CAKE -- Amazon Chocolate Cake


Eggless and Dairy-Free! The only chocolate cake I ever make anymore. Recipe from Margaret Fox was in McCall's in 1996: "From their kitchen to yours: America's top women pastry chefs let you in on six of their sweetest secrets." It's one of my best-ever recipes!


12 servings

Margaret Fox, pastry chef in Cafe Beaujolais, Mendocino, CA

File under
cake, chocolate, dairy-free, egg-free


3 c. unsifted all-purpose flour
2 c. gran. sugar (I use half white, half brown)
2 t. soda
2/3 c unsw. cocoa powder* (I use SACO Premium Cocoa)
1 t. salt
2 c. cold water
2 T. white vinegar (or strained lemon j.)
1/2 c. + 2 T. vege. oil (I like canola oil)
1 T. vanilla extract

* I like to place 1 T. KAF's Black cocoa in cup, then fill on up with the SACO Premium Blend, which is part Dutch and part regular. Awesome results!


Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 2 rd. 9-in. pans. Line bottoms with waxed paper, grease and flour (with cocoa). [For everyday I prefer a 9x13-inch cake pan.]

In lg bowl, mix flour, sugar, cocoa, soda, and salt; I whisk this tog. with a wire whisk or slotted spoon, to be sure it is well-mixed. In another bowl, mix water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Grad. add liquids to dry ingredients, whisking ‘til smooth. Pour into pans; rap bottom of filled pans on counter to rid of air. Bake 30 min, ‘til toothpick is clean and edges pulled away. Cool in pans on racks 30 minutes, then invert on racks, remove paper, and let cool completely. Actually, I don't line the bottom of the 9x13" pan, because I prefer to leave the cake right in the pan. 16 servings

Per serving: 435 cal, 22 g fat, 31 mg cholesterol, 184 mg sodium

***Recipe came with Mocha Frosting Recipe... We MUCH prefer the posted Miracle Frosting (in my recipes) to the Mocha version. I believe the Per Serving values include the Mocha Frosting. I will post it, too, for those interested.


Submitted by lda124 on Sun, 2012-01-22 20:53.

Thank you! I will definitely try this. Sound delicious!

Submitted by --jej on Mon, 2012-01-23 11:24.

Ida124... Recipe says to turn this cake out of the pan. I would for a layer cake, or maybe the 9x13 pan if it was a special feature at a celebration; but normally, I just frost the top and leave the cake right in the pan. Stays fresher and more moist, of course, if left right in the pan. But it really doesn't last long enough to EVER get stale, dry, etc.

Submitted by jabmac on Sat, 2012-02-04 11:25.

my good friend Joyce from Concord,MA. made this cake, and we all loved it!!

Submitted by --jej on Sun, 2012-02-05 00:31.

Yes, jabmac, thanks for the feedback. This cake is so good, and all the credit has to go to that wonderful pastry chef, Margaret Fox, who originally shared her recipe.

jabmac, Did your friend frost the cake, and if so, with what? My DH likes it so well with the white fluffy Miracle Frosting that I never make the Chocolate Mocha Buttercream frosting recipe that came with it.

I also will relate that our DD's best friend's little girl just had her 5th b'day... The little one has serious egg allergies, so this is always the Mom's go-to recipe for the Birthday Cake. They used this recipe for cupcakes and just dusted the tops with a little powdered sugar for the adults, but had a "frosting lady" set all the cupcakes together and frost them as one large cake for the kids. ... Our DD just called on their way home from the b'day party!! She said frosting all of the kids' cupcakes as one big cake worked very well. Our grandson loved his cupcake apparently, saying he should have had TWO!!

Usually they just bake the recipe in mini muffin pans for at home treats, as it is the only way they all don't 'pig out' on them! LOL

Submitted by annzie on Mon, 2012-02-13 18:42.

Thanks for this recipe! It is quite unique among my recipes! I added 1/4 t cayenne pepper (a small pinch would have been enough, tho') because I like the boost that cayenne gives to chocolate. I frosted it with a White Mountain Creme and topped it with shaved bittersweet chocolate. Beautiful, and tasty!

Submitted by --jej on Tue, 2012-02-14 03:43.

How wonderful to hear from you, annzie! I'm also so glad to hear you've enjoyed this recipe! I can't tell you how many times I've mentally thanked Margaret Fox for putting it in that McCall's magazine back in the '90s for all the world to enjoy! ;))) And it's interesting to hear how you've 'made it your own' with the addition of the cayenne!

Curious about the White Mountain Creme, which is unfamiliar to me, I googled for it when I didn't find it among your recipes. When 'google' didn't find it, I googled for White Mountain Frosting and received many responses. All but one boiled the sugar, water, etc., and when it reached 238 or 242 degrees, OR dripped 'hair-like' from a spoon, it was beaten into well-beaten egg whites. One recipe, however put it together pretty much like the Miracle Frosting recipe I love to make and use.

As for shaving bittersweet chocolate on top, I'm going to have to try that instead of unsweetened! I think we will find it as delicious as you did. I don't know if I've put the following tale on this site or not, but when our little DGS, 9 at the time, was getting ready to return to his home in Maryland this past summer after nearly a month's visit, I discovered a full box of Baker's Bittersweet Chocolate on the floor under his bed; there were just a few nibbles out of one of the squares. He told me, "It wasn't very good, Grandma." We learned he had already found -- and devoured -- an entire box of Baker's German Sweet Chocolate, and had expected the bittersweet variety to be just as tasty!! LOL

Submitted by dachshundlady on Wed, 2012-02-29 17:30.

Since there are no eggs, this would be easy to halve for us empty nesters who are watching our thighs!

Submitted by --jej on Fri, 2012-03-02 10:22.

You bet, d-lady! And instead of frosting (if you really want to cut back), a frozen tub of non-fat, lo-cal topping would do the trick for garnish... OR WHIPPED CREAM? YUM, YUM!!