The BEST Chocolate Cake Recipe

I’m not exaggerating when I say this is the absolute BEST Chocolate Cake recipe you will ever taste. Perfectly rich and completely moist- your friends and family will beg you for the recipe and they’ll never know that it’s actually an easy cake mix hack!

A chocolate bundt cake on a plate

Be sure to try some other awesome cake recipes like Coconut Cake, Lemon Pistachio Cake and Pumpkin Spice Latte Cake.

Killer Chocolate Cake

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Remember this insanely delicious Poppy Seed Cake that is crazy easy to make and the most moist cake you’ve ever tasted (if the answer is no, I encourage you to get into the kitchen and make it, stat)? Like all great things in life, I couldn’t leave well enough alone and had to make a variation but in the form of a chocolate pudding cake.

I think it’s super important to have a great, easy, last minute dessert recipe up your sleeve. But not everyone has the time to put a ton of work into a fancy, scratch made dessert. And you guys, everyone loves a chocolate bundt chocolate cake.

Especially when it’s the freakin’ best chocolate cake. Which this is. And I’m not exaggerating when I say that. 

While this isn’t a “scratch” cake, I think it’s nice to have an in-between option that takes mere minutes of your time to throw together (the rest is baking time), minimal ingredients and is virtually foolproof. And of course the big game changer is that the variation of ingredients or the “hack” that results in a chocolate pudding cake recipe that is moist, addictive and that blows your normal boxed cake mix right out of the water!

A straight on photo of a slice of chocolate cake being pulled out of the cake revealing the inside of the cake.

Tips for making this chocolate cake recipe

  • Don’t feel like you need to have water that’s so hot it’s boiling water. I just run my tap water until it is warm and then fill my measuring cup for this cake recipe.
  • Be sure to grease your cake pan with cooking spray so the cake pops out easily without sticking. 
  • The chocolate chips are totally optional but I personally love the texture they add.
  • Be sure to scrape all the batter out of the large bowl with a spatula when you pour batter into the bundt pan.
  • Every oven is different, so check the cake at 40 minutes and if the tester comes out clean, pull it then.
  • I let it cool quite a bit before inverting. Often, I’ll let it cool completely in the pan. It’s fine either way. 
  • For the cake mix, I prefer dark chocolate, but devil’s food cake works great too.

An overhead image of the best chocolate cake recipe

How to make ahead and store the cake?

Absolutely! I’d bake it off and leave it in the bundt pan overnight. When it’s time to remove the cake from the pan, run a butter knife around the outside of the cake between the cake and the pan and place the serving plate on top of the pan and then turn it all over. The cake slides right out onto the serving plate.

Can I do this as a layer cake and frost it?

Yes! Spray two 9 inch round cake pans with cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment. Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes (begin checking it around 25 minutes just to be safe).

Can I make this recipe in a 9” x 13” pan?

Yes! It’ll take about an hour to bake at 325 degrees (give or take some time depending on your oven- check it at 45 minutes and remove when a toothpick comes out clean.

Can I make this cake as cupcakes?

Yup- line a standard size muffin pan with cupcake liners and fill them ¾ of the way (an ice cream scoop works well for this!). Bake for 15-20 minutes at 325 degrees until your cake tester comes out clean.

Can you freeze this cake?

Yes, just freeze before frosting and wrap it really well.

What makes chocolate cake moist?

In this particular recipe, the eggs are what makes it super moist and delicious. Do not cut down the amount of eggs (it may seem excessive, but if you’re going to eat a cake, go big and eat a cake!). That said, you do not need to use extra large eggs. They’re ideal, but I’ve made this several times with large eggs and it’s come out perfect every single time.

What is the best topping for this cake?

My favorite is making chocolate ganache and pouring it over the top- heat 1/2 cup heavy cream to almost simmering (it’ll be steaming). Pour it over 1 cup chocolate chips and let it sit for a few minutes and then keep whisking until it turns into ganache. Let it cool for 10-15 minutes and pour over the top. You can also frost it with chocolate butter cream, fresh whipped cream, or a dusting of powdered sugar is great in a pinch. But I think chocolate ganache ups to wow-factor!

A slice of chocolate cake on a plate.

Ingredients for Triple Chocolate Cake

  • Dark chocolate cake mix
  • Instant chocolate pudding mixes
  • 5 eggs (yes, 5!)
  • Vegetable oil
  • Water (or coffee or Kahlua- do you!)

Helpful tools:

  1. Measuring cups
  2. Measuring spoons
  3. Mixing bowl
  4. Spatula
  5. Stand mixer or Hand mixer
  6. Bundt pan
5 from 2 votes
This quick and easy Chocolate Pudding Cake recipe is a delicious cake mix hack! There are only five simple ingredients and the result is the most perfectly moist cake you'll ever taste. This is an awesome last-minute dessert to throw together and it's so good that people will have no idea it's from a box!
The BEST Chocolate Cake Recipe
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 

I’m not exaggerating when I say this is the absolute BEST Chocolate Cake recipe you will ever taste. Perfectly rich and completely moist- your friends and family will beg you for the recipe and they'll never know that it’s actually an easy cake mix hack!

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate pudding cake
Servings: 8 slices
Author: Jessy Freimann, The Life Jolie
Ingredients
  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 2 small boxes instant chocolate pudding
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 5 extra-large eggs (large is also fine)
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and grease a bundt pan with cooking spray. Set aside.

  2. Mix the first 5 ingredients until just combined.

  3. Stir in the mini chocolate chips if you're using them and put batter into the bundt pan.

  4. Bake for around 1 hour or until a cake tester comes out clean. Check it at 50 minutes, because it can go a little faster depending on your oven.

  5. Cool and serve with chocolate ganache or a dusting of confectioner's sugar.

Recipe Notes

To make Chocolate Ganache for topping: heat 1/2 cup heavy cream to almost simmering (it’ll be steaming). Pour it over 1 cup chocolate chips and let it sit for a few minutes and then keep whisking until it turns into ganache.

A close up shot of the ganache on a chocolate pudding cake

If you tried this recipe please comment and rate it 🙂 I love hearing your feedback and answering your questions! And if you make it please tag me on Instagram with @thelifejolie so I can share it <3

You can find a full index of my recipes here.

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This quick and easy Chocolate Pudding Cake recipe is a delicious cake mix hack! There are only five simple ingredients and the result is the most perfectly moist cake you'll ever taste. This is an awesome last-minute dessert to throw together and it's so good that people will have no idea it's from a box! Click on the photo to get the recipe!

