High Altitude Chocolate Cake Recipe

Chocolate cake

High Altitude Chocolate Cake Recipe

Baking chocolate cake at high altitude is one of the greater challenges in a baker’s life. Chocolate cakes tend to take more sugar, and sugar plus high altitude is a problem.  You can overcome this problem with trial and error, or you can use a tried-and-true recipe that will produce a moist, chocolaty cake without a lot of fuss.

This recipe is from an old recipe card that I think was copied from a friend of my mother’s.  At least – her name is on it and that’s my deduction.  My mom did scratch out the baking time to insert her own.  This is another common problem with baking – everyone’s oven is different.  A good baking thermometer will help you figure out if your oven bakes warmer or colder than the setting.

CDN High Heat Oven Thermometer High heat 100 to 750 degreeCDN High Heat Oven Thermometer High heat 100 to 750 degreeCDN High Heat Oven Thermometer High heat 100 to 750 degreeTaylor Precision Oven ThermometerTaylor Precision Oven ThermometerTaylor Precision Oven ThermometerComark Fluke Electronics Oven ThermometerComark Fluke Electronics Oven ThermometerComark Fluke Electronics Oven Thermometer

 

Check out my article on High Altitude Baking adjustments for even more information and tips.

This mixing technique seems a bit strange at first, but I promise it works fine.  At high altitude, you generally don’t want too many bubbles whipped into your batter at the beginning.  Too much volume in the batter, rising too fast, is what causes cakes to fall, so take it easy on the beating.

Chocolate cake

For 5,000 feet altitude:

High Altitude Chocolate Cake (5000 ft)

Baking chocolate cake at high altitude is one of the greater challenges in a baker’s life. Chocolate cakes tend to take more sugar, and sugar plus high altitude is a problem.  You can overcome this problem with trial and error, or you can use a tried-and-true recipe that will produce a moist, chocolaty cake without a lot of fuss.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: HIgh Altitude Chocolate Cake, High-Altitude Baking
Servings: 12 Servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Cake Flour LESS 2 tbsp
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/4 cups Sugar LESS 1 tbsp
  • 1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 2/3 cup Butter or Lard
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 3 lg Eggs

Instructions

  • Grease and flour 2, 9" round cake pans.  Preheat oven to 375F
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar and cocoa.  
  • In a mixing bowl, beat butter or lard just until softened.  Add the dry ingredients above and 3/4 of the milk.  Mix until moistened and then beat on medium for 2 minutes.
  • Add the remaining milk and eggs and beat for 1 more minute.
  • Pour batter into pans.  Bake at 375F for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and cool completely on a rack.
  • Frost with chocolate buttercream icing.

For 3,000 ft altitude:

Simple Chocolate Cake (3000 ft)

Baking chocolate cake at high altitude is one of the greater challenges in a baker’s life. Chocolate cakes tend to take more sugar, and sugar plus high altitude is a problem. You can overcome this problem with trial and error, or you can use a tried-and-true recipe that will produce a moist, chocolaty cake without a lot of fuss.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Simple Chocolate Cake
Servings: 12 Servings
Author: Don Herman

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Cake Flour
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/3 cups Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 2/3 cup Butter or Lard
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 lg Eggs

Instructions

  • Grease and flour 2, 9″ round cake pans. Preheat oven to 350F
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar and cocoa.
  • In a mixing bowl, beat butter or lard just until softened. Add the dry ingredients above and 3/4 of the milk. Mix until moistened and then beat on medium for 2 minutes.
  • Add the remaining milk and eggs and beat for 1 more minute.
  • Pour batter into pans. Bake at 350F for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and cool completely on a rack.
  • Frost with chocolate buttercream icing.

For 7,000 feet altitude:

High Altitude Chocolate Cake (7000 ft)

Baking chocolate cake at high altitude is one of the greater challenges in a baker’s life. Chocolate cakes tend to take more sugar, and sugar plus high altitude is a problem. You can overcome this problem with trial and error, or you can use a tried-and-true recipe that will produce a moist, chocolaty cake without a lot of fuss.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: HIgh Altitude Chocolate Cake, High Altitude Recipes
Servings: 12 Servings
Author: Don Herman

Ingredients

  • 2 cups PLUS 2 tbsp Cake Flour
  • 3/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup LESS 2 tbsp Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 cup Butter or Lard
  • 1 cup PLUS 1 tbsp Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 3 lg Eggs

Instructions

  • Grease and flour 2, 9" round cake pans. Preheat oven to 375F
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar and cocoa.
  • In a mixing bowl, beat butter or lard just until softened. Add the dry ingredients above and 3/4 of the milk. Mix until moistened and then beat on medium for 2 minutes.
  • Add the remaining milk and eggs and beat for 1 more minute.
  • Pour batter into pans. Bake at 375F for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and cool completely on a rack.
  • Frost with chocolate buttercream icing.

Buy only the best chocolate for baking at Savory Spice.  A huge variety of chocolate from around the world to give your cake a unique, original flavor!

Mayan Cocoa – 1 Cup Bag | Savory Spice Shop

The Mayans have been drinking chocolate as far back as 2600 years. With that in mind, we created a spicy Mayan cocoa powder so you can enjoy a version of this traditional drink at home. Use 1 heaping Tbsp. per cup of heated milk for a spicy yet heavenly Mayan drink. Sweeten as needed. Also nice for baked goods or sprinkling on buttered toast, fruit, and waffles. Ingredients Dutch cocoa, chile peppers, cinnamon, vanilla powder (corn maltodextrin, vanilla extractives)[More]

Price: $9.75

If you enjoyed this recipe, try one of my other chocolate cake recipes – in regular and high-altitude versions. Homemade German Chocolate Cake and No-Egg Wacky Cake.

Comments? Questions? I’d love to hear from you – leave me a note!

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