Coca Cola Cake ~Oh So Good!~


If you’re familiar with Coca Cola cake, just seeing the title had you scrolling down to make sure you had the ingredients to make it today. If you’re not familiar with Coca Cola cake, allow me to offer a brief introduction (because you need to hurry up and make this cake!).

We love our Coca Cola. After all, Coke is a southern product! It was invented in Atlanta, just a few hours from where I live, and the extremely large World Of Coke museum is located in downtown Atlanta today.

If you’ve never been to Atlanta, you simply must put World Of Coke on your list of things to see should you ever get to visit. My kids love it so much that I can’t even tell you how often we have been. With in-laws living just outside of Atlanta, every time we go to visit I hear “Are we going to the Coke Museum?”

They especially love the tasting room where you can drink all the different beverages Coke makes around the world. Some of them are amazingly delicious – and some are downright strange – but all of them are fun to try!

The museum also hosts an interactive movie theater, complete with 3-d, smell-o-vision, vibrating seats, and even special effects like water sprays and such (all minor). There are coke relics from around the world and several floors of interesting and interactive exhibits. Kids love this place!

Oh, back to my cake….Coca Cola does wonderful things to baked goods. The sugar in it caramelizes, the carbonation tenderizes, the flavor is so amazing that it enhances everything. I have a few Coke recipes up my sleeve to share with you but we shall start with this wondrous cake!

Oh, and yes, in the south, if it is a carbonated beverage, it is a “Coke”. No one ever says “soda” or “pop”. All carbonated beverages are “cokes”.

“You want a coke?”


“What kind?”

“Dr. Pepper”

That is generally how it goes. We really do love our Coke!

Alrighty then, on to our cake! Did you know that Coca Cola cake is so popular in the south that our beloved Cracker Barrel Restaurants even have it on their menu as a seasonal special? Yup, see how much you learn with me? You N’ me, we’z smart folks!

You’ll need: White cake mix, cocoa, coca cola, eggs, margarine, vanilla, marshmallows, and buttermilk (Or substitute whole milk with a bit of lemon juice mixed in like I do).
*Now don’t y’all start in on wanting to substitute “Diet” or “Splenda” coke for Coca Cola. This is good, don’t mess up a good thing!
Just fix it how the recipe says and munch on some celery after you lick the bowl!
Dump cake mix into a mixing bowl.
Melt butter in microwave
Add cocoa powder and melted butter to cake mix.
Pour in Coca Cola
Add eggs.
Add 1 Tablespoon lemon juice to milk. If you have buttermilk there is no need to add lemon juice.
Drop your digital camera into cake batter. Fish out as quickly as possible.
Add milk and check to see if your digital camera will still take a photograph, continually wiping more chocolaty batter from the sliding cover as it drips out from beneath the areas that you can’t possibly clean under because the idiots nice people who invented the thing didn’t have the good sense to fix it so little parts and such could pop off conveniently when someone was stupid enough became distracted by the excitement of baking for her family and accidentally dropped the camera into the batter. I mean, what are folks supposed to do in situations like this? Shouldn’t the camera manufacturers have thought ahead a little here?
*Add vanilla but get frustrated trying to take a picture of it and just give up, making a note to put a little asterisk beside the tutorial instructions reminding folks to add it.
*Make another note reminding folks to wear that little camera strap on their wrist next time they happen to be baking and photographing each and every step like an obsessive bake-a-holic even though you actually took your strap off just last week and stuffed it in a drawer because it kept dipping down and showing up in photographs of your food and you decided it was completely useless. I mean, what kind of idiot can’t even hold on to their camera, right?
Mix your batter and scrape down the sides.
Turn the mixer on low and go dampen a dishcloth and try to wipe some of the dripping chocolate goo off your camera after taking one more picture. Don’t forget to open the battery compartment because it got in there, too….and also that little slot that holds the now chocolate covered SD card. Yeah, clean that also. Hurry up, its starting to get sticky holding that thing.
Toss in your marshmallows and turn the mixer on just so they are all dunked down into the batter – much like your camera was – only this time it is intentional with the marshmallows. What the heck were you thinking? I mean, how does someone drop a camera into cake batter? Have fun explaining that one!
Spray your pan with cooking spray and take another picture. Try not to think about the fact that the camera is actually sticking to your hand and feels really gross. Just be glad you are still able to take pics.
That really was stupid of you to drop it in there, you know.
Spread your batter into the prepared pan and bake at 350.
Give up on the sticky camera for now and switch to using your iPhone for the rest of the photographs.