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44 Comments

  • Reply
    Laura - The No Pressure Life
    August 1, 2016 at 10:31 am This cake looks mouth-watering! I love that seems so simple. Definitely pinning this for later! Laura - The No Pressure Life recently posted...Affordable Swing-Arm Sconces and Where to Use ThemMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      August 1, 2016 at 11:27 am Thanks Laura, it's as easy as it is delicious :)
  • Reply
    Lisa Sell
    August 1, 2016 at 10:32 am I love that this looks delicious and is simple to make. Going to try this out!
    • Reply
      Jessy
      August 1, 2016 at 11:26 am Thank you, Lisa- I hope you LOVE it!
  • Reply
    Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl
    August 5, 2016 at 12:07 pm I love how few ingredients there are in this lovely pudding cake! Pinning to enjoy soon! Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl recently posted...Fluffy Birthday Cake MuffinsMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      August 7, 2016 at 10:51 pm Thank you- I hope you love it as much as I do!
  • Reply
    CJ Huang @ Morsels of Life
    August 5, 2016 at 9:11 pm Love these types of recipes! They're so perfect for those times when I either don't have the time or don't want to go through everything needed to make a cake completely from scratch, but want something scrumptious. :) CJ Huang @ Morsels of Life recently posted...Nutty Asian Chicken StripsMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      August 7, 2016 at 10:50 pm Me too- I'm all for keeping it super simple but not sacrificing flavor and quality!
  • Reply
    Dee
    August 7, 2016 at 3:37 am I would love a huge slice of this gorgeous cake! Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday. :) Dee recently posted...One Pan Pepperoni Pizza PastaMy Profile
    • Reply
      Jessy
      August 7, 2016 at 10:49 pm Thank you- but be careful, you won't be able to stop at one slice... :)
  • Reply
    sara
    January 12, 2017 at 11:13 pm How much is 1 box cake mix and pudding choc in gram? Thankyou😊
    • Reply
      Jessy
      January 12, 2017 at 11:24 pm According to the boxes in my pantry, the cake mix is 432 grams and each chocolate pudding is 110 grams. I hope this helps :)
  • Reply
    Julie
    April 20, 2017 at 8:45 pm Curious to know why you said chocolate chips, if you're using them. Is there a big difference if you don't?
    • Reply
      Jessy
      April 21, 2017 at 8:56 am Hi Julie- It doesn't make a huge difference, it's more of an optional addition that adds a bit of texture. Some people like that texture but others don't, so I made it optional. It won't hurt the cake if you leave them out.
  • Reply
    Lisa
    June 15, 2017 at 8:03 pm Looks delicious! What type of chocolate chips...Semi Sweet?
    • Reply
      Jessy
      June 15, 2017 at 8:46 pm Thank you! I've made it with both dark chocolate chips (my favorite- though that's more about personal preference than anything else) and with semi-sweet. I've also made it with none, although I like the texture that it adds. I'd love to hear what you decide on!
  • Reply
    Sanaa
    June 24, 2017 at 10:12 am Has anyone tried making muffins with this recipe?
    • Reply
      Jessy
      June 24, 2017 at 11:06 pm I've not gotten any feedback that anyone has tried this as muffins but I bet they'd work great. I'd probably recommend starting to check for doneness at 15 minutes and make sure to fill the cups 3/4 of the way. Let me know how it goes :)
  • Reply
    Shannon Brooks
    October 30, 2017 at 1:33 pm Can I use just one box of pudding? My husband only bought one.
    • Reply
      Jessy
      October 30, 2017 at 2:13 pm I've never tested it out and baking can be trick since it's all chemistry. That being said, give it a try. It's a pretty forgiving recipe in general. Let me know how it goes!
  • Reply
    Kelly
    November 4, 2017 at 3:25 pm Is it supposed to be super gooey in the middle or did I just poison my family?
    • Reply
      Jessy
      November 4, 2017 at 8:43 pm You probably didn't poison your family, since most eggs are pasteurized. ;) While I wouldn't describe the texture as gooey, it is extremely moist compared to normal boxed mix cakes but it's always turned out just like the photos and videos (I make this very often as it's my go-to cake). It sounds like it may have needed to bake longer. Every oven is different. Did you test it with a toothpick or cake tester when it came out?
  • Reply
    Florence PHILLIPS
    December 25, 2017 at 9:33 pm As a diabetic, I need to know the nutritional values of all recipes. Please send for your chocolate pudding cake.
    • Reply
      Jessy
      December 26, 2017 at 9:44 am Hi Florence- You can google "Nutrition Calculator" and find a variety of sites dedicated to calculating the nutritional values of foods. Enjoy! :)
  • Reply
    Katie
    January 15, 2018 at 6:10 pm How long should I let the cake cool before removing it from the bundt pan?
    • Reply
      Jessy
      January 21, 2018 at 10:58 pm As little as 15 minutes, although, I've also left it in the pan overnight and had no issues turning it (although, my bundt pan has never had anything stick, I don't know what it is- it's the cheapest Target bundt pan but it's like magic!). Enjoy!
  • Reply
    Lauryn
    March 30, 2018 at 11:14 pm Oh my goodness this cake! Wow! I don't even have words for how good this turned out! I ended up topping the cake off with a powdered sugar glaze and I swear it tasted like a krispy kreme donut. Make this cake today!!!!
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      March 30, 2018 at 11:17 pm Hi Lauryn- thank you SO much- you totally just made my Friday night! These kind of comments are exactly why I share recipes! So glad you loved it as much as we do (I'm actually making it on Easter Sunday with some ganache on top!).
  • Reply
    Michelle
    September 11, 2018 at 1:15 pm Why 5 eggs? Did you ever use less?
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      September 15, 2018 at 9:34 pm More eggs makes this cake incredibly moist. I've never gone with less, so I can't say how it would turn out. I highly recommend making it as listed, trust me. It's the best!
  • Reply
    Katie T.
    December 9, 2018 at 6:50 am I am a VERY unexperienced baker. That said, will this recipe work for a 12-cup bundt pan? Or should I double it? Thank you.
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      December 10, 2018 at 11:45 am Hi Katie- Are you referring to a regular bundt pan or a 12 cup one that is like a muffin tin only with mini bundt shapes? It's my understanding that the average single bundt pan holds around 12 cups so if that's what you have I'd keep the recipe as is. If terms of the mini bundt pans, I'd say bake at the same temp as the cake (325 degrees) and begin checking them at 15 minutes- the total time will vary by oven. If a toothpick comes out clean and it bounces back when very gently pressed, they're ready to pull. Good luck and please let me know how it goes! This is a super forgiving cake, so that's always a plus :)
  • Reply
    Taryn Reagan
    December 11, 2018 at 11:25 pm This is really good and really easy. I have made it the way recipe states with the chocolate chips, but also in a vanilla form for my chocolate hating son, with sprinkles and white chocolate chips in the cake. I made a quick buttercream and sprinkled more on top because it was a birthday for both versions. I had to cook the cake much longer than recipe suggested, but do not overcook. My toothpick would not come out clean because of the addition of the chips. FYI, if you have room in your freezer and leftover cake, it freezes amazingly and is so moist when defrosted. Thanks for the recipe and I am going to try more variations!
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      December 12, 2018 at 11:28 am Sounds like a fantastic variation- I'm so glad you liked them! Yes, ovens can vary in heat- there are so many things that come into play in terms of bake time, but I'm so glad it worked out! Enjoy :)
  • Reply
    Beth
    May 6, 2019 at 12:09 pm I added 2 tsp instant espresso coffee powder to this recipe and everyone loved it. I don’t eat sweets or anything chocolate, so I rely on others to judge for me.
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      May 6, 2019 at 7:34 pm I'm so glad everyone loved it, Beth! The espresso powder sounds like a fantastic addition- I'll have to try that! <3
    • Reply
      Sherry L.
      December 14, 2019 at 11:07 pm Hi! This was a wonderful base recipe for a gentleman’s cake (whiskey cake). I substituted 1/2 cup espresso coffee and 1/2 cup whiskey for the water. I also poked fork holes on the top and slowly spooned whiskey over the cake prior to adding the confectioners sugar. It was a holiday hit!
      • Reply
        Jessy Freimann
        December 15, 2019 at 3:21 pm OMG that sounds like some fantastic substitutions! I actually made it for a party last night with KAhlua in place of water and that was amazing too!
  • Reply
    Anjali Saigal
    September 12, 2019 at 9:12 am Could I use a square cake tin instead of the a bundt pan?
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      September 15, 2019 at 4:42 pm Yes, but I would probably for it in a rectangular 9" x 13" pan (or two 8" x 8" square pans). For a 9" x 13" I'd bake for around an hour but maybe start checking around 45 min. and for the 8" x 8" pans, I'd bake for around 30 minutes. Good luck!
  • Reply
    Melissa Bender
    April 30, 2020 at 10:25 pm Here it is day 4,535 of quarantine and my husband want chocolate pudding cake. He wanted it bad enough to risk going to Walmart in case we didn’t have everything I needed! Came across this gem in Pinterest and no lie the best chocolate cake! Hooray! Quarantine just got better! Yummy! It’s a keeper!
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      May 3, 2020 at 9:53 pm Yaaaaaaassssssss! Sounds like a good life decision to me!!
  • Reply
    Gina
    May 4, 2020 at 10:46 pm Yum sounds so good! Quick question- I have a 5.9 oz instant jello chocolate pudding mix. Wil that work?
    • Reply
      Jessy Freimann
      May 11, 2020 at 10:20 am Hi Gina- I've never tried it. Baking can be tricky in terms of precision, but I think it's worth a try because it's not a huge difference. Please let me know how it turns out.

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