The Fifties are having a moment—-fondue pots in every kitchen, aspic salads, big hair, big tail fins on two-tone cars, Elvis, and Coca Cola Cake.  A sweet, very, very chocolate layer cake, flavor-boosted with vanilla and not one, but two shots of Coca Cola. Shown here is a small 6” cake for 2-4, but this recipe is easily doubled for 8-9” cake pans.  Use your judgement about doubling the cocoa!!  The only tricky part is the frosting–start with that.


  • 2 cups real (not Diet) Coca Cola
  • 5 Tblsp soft cream cheese
  • 5 Tblsp soft salted butter
  • 2-3 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • A little vanilla

Put 2 cups of Coca Cola in small sauce pan—heat to boiling, reduce heat, stir frequently, and simmer briskly to reduce to about 2 tblsps of syrup.  Watch it closely after about 30 mins—don’t let it burn.  Let cool. 

While cake bakes, beat butter and cream cheese.  Add vanilla, then sifted powdered sugar, ½ cup at a time, and beat about 4 minutes, until shiny.  Add cool reserved syrup and beat well.  Frosting should be light and fluffy.


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2-4 tblsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ cup butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup Coca Cola
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ¼ cup buttermilk (or milk with a little vinegar added)
  • 1 large egg
  • Vanilla to taste

Line bottoms of two 6” round cake pans with parchment paper circles—butter bottoms and sides of pans.  In stand mixer, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder and soda.  Scatter pieces of soft butter on dry ingredients and beat on low about 2 minutes.  Whisk Coca Cola, oil, buttermilk, egg and vanilla in separate bowl.  Add to dry ingredients 1/3 cup at a time—beat 2 minutes after each addition.  Pour equal amounts of batter into prepared pans.  Bake at 350’ about 30 minutes—clean toothpick test.  Cool completely. 

Frost both layers and sides generously—making pretty swirls.

The Kitchen Hive

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