Decadent Chocolate Cake with Hershey Bar Frosting

by Nancy on May 15, 2011

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Do you have a favorite traditional birthday cake? My husband, Alan, loves carrot cake. Our friend, Chuck, makes his mother’s German chocolate cake and Joan’s mom makes angel food and lemon pound cake for family birthdays. My dad’s birthday was on Saturday. Growing up Dad’s cake was always a high point with my brothers and me, not because of the cake but because of the frosting made from Hershey milk chocolate bars. For the past 20 years or so, since they retired, my parents have been gallivanting around the world and my mom couldn’t put her hands on that Hershey’s chocolate bar frosting recipe. Fortunately this year they happened to be here for Dad’s birthday and my mom found the recipe which I am ecstatic to now have in my recipe collection.

As an added perk this frosting recipe is super, super easy and only has 3 ingredients. Here’s the recipe:

Hershey Bar Chocolate Frosting

(frosts one 9″x13″ oblong cake or a 2-layer 9″ round cake)

  • 4 7oz. sized Hershey Milk Chocolate Bars
  • 1/3 C. whole milk
  • 1 t. vanilla

Break chocolate into pieces and melt over a double boiler. As chocolate starts to melt add the milk. When milk and chocolate are combined and melted add the vanilla and stir well. The chocolate will be warm and runny.

Hint for frosting: For a layered cake pour a small amount in the center of the bottom layer. Gradually work it towards the sides of the cake using an offset spatula. Don’t take the frosting all the way to the edge. It will spill over. Place the 2nd layer on top. Pour the rest of the frosting in the center of the top layer. Working from the center slowly push the frosting to the edges of the cake, it will spill over to frost the sides. Frosting sets up as it cools. I store the cake in the refrigerator.

To make this cake more special try this easy homemade moist chocolate cake. (If you would like to feel more virtuous you could skip the Hershey’s frosting and dust the cake with powdered sugar or a dab of whip cream or vanilla ice cream.

Moist Easy Failproof Chocolate Cake

(makes a 9’x13′ sheet cake or 2 9″ rounds)

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare cake pans by greasing and flouring. If you are making a layer cake using parchment rounds will ensure your cake comes out in one piece. Sift together in a small bowl or onto a sheet of wax paper:

  • 1/2 C. unsweetened cocoa (I like Hershey’s Special Dark which is a blend of natural and Dutch processed cocoa)
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 2 1/2 C. flour
  • 1/2 t. salt

Combine in a measuring cup and let sit while you continue with the recipe:

  • 1 C. whole milk
  • 1 t. white vinegar
  • 2 t. baking soda

Put 1 C. of water into a saucepan and bring to a boil.

In a mixer cream until fluffy:

  • 1 C. (2 sticks) butter
  • 2. cups sugar


  • 2 lightly beaten eggs
  • 1 t. good vanilla

With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the creamed butter mixture alternating with the wet ingredients. Turn off the mixer and remove beaters. Pour the boiling water over the batter and slowly incorporate by hand using a spatula. The batter will be runny. Pour into prepared cake pans, place in center of oven and bake, approximately 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cake cool before frosting.



{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Raven May 22, 2011 at 6:47 pm

yum i tried it, and one word: DELICIOUS!!! YUM thanks for the recipe!

Nancy Nancy May 23, 2011 at 7:42 pm

We’re glad you liked it!

Shalina June 5, 2011 at 11:59 am

I tried this for my little brothers birthday, right now its in the oven actually! i saw that vinegar was on the ingredient list and i was a little skeptical but i remembered chemical reactions change how everything else tastes and feels in the mouth. Im excited to taste it when it comes out of the oven!! PS you have a typo: “add the flour mixture to the creamed butter mixture alternating with the dry ingredients” shouldn’t dry be wet instead?

Nancy Nancy June 5, 2011 at 5:06 pm

You are right about the typo, I just fixed it, thanks for the heads up. Let me know what you think of the cake.

Racheal August 19, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Oh my goodness I made this for my hubbys birthday tomorrow and I just had to sneak a sma;ll piece lol. It was so moist and it melted in my mouth oh my god it was really good you did good.

bonmail July 5, 2013 at 2:54 pm

As a young teenager, I babysat on Saturday evenings for a family whose mom made a fabulous chocolate cake with Hershey bar frosting each Saturday. She was definitely not interested in sharing the recipe. I am so appreciative of you sharing because I have never forgot how delicious it was, and have looked for the melted Hershey frosting before. I’m probably your parents’ generation, so I am thrilled to be able to make it tonight for my husband’s birthday and our family! Thanks!

Elizabeth October 28, 2013 at 9:56 am

This looks delicious! I am making it for my husband’s birthday tomorrow! One quick question: what do you mean by “pour the boiling water over the water”? Do you mean to pour it over what was just in the beater? Sorry for the confusion! Thank you!

Nancy Nancy October 28, 2013 at 11:48 am

Sorry, that should read “pour the boiling water over the batter.” Enjoy the cake!

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