October 13, 2009

Texas sheet cake

Posted in Daily life, Food tagged , , , , , , , at 8:30 pm by Lauren

The story is that my parents had this Texas sheet cake at a restaurant in Tampa (back when I was a wee babe) and begged for the recipe.

This may have been the first thing I learned to bake. It certainly was the prize of my college years. The most memorable baking was when we were watching Ishtar for the first time, and Devon stuck her finger in the hot icing and burned her fingerprint off (for months), and while we were tending to her finger, the icing burned and Peter and I ended up scraping it into a gutter in the alley.

Why did I ever stop making it? Maybe it was because I learned to cook and bake other things, and I got distracted. Maybe it was because I had to start watching my weight so cooking with shortening became impractical. Maybe it was just because keeping buttermilk on hand was too much of a deterrent to impromptu baking.

Whatever the reason, I made Texas sheet cake tonight, and since it now qualifies as a family recipe, handed down, I thought I’d post the recipe here.

Texas Sheet Cake

1 cup water

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup shortening

1/4 cup cocoa

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup buttermilk

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

In saucepan, combine water, butter, shortening and cocoa; cook and stir until boiling occurs.  Remove from heat.  In a bowl mix together flour, sugar, soda, cinnamon and salt.  Add hot cocoa mixture to flour mixture and mix until smooth.  Add buttermilk, eggs and vanilla and beat well.  Pour into greased 15 ½ x 10 ½ x 1 inch pan.  Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.


½ c. butter

6 tbsp. buttermilk

¼ c. cocoa

1 1b. powdered sugar, sifted

1 tsp. vanilla 

In saucepan, combine butter, buttermilk and cocoa.  Cook on med. heat and stir until mixture boils.  Remove from heat.  Gradually blend in powdered sugar and vanilla.  Beat until smooth.  Immediately pour frosting over warm cake.  Cool.

Pour yourself a tall glass of milk. Eat. Enjoy.



  1. grandma said,

    guess i’ll have to try this one/1

  2. Alan said,

    This recipe is the definition of “baller.” Nothing but compliments and people trying to pay me for it when I make it. Try a little extra cinnamon, powdered sugar, and eat it with natural vanilla bean ice cream for best results.

  3. Lauren said,

    Ah yes, I can’t believe I didn’t mention that it is the definition of baller. HA!

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