German chocolate cake stands out from the crowd. Whenever something has ‘German’ in the name, you automatically think it will taste good.
Although this cake is not actually German, it does stand true in that it tastes amazing. It is decadent and delicious, perfect for those with a sweet tooth.
A German chocolate cake is enough to make you say ‘Wowza!’
So, let’s move on to give you the 15 best German chocolate cake recipes you can make comfortably in your own kitchen!
Our Top 5 German Chocolate Cake Recipes
Who’s picking favorites? Oh, yeah, us. Oops. Oh well, we can’t help it, these five recipes really… Take the cake!
1. German Chocolate Sheet Cake (I Heart Eating)
Sheet cake is a traditional German recipe. It is also one of the easiest cake recipes to whip up, so works well for beginners.
German sheet cake usually has some toppings, and this one is a real winner with a sweet, caramel coconut pecan topping.
These cakes remind us of those small cake platters you would get at a birthday party as a kid, or budget cake, or even brownies. However, this is so much better and the sweet caramel really steals the show. That is why this one is our top German chocolate cake!
2. German Chocolate Snack Cake With Coconut-Pecan Frosting (Simply Recipes)
In the last recipe, the coconut-pecan frosting sounded amazing, and it reappears in our second favorite pick. It is just the same chocolate cake you always loved, but it gives you more of a decadent, gooey, coconut pecan topping that just adds to the wave of flavors.
This frosting is typical with German chocolate cake, but how you do it is what really matters, and this one is gorgeous. It might lack the caramel the top pick had, but it is still just as glorious.
3. German Chocolate Cake (Tastes Better From Scratch)
What if you do not want a snack cake? What if you want a big birthday cake with that frosting?
You can have it! It is not a German dessert, and the cake is usually lighter, but this version is perfectly chocolaty, with chocolate frosting on the top and center with the usual frosting on the top too. It is an epic mashup of traditional chocolate cake and German chocolate cake.
4. German Chocolate Birthday Cake (Taste Of Home)
German chocolate cake doesn’t need to be traditional. If you love the taste and its unique style, you can make it into a birthday cake too! It keeps the sweet coconut-pecan frosting that we love about this cake and adds it to the most delicious chocolate birthday cake.
5. Easy 5-Ingredient German Chocolate Cake (Barbara Bakes)
Baking can be hard, especially for beginners, and you do not want to be tackling a sea of ingredients that can be confusing and hard to negotiate. This German chocolate cake recipe is perfect for baking newbies who want to try and bake their favorite cake.
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Other German Chocolate Cake Recipes
While these are not members of our top five cakes, they are just as good, and we recommend giving them a try. You can make so many types of German Chocolate Cake, once you have it nailed, you can even add your own personal touch.
1. German Chocolate Cake (Little Sweet Baker)
If you enjoy nutty and chocolate flavors in a cake, this one’s for you. The decadent chocolate and delicious, rich coconut-pecan frosting make it to die for. It is super easy and tastes like heaven on earth.
2. German Chocolate Cake (Preppy Kitchen)
This one may not be the most visually appealing of our many choices, however, its decadence and intense flavor make up for it.
This recipe incorporates plenty of that coconut-pecan frosting the cake is known for, layering it between the sponge. It simply melts in your mouth. It doesn’t need to look fancy if it won’t be on the table for very long!
3. Easy Baker’s German Sweet Chocolate Cake (My Food And Family)
This recipe has one of the longer cooking times of all these recipes at 2 hours. However, this is another one of the sheet cake recipes, but simple and easy. It keeps the richness and flavor, but it saves some time on prep. This recipe calls for Baker’s German’s sweet chocolate in the ingredients.
4. German Chocolate Cake With Coconut-Pecan Frosting (Kitchen Tested)
This cake is the perfect balance between sponge and frosting. With three layers of each, it gives off an equal amount of that creamy frosting and its soft, spongy chocolate base. It is an easy recipe, and if you are an avid baker, you likely have all the ingredients for this one already in your home!
5. Easy German Chocolate Sheet Cake (Tablespoon)
A simple sheet cake takes 25 minutes to prepare, and an hour and a half to cook. It is a big cake that can serve many! However, this one is unique, with a chocolate ganache beneath the coconut-pecan topping. Yum!
6. German Chocolate Sheet Cake (The Spruce Eats)
Try this one! Chocolate sponge, the coconut-pecan frosting, but add on a ganache or chocolate buttercream to the sides, and pipe a decorative border around the edge. What deliciousness.
If we ate with our eyes, this cake would not last long. It’s one of the more intermediate cakes on this list, however.
7. Mama’s German Chocolate Cake (My Recipes)
This recipe calls for 12 ingredients, total. It is unlike the others because this one adds the frosting all over. Once you are done with the baking of the sponge, spread the coconut-pecan frosting between the layers, on the top, and the sides of your cake. For those who love this frosting, this is the one to beat… or eat.
8. Baker’s German Chocolate Cake (Love From The Oven)
This cake is a gentle combination. It mixes a sweet and gentle chocolate cake with the rich frosting this cake is known for. A two tier-cake, really indulging in its nutty side. Although maybe not as much as our previous recipe.
9. The Most Amazing German Chocolate Cake (The Stay At Home Chef)
This one is more for chocolate lovers who have a hankering for the frosting. It is moist and rich but is layered with that delicious coconut-pecan frosting. It adds in a chocolate buttercream option as well. Making for a truly decadent dessert. Although one of the more complex options.
10. German Chocolate Cake (Life, Love, And Sugar)
Finally, this recipe is the ideal combination of the above. A tasty chocolate cake, with the coconut-pecan filling and a chocolate frosting all mixed together into one. Sweet, nutty, and with a splash of coconut between the bites. It adds just enough of the filling to be tasty but not too much to overpower those with less of a sweet tooth.
German chocolate cake is not a German cake, but what it does have is plenty of flavor, sweetness, and some incredible ingredients. Whoever thought of making that frosting is a genius.
The recipes we have given you today range from beginner level to expert. You can challenge yourself to make the most decadent and glamorous German chocolate cake in the world.
Or, you could simply make a calm German chocolate sheet cake in the knowledge that it won’t last long anyway.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Different About German Chocolate Cake?
One of the main differences in most German chocolate cakes is the use of a low-in-cacao chocolate for its cake. This gives it a more subtle flavor. However, this is not always true, as people love their chocolate, and it can be very rich in some cases.
Is German Chocolate Cake Actually German?
Sadly, no. The German chocolate cake is indeed German, and a cake, alongside its other coconut and pecan ingredients. However, it is not German at all.
The name actually comes from Sam German, who was an American (Or English) gentleman. He invented a style of sweet baking chocolate for the Baker’s chocolate company. They ended up naming it after him.
However, this did not get known until 1957 when a Texas homemaker sent this now-legendary chocolate cake recipe to a Dallas newspaper, and then the name was born!
What Flavor Is German Chocolate Cake?
The name is deceiving as it is not a German dessert, however, it was originally made from ‘German Chocolate’ which means the cake is a lighter colored cake with a mild chocolate taste.
The entire cake is traditionally covered in coconut-pecan frosting. However, we love our chocolate, and now this cake is more traditionally like a typical chocolate cake.
We tend to use normal chocolate, thus making German chocolate cake less mild in its flavor. However, it differs per baker, and per recipe.
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