While that is baking, prepare your icing.
You’ll need: Cocoa, Margarine, more Coca Cola, and Confectioner’s Sugar
Put your margarine in a pot as you begin to wonder why Apple made iPhone pics such a wierd proportion. Or is it in your head? Does this look like a normal size for a photograph to you?
Pour in Coca Cola.
Bring this to a boil, then remove from heat.
Add Confectioner’s Sugar. Stir well until there are no lumps. I use a wire whisk for this.
Remove cake from oven. Pour hot icing over hot cake.
Get ready for some happy kids!
Mine both ate two slices of this for dessert! My husband had two also.
This is NOT a cake that will go to waste!
Now go fret over your camera a little more.
Maybe some q-tips and rubbing alcohol might help you clean it again….

Coca Cola Cake
  • 1 package plain white cake mix
  • 4 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted
  • 1 cup coca cola
  • ½ cup buttermilk (Or substitute ½ C whole milk with a T of lemon juice stirred in)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups of marshmallows
  • Icing:
  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) butter or margarine
  • 4 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ⅓ Cup coca cola
  • 4 Cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 Cup chopped pecans (I left these out because my kids prefer this cake with no nuts, but pecans are GREAT in this!)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly mist a 13x9-inch baking pan with vegetable oil spray. Set the pan aside.
  2. Place the cake mix, cocoa powder, melted butter, cola, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides with a spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes.
  3. The batter should be well blended. Fold in the marshmallows. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Place the pan it the oven.
  4. Bake the cake until it springs back when lightly pressed with your finger and just starts to pull away from the sides of the pan, 40 to 42 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, prepare frosting while cake is still hot.
  5. Place the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. As the butter melts, stir in the cocoa powder and cola. Let the mixture come to just a boil, stirring constantly, and then remove it from the heat. Stir in the confectioners’ sugar until the frosting is thick and smooth. Fold in the pecans.
  6. Pour the frosting over the top of the cake, spreading it out with a rubber spatula so that it reaches the edges of the cake. Cool the cake for 20 minutes before serving.


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  1. Tina says

    Christy…oh my…you have brought the biggest smile to my face this morning!! You are sooo funny! I can really picture that poor camera skinny dipping in the batter and the look you must have had on your face as you fished it out!!
    I sure do look forward to making the Coca Cola cake!! Thank you!

    Bountiful Blessings!!

  2. Debado says

    There nothing harder than to chose what type of cake to make…
    It better be chocolate! I guess I better make the Chocolate Sundae Cake too. It’s a family favorite during the summer and now they can chose from both. Your the best! (I’ll be lucky if they last for two days);)

  3. Casie says

    This is the #1 most fabulous cake- it was one of the things that actually tasted good to me when I was taking chemo- course, I gained about 20 pounds too- LOL! It really is wonderful!

  4. says

    This recipe reminds me of my mother-in-law, Evelyn, who passed away about 6 years ago. It was a staple in her home and never lasted long. When we knew she was making one, we’d be the first ones over there to be sure we didn’t miss out before it was all gone! And you’re right about all soft drinks being “coke”. My son heard someone say “soda pop” and asked me what that was… :)
    P.S. There was one crazy member of the family who didn’t like pecans in the cake – Evelyn’s solution was to put pecans on the top on 3/4 of the pan of cake so there was a small portion at the end of the pan w/o them for the “odd ball”.

