Rich Chocolate Cake & Circuit Board Cake

Last month was Dude's 12th birthday. TWELVE you guys!

When I asked him what he wanted for a birthday cake this year, the requested chocolate cake with chocolate frosting (my favorite, too!)

But that wasn't the real question.

The real question was how do you want your cake decorated?

Then, the big guy broke his mama's bear's heart a tiny bit saying, "it doesn't need to look like anything, just the chocolate."


My baby is big!!!!

Well, I couldn't leave well enough alone and I still wanted to make him a special cake, even if he wouldn't request it himself.

Dude love electronics in any way, shape or form, so I decided to make a cake that looked like a circuit board (honestly, you should see my basement right now, he takes everything apart, there are motherboards everywhere!) 

Then I decided to take it just one step further.  I knew I wanted to pipe along the edges, but instead of a regular pattern, I used a series of dots and dashes to write "Happy Birthday" in binary!

The morning of his birthday Dude was surprised and thrilled and I was so happy that I could make his birthday special!

I shared this recipe once before on my other blog, but since I haven't been keeping that up, I decided to reshare it here, along with a few updates (especially the frosting the ingredients are the same, but method is different)

This has been my go-to chocolate cake for years and I don't see that changing anytime soon!

Recipe Notes:
*Don’t be afraid of the espresso powder, you won’t taste it!  The espresso powder simply enhances the flavor and decadence of the chocolate.

Rich Chocolate Cake
Adapted from My Baking Addiction

1 box Devil’s Food Cake Mix
1 (3.9 oz) package instant chocolate pudding mix
1 (8 oz) tub sour cream
1 cup canola oil
4 eggs
1 tbsp special dark cocoa powder (optional)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp instant espresso granules or 1/4 cup strongly brewed coffee
½ cup warm water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Place paper liners into two muffin tins or spray two 8-inch pans with non-stick spray.

Stir together the warm water and the instant espresso, until the espresso is dissolved.

Add the espresso mixture, along with all of the remaining ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer.  Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed until smooth and well combined.  The mixture will be thick and pudding-like.

Fill each cupcake liner about 2/3 full with batter and bake for 22-25 minutes.  

Alternately, spread the cake batter into the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Move to wire racks and cool for 10 minutes.  Then, run a knife along the edges of the pan and flip to remove the cake.  Cool the Cupcakes (or cakes) completely before icing.

Hershey’s “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Frosting
Recipe adapted from Hershey’s

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
1 1/3 cups Hershey’s cocoa
6 cups confectioner’s sugar
2/3 cup milk
2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Mix together the powdered sugar and cocoa powder in the bowl of a stand mixer.

While the mixer is running on the lowest setting, pour in the melted butter and milk.  Stir until the frosting is smooth and blended.  Stir in the vanilla.

Pipe the frosting onto cupcakes using an Ateco Tip 847 or fill and frost an 8-inch round cake.

Makes 4 cups of frosting.


  1. Happy Birthday to how time flies. Your cakes look amazing as always Amy.


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