Classic German Chocolate Cake

A Symphony of Sweetness: Crafting the Perfect Classic German Chocolate Cake

Embark on a delectable journey into the world of baking as we unravel the secrets behind creating the perfect Classic German Chocolate Cake. This iconic dessert, with its rich layers of moist chocolate cake, coconut-pecan frosting, and luscious chocolate ganache, is a celebration of flavors that has stood the test of time. Join us in exploring the meticulous steps to bake this indulgent masterpiece—a cake that not only tantalizes the taste buds but also evokes a sense of tradition and culinary artistry.


For the Chocolate Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

For the Coconut-Pecan Frosting:

  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups shredded sweetened coconut
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

For the Chocolate Ganache:

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 oz semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


Step 1: Baking the Chocolate Cake

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla extract to the dry ingredients. Mix until well combined.
  4. Gradually add boiling water to the batter, mixing on low speed. The batter will be thin, but that’s normal.
  5. Pour the batter evenly into the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Step 2: Crafting the Coconut-Pecan Frosting

  1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, butter, and vanilla extract.
  2. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens (approximately 10-12 minutes).
  3. Remove from heat and stir in shredded coconut and chopped pecans.
  4. Let the frosting cool to room temperature before spreading it between the cake layers.

Step 3: Preparing the Chocolate Ganache

  1. In a small saucepan, heat the heavy cream until it just begins to simmer.
  2. Place the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and pour the hot cream over it.
  3. Let it sit for a minute, then stir until smooth and glossy.
  4. Add butter and stir until fully incorporated.
  5. Allow the ganache to cool slightly before pouring it over the assembled cake.

Step 4: Assembling the Cake

  1. Place one cake layer on a serving plate and spread a generous layer of coconut-pecan frosting on top.
  2. Repeat this process with the remaining layers.
  3. Pour the chocolate ganache over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides.
  4. Spread the ganache with an offset spatula for a smooth finish.

Cook Notes:

Boiling Water Magic:

  • Don’t skip the boiling water in the cake batter—it intensifies the chocolate flavor and ensures a moist crumb.

Frosting Thickness Tip:

  • Adjust the thickness of the coconut-pecan frosting by adding more or less sugar, depending on your preference.


Expresso Elegance:

  • Infuse a layer of sophistication by adding a hint of espresso to the chocolate ganache.

Toasted Nut Twist:

  • Elevate the flavor profile by toasting the pecans before incorporating them into the coconut frosting.

Keto Version:

  • Replace all-purpose flour with almond flour, and use a low-carb sweetener in the cake and frosting. Consider a keto-friendly chocolate for the ganache.

Low-Carb Version:

  • Modify the cake by incorporating a mix of almond and coconut flour. Use a sugar substitute for the cake, and opt for unsweetened shredded coconut in the frosting.

In conclusion, the Classic German Chocolate Cake isn’t just a dessert—it’s a testament to the art of baking, a symphony of textures and flavors that captivates the senses. As you dive into the process of creating this indulgent masterpiece, may it become a staple in your repertoire—a cake that brings joy to celebrations and creates lasting memories.

Whether you’re baking it for a special occasion or surprising loved ones with a sweet treat, the Classic German Chocolate Cake invites you to savor the richness of tradition and the satisfaction derived from crafting a truly iconic dessert. So, gather your ingredients, preheat the oven, and embark on the delightful journey of creating a cake that encapsulates the essence of timeless indulgence and the joy found in the sweet moments shared around the table!

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