Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake Recipe

Cracker Barrel Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola Cake is a tasty cake. You can recreate this classic Cracker Barrel menu item at home! Enjoy this double chocolate at home.

two bowls of homemade chocolate Coca Cola cake and vanilla ice cream

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A huge hunk of double chocolate cake and an ice-cold glass of milk is one heck of a great snack. But cut that slice from a Cracker Barrel Double Fudge Coca Cola Cake, and you have something truly extraordinary. Double fudge coke cake has been a guest favorite at Cracker Barrel restaurants around the country for over twenty years, and for a good reason. It is rich, moist, and delicious. Adding Coca Cola to the cake batter not only lends it a unique flavor to the cake but heightens the fudgy goodness of the chocolate. Once you give the recipe below a try, Cracker Barrel Coca-cola cake is going to be one dessert your family will ask for again and again!

A Brief History of Coke Cake

Coca Cola is such a cultural phenomenon in the South that most Southerners insist on referring to just about any brand of soft drink as a ‘Coke.’ The drink that was to become Coca Cola was first developed in Columbus, Georgia by John S. Pemberton, a bankrupt pharmacist and morphine addict, as a knockoff of the popular French health tonic, Vin Mariani. He marketed his drink as Pemberton’s French Wine Coca, a non-carbonated combination of red wine and cocaethylene (a preparation of cocaine). It sold well locally, but when Atlanta, Georgia, passed anti-alcohol legislation in 1885, Pemberton started work on a non-alcoholic version of his tonic. Soon after developing the new recipe, Pemberton passed away. The formula for the non-alcoholic version of the drink wound up in the hands of Asa G. Candler, who considerably increased the drink’s popularity.

Fast-forward 50 years and recipes for cakes containing Coca Cola began cropping up in newspapers and magazines in the South. Still, it wasn’t until 1997 that Cracker Barrel modified the traditional Coke cake recipe and introduced it as a menu item.

A Buttermilk Substitution

Today’s buttermilk is not the same ingredient that your great, great grandmother had in her kitchen. Traditional buttermilk is that watery, yellow liquid leftover after churning butter. But these days, people just buy buttermilk at the store. Sadly, the stuff in the cartons is not real buttermilk, but just regular milk that is cultured with a little lactic acid bacteria.

This recipe calls for only half of a cup of buttermilk, and unless you use buttermilk regularly, it is a shame to run to the store to buy it. If you have it on hand, use it, but you can make a perfectly suitable substitution if not.

Combine a half-cup of milk with a half tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar. Mix and leave on the counter for five to ten minutes until it begins to curdle. Stir to combine and add to the cake batter.

Tips For Making Cracker Barrel Coca-Cola Cake

  • You can freeze buttermilk. Don’t waste any of your buttermilk. Freeze the buttermilk in an ice cube tray and store in a freezer bag. A standard ice cube is about one ounce. Defrost in the microwave or allow to thaw overnight in the fridge.
  • Make sure the double chocolate Coca-Cola cake is done. Double-check by sticking a toothpick in the cake center. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cake is ready.

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You will be amazed at just how moist this recipe is. It is an incredibly moist chocolate cake. This recipe has Coca-Cola in the cake batter. This cake also contains buttermilk, baking soda, and lots of dark cocoa. You can use regular cocoa, but you may want to try dark cocoa like this King Author Double Dark Cocoa.

Ingredients Coca Cola Cake

Here’s what you need to make Coca Cola chocolate cake:

  • Butter
  • Coca Cola
  • Semi-sweet baking chocolate square
  • Miniature marshmallows
  • Shortening
  • Vegetable oil
  • Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla
  • Buttermilk
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking soda
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Cocoa
  • Confectioners’ sugar
  • Heavy cream

Cracker Barrel Double Chocolate Fudge Coca Cola Cake ingredients

How to Make Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake

  1. Place butter, coke, and chocolate square in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Remove from heat and add marshmallows. Stir until marshmallows are completely melted and all is blended. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.
    chocolate coca cola mixture for cake
  3. In a mixing bowl, blend the shortening, oil, vanilla, and sugar until fluffy.
  4. Add eggs and buttermilk and beat until smooth.
  5. In another bowl, mix flour with baking soda, cocoa, baking powder and salt.
  6. Add half of the flour mixture to shortening, egg mixture, and beat until well blended.
  7. Add cooled Coca-Cola mixture and beat well.
  8. Add remainder of flour and beat until completely smooth.
    Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake batter
  9. Pour batter into a 13 X 9 X 2-inch greased and floured baking pan.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.
  11. Cream together margarine, cocoa, confectioners’ sugar in a large mixing bowl.
  12. Slowly add cream or milk. Add in vanilla.
  13. Spread frosting over warm cake.

Serve with vanilla ice cream and enjoy.

You may want to use the frosting for other chocolate cakes and cupcakes. This frosting is super easy to make.

If you like, you could add about 1 1/2 cups of pecans to the frosting recipe.

I know you are bound to fall in love with this just as much as my family has. This cake is great for birthday parties, potlucks, and holiday celebrations.

a bowl of homemade Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake and vanilla ice cream

Love Cracker Barrel desserts? Try these copycat recipes

Popular Homemade Cake Recipes

Be sure to take a look at my easy cake recipes and the best Cracker Barrel copycat recipes.

two bowls of homemade chocolate Coca Cola cake and vanilla ice cream

Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake

You can make the Cracker Barrel Double Chocolate Fudge Coca Cola Cake at home with this copycat recipe.
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Coca-Cola Cake, Cracker Barrel Coca Cola Cake, Cracker Barrel Recipes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 747kcal


Cake Ingredients

  • 4 ounces butter
  • 1 cup Coca Cola
  • 1 ounce baking chocolate 1 square
  • 3/4 cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup cocoa

Frosting Ingredients

  • 1/4 lb butter
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1 lb confectioners' sugar
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place in a saucepan butter, coke, semi-sweet baking square and bring to a boil remove from heat and add marshmallows and stir until all is blended and the marshmallows are disappear. Set aside to cool enough to tepid or room temperature. 
  • In mixing bowl blend the shortening, oil, vanilla, and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and buttermilk and beat until smooth. In another bowl mix flour with baking soda, cocoa, baking powder and salt, add half of the flour mixture to shortening, egg mixture, and beat. Scrape bowl time to time to clean the sides off so ingredients are blended in the batter. Add cooled coca-cola mixture and beat. Add remainder of flour and beat until completely smooth about 3 - 4 minutes. The batter will be thick. Place batter into a 13" x 9" x " 2 greased and floured baking pan. Set pan on top shelf in a preheated 350 degrees oven for 35 - 40 minutes. Check for completed baking time with a toothpick. If the toothpick comes out clean by sticking in the middle of the cake its time to come out of the oven and cool.
  •  Frosting In a bowl cream together margarine, cocoa, confectioners' sugar. Slowly add the 6 tablespoons of cream or milk. Add in vanilla. Frost warm cake. Serve with natural vanilla bean ice cream and enjoy.


Calories: 747kcal | Carbohydrates: 99g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Cholesterol: 79mg | Sodium: 359mg | Potassium: 233mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 74g | Vitamin A: 645IU | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2.7mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Margie

    5 stars
    I worked for many years at Cracker Barrel I love to make this cake and I love even better eating it!!!


    5 stars
    I just made these as cupcakes, 3T batter per, for 16 minutes. It made 42 cupcakes. I really creamed the frosting and it turned out fluffy and stupendous!

  3. Capt Cat

    Yeilds approximately 40 cupcakes (fill 3/4 full, cook for 19 minutes). This recipe is clearly the best one of the two I just compared. This is much richer in flavor, more chocolate (as you read the recipe) and I won’t make the other one again. I don’t bake at all, but decided to make it after seeing at the restuarant. I am shocked at the flavor this recipe offers. All others cannot compare to this one. Don’t waste your time; follow this above recipe. I strongly object to Mrs. B comments below. Yes, the Coca-cola and marshmallows are the vital part. Leave nothing out; cook exactly as told. YUM!!!!

  4. Coronagranny

    If you really want the recipe, go to the Coca Cola Company Web site, they have it listed. I worked at Cracker Barrel and the secret is the coca cola and marshmallows. It is a very simple cake.

  5. Mrs. B

    As a professional in the restaurant business, this cake tastes nor looks anything like Cracker Barrel’s Coca-Cola Cake. I had my doubts from looking the recipe over…and sure enough, after following the recipe exactly, the product was simply a chocolate cake. It took nearly an hour to bake and was time consuming too! Baking is my livelyhood, so it isn’t a question of whether I made it wrong…it just isn’t correct & true recipe!

  6. IrishSammie

    I haven’t made this yet, but I have to mention that I love the Fiestaware in the picture of the cake! I collect it, and live really near the pottery.

  7. Jodie

    Made recipe just like it was printed and it was very dry and crumbled when cut. The taste was ok, bur not comparable to the real thing.
    I am sorry your cake didn’t turn out well, and it was dry. I have had good results with that recipe in the past. ~Stephanie

  8. Crackergirl

    I can tell you one thing about this cake. It has to sit for over an hour after it is frosted. Even though I work at Cracker Barrel, we don’t know how this is made. The cake mix comes in a bag ready to pour and bake.

  9. mark

    I made this to a T tonight and it tastes NOTHING like Cracker Barrels version. It was not the baking that did it in, the ingredients just are not right. The cake was bland and the icing was ridiculously sweet and laced with too much powdered sugar. Sorry but not a true copy cat.

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