3 Recipes to Make on National Devil’s Food Cake Day

3 Recipes to Make on National Devil's Food Cake Day

Thumbnail image by Ashley Cuoco

By Rebecca Fending

Believe it or not, there’s a national holiday for almost every day, including the celebration of cake. From National No Dirty Dishes Day (May 18) to National EMS Week (May 17 to 23), each day can be a celebration of your choosing. However, one the tastiest in May is National Devil’s Food Cake Day on May 19. What is Devil’s Food Cake and why does it deserve its own day?

Where did it come from and why does it have that name?

It’s no surprise that this decadent treat was born from the South. (No, not Hell, but THE South.) According to CooksInfo, the first dated record of a Devil’s Food Cake recipe comes from in Sarah Tyson Rorer’s book, “Mrs. Rorer’s New Cook Book”. A number of pastry experts and home bakers have come to make their own recipes for the cake, all varying in terms of amount of cocoa, cook time and even adding red food coloring to give the dessert its signature reddish-brown tint.

The primary question most people have when it comes to Devil’s Food is, “Why is it called ‘Devil’s Food Cake’?” Although we can’t be sure whether this is truly the preferred dessert of Satan, we can be sure that the name sets it apart from its seemingly more bland cousin, “Chocolate Cake”. Some believe that it earned its name due to its sinfully rich quality and taste. Others think it has to do with the fact that it’s the exact opposite of Angel Food Cake, which is light, airy and milder in taste. The intense chocolaty flavor and density of Devil’s Food truly makes it the Angel Food‘s evil twin.

So, where are the recipes?

Fear not, here are three great recipes that you can make today (or any day) in the spirit of Devil’s Food Cake Day:

Chocolate Cookies by Betty Crocker

Believe it or not, not all Devil’s Food recipes are exclusive cakes. This recipe from BettyCrocker.com is a fun spin on the traditional dessert. It tastes just like the cake, but a bit denser and bite-sized! Quick ‘n easy with a box of the cake mix with four other ingredients you likely already have in your house, this may be your new go-to dessert recipe any night of the week.


  • 1 box Devil’s Food Cake mix
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  1. Heat oven to 325°F. In large bowl combine cake mix, oil, vanilla and eggs with spoon until dough forms.
  2. Refrigerate dough 30 minutes or as needed for easier handling. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in sugar. On ungreased cookie sheets, place balls about two inches apart.
  3. Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until set. Cool one minute; remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks.
“Cake Mix Chocolate Cookies” recipe and pictures from BettyCrocker.com

Cookies and Cream Bars

This recipe will make your mouth water just from the pictures. Again, with a box of Devil’s Food mix and a few more ingredients for a cream cheese filling, these irresistible treats from YourCupofCake.com may be a new family favorite this summer. A perfect mix of wickedly good and refreshing from being chilled, these bars go a long way due to their richness.



  • 1 box Devil’s Food Cake Mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup oil


  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter softened
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2-3 cup powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Combine cake mix, eggs and oil. Dough will be thick.
  3. Press into a 9″ by 13″ pan (or use half of a regular sheet pan- the dough won’t spread)
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes. These will be very fudgy. Let cool in pan.
  5. Filling: Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add vanilla extract and 2 cups powdered sugar. Continue to add sugar until you reach your desired sweetness. Remember that the chocolate layers will be sweet so the filling can be less sweet to balance it out.
  6. If you baked your dough on one pan, cut the bake in half and frost one on the halves. Then place the other side of the bake on top to sandwich the two together with your layer of cream cheese filling in the middle.
  7. Let chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes and then cut into bars. These are very rich, so small slices are recommended. Serve cold and enjoy!
“Cake Mix Oreo Bars” recipe and picture from YourCupofCake.com

The Classic

And last but not least, the classic Devil’s Food Cake. We’ve talked a big game for how “rich” and “chocolaty” it is, but we’ll leave that for you to decide. But take our word for it, this recipe from Food.com is perfect for any occasion and is sure to dazzle guests of all sorts.



  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 34 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup hot coffee
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • 1 cup milk
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 12 cup cocoa powder
  • 12 cup butter, softened
  • 12 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, sift together dry ingredients. Add oil, coffee and milk and mix at medium speed for 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and beat 2 more minutes. Expect batter to be thin.
  3. Pour into a 9″ x 13″ greased and floured pan or 2-9″ round pans. Bake 9″ x 13″ pan for about 45 minutes or 9″ pans for about 30 minutes. Cool in pans for about 15 minutes and then cool completely on racks.
  4. While cake is cooling make the frosting: Combine the milk and flour in a saucepan and cook over low heat until thick, whisking constantly. Add cocoa. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.
  5. In a medium bowl, beat butter, shortening, sugar and vanilla until creamy. Add chilled milk and flour mixture and beat for 10 minutes. Frost cooled cake, refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight and enjoy!
Photo by Ashley Cuoco

Don’t feel like baking? Whether it’s because you don’t have the ingredients or you don’t want to have to clean up the kitchen, you can always order out at your local bakery in support of local and small business and your sweet tooth.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here