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Coca Cola Cake

Coca Cola cake is an outrageously fudgy and moist chocolate cake slathered with an equally chocolatey pecan frosting. How amazing is that?

The cake itself is already to die for. Thanks to Coca Cola – and this isn’t a paid advertisement – this cake is packed with flavor. The marshmallows give it a chewy crust, to boot.

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Homemade Coca Cola Chocolate Cake with Pecan Nuts

Then there’s the frosting. It’s sweet, buttery, chocolatey, and loaded with pecans.

Together, the ingredients create a glorious harmony of flavors and textures that’s impossible to resist.

This Coca Cola cake may just as well be called crack cake. It’s just that addictive.

Coca Cola Cake

Coca Cola cake is a classic southern cake that uses Coke for two reasons: flavor and structure. 

The soda enhances the flavor of the cocoa powder, giving you a delectable, drool-worthy dessert.

The carbonation also helps it rise, giving you a high cake that’s super moist at the same time.

The added marshmallows and pecan frosting take it over the top! It’s, without a doubt, the king of soda-infused cakes. I can eat it all day, every day.


For the Cake:

  • All-Purpose Flour. The base of any cake.
  • Granulated Sugar. For sweetness.
  • Baking Soda. The leavening agent that makes the cake rise.
  • Butter. For a rich cake. Slice it into small chunks for faster melting. Either salted or unsalted butter works fine.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder. For that rich, chocolatey goodness.
  • Coca Cola. It’s called Coca Cola Cake, after all! Don’t use Diet Coke – now is not the time to watch your weight.
  • Buttermilk. For extra moisture and richness. 
  • Eggs. To bind the ingredients together and help the cake rise.
  • Vanilla Extract. Flavor enhancer.
  • Mini-Marshmallows. A key ingredient to achieving that chewy crust.

For the Frosting:

  • Butter. Nothing beats a buttery frosting. I like to use salted butter to contrast the sweetness of the sugar.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder. Double the chocolate, double the fun.
  • Coca-Cola. Boil it along with the butter and cocoa powder for a concentrated flavor.
  • Powdered Sugar. You’ll use 4 cups, but you can add more or less to suit your taste. Just note that the consistency will change depending on the amount of sugar.
  • Pecans. For added crunch.

Tips for the Best Cake

  • Sift the dry ingredients for a lump-free batter. Also, measure them accurately by using the spoon and level method. Instead of merely scooping the ingredients with a measuring cup, use a spoon to transfer them, then level with the back of a knife.
  • This cake is dense, so don’t attempt to turn it into a layer cake. 
  • Aside from pecans, other nuts such as walnuts, macadamias, cashews, and almonds work well, too. 
  • Let the cake and frosting cool completely before slicing. 
  • No buttermilk? Make your own by combining half a cup of milk with half a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice. Give it a good stir and let it sit for 5 minutes. 
  • Cover the cake with plastic wrap or foil and store at room temperature for up to 5 days. No refrigeration needed.
  • You can also freeze the cake for a longer shelf-life – I’m talking 2 months. Slice individual portions and wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and foil. Seal in ziplock bags and freeze. 
  • Pour the frosting when the cake is warm. 
  • You can use either Dutch-process or regular cocoa powder. Dutch will yield a darker cake.
  • You can serve the cake either warm or cold. Microwave a slice for 10 to 15 seconds and top with vanilla ice cream. You’re welcome.
  • If you’re bothered by the marshmallows floating on top, don’t worry, that’s what’s supposed to happen. It will melt over the cake as it bakes, giving it a chewy crust. Just trust the process!

Origins of Coca Cola Cake 

Adding soda to cake batter is nothing new. In fact, this technique has been around since the war.

But did you ever wonder who came up with the idea and how it all started?

Baking back in the day was not as easy as it is today. Imagine what it was like for home bakers when baking soda had not been invented yet!

People used a variety of ingredients to leaven cakes and pastries, from pearl ash to huge amounts of beaten eggs. 

Carbonated beverages were a game-changer. Apart from enhancing the flavor of chocolate, the chemical structure was also found to lift cakes without the need for leavening agents.

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Thanks to strategic marketing strategies, the genius idea spread like wildfire. The technique is so practical that it’s continuously used to this day.

Can I Use Other Sodas to Make a Cake?

You definitely can. Just keep in mind that the cake will vary in flavor depending on the soda you add.

I’ve tried the recipe with Pepsi and Dr. Pepper, and it came out great both times! I heard root beer works fantastic, as well.

More Soda Cake Recipes to Try

Orange Crush Pound Cake
7-Up Cake
Dr. Pepper Cake
Root Beer Float Cake

Coca Cola Cake



Prep time






  • For The Cake:
  • 2 cups 2 all-purpose flour

  • 2 cups 2 granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon 1 baking soda

  • 1 cup 1 butter

  • 3 tablespoons 3 unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1 cup 1 Coca-Cola

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 buttermilk

  • 2 2 eggs

  • 1 teaspoon 1 vanilla extract

  • 1 1/2 cups 1 1/2 mini-marshmallows

  • For The Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup 1/2 butter

  • 2 tablespoons 2 unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 6 tablespoons 6 Coca Cola

  • 4 cups 4 powdered sugar

  • 1 cup 1 chopped pecans


  • To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9×13-inch pan with oil or butter.
  • Sift the flour, sugar, and baking soda into a large bowl. Set aside.
  • Boil 1 cup of butter, 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder, and 1 cup of Coca Cola. Pour mixture over the dry ingredients and mix until lump-free.
  • Stir in the buttermilk, eggs, vanilla, and mini-marshmallows until well-combined.
  • Pour the batter into greased pan and bake for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean or with a few dry crumbs. Let cake cool on a wire rack.
  • While the cake is in the oven, prepare the frosting. Combine 1/2 cup of butter, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, and 6 tablespoons of Coca-Cola in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until it boils.
  • Remove from heat and beat in the powdered sugar until the mixture is smooth. Add the chopped pecans and spread evenly over the warm cake. Let it cool completely before slicing. Enjoy!
Coca Cola Cake

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Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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