The world’s first chocolate cake was made in Boston in 1764. This was when Dr. James Baker discovered that cocoa could be ground using a water-powered mill. He and a chocolate maker ground up cocoa beans with millstones to turn it into a thick syrup (called cocoa liquor), which was poured into molds shaped like cakes.
Prior to that, chocolate had been primarily used to make a drink similar to tea or coffee, which was the original intention of these chocolate molds (almost like hot chocolate bombs).
The word chocolate comes from the Aztec word xocotal, which means bitter water. Cocoa beans themselves, and chocolate without milk and sugar added (aka dark chocolate) is actually not very sweet at all.
60 years later, in 1824, Conrad Van Houten discovered a way to remove the fat from cacao liquor, which was called cocao butter.
In 1847, Eliza Leslie published the first chocolate cake recipe in The Lady’s Receipt Book. As she was already a popular cookbook author, the recipe soon gained traction. It wasn’t how we think of chocolate cake today, either, but it was regular cake with small chunks of chocolate mixed in.
Around that same time, other popular cookbook authors and chefs – like Maria Parloa and Sarah Tyson Rorer – also create their own variations and recipes. Then in 1879, Rodolphe Lindt developed a process called “conching” that made chocolate smoother and silkier.
Boxed cake mixes weren’t invented until the late 1920s, when the first one was created by the company O. Duff and Sons and was called Devil’s food chocolate cake mixes.. Betty Crocker’s dry cake mix wasn’t released until 20 years later in 1947, along with several other flavors.
During World War II, boxed chocolate cake production came to a halt. It was picked up again when the war ended, and in 1948, Pillsbury entered the market with their own dry chocolate cake mix.
In 1957, German chocolate cake first came onto the scene when the Dallas Morning Star featured this chocolate cake covered in coconut-caramel frosting. Interestingly enough, the name did not derive from the country Germany or its inhabitants; rather, the recipe called for the German’s brand of chocolate.
A decade later in 1967, Hostess Brands began to release small cream-filled chocolate covered cakes called Ding Dongs. They moved up into Canada, where they are called King Dons.
In the 1990s, molten laval cakes became popular. These are small chocolate cakes with hot, melted liquid chocolate in the center. They are often served as dessert at many restaurants.
Ideas for National Chocolate Cake Day
Here are some delicious unique recipes for chocolate cake that you can try out today.
This easy Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream Cake is a perfect frozen dessert for National Chocolate Cake Day. A layer of chocolate cake with chocolate ice cream and frosted chocolate whipped cream. This recipe is easy to customize to just about any flavor!
If you’re a fan of Milky Way chocolate bars, you’re going to love this easy Milky Way cake recipe from scratch. With a simple caramel frosting and chopped Milky Way bars on top, this is one of the best ultimate cake recipes for National Chocolate Cake Day.
This Blood Orange Chocolate Cake is not just beautiful to look at, it tastes absolutely sublime too. On National Chocolate Cake Day, you'll want a rich chocolatey fudgy cake topped with caramel orange slices!
This tasty mango chocolate cake is a simple and easy cake recipe that tastes absolutely delicious, especially on National Chocolate Cake Day. A double layer chocolate cake base, lightly covered with a mango buttercream. Then topped with fresh mango slices. Light enough for a breakfast cake or a not-too-heavy dessert.
Show someone how much you care on National Chocolate Cake Day by baking up this homemade Mini German Chocolate Cake with coconut pecan frosting from scratch, which makes enough dessert for two (or you can pretend it’s a single serving cake. It is almost February, after all).
Chocolate Pudding Cake makes its own gooey chocolate sauce as it bakes and is equally delicious served either warm or cold on National Chocolate Cake Day. With its rich chocolate flavor, this chocolate cake is best served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
This Twix Cake is a chocolate caramel cake baked on a shortbread crust, filled with thick caramel and frosted with a caramel shortbread buttercream frosting! It has all the layers and elements of a Twix candy bar but in cake form - so perfect for National Chocolate Cake Day.
This easy chocolate olive oil cake recipe with lemon zest and crystallized ginger is such an amazing dessert for National Chocolate Cake Day! The cake is so moist and tender, with deep chocolate flavor and a bright complexity from the ginger and lemon.
Chocolate zucchini snack cake is a rich and moist chocolate cake that's made entirely in the bowl of a food processor! This recipe makes an 8x8 cake - perfect for small, snack sized slices on National Chocolate Cake Day.
A dense, rich, moist chocolate cake with a thick layer of fluffy cream filling and chocolate ganache icing creates a Ding Dong Cake that’s so much like your favorite snack cake, but also a million times better! Give it a try on National Chocolate Cake Day.https://savingtalents.com/caramel-pecan-christmas-turtles-recipe/
A wonderful chocolate layer cake with chocolate cream cheese buttercream frosting and truffles on top: the absolute dream on National Chocolate Cake Day of everyone who likes chocolate! In fact almost every chocolate dessert is something amazing to eat, especially when it is moist and with delicious chocolate frosting. But this particular cake is really impressive as it is made of six layers, each one covered by the velvety frosting! It simply melts in your mouth like a truffle and it is decorated with easy to make truffles.
An easy one-bowl chocolate cake, topped with a delicious and intriguing black pepper buttercream icing to make on National Chocolate Cake Day. The black pepper adds a subtle fragrant spice that pairs beautifully with the vanilla buttercream and chocolate cake.
Black Forest Fault Line Cake with Buttercream Frosting is a rich and classic cake for National Chocolate Cake Day, where moist and delicious chocolate layers are combined with fresh cherries, and rich, silky smooth and melt in mouth frosting.
This is the Best Flourless Chocolate Cake Recipe you'll ever make or eat on National Chocolate Cake Day. It is a gluten-free dessert for serious chocolate lovers that's made with only 7 ingredients. It's a delicious & elegant make-ahead treat for any special occasion.
Chocolate Financiers are decadent mini French chocolate cakes made with almond flour and browned butter. Browning the butter adds an incredible aroma and flavor to these delectable mini chocolate cakes! Give them a try on National Chocolate Cake Day.
This whiskey cake is a simple no-frosting cake you can make on National Chocolate Cake Day. This recipe combines chocolate, strong coffee, and Irish whiskey. Undertones of black pepper and clove support this chocolate cake, almost like a warm kiss with each bite.
There is no real celebration on National Chocolate Cake Day without a cake! This scrumptious and rich Chocolate Layer Cake with Mascarpone and Caramelised Meringues is all a chocolate lover needs: 5 tasty chocolate layers assembled with two types of chocolate frosting. And this whole beauty is decorated with caramelized meringues that you can easily make at home.
This decadent Red Wine Strawberry Chocolate Cake cake is the ultimate cake for National Chocolate Cake Day! A whipped creamy mascarpone strawberry kirsch filling is sandwiched between luscious red wine chocolate cake, all encased in a rich red wine dark chocolate ganache with ganache dipped strawberries on top.
Chocolate Rum Cake is a decadent and delicious dessert for National Chocolate Cake Day but easy enough to make for any day of the week. Chocolate bundt cake soaked in a warm buttered rum sauce for one of the best chocolate cakes you'll ever taste!
Kladdkaka is one of the easiest cakes you'll ever make, and it may well become a favorite, too for National Chocolate Cake Day. This Swedish sticky chocolate cake uses just a handful of everyday ingredients, and takes only a few minutes to prepare and bake. Get ready for rich, indulgent deliciousness.
The best chocolate spice cake recipe perfect for your National Chocolate Cake Day celebrations! You’ll love this old fashioned chocolate spice cake recipe - buttermilk, molasses, and warm spices make this a rich, moist, flavorful cake, and then our incredible cream cheese frosting brings it all together!
This delicious Chocolate Honey Cake is perfect for National Chocolate Cake Day. It's flavored with melted chocolate and cocoa powder, sweetened with honey and a touch of brown sugar, and drenched in whisky sauce. It's a deeply chocolate cake with a rich texture that's PERFECT for soaking up all the delicious sauce.
Do ever look at your holiday leftovers and you can’t even imagine what you’re going to do with the amount of food you have? Here's a great recipe for using leftover mashed potatoes on National Chocolate Cake Day. This Mashed Potato Chocolate Cake fools everyone – you’d never know what’s in it – and it tastes moist (thanks to the spuds).
This triple chocolate layer cake is a favorite chocolate cake recipe for National Chocolate Cake Day! With moist, fudgy chocolate cake layers, smothered with rich chocolate buttercream, and then covered with dark chocolate ganache, this cake is truly a chocolate lovers dream!
How do you imagine the perfect chocolate layer cake for National Chocolate Cake Day? You would probably think of moist layers, gooey frosting and a great chocolate taste. But if you are a real dessert lover, you might go one step further in your dreams and add a raspberry filling. Chocolate tastes even better with it! Indeed, this Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Filling is a real perfection!
Romanian chocolate cake or prajitura Boema, an incredible triple chocolate cake soaked in caramel syrup and topped with ganache and cream, a must-have recipe for all chocolate lovers on National Chocolate Cake Day.
Hot Fudge Pudding Cake is made on National Chocolate Cake Day from simple ingredients you’ve already got in your kitchen. The cast iron skillet gives a “crispy-around-the-edges” touch that only an iron skillet can do.
If you’re a chocolate lover, this Italian Chocolate Torte is a delicious way to satisfy that craving on National Chocolate Cake Day. Packed with dried fruit and nuts, topped with a rich chocolate ganache it’s a chocolate lover’s dream that is perfect for the holidays or your next special occasion.
This Salted Caramel Chocolate Crepe Cake is one spectacular dessert for National Chocolate Cake Day! Made with layers of deliciously soft chocolate crepes, with a creamy but light salted caramel diplomat cream in between. No baking required.
This Chocolate Cake with Caramel is a rich and dreamy cake for National Chocolate Cake Day. Three layers of moist, fudgy chocolate cake are slathered in homemade chocolate frosting and dripping with caramel.
This Paleo Triple Chocolate Cake is a triple-threat, death-by-chocolate ultra rich and moist experience just fully loaded to the brim with chocolate decadence! Give it a try on National Chocolate Cake Day!
It’s National Chocolate Cake Day, so it's time to share the best keto chocolate cake recipe you will ever make! With a moist and decadent chocolatey texture, this cake is full of flavor with only 1.9g net carbs.
Impress your guests on National Chocolate Cake Day with this Luxurious Showstopping Instant Pot Lava Cake! Each exciting bite of joy oozing with unbelievably silky rich molten chocolate. This mysterious melt-in-your-mouth indulging satisfaction is the ultimate dinner party dessert that’s surprisingly easy to make.
This Hot Fudge Pudding Cake is so sinfully rich! A luscious chocolate cake bakes right with a creamy, chocolatey pudding sauce. Each bite is pure chocolate heaven, making it the perfect dessert for National Chocolate Cake Day.
An unlikely combination of chocolate and sauerkraut yields an absolutely delicious and moist Chocolate Cake for National Chocolate Cake Day. Add cocktail cherries to the middle and finish with a luxurious Ermine Frosting for a real stunner!
This S’mores Cake, which is perfect for National Chocolate Cake Day, consists of a moist chocolate cake baked on a sweet graham cracker crust, with a chocolate ganache filling and a toasted marshmallow whipped cream filling, covered in a delicious graham cracker marshmallow buttercream and a chocolate ganache drip!
This quick and easy chocolate cherry bundt cake recipe is an addicting, easy dessert made with cake mix and cherry pie filling you should try on National Chocolate Cake Day. This delicious cake tastes just like homemade, but without the extra work. Top with a fudgy chocolate glaze and maraschino cherries for a fun look.
A perfectly indulgent dessert this six ingredient Swedish gooey chocolate cake has chewy edges, a soft rich gooey centre and takes just 25 minutes to make! Give it a try on National Chocolate Cake Day.
The tender cake is filled with two types of rich dark chocolate, two cups of softened, chopped Medjool dates to add natural sweetness and just the right amount of vanilla extract to make for the most flavorful cake on National Chocolate Cake Day. It’s all topped with a German chocolate-inspired frosting made of dates, chocolate, walnuts and coconut.