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Texas Sheet Cake

  • This cake is moist, chocolatey and altogether delicious. It's quick to put together. You don't even have to get out your electric mixer; you can mix up this cake by hand in a jiffy.
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 cup cocoa
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), melted
    • 1/2 cup buttermilk
    • 1/2 cup canola or other vegetable oil
    • 1 cup water
    • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease and flour a 13x9x2-inch baking pan.

    Sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda and cinnamon, and set aside. Stir together the remaining ingredients. (Since I'm a chocolate freak, I use just a half-teaspoon of cinnamon. I want the cinnamon flavor to come through, but only just a hint of it. Strictly a matter of personal preference.) Mix the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients, stirring until you have a smooth, rather thin batter.

    Pour into your prepared pan, and bake at 400°F for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

    While the cake is baking, prepare the frosting.
    • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk (whole, 2% or skim - doesn't matter)
    • 1/4 cup cocoa
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted (about 4 cups)
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 cup chopped pecans
    Mix the milk and cocoa in a heavy saucepan (stir, stir, stir). Add the butter and, over medium heat, stir until the butter melts. Remove from heat and gradually stir in the sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add the pecans.

    When the cake is just out of the oven, spread the frosting evenly on the hot cake.

    Prep time: 20 minutes; Cooking time: 20-25 minutes; Total time: 40-45 minutes

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  • Note: This is a good recipe in which to use dry buttermilk. For a product review, see Dry Buttermilk.

    For the related Dessert Spotlight article, see Texas Sheet Cake, Hospitality in a Cake. The serving dishes in our photograph are Fiesta dinnerware.

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