  5. Beverly Palmer says

    I live in western NC (near Asheville) and even though I was born and raised in Atlanta (GO DAWGS!!!), I have never made the Coca Cola Cake. I think it’s time to give it a try to surprise my husband and family. I’ve tasted this cake at a Church Picnic but it was made with Cheerwine, a North Carolina soft drink. I’ve also had ham cooked in Coca Cola and it was delicious, too. Let’s face it! Things go better with Coke. YUM, yum. . . ;~)

  6. says

    Christy, This has to be one of my all time favorite cakes! It brings back so many memories from the days (1972) we lived in Midwest City, OK. My husband was Air Force and we were far away from home (Florida). We became close friends with the Pittman family while stationed there and Mrs. Pittman became a second mom to us. One time when we were going on leave, Mrs. Pittman made a “coca cola” cake and sent it with us to munch on as we traveled to visit family in Ohio. We had never had a coca cola cake but fell in love with it. Every time I make one or see the recipe, it brings back fond memories of Mrs. Pittman. I have recently found her daughter on Facebook and was so excited to find her after all these years! So, thank you for providing a memory from my past today! So glad your camera survived the “fall”!

  7. Laura says

    Christy, your mishap with your camera is a fine example of one of my dad’s biggest gripes. See, he is a professional photographer and it has always aggravated him that people, most especially professional photographers, do not use the strap around their neck (or in the case of the smaller cameras, around the wrist. Anything can happen as in your case or someone bump you and down goes the camera. If your using it over water… say bye-bye to the camera. Hope you can get it cleaned well enough! :-)

  8. Susan says

    Just made this a couple weeks back for church homecoming. I use the traditional recipe that my aunt gave me. I put pecans in my frosting, too. W/out the pecans, it’s a great brownie frosting!

  9. Mary says

    Hi Christy. Please consider a way to go directly to the recipe itself? I love your commentary and enjoy the pictures, but sometimes, I just need to go to the recipe first. I know that I can scroll down, but when you get on a topic that you love the scrolling can be long enough to plow the south forty. Thanks for the Coca Cola Cake. It’s a perfect one to send to my buddy who drives all the way to Dublin, Texas to get the original Dr. Pepper. =-)

  10. says

    Hi Christie – That cake looks SOOO good – but I live alone and I’m diabetic – what to do? What to do?? Oh, I know – I can make it, have a piece and send the rest down to the Drive Inn and they can serve it there!!

    When you’re done emptying the Coke can, save it – as you now know, it makes excellent packing material!! Glad you and your mom had a good laugh about that! I have sold a lot of glassware on ebay, and it works great – and it’s recyclable! No added weight! I’ll enjoy my evening, thanks to you!!!! I had chemo yesterday and a white blood cell booster shot this afternoon, so now it is rest, rest, rest. It gets old after awhile, but if it gets me where I want to be, I’ll do it!! Got lotsa living left to do!!! Thanks!

  11. Sheila says

    Oh my! ain’t nothing the real thing baby : ) And when I ask for a coke I’m asking for the original Coca Cola. And no thank you Taco Bell Pepsi will not be alright. ; )
    My Daddy use to call them belly washer’s, he didn’t allow us kids to drink them. He always said why would we want to drink something that would eat the dirt off white wall tire’s. So whenever possible my sister’s and I would sneak off to the 7-11 store and get a coke. But believe it or not I’ve never had the pleasure of eating coca cola cake and I eat at Cracker Barrel fairly regular. Oh! what a sheltered life I’ve lived. : ). I was born and raised in Atlanta. I will have to try this soon it sounds scrumptious. Thank’s


  12. Shane says

    I know what I’m going to be making soon! lol

    I can’t wait to give this a try! I love me some Coke Cake and I’m a Coke fanatic as well. (You should see my puter room!) So this Is definitely up my alley.

    The last time I’ve had this was from Cracker Barrel and got hooked on It. But I can bet that this will be even better! Cause If It’s from Southern plate, you know It’s gonna be good. 😉

    Thanks so much for sharing this Christy! Hope all Is well with your phone. 😀

  13. michelle says

    Love,love,love me some co-cola cake! It is a favorite around my house when they have it at Cracker Barrel.And I have always baked my hams with coke-the flavor is awesome!I agree with you, Christy, the coke museum is a must see when in Atlanta. We’ve been twice and the kids love it. Some of the things in the tasting room are just plain ol’ weird!
    Have a great day!

  14. Carol "Just South of the Mason Dixon Line" Cook says

    I LOVE CocaCola cake! When they have it at Cracker Barrel I buy a whole cake to take home…not anymore! I was just wondering…can I omit the marshmallows? I’m not really a fan of marshmallows.

  15. Rene says

    The last 2 times we visited the south (from Northern IL), my friend made Coca Cola cake and we all loved it. I’ve never had it up here, but now I can serve it to people myself! Thanks!

  16. PAULA says

    This icing is also GREAT on brownies. Just use a family size box of brownie mix. Make and bake as directed. Poke holes in the brownies…make the icing and pour over brownies. Put in fridge till icing is set well…YUMMMMMMMY

  17. says

    Well, Christie – about that camera………..I imagine it is long gone now but you could have done what I tried once – it was an accident, I promise. I was loading the washer, decided to add the slacks I had on, forgetting that my phone was in the pocket. It came out nice and clean – and wet. I thought I’d ruined it, but my grandson took out the battery and left it lay open on a towel on top of the dryer – it’s still working just fine!!! Would have gotten rid of the cake batter, too, I’ll betcha. Modern miracles – and kids who know what to do, huh???

    Thanks for the picture of the pasta salad in the red casserole!!!!!

  18. Mary K. Dixson says

    Oh, Christy, What memories you have stirred up!!! I made my first Coca-Cola Cake as a newlywed in Alaska over 40 years ago!!!!! Thanks for bringing back some sweet memories!! Girl you rock! So glad you are human like the rest of us and admit your (additions?) to the recipe….I love it!!!

  19. Alice says

    Christy, Have you tried the orange soda cake where you just pour the soda (or coke?) into the yellow cake mix, bake and frost with Cool Whip and mandarin oranges? My friend told me about it, but I haven’t tried it yet. Your Coca Cola cake is a keeper, I’ll try it in August when my niece gets married on the beach at Sanibel and we all go back to her father’s condo for refreshments.

  20. Liz says

    Loved the write-up and the recipe! Am saving it for when it’s cooler in the house to cook…

    Oh, and a tip about the camera: When I bought my last one, I also bought a cheap lanyard with a key-ring loop at the end. With a little effort, I was able to get the lanyard attached to the camera. Now, I wear it around my neck when I’m taking pictures.

  21. Tonya says

    Oh, my goodness, I am ‘happier than a bird with a french fry!’ after seeing this!!! I used to have a cookbook from Atlanta that had this recipe in it, and OH, how I’ve missed it! Thank you SO MUCH! I will probably get one of these going VERY soon!! :)

  22. Lydia says

    I have had Coke cake before but it was different then this… you had to use a devils food cake mix or brownie cake mix and chopped walnuts/nuts optional, and the can of coke, mix and pour into a greased and floured pan….thats it…

  23. says

    Mmmm, I made this cake because my in-laws came for the weekend with very little notice and I needed something easy. It was so good! Very moist. Just about my favorite chocolate cake. My father-in-law especially liked it too and was found eating some in the middle of the night 😀

  24. bonnie says

    I made this for Christmas Day. It was awesome! I am not a baker but something told me that I just had to make this cake! I am so glad I listened to that little voice. My oldest daughter who is ten and doesn’t even like cake and icing, asked me to make this for her birthday next month. Thanks so much for sharing! Happy New Year!

  25. Rachelle says

    I made this cake last week for someone’s birthday. I don’t know if she liked it but I loved it. The icing makes it! I am making it tonight for a bake sale at church tomorrow. I hope they enjoy it as much as I did.

  26. Karen says

    Thank you for this recipe I’m literally walki to the kitchen right now to try it! I’ve been googling or 15 minutes looking for one like this! I live Mississippi and live off of coca cola and have never tried a coca cola cake or fried coke! I’m not sure how but I haven’t lol

  27. Tamra says

    I grew up in NC and I’ve made my grandma’s coca cola cake for years. It’s a favorite of my Utah husband! However, I’ve never used a cake mix and my recipe calls for stove top cooking first.
    Perhaps I need to make 2 to compare!….

  28. Shirley says

    No need to re-take and update this was very funny…and wordy..I like wordy..lots of people don’t (I’m a talker too) but I do. Lovin’ your blog.
    Bookmarking it and making some of this good luv!!!


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