Homemade Cake Recipes From Scratch

Perfectly delicious cakes made from scratch

Sheet Cake Recipes


It was probably in the early 1980’s when my mother first got the recipe for and started making Texas Sheet Cake.  It was an immediate hit with the family (except for one of my brothers, who was born with a mutated gene to not like chocolate).  I have fond memories as a child, of mother having to turn the cake in the oven so it didn’t bake unevenly in our old oven.  I don’t think my mother looks at that quite so fondly!  The rich, chocolate flavor and the thin pieces make this cake great to take to potlucks or get-togethers.  My mother still makes it regularly; especially when it’s her Sunday to take the after-church treats for Fellowship.


Texas Sheet Cake


2 cups sugar

2 cups flour

½ cup margarine

½ cup shortening

3 ½ Tablespoons cocoa powder

1 cup water

2 eggs

½ cup soured milk

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla


Mix together sugar and flour and set aside.  Combine margarine, shortening, cocoa powder and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Add eggs, sour milk, soda, vanilla and reserved dry ingredients and beat until well mixed.  Bake in 11 X 18 jelly roll pan for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.  Begin to make frosting five minutes before cake is done.  Frost immediately.




½ cup margarine

3 ½ Tablespoons cocoa powder

½ cup milk

1 pound powdered sugar

1 cup nuts

1 teaspoon vanilla


Combine margarine, cocoa powder, and milk in a saucepan and heat to a boil, stirring constantly.  Add powdered sugar, nuts, and vanilla, and pour hot over hot cake.  


Tip:  The nuts may be omitted from the frosting.  I prefer it without.


History:  Texas sheet cake is sort of a blend between brownies and cake.  It’s baked in a jelly roll pan so it is thin, like a brownie, but has the consistency of cake.  Historians find record of sheet cakes in the early twentieth century, however it became popularized in the 1980’s.  It is also referred to as “sheath”.  Although, there is no firm agreement on where Texas Sheet Cake got its name, some of the answers given in an article by Ann Burger, The Post and Courier (Charleston, SC), January 28, 2001 suggest it got the name from its super-chocolatey taste, as big as Texas, from the fact that the taste is super intense so people can only eat a small piece – which means one cake will feed a crowd as large as Texas!


Whatever the history of the name is, I know that a Texas Sheet Cake, with its intensely rich and fudge-like texture and flavor is both a family favorite and a crowd pleaser.