The idea started as a chocolate freckle cake but soon morphed into the best ever one bowl chocolate cake. It’s incredibly simple to throw together and has a soft but slightly fudgy texture that can’t be beaten.

A stack of 3 square slices of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles stacked on a piece of brown parchment paper

You might also like this S’mores Gooey Chocolate Mug Cake or Chocolate Peppermint Mug Cake for their simplicity. Just 10 minutes to an indulgent single serve chocolate cake. Link will take you to my Tangi video page.

Easy To Make Chocolate Cake

The cake batter is all made in one bowl with a hand beater or whisk. There’s no need for a stand-mixer, no need to cream butter and sugar together. Just melt that butter and mix everything together.

You will need to wash that bowl out to make the frosting if you truly want everything done in one bowl but I’m pretty sure you won’t mind that technicality one little bit because the cake is THAT GOOD.

Perfect Chocolate Cake Texture

It’s not just simple but it’s also moist and has this tender, heading towards slightly fudgy, texture that makes it feel so indulgent.

I used to think the Black Magic Cake was my absolute favourite. That one is so rich and chocolatey but it has a light, fluffy texture – normally my favourite kind – but I’m torn now because this one bowl chocolate cake has all that plus that little bit of fudginess which takes it to the next level.

6 square slices of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles on a piece of brown parchment paper

Easy For Anyone, Any Time

If all that didn’t get you over the line, it’s an easy chocolate cake recipe for kids or for beginner bakers wanting to start out easily but even a seasoned baker will love the richness and simplicity of this cake. We sure do.

This is the cake you can turn to when you promised to make a dessert but you’re running out of time or when you want to create a gorgeous birthday cake for your bestie. It’s reliable, it’s delicious and it’s easy.

How To Make A One Bowl Chocolate Cake

  1. Make sure your eggs and buttermilk are at room temperature but if not that’s ok. Just sit the eggs in warm water for 5 minutes and heat cold buttermilk in the microwave for 15 seconds.
  2. Now measure your dry ingredients straight into a large mixing bowl – see my notes on measuring below.
  3. Give them a whisk around to disperse them evenly.
  4. Now add in your wet ingredients, all at once and give the whole thing a mix until it’s combined.
  5. Tip it into your tin and level it out, then bake it for about 27 minutes.

3 square slices of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles in lined up on a piece of brown parchment paper

How To Correctly Measure Flour

This is important, don’t skip this or you risk any cake going all wrong. Where a weight is provided in a recipe, weighing the ingredients will ALWAYS give you the best result.

Kitchen scales are cheap and it really won’t add a lot of time to your recipe to use them, in fact I prefer using scales not only for accuracy but also because weighing ingredients means I don’t have to wash a bunch of cup measures.

You may still not be convinced, maybe you don’t have kitchen scales and you want to make this cake right this second. To measure ingredients correctly using cups

  • always fluff the ingredients up in their tub first with a spoon
  • Now spoon the ingredient into your cup measure
  • Use the back of a knife to scrape along the top of the cup measure to remove the excess.

I know this may sound like a lot of trouble but truly, a cup of flour can weigh anywhere from 120g-150g depending on the way you measure it and where you are in the world. A cup in Australia is 250ml while in the US it’s 225ml. Measuring the right way will make this a non-issue but the wrong way and you could be adding 2-3 tablespoons of flour to your batter.

Weigh it if you can, or spoon and level if you can’t.

9 square slices of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles on a piece of brown parchment paper. In the middle it says watch the video

Do I Have To Use Buttermilk?

Buttermilk has this amazing ability to make baked goods tender so I love using it but if you don’t have it handy you can just use regular milk but add 1 teaspoon of vinegar to the mix as well.

Variations

So, whether you’re looking for the best chocolate cake recipe or a simple one bowl chocolate cake recipe, you’ve found it here. Endlessly customisable, insanely delicious and so easy to make, your family and friends will love this one.

closeup of a piece of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles on a piece of brown parchment paper

One Bowl Chocolate Freckle Cake

5 from 5 votes
The best ever simple chocolate cake recipe is right here. This One Bowl Chocolate Freckle Cake starts with one bowl and some everyday ingredients. Add some chocolate fudge frosting and cover it with sprinkles and you have an easy treat everyone will love.

Ingredients

FOR THE ONE BOWL CHOCOLATE CAKE

  • 130 g plain (all-purp) flour (1 cup)
  • 40 g dutch process cocoa (½ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 115 g unsalted butter, melted (½ cup / 1 stick)
  • ½ cup white granulated sugar (100g / 3.5oz)
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar, packed (100g / 3.5oz)
  • 2 large eggs, room temp
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (notes)
  • ¾ cup buttermilk, room temp

FOR THE FUDGE FROSTING

  • 85 g unsalted butter, softened (¾ stick)
  • 1 cup icing (powdered) sugar
  • ¼ cup cocoa (20g)
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk (notes)
  • 50 g dark (50%) chocolate, melted and cooled to room temp (1.8oz / ¼ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • cup 100s and 1000s (or sprinkles of your choice)

Instructions
 

FOR THE ONE BOWL CHOCOLATE CAKE

  • Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / 160C fan forced. Grease and line an 8 inch square baking tin with baking paper.
  • Measure the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt directly into a large bowl (see notes for proper measuring)
  • Whisk to combine well.
  • Add the melted butter, both sugars, eggs, vanilla and buttermilk. Beat with a handheld beater or whisk until combined and there are no dry floury bits left.
  • Pour the mixture into the tin, then move from side to side to level it out. Give it one light tap on the work top, then bake for 27-28 minutes until a toothpick comes out with just a crumb or two attached (not wet batter).
  • Let it cool in the tin for 10 minutes then use the edges of the baking paper to lift it and transfer to a wire cooling rack.

FOR THE FUDGE FROSTING

  • Beat the butter, sugar and cocoa in a bowl on low speed until it comes together, then beat on medium-high for 4-5 minutes until it's lightened and creamy.
  • Add half the milk, the melted chocolate and the vanilla and beat for another 3-4 minutes on low until well combined and fluffy. It should be quite soft and not overly gritty anymore.
  • If the mixture is too stiff, add the remaining milk and beat it through.

Notes

  1. I use a standard Australian 20ml tablespoon (=4 teaspoons worldwide)
  2. For best results, you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
  3. All ovens vary – always test for doneness 3-5 minutes before the recipe suggests
  4. Buttermilk: If you don't have buttermilk handy, you can use whole milk and add 1 teaspoon of regular white vinegar to the mix.
  5. Shape: you can use a square tin as I did, or use an 8 inch round tin.
  6. Double: You can easily double this recipe and make a two-tiered layer cake.
  7. I use my stand mixer for this frosting so that I can make it hands free but you can wash out the same bowl you used for the cake batter, then use a hand held beater if you prefer.
  8. The darker the chocolate you use in the frosting, the richer, fudgier and stiffer it will be.
  9. More frosting flavours to try:
For more cake recipes, click here
Have you tried this recipe?Rate or comment below and let us know how it was!

9 square slices of chocolate cake topped with sprinkles on a piece of brown parchment paper