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Chocolate Party Cake – adapted from Kitchen Simplicty

Chocolate party cake & vanilla butter icing, adapted from Kitchen Simplicty’s original recipe. Perfectly tall (massive) 3 layer 8 inch cakes for any celebration!

Chocolate Party Cake - adapted from Kitchen Simplicty


  • 3 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1 block of butter (around 250g)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 cups + about 12 (heaped) tablespoons all-purpose flour
    // if you actually  have cups it’s 2 2/3 cups
  • 1 cup cocoa powder (I use 12 heaped tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 150ml cups sour cream
  • 1 cup + 4 liberal tablespoons (or 1 1/3 cups) boiling water


1. Cream together brown sugar and butter until fluffy.
2. Beat in eggs, one at a time
3. Add vanilla, beat again
4. Add the salt baking soda
5. If you want to do it properly you can sift the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda together at this stage in a separate bowl and add 1/3 to your cake mixture and beat otherwise….Add a cup of flour, 4 generous tablespoons of cocoa and beat
6. Add 1/2 the sour cream – beat
7. Repeat step 5, then 6, then 5 again
8. Stir in water until evenly blended or….add 1/2 cup of water, give a stir with beaters then turn beaters on, repeat, then the remaining 4 (ish) tablespoons of water and beat

It’s pretty wet at this stage and the first time I did it I panicked but it all turns out fine….

This recipe makes about 9 cups of batter, so if using a 8 inch cake tin, that’s 3 cups in each or in my case….

Add 4.5 cups of batter, realise you can’t do maths and take some out, eventually just put in the oven at 180 degrees and leave for 35 mins (this actually is the only bit that is accurate in my method!)

If you like you can grease your cake tin first….I don’t because, again, I can’t be bothered.

9. Let each cake cook for about 10 mins before popping it out and then head over to the vanilla icing recipe here.


So the method above is the actual one that I use – I have added the original Kitchen Simplicty suggested measurements. If you follow these, then your cake will probably turn out better than my half arsed version. I have also added to the method the ‘correct’ method that Kitchen Simplicty suggested.

Another thing to mention is I only have a 1/2 cup and a 1/4 cup measure….Don’t ask me where the others have gone, but I would assume they are probably in the bath or in the play doh drawer.

I did also have actual cook spoon measures, probably living with the rest of my measuring cups. I have in the past considered buying extra cake tins to speed this whole process up (you could probably bake 2 at a time, maybe even 3 so that would cut the actual cook/prep time down to around an hour/hour and a half) – I also can’t be bothered to sift flour, or dirty more than one bowl.

This year I was going to get a 10 inch pan to make a larger, flatter cake, but Sainsbury’s had run out of cake tins…

….In a moment of genius, I put the top layer into a kids ikea Kalas plate (fits perfectly) and used the edges to slice it in half. So I got 1.5 cakes out of this, alternatively you can freeze the 3rd layer in clingfilm in your fridge. The main image for this post shows XO’s 2nd 3rd (yes I baked 2 cakes that year) birthday cake….I just wacked a minion on the top and hoped for the best!

The actual ingredient list is below:

3 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, softened
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2⅔ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
150ml cups sour cream
1⅓ cups boiling water

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