Chocolate Cake with Fresh Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
Chocolate Cake with Fresh Strawberry Buttercream Frosting is my most popular cake recipe, and it’s not surprise why! The moist, fluffy cake layered with a fruity strawberry buttercream frosting make this dessert perfect for any occasion.
Have I mentioned before that I LOVE CAKE?
Because I really, really do. Especially when it is chocolate.
The first attempt at this cake, as you probably read about before, was an absolute disaster.
It was an epic failure. And left me cleaning out our oven for about an hour. Not my finest baking attempt.
Luckily the second attempt came out perfectly! Turns out I just needed to cut down the recipe a bit.
I suppose I can look on the bright side – I ended up with an amazing cake that literally will melt in your mouth AND a clean oven.
And a whole new perspective on baking.
The best part about this cake, aside from the fluffy, moist chocolate cake, is the fresh strawberry puree in the buttercream frosting.
The taste of strawberries literally pops in your mouth.
I think I am going through a strawberry obsession.
You know how I had that obsession with lemon and that other obsession with goat cheese? This is like that. Except times twenty.
You probably think I am a bit crazy. But come on, strawberries and chocolate?
Who in their right mind can live without that combination?
So go ahead, indulge yourself. You know you want to.
This Recipe’s Must-Haves
Make sure that you have your stand mixer or a mixing bowl and an electric hand mixer to get the cake and frosting to absolute perfection. I generally end up using both because I don’t like to clean in between… Have I mentioned how much I hate doing dishes?
I love using this Wilton 2 Piece Round Pan Set, 9-Inch to get the layers in my cake perfect. You’ll need to buy two sets to get three layers, but the small investment is worth it!
Every wonder the secret to frosting a cake with ease? It’s using an offset spatula because it will seriously change your life. It makes it SO much easier to layer on the frosting!
Here are some of the more frequently asked ones from the comments below:
Can you turn these into cupcakes?
Yes you can! If you do so, you will end up with a little over a dozen cupcakes. For the baking time, start by cutting the total time in half and check on them every few minutes after that.
Can I use frozen strawberries?
Frozen strawberries are just fine for the strawberry frosting! Just be sure to thaw them completely and then drain them of any excess liquid.
Are the cake layers thick?
As you can tell in the photos, this is not a cake with giant thick layers. The cake layers are a little thinner on purpose. It’s the perfect balance for fresh strawberry flavor and moist chocolate cake!
Why do you use buttermilk?
It makes the cake lighter and more tender! If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can add 3/4 Tbsp lemon just to 3/4 cup whole milk. Let the mixture stand for 2 minutes and then you will have a homemade buttermilk substitute!
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- ¾ cup cocoa powder
- ½ Tbsp baking soda
- ¾ tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- ¼ cup + 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup boiling water
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter
- 4 ½ cups confectioners sugar
- ½ cup fresh, ripe strawberries, washed, stemmed, and hulled
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Butter three 9" round cake pans, and dust with extra flour, tapping out excess.
- Sift flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of a mixer. Beat on low-speed until just combined. Increase speed to medium, and add eggs, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla. Beat until smooth, approximately 3 minutes. Turn mixer off and carefully add boiling water. Beat on high for approximately 1 minute until well-combined.
- Divide batter evenly among pans. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until set and a toothpick inserted in the center of each comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes of a cooling rack, turn out cakes onto the rack and allow to cool completely before frosting and assembling.
- To make the frosting, puree the strawberries in a food processor. Set aside.
- Cream butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Gradually confectioners sugar, beating until just combined.
- Add strawberry puree and vanilla and beat until the buttercream is light and fluffy (approximately 3-5 minutes).
- Frost the tops of your cakes and stack on top of each other to form three layers. Add a final layer of frosting to the outside and decorate with extra strawberries if you desire.