Devil Dog Cake

Devil Dogs…yum.  You know from my Pumpkin Snack Cake post that I have a little thing for snack cakes.  Ok, maybe more than a little thing.  Put it this way – if I see a recipe for something that resembles a snack cake – let along called a Devil Dog Cake – there is no way I can pass it up.  For those of you that have no idea what I am talking about, I learned this week that Devil Dogs are an east coast thing… so see the link below.

This is actually the second time I have made this cake – the first time I brought it to my daughter’s school picnic.  I decided that since there would be a lot of kids there, I would make this into bit sized treats.  Basically I made them look exactly like this by spliting the cake in half horizontally.  They were a huge hit.  There was a very long table completely packed with desserts and the devil dog bites were gone first.

Ok – so what prompted me to make this cake again?  Besides the fact that everyone loved this cake – it was my good friend’s 40th birthday – and she was having a Keraoke party – she loves chocolate, and I figured this would be the perfect retro-cake to go with the venue.  The marshmallow frosting is to die for.  It is not a sweet frosting, and goes with the moist chocolate cake perfectly – both are pretty mellow, which for my sweet tooth is perfect.  Next time I am taking a blow torch to the top, instead of sprinkling cocoa powder on top – that would definitely make a statement.  This recipe comes from Gourmet – and I followed it exactly as written.


For cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process) plus additional for dusting
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups water

For frosting

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Make cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Butter and flour an 8-inch square cake pan (2 inches deep).

Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.

Beat together butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well, then beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture and water alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture and mixing until just combined.

Pour batter into cake pan and smooth top, then bake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 45 to 55 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 1 hour. Transfer cake to a cake plate.

Make frosting:
Combine frosting ingredients with a pinch of salt in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water and beat with a handheld electric mixer at high speed until frosting is thick and fluffy, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove bowl from heat and continue to beat until slightly cooled. Mound frosting on top of cake. Dust with additional cocoa powder.

For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, click here:  Devil Dog Cake

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