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Tess’ Amazing 2-Layer Mayonnaise Chocolate Cake

  • Author: Meagan


The first time this was made in our house (by Marlow!), there was an embarrassingly little amount left! and there’s only 4 of us!  Tess is an amazing baker already at only 13 years old and we’re grateful she not only made us this fabulous cake, but she then freely shared her well-loved, often-used recipe (with a side note that it works well for a ‘money cake’).  We got a pretty good dome on our 8-inch pans so at some point I’m going to also try 9-inch and see what happens.  (**update – 9″ works great! might be the size I use going forward!).  The frosting shown is Chocolate Buttermilk Frosting and oh my goodness it’s a dangerous combination!  The only teeny change I made was to swap the water in the original cake recipe for an equal amount of strong coffee – enjoy!

**Another Update – for those who enjoy cake decorating, I’m attaching Favorite Chocolate Buttercream recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction.  The initial measurements will absolutely cover a 2-layer cake, and the measurements at the end of the ingredients are for 1.5 x the amount if you’d like extra for roses etc.**



2 c. (250 g) flour AND 2/3 c. (65 g) cocoa

1 1/4 t. baking soda AND 1/4 t. baking powder

3 eggs AND 1 t. vanilla

1 2/3 c. sugar

1 c. (230 g) mayonnaise

1 1/3 c. room temperature strong coffee (or water)

**Favorite Chocolate Buttercream**

1 c. (230 g) butter, softened (1 1/2 c. (345 g))

3 1/2 c. (420 g) icing sugar, sifted (5 1/4 c. (630 g))

1/2 c. (41 g) cocoa, sifted (3/4 c. (62 g))

3 T. cream, room temperature (4 1/2 T.)

a pinch of salt

2 t. vanilla (3 t.)


For the cake – spray 2, 8-inch (or 9-inch, little less doming, easier to tell if it’s done) round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment and spray the parchment.  Preheat the oven to 350.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and baking powder and set this aside for a bit.  Using your electric mixer, beat together the eggs, vanilla and sugar on high for 3 minutes, then reduce the speed to low and scrape in all of the mayonnaise. With the mixer still on low, alternately add the flour mix in 3 portions with the coffee, beginning and ending with the flour.  Scrape down the bowl if needed and mix until no trace of flour can be seen.

Add the batter to your prepared cake pans and then weigh them to make sure that the batter is evenly distributed.  Bake for about 35 minutes (for both 8 and 9″ cake pans) until the tops are slightly cracked and a cake tester comes out clean – the temperature in the middle should also be 200 degrees.  Allow the cakes to rest in the pans for about 10 minutes until turning them out to cool completely.

Shape and frost the cakes as you wish – Marlow trimmed both layers until that they were perfectly even so that she could practice her decorating skills, but we were all horribly impatient and the cake was devoured before any decent photos were taken.  Not to worry though…there will be several more ‘next times’ I’m sure!

For the buttercream – use your electric mixer to beat the butter for a couple of minutes until creamy, then carefully add the icing sugar and cocoa and beat on low until it’s partially mixed in, then add in half the cream, the salt and vanilla.  Beat for a minute until the frosting starts to smooth out, drizzling in the remaining cream or even adding more as needed to get the consistency that you’d like.  Scrape down the bowl, beat for a final minute after adjusting the cream, then frost as you wish.  This works well if made ahead and refrigerated, just allow it to come to room temperature before using – you may even need to beat it again to return it to it’s best form.



From Meagan's Kitchen


  • Erin says:

    I haven’t tried this yet but I’m going to today! I just wanted to say…my name is Erin and my mom’s name is Deanna. ? I was Googling cake recipes to try a new one and saw this website and thought, “Well, that’s a sign!” Lol.

  • Meagan says:

    Love it! also hope you love that cake, it’s one of our favorites and I just made it again on the weekend.

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