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  • Writer's pictureRobyn Nicole

German Chocolate Cake

Updated: Mar 14

Inspired by cherished family traditions, this indulgent dessert holds a surprising secret ingredient: sauerkraut. Join me as I guide you through the steps to creating the most moist and decadent cake you've ever tasted. Prepare to be amazed as we unlock the magic behind this unconventional addition, promising a slice of nostalgia and pure delight with every bite.

While catering for clients one summer, I received a unique request for a German chocolate cake, a challenge I eagerly accepted despite never having made one before. After finding a recipe online, we found it to be good but not quite perfect. Upon learning that my client's childhood version contained sauerkraut, I embarked on a mission to recreate that nostalgic flavor.

Scouring the internet, I eventually stumbled upon a traditional German chocolate cake recipe featuring sauerkraut. With a few adjustments, including an extra layer of icing, I perfected the recipe to my satisfaction. The moment my client tasted it, closing his eyes in pure bliss, I knew I had succeeded. His heartfelt remark about it resembling his mother's cake reaffirmed why I chose this profession—to create meaningful culinary experiences.

Witnessing him savor each bite, transported back to cherished memories of his mother's kitchen, was immensely rewarding. He savored the cake throughout the day, making it his go-to for every meal until it vanished, solidifying its place as my all-time favorite cake recipe. Its unparalleled moistness and delectable flavor make it a standout, and I'm thrilled to share it, hoping it brings as much joy to others as it has to me and my clients.

What You Need:

For the Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 teaspoons baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 14 oz sauerkraut- drained

  • 1 cup water

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

  • 3 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Frosting:

  • 1 1/2 cups evaporated milk

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 3 large egg yolks

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 1/3 cups sweetened shredded coconut

  • 1 cup chopped pecans

What You Need to Do:

Preheat oven to 350°f. Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

In a blender, pulse sauerkraut with water until its finely chopped and no large chunks remain. In an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, mix sauerkraut, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not over mix.

Pour batter evenly into cake pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool cakes completely before applying the frosting.

For the frosting, whisk together evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, and butter in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly for about 10 minutes until mixture comes to a simmer and thickens. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, coconut, and pecans. Cool at room temperature.

I like to frost just the tops of the cake layers. This frosting tends not hold up well on the sides. I also wrap the sides in plastic wrap until I'm ready to serve to keep them from doing out, since they're not protected by the frosting. You can store this on our countertop at room temperature. I don't recommend refrigerating because it could loose its texture.

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