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Dr Pepper Cake

Dr Pepper Cake is a sweet, easy chocolate cake recipe that has a poured chocolate frosting on top! It’s nostalgic, classic, and quick!

Dr Pepper Cake Is An Easy and Classic Chocolate Recipe!

Have you ever had Dr Pepper Cake? Ok, how about a Coca Cola Cake? A Texas Sheet Cake? I am pretty sure you have had at least one of those classic chocolate cakes. They’re kinda-sorta old fashioned, the kind that you can order at Cracker Barrel or have had at a church potluck dinner or a BBQ. