“The Kids’ Chocolate Cake”

I found this recipe for a chocolate cake from 1950.  It was described as “the kids’ cake” as the mom of the house made a spice cake for Dad and this cake for the kids each week.

With this name I had to make it for a fundraiser in the school and made it into cupcakes as cupcakes sell easier to the students rather than a whole cake.

I messed up by beating the water and baking soda by themselves (READ, Alison!) at first but realised how silly it was to beat water and corrected the mistake.  I frosted the cupcakes with a simple vanilla butter cream.  Using medium cupcake cases I got 30 cupcakes.

This makes a really dark cake, with a really light crumb.  It is not overly sweet so stands up really well to a butter cream frosting.

"The kids' chocolate cake"

“The kids’ chocolate cake”

“The Kids’ Chocolate Cake”

(Frances Rooney 1950)

In a bowl, put

  • 1-1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Pour in

  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil but do not mix

Put in another bowl

  • 1-1/2 tsp baking soda


  • 1-1/2 cup hot water

Pour baking soda/water into first bowl and beat until cooled


  • 1-3/4 cups flour
  • 2 eggs
  • vanilla

Pour batter into a sheet cake pan and bake at 350 for about 25 minutes.

Sometimes frost it with a simple frosting of butter, cream and powdered sugar, other times chocolate frosting.