Texas Sheet Cake With Dulce de Leche Frosting

This Texas Sheet Cake recipe is a rich and decadent chocolate cake, topped with gooey fudge-like icing and crunchy pecans. This dessert is perfect for special occasions or just as a treat for yourself.

My husband’s Aunt Norma introduced us to Texas Sheet Cake during a summer visit, so every summer I find a reason to take her handwritten recipe card out of hibernation. Adding the gooey chocolate frosting is the traditional way to make this cake. I have also topped the cake with a Dulce de Leche frosting, and have included that variation here as well.

A slice of Texas sheet cake topped with pecans. .

Why You’ll This Recipe

  • This tender chocolate cake is rich, and fudgy, and will please all the chocolate lovers in your family.
  • You only need simple ingredients so you don’t have to worry about spending a lot of money at the grocery store. 
  • Because it’s a sheet cake, it’s great for feeding crowds, at birthday parties, holidays, family gatherings, church potluck, or even summer cookouts.  

Are you watching your carbs and such? Then instead of making this traditional Texas Sheet Cake try making this Low Carb Chocolate Cake instead. 

Ingredients Needed and Variations

You will need a few ingredients to help you make this moist chocolate cake recipe. Gather these ingredients so that you can make this rich and moist cake.  

  • Dry ingredients: all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, baking soda
  • Wet ingredients: butter, oil, water, vanilla extract, eggs
  • buttermilk buttermilk gives this cake a moist texture and great flavor, in a pinch you can use sour cream instead. 
  • Chocolate: unsweetened cocoa powder

Chocolate Frosting

  • butter
  • cocoa powder
  • milk
  • powdered sugar, sifted
  • chopped pecans

Optional Dulce de Leche Frosting

  • butter 
  • Dulce de Leche 
  • powdered sugar, sifted
  • vanilla extract
  • milk
  • chopped pecans
Texas sheet cake with chocolate frosting and topped with pecans in a cake pan before cutting.

How to Make This Texas Sheet Cake Recipe

This is a quick overview of the steps needed to make this moist chocolate cake, you can find the full instructions in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. 

Step 1:  Mix the dry ingredients 

In a large bowl combine whisk the flour, sugar, and baking soda together then set aside. 

Step 2: Boil the chocolate mixture

In a medium saucepan bring the butter, oil, cocoa, and water to a boil. Remove from the heat and then pour over the flour mixture. Mix until combined.

Sauce pan with chocolate and butter melting together.

Step 3: Bake the cake 

Mix in the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla, then pour the cake batter into the prepared pan. Bake in a 400-degree preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until set. 

Chocolate batter for Texas sheet pan recipe.

Step 4: Make the frosting 

In a small saucepan heat the butter, cocoa powder, and milk until butter is melted and combined. Whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth. Pour the frosting on top of the warm cake and spread evenly with a spatula. Sprinkle with chopped pecans on top of the chocolate cake if desired. 

Frosting over chocolate cake before adding chopped nuts.

What To Serve With This Dish

This delicious cake goes well with whipped cream, a cup of coffee, or your favorite hot tea. You can also enjoy a slice after your favorite meal like this Lazy Ravioli Lasagna.

How To Store

Storage – Store leftovers of this delicious dessert in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. If you don’t have a lid for your pan cover it with plastic wrap to keep the moist cake from drying out. 

Freezing – You can also freeze the cake for up to three months. Let the frosting set then wrap tightly with plastic wrap and place in a freezer-safe container. When ready to serve, thaw at room temperature or in the fridge overnight before enjoying.

Sliced chocolate cake on a white serving dish.

Sandra’s Pro Tips

  • ​For a decadent dessert try topping a slice of this warm chocolate cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. 
  • Use a toothpick or cake tester to check the center of the cake for doneness before you remove it from the oven. 
  • Don’t allow the chocolate frosting to cool, you want to pour the warm chocolate frosting over the top of the cake. 
  • I like to reheat single slices of this cake in the microwave for about 30 seconds because this cake tastes amazing when warm. 

FAQs

​Do you have questions about this chocolate sheet cake recipe? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions for this recipe. 

Why is it called a Texas sheet cake? 

The origin of this perfect dessert is not clear. However, it is believed that it either first appeared in a Texas newspaper, or that it’s called a Texas cake because it’s the size of Texas. 

What is the difference between a sheet cake and a regular cake?

The main difference between the two desserts is that regular cakes or layered. And, unlike a classic cake, the sheet cake is just one layer. 

Other Delicious Cake Recipes You May Enjoy

exas Sheet Cake - The Foodie Affair
A slice of Texas sheet cake topped with chopped pecans.

Texas Sheet Cake With Dulce de Leche Frosting

A moist chocolate Texas sheet cake topped with a decadent dulce de leche frosting. A twist to a classic dessert.
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: texas sheet cake recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 513kcal
Author: Sandra Shaffer

Equipment

  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • medium saucepan 
  • 9×13 baking dish or jelly roll pan or half sheet pan
  • small saucepan

Ingredients

Chocolate Sheet Cake with Buttermilk

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup oil canola or vegetable
  • 4 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Dulce de Leche Frosting

  • 1 stick butter softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup Dulce de Leche
  • 2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla
  • 2-4 Tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Chocolate Frosting

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 6 tablespoons milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1 cup chopped pecans for topping

Instructions

  • Pre-heat oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and set baking pan aside (jelly roll pan or 9×13)

Chocolate Cake

  • In a large mixing bowl whisk together flour, sugar, and baking soda together and set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, add butter, oil, cocoa and water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and pour over flour mixture. Stir until blended.
  • Add buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Mix well and pour into ungreased pan. Bake for about 20 minutes or until set.

Dulce de Leche Frosting

  • Using a mixer, combine butter and Dulce de Leche together. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. Add vanilla. Add milk until desired consistency. Fold in the pecans and pour over warm cake.

Chocolate Frosting

  • Melt 1/2 cup of butter in a small saucepan. Stir in 1/4 cup of cocoa powder and 6 tablespoons of milk. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Whisk in powdered sugar until smooth.
  • Pour the frosting over the warm cake and spread evenly with a spatula.
  • Sprinkle 1 cup of chopped pecans on top of the chocolate frosting.

Notes

I have used different sized pans for this cake 15 X11, 9 X 13, and a jelly roll pan. The cooking time and thickness of the cake will vary slightly.
If you like the flavor of cinnamon, add 1 teaspoon to the batter. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 66g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 240mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 51g

Disclaimer

Please note that the nutritional information provided are guidelines and may vary based on the brand of products used. For your specific nutritional goals use My Fitness Pal or Verywell Fit recipe calculators. All content within this site is not intended as medical diagnosis or treatment and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise.

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14 Comments

  1. Your site is fantastic, just found it today, the recipes are all interesting and I have copied a couple. I really like how easy it is to copy, thanks. All your remarks and stories are great. Thanks for all your hard work and keep posting. God Bless.

    1. Chocolate is chocolate, right? 😉 Texas Sheet Cake I think is intended to be brought to potlucks with the intent of showing hospitality in a big Texan way, but this is meant to be easy to make. Bake and serve in the same pan, and no substituting any of the fat for applesauce or such 😉 That’s all I know about Texas Sheet Cake.

    1. I make this cake during the summer months when I can share it at potlucks. The chocolate frosting is good too, but the dulce de leche combination is awesome!!