) and a distinct rich deep chocolate essence.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

I am often asked how to make this recipe gluten-free. I recommend a good quality gluten-free flour that can be used interchangeably with all-purpose flour. This recipe is best when gluten is used, but will still taste delicious with gluten-free flour.

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Chocolate Wedding Cake

Folks often ask if this is like bakery chocolate cake, or if it can be used in wedding cakes. Yes and no. The flavor and consistency are very similar to a bakery chocolate cake except that it is MORE moist in my experience. Can you make a wedding cake with this recipe? Well, that really depends on the type of wedding cake you are making. The highest I have ever stacked this cake is 4 layers, so I cannot speak its’s durability beyond that. If you are covering this chocolate cake recipe with fondant it may not stand up because of the moisture level.

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How To Make A German Chocolate Cake

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A few months ago, my Uncle Larry asked me to make him a German Chocolate Cake for his birthday. I really haven’t made many German Chocolate Cakes over the years, but because he’s been sick for several months, I wanted to not only make him one… I wanted it to be excellent!!

Other than requesting the cake, the most important thing he asked was that I pile on lots and lots of the Coconut Pecan Frosting. Lots of frosting? Yes, I think I can handle that!

As I was looking for a good recipe, there were just so many out there that looked good and I was surprised to learn that German Chocolate Cake is considered a “guy’s cake”. Why is that, I wonder?

It was listed as a favorite of men, perfect for Father’s Day and Dad’s birthday desserts… everywhere I turned, it was decidedly a masculine dessert. I was baffled.

But I’m here to tell you… this cake will be a crowd-pleaser for men and women! It’s filling and chocolatey and rich and has loads of texture with the roasted coconut and pecans. Maybe the men will go crazy for it, but the women will be coming back for seconds too!

Oooh, and while my favorite pictures of this cake were of the “naked” layers… it was also very pretty once I covered the whole thing in the Coconut Pecan Frosting (as requested!).

So, without further delay… let me share the recipe with You. If you’d like to see this recipe as cupcakes, be sure to check out my post here: German Chocolate Cupcakes with Coconut Pecan Frosting and Milk Chocolate Buttercream.

This recipe was slightly adapted from The Cake Mix Doctor Returns cookbook.

Here’s what you’ll need for the cake:

1 (4 oz.) bar of German’s sweet chocolate (I prefer Baker’s brand OR you could also substitute 4 oz. of milk chocolate chips)

1 (16.5 oz.) box of German Chocolate cake mix

1 (3.5 oz.) box of instant vanilla pudding

1 (12 oz) can of evaporated milk

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

12 tablespoons salted butter

4 large egg yolks, slightly beaten

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

2 cups sweetened, flaked coconut

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly spray (3) 8″ round pans with cake release spray (or a homemade version).

2. Break the milk chocolate bar into pieces (or milk chocolate chips) and place them in a microwave safe dish. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds until the chocolate is completely melted.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the melted chocolate, cake mix, flour, pudding mix, water, sour cream, oil, and eggs. Beat on low until the ingredients are incorporated and then on high for 2 more minutes. The batter will be smooth and thick.

4. Divide the batter evenly into (3) 8″ pans.

5. Bake until the top springs back when touches, usually for 28-32 minutes.

While the cake is baking, make the frosting:

1. Place the evaporated milk, sugar, butter, egg yolks and vanilla in a large boiler over medium heat.

2. Cook, stirring constantly, until thick and golden brown. This took about 12 minutes for me.

3. Remove from the heat and stir in the coconut and pecans. Allow it to cool to room temperature (I stuck mine in the frig – it got a little too thick, but it worked!). It’ll take at least 30 minutes to cool to room temperature if left out.

Assemble the cake by alternating layers of cake and frosting. I love the look of piling up the frosting between layers and then a big pile on top OR you could do thinner layers between the cakes and cover the entire outside with frosting. I recommend covering the entire outside if you will not be serving immediately so the cake does not dry out.

It&rsquos the frosting, which is made egg yolks, milk, pecans and coconut are added in at the end. To keep this sugar free and keto friendly, I used Swerve brown sugar, heavy cream, and unsweetened coconut. You can find out more about Swerve, a powdered erythritol here.

Choc Zero Maple Syrup Option instead of Brown Sugar

One day I was out of Swerve brown sugar and used Swerve granulated and a tablespoon of Choc Zero Maple Syrup. It worked out wonderfully. You could also use only the Swerve granulated, as I realize the brown sugar and Choc Zero Maple syrup may not be available.

The BEST German Chocolate Cake (video)

One of the most iconic chocolate cake recipes – German chocolate cake is unbeatable! My recipe for this classic coconut cake includes rich chocolate cake layers, classic American chocolate buttercream, the classic pecan and coconut custard filling, chocolate ganache as garnish and more toasted coconut flakes! This stunning cake is simply the best and it’s almost too pretty to eat, almost! And, try my new ‘German Chocolate Cheesecake’, too!

Watch My Video!

Watch my video recipe for step-by-step instructions for assembling this incredible chocolate cake! Want to receive new recipe emails in your inbox? Make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel and turn on notifications!

German Chocolate Cake

Did you know that this cake actually has nothing to do with Germany? That’s right! It’s named after the man who invented the dark chocolate that is used in the original recipe, Samuel German. The chocolate recipe can be traced back to 1852! Then in 1957 Mrs. George Clay came up with this cake recipe, using German’s iconic baker’s chocolate. This version with chocolate buttercream and ganache pays tribute to the original in the prettiest way possible!

How It’s Made: The Chocolate Cake

This incredible coconut cake starts with delicate chocolate cake layers. For this recipe, I used my ‘Perfect Chocolate Cake’recipe from my ‘Back to Cake Basics’ series and made 1 1/2 portions of the recipe to make thick layers of cake. It’s the perfect cake recipe – rich, chocolate-y and very moist! It’s made with a combination of cocoa powder and melted chocolate to get the most flavor. This cake is very moist but if desired, a syrup can be used to soak the layers. Simply combine 1 cup hot water with 1/2 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons coconut extract. Stir the sugar and water until the sugar is completely dissolved. Allow the syrup to cool, then transfer into a dispenser bottle for soaking the cake layers.

The Coconut Pecan Filling

The cake layers are then filled with the iconic German chocolate cake filling made with toasted coconut and pecans. The classic coconut custard filling is super easy to make! It’s made with egg yolks, sugar, butter and evaporated milk. When making the custard, make sure to continuously stir it with a rubber spatula to avoid burning it. Also, don’t allow the custard to boil which can cause it to separate low and slow does it! And then go in the toasted coconut flakes and chopped pecans. I love using unsweetened coconut flakes because the filling is already sweet enough. Make sure the filling is completely cooled before using in the cake! Otherwise, the buttercream will melt. I spread the filling onto a baking sheet and place it into the fridge for faster cooling!

The Chocolate Buttercream

Sticking with the classic American theme of this recipe, I use my ‘Basic Chocolate Buttercream’ recipe for this cake. It’s a super simple and delicious frosting that’s perfect for this cake! If you don’t like American buttercream, this cake will work with other buttercreams! Try making a chocolate version of my ‘French Buttercream’ by adding a few tablespoons of cocoa powder. Also, my ‘Italian Meringue Buttercream’ can be made chocolate with 2 tablespoons cocoa powder and 1/2 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate chips.

The Garnishes

And to finish off this stunning cake, I went with a combination of my classic ‘Chocolate Ganache’, the remaining toasted coconut flakes, dollops of chocolate buttercream and the coconut pecan filling. To add the toasted coconut, I just lightly pressed it into the sides of the cake, gently into the buttercream. When making the chocolate ganache, allow it to cool until it’s room temperature and then garnish the cake. Hot chocolate and buttercream don’t mix!

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Looking for more incredible cake recipes? Here are some similar recipes on my blog you’re sure to enjoy!

3 Tips for the Best German Chocolate Cake Ever

Before you head into the kitchen to bake this cake, keep these tips in mind:

1. Use a high-quality semisweet chocolate: The predominant flavor of the cake is the chocolate, so you want to use one that tastes really good. For this recipe we recommend using semisweet chocolate that’s around 60 percent cocoa solids, which gives the cake a strong chocolate flavor without being bitter. Our favorite brands are Ghirardelli, Valrhona, or Scharffen Berger.

2. Bring the cake ingredients to room temperature before making the batter: Because you’ll add warm melted chocolate to the cake batter, it’s important that all of the ingredients for the batter are at room temperature. If your eggs or butter are too cold, you run the risk of the batter splitting. (If this does happen, you can still bake the cake — but the texture of the baked cake might be a bit denser).

3. Toast your pecans: This recipe calls for toasted pecans, which add a deep, nutty flavor to the cake. If you only have raw pecans on hand, you can quickly toast them by placing them in a medium skillet over medium heat and toasting them until they’re fragrant and lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes.


  1. For cake layers
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
    • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
    • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3/4 cup whole milk
    • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    • 1 large egg
    • 1 large egg yolk
    • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
    • 3/4 cup boiling-hot water
  2. For filling
    • 7 ounces sweetened flaked coconut
    • 4 ounces coarsely chopped pecans (1 cup)
    • 14-ounces can sweetened condensed milk
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  3. For glaze
    • 2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
    • 10 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate
    • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  4. Special Equipment
    • 3 (9-inch) round cake pans

German Chocolate Cake

German Chocolate Cake is a sweet chocolate cake that is filled and frosted with rich, sticky coconut, and pecan filling. Despite its name, the cake isn't German at all. In fact, it's an American creation. The cake was originally created using a specific type of chocolate that a chocolatier named Samuel German had created: German Chocolate. We call for the use of German chocolate in this recipe (you can find it in most supermarkets), but any chocolate around 48% cocoa will work.

Admittedly, this dessert doesn't have the strongest chocolate flavor and is meant for those who prefer things on the sweet side. Even still, we couldn't resist adding chocolate ganache to go in between the layers. Not only does it add decadence, but it helps keep the layers from falling apart!

Chocolate aside, let's talk about the best part: the filling. The toasted coconut and pecans mixed with evaporated milk and butter make a custardy, almost caramel-like filling is dangerously delicious. It's truly what makes the cake so unique.

Have you tried this yet? Let us know what you think in the comments below! And if you're a chocoholic, try our Classic Chocolate Cake.

Watch the video: Γευστικά Σιροπιαστά Μπισκότα με μήλο. Μια πολύ εύκολη συνταγή! (July 2022).


  1. Jacan

    Good little by little.

  2. Atsu

    You are absolutely right. In this nothing there is a good idea. I agree.

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