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Miss Carroll's Mom's Chocolate Layered Cake

Miss Carroll's Mom's Chocolate Layered Cake



My mom made a similar version of this chocolate layered cake when I was growing up in Texas and I enjoyed licking the beaters as she worked in her kitchen. It must be the sour cream and boiling water that makes it so moist, delicious, and comforting. The perfect cake for a special celebration, holiday baking, or just because you want a chocolate cake. đź’—

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes + time for the cake layers to cool
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 1 whole cake or 16 individual servings

Cooking Tools

  • Three 9-inch round cake pans
  • Mixer

Cake Ingredients

  • 1 cup real butter, at room temperature
  • 3 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature (I used eggs from a local egg farmer)
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla bean paste (I used Trader Joe’s vanilla bean paste)
  • 2 â…” cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
  • Âľ cup Ghirardelli premium baking 100% cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon fine granular salt
  • 1 â…“ cups full-fat sour cream
  • 1 â…“ cups boiling wate

Frosting Ingredients

  • ½ cup real butter, at room temperature
  • 3 ounces Ghirardelli premium chocolate, unsweetened
  • 3 ounces Ghirardelli premium chocolate, semisweet
  • 5 cups confectioners’ pure cane sugar
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla bean paste
  • Fresh berries
  • Fresh mint
  • Chocolate shavings


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Spray with Baker’s Joy three 9-inch round baking pans.
  3. For the cake, in a large mixing bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Start the mixer on low speed, then increase it to medium-low speed.
  4. Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
  5. Beat in vanilla bean paste.
  6. In another bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream, beating well after each addition.
  7. Slowly stir in boiling water until blended.
  8. Transfer batter to three 9-inch cake pans. 
  9. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, 30-35 minutes. Cool in pans for 10 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
  10. For frosting, in a metal bowl over simmering water (I used a double-boiler), melt butter and chocolates; stir until smooth. Cool slightly.
  11. In a large bowl, combine confectioners sugar, sour cream, and vanilla bean paste. Add chocolate mixture; beat until smooth. Spread frosting between layers and over the top and sides of cake.
  12. Garnish with fresh berries, fresh mint, and chocolate shavings.
  13. Refrigerate leftovers


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Miss Carroll's Kitchen is named after Clara Carroll, a former Home Economics teacher at Paul's high school and a lifelong friend. Carroll, now a retired professor of Home Economics from Harding University, brings unique recipes and ideas to make your seasons and home great. Her wealth of knowledge in Home Economics is sure to impress and inspire all who try her delicious creations.

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