Chocolate Cake with Cocoa Puffs Frosting Recipe

Chocolate Cake with Cocoa Puffs Frosting Recipe

Made with cocoa powder, melted bittersweet chocolate, sour cream, and brown sugar, this cake is rich, moist, and a treat for the hungry school kid in you.


  • The cake batter can be mixed by hand, however, you will need an electric mixer to make the frosting.
  • Dry milk powder is available in non-fat and regular varieties: both will work in this recipe.
  • This recipe can be adapted to make 24 cupcakes. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners and divide batter equally among prepared tins. Bake until toothpick inserted in center of cupcakes comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool cupcakes in tins for 10 minutes, then remove from tins and cool completely on cooling racks, 30 to 45 minutes, before frosting.
  • Yield:12
  • Active time: 20 minutes
  • Total time:1 hour and 45 minutes


  • Baking spray
  • 2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons boiling water
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips (or 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped)
  • For the frosting:
  • 5 cups Cocoa Puffs cereal
  • 3/4 cup dry milk powder (See Notes)
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 16 ounces confectioners’ sugar


  1. 1.

    Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray 13- by 9-inch cake pan with baking spray. Line pan with parchment paper lengthwise with one sheet, then crosswise with a second sheet to create a sling; spray once again with baking spray.

  2. 2.

    In large bowl, whisk together brown sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, oil, and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until mixture is a thick paste.

  3. 3.

    Stir espresso powder into boiling water, then, whisk into batter until smooth.

  4. 4.

    Place chocolate in small bowl and microwave until smooth and melted, 1 to 2 minutes, stopping microwave to stir chocolate every 30 seconds. Stir melted chocolate into batter.

  5. 5.

    Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of cake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer cake to cooling rack and cool in pan 10 minutes. Pull cake out onto a cooling rack using the parchment sling and cool completely, about 1 hour.

  6. 6.

    Meanwhile, pulse Cocoa Puffs and milk powder in food processor until powdery. Set aside.

  7. 7.

    Place whisk attachment on electric mixer. Whip cream cheese and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla and whip just until incorporated.

  8. 8.

    Reduce speed to lowest setting and add confectioners’ sugar. Whip until incorporated, scraping bottom and sides of bowl with rubber spatula as needed, 30 to 60 seconds. Increase speed to medium-high and continue to whip until frosting is light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.

  9. 9.

    Reduce speed to lowest setting once again; add Cocoa Puffs-milk powder mixture and whip until combined, about 1 minute.

  10. 10.

    Frost top and sides of cooled cake. Serve.