Texas Sheet Cake

If chocolate is your thing, then this Texas sheet cake recipe is for you! This sheet cake recipe is super simple to make and is perfectly paired with a delicious Texas sheet cake frosting.

Texas sheet cake slice on a plate and a glass of milk.

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What Makes Texas Sheet Cake so Unique

Texas sheet cake is one of the most classic sheet cakes. It is filled with wonderful chocolate flavor. This recipe especially highlights the chocolate flavor by boiling the butter, cocoa, and water together which activates the flavor.

It also features a wonderfully smooth chocolate pecan buttercream frosting to top off an already moist sheet cake.

Why is it called Texas Sheet Cake and what makes it different?

It is uncertain how Texas Sheet Cake got its name, but maybe it’s because it’s a big cake and, as you know, everything is bigger in Texas.

Texas sheet cake is also very similar to German chocolate cake. However, the main difference between the two is that German chocolate cake requires a more complex, multistep process, whereas Texas sheet cake is made easier by combining everything in one bowl.

Chocolate Sheet Cake Ingredients

You won’t need anything special or unusual for this chocolate cake. Just take a look to make sure you have enough of all the ingredients.

  • All-purpose flour
  • Sugar
  • Baking soda
  • Butter you can use salted butter or unsalted butter
  • Cocoa
  • Water
  • Large eggs
  • Buttermilk
  • Vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar
  • Pecans or Walnuts
Texas sheet cake ingredients.
Batter Ingredients
Texas sheet cake frosting ingredients.
Frosting Ingredients

Replace the Buttermilk

If you don’t have a jug of buttermilk at home, you can make your own. Combine 1 cup whole milk (or whatever milk is in the fridge) with 1 tablespoon of distilled white vinegar or lemon juice. Stir and let it sit for 5 minutes. You’re ready to go!

What size pan is needed to make this Texas sheet cake?

For this recipe, you will use a jelly roll pan that is 18″x26″. Some people like to use two half-sheet pans. If you would like to make this as a layer cake, then I would suggest using two 8-inch cake pans, you could also make this in a 9″x13″ baking pan.

Check out this guide on cake pan sizes.

How to Make Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake

  1. Bring 2 sticks of butter, cocoa, and water to a boil. Keep on the heat until you melt the butter. Remove from the heat.
butter, cocoa powder, and water in a saucepan.
melted butter, cocoa, and water mixture in a saucepan.
  1. Add in the dry ingredients. Add the flour, sugar, and baking soda, and whisk to combine.
adding flour, sugar, and cocoa powder to a chocolate mixture in a saucepan.
  1. Add the eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla, and stir until incorporated.
adding eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla to chocolate cake batter mixture in a saucepan.
  1. Pour the batter into a 18×26-inch greased and floured pan. Bake at 350°F for 18 to 20 minutes.
  2. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of the cake if it comes out clean, the cake is done. Remove the cake from the oven.
  3. Rest the cake on a wire rack.

How to Make Texas Sheet Cake Frosting

  1. While the cake is baking, bring 1 stick of butter, cocoa, and buttermilk to a boil.
butter, buttermilk, and cocoa powder in a saucepan.
  1. Add 1 box of powdered sugar, nuts, and vanilla. Stir the mixture until smooth.
Texas sheet cake frosting in a saucepan.
  1. Pour the frosting over the cake.
Texas sheet cake frosting poured over the cake.

Does Texas Sheet Cake have to be refrigerated?

This sheet cake does not require refrigeration. But if you live in a warmer area or you’d like the cake to last longer, it would be best to cover and refrigerate the Texas chocolate sheet cake. 

Does this recipe freeze well?

Yes, you can freeze this cake! It actually turns out well frozen.

Either freeze the whole cake or slice it and freeze the slices individually. This sheet cake will last for 2 months in the freezer.

slice of Texas cheese cake on a plate.

How many people does this sheet cake serve?

Depending on how you slice it, you can get anywhere between 12 and 20 pieces out of this cake.

The bigger the pieces the fewer there will be, so slice based on how many people you intend to serve.

This cake is so moist and delicious you’ll want to eat it with a spoon!

a slice of Texas sheet cake with a spoon in it.

Love chocolate cake? Try these recipes!

Favorite Chocolate Desserts and Sweets

Check out more of my easy cake recipes and the best dessert recipes here on CopyKat!

Texas sheet cake slice on a plate and a glass of milk.

Texas Sheet Cake

Chocolate Texas sheet cake is a classic dessert that feeds a crowd.
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cake Recipes, Chocolate cake, Dessert Recipes, Texas Sheet Cake
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 814kcal



  • 8 ounces butter plus extra for the pan
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra for the pan
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 4 ounces butter
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa
  • 6 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 16 ounces powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans or walnuts optional



  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a baking sheet 18"x26".
  • In a saucepan, bring the butter, cocoa, and water to a boil. Remove from the heat.
  • Add the flour, sugar, and baking soda, and stir to combine.
  • Add the eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla. Stir until well incorporated.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan
  • Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.
  • You can check for cake doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of the cake and if it comes out clean, the cake is done.


  • While the cake is baking, prepare the frosting: Bring the butter, cocoa, and buttermilk to a boil in a saucepan.
  • Add the powdered sugar. Stir only until smooth.
  • Add the vanilla and pecans and stir to combine.
  • Pour the frosting over the warm cake.


If you want to bake this cake in an 18 x 13-inch sheet pan, you will need to reduce the baking time. Bake it in a sheet pan for about 20 minutes.


Calories: 814kcal | Carbohydrates: 110g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 389mg | Potassium: 202mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 86g | Vitamin A: 940IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 2.4mg

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 CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Pat

    5 stars
    You left out the tsp. cinnamon in the cake mix. That’s the main reason I love this cake because the cinnamon takes away the heavy chocolate flavor.
    This is the very best cake and I have served it over and over through the years

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