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John Hoosier Cake

  • Author: Emily
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 16 1x


Easy and delicious tangy chocolate sheet cake.




  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cubes (1 cup) salted butter or margarine
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder, and 2 more for dusting your pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 and 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • 1 stick of salted butter or margarine
  • 4 tablespoons of cocoa powder
  • 1 pound of powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup of chopped nuts (optional)


  1. Mix the vinegar into the milk to create your buttermilk substitute and let it sit as you continue with the recipe.
  2. Move the oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350. Grease a 15.5 by 10.5 by 1.5 inch rimed baking sheet with Crisco and dust the entire surface with cocoa powder, tapping out the excess.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat bring to boil the butter, water and cocoa, stirring occasionally and remove from heat when boiling.
  4. In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine and sift together the flour, sugar baking soda and salt. pour in the cocoa mixture and mix until combined. Add 2/3 cup buttermilk substitute, eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.
  5. Pour into your prepared baking sheet, tapping the bottom gently on the counter top a few times to release any trapped bubbles. Bake for about 30 minutes.
  6. While the cake bakes, prepare the frosting by combining the butter or margarine, what’s left of your buttermilk substitute and 4 tablespoons of cocoa in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and add to the bowl of a clean stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl). With the paddle attachment on medium low speed add in the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat on medium high for 2 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl half way through. Pour over a very warm cake, spreading out evenly with a spatula or knife and serve.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American