When I was very young, our neighbor made this yummy cake.  I remember sitting at her kitchen counter one day when she let me eat two big pieces.  I am smiling just thinking about it.  But it’s not for the faint of heart.  Be ready for a buttery cake topped with chocolate pecan fudge.  This is very similar, if not the same, to what some call Texas Sheet Cake.  But Dorothy called it 22-minute cake because that is how long she baked it.  Thankfully, Mom wrote down the recipe.  I hope you enjoy it too!


22 Minute Cake with Fudge Frosting Halloween decorated mugs filled with 22 minute cake bites
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This is a rich, buttery cake topped with chocolate pecan fudge.
Recipe type: Dessert
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks)
  • 3½ Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate Pecan Fudge Topping
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick)
  • 3½ Tablespoons cocoa
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 1 pound powdered sugar
  • 1 cup pecans
  1. Do not use an electric mixer. This cake must be mixed by hand.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Butter a 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Cooking spray can be used instead of butter.
  1. Combine flour and sugar in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together buttermilk, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla in a separate bowl.
  3. Combine water, butter, and cocoa powder in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat, whisking until it comes to a boil.
  4. Pour the boiling water mixture over the flour mixture. Stir until just combined.
  5. Add buttermilk mixture to the chocolate mixture and stir until just combined.
  6. Pour the mixture into the buttered baking dish.
  7. Bake for 22 minutes. Note a toothpick may come out clean before then, but bake the cake until it is just firm.
Chocolate Pecan Fudge Topping
  1. Make the fudge topping right before the cake comes out of the oven or immediately after.
  2. Combine the butter, cocoa, and milk in a saucepan. Whisk over medium heat until the mixture boils. Add the powdered sugar and pecans. Stir until combined. Pour the fudge over the warm cake.
  3. Serve warm or at room temperature.