Tomorrow is my dad’s 85th birthday and as we are getting ready, I realized that I’ve never shared my family’s favorite chocolate cake recipe. This is a from scratch recipe, but it’s so easy, you’ll never use a mix again. It’s yummy with butter cream frosting and cream cheese frosting (my husband’s fav) but it’s heavenly with German chocolate frosting.

I have no idea where my mom originally came across this recipe, or I would happily give credit. If you try this cake for a celebration, I’d love to hear about it — and see your photos!

Real Crazy Cake

Easy chocolate cake that doesn't need eggs.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12
Author: Jennifer Needham


  • 8" round cake pan(s)
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Large whisk


  • cup flour
  • 3 tbsp cocoa
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 tbsp canola oil
  • Pam for baking OR flour and Crisco


  • Sift dry ingredients into large mixing bowl.
  • Make 3 depressions in mixture with the back of a spoon.
  • Pour vinegar in one depression, vanilla in the second and canola oil in the third.
  • Pour water over all, then mix well until smooth.
  • Pour into a greased and floured 8-inch baking pan.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.


Makes ONE layer of cake. You will need to double the ingredients for a two-layer cake.
Makes 12 – 15 cupcakes.
This recipe is great with German chocolate cake frosting, vanilla buttercream, or cream cheese frosting.
This is a very moist cake, so buttercream frosting will pick up cake crumbs unless you do a crumb coat before the final frosting coating.

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