Devil’s Food Cake with Seven-Minute Icing and Coconut

Devil's Food Cake with Seven Minute Frosting

This is the same recipe we’ve made in my family for every birthday since the beginning of time, and the same cake we serve at the bakery—but a different icing and the coconut garnish give it a whole new taste.–Allysa Torey

Devil's Food Cake with Seven-Minute Icing and Coconut

  • Quick Glance
  • 1 H
  • 2 H, 30 M
  • Makes one 3-layer 9-inch cake
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  • For the cake
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, separated when cold and left to warm to room temperature
  • 9 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted and left to cool for 10 to 15 minutes
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • For the icing
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • For the garnish
  • Sweetened shredded coconut


  • Make the cake
  • 1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and lightly flour three 9 x 2-inch round cake pans, then line the bottoms with waxed paper.
  • 2. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • 3. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • 4. In a separate small bowl, beat the egg yolks until thick and lemon-colored, about 2 minutes. Add the beaten yolks to the butter mixture and beat well. Add the chocolate, mixing until well incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated, but do not overbeat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl, making sure the ingredients are well blended and the batter is smooth.
  • 5. In a separate small bowl, beat the egg whites on the high speed of an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gently fold into the batter. Divide the batter among the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • 6. Let the layers cool in the pans for 1 hour. Remove from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Make the icing
  • 7. Combine the egg whites, sugar, water, syrup, and salt in the top of a double boiler and place over rapidly boiling water. On the high speed of an electric mixer, beat constantly for 6-8 minutes, or until the icing stands up in soft peaks.
  • 8. Remove from the heat, add the vanilla, and beat about 1 minute more, or until the icing has the desired spreading consistency. Use immediately.
  • 9. When the cake has cooled, ice between the layers, then ice the top and sides of the cake with Seven-Minute Icing. Sprinkle the top of the cake generously with the coconut.

Recipe Testers Reviews

Wow. I’m not a big chocolate fan, but this recipe is fantastic. Most people said it was the best chocolate cake they’ve had in a long time. The cake was very moist and I could’ve eaten the icing with just a spoon. I only put coconut on half of the cake because some guests don’t care for it. The coconut did give the cake a nice texture and I liked the flavor that it added. This one is going in our favorites to make again.


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    1. Hi Cat, the cake is going to taste best if served right away. If you do need to make it ahead, I would store it in a sealed cake container in the refrigerator.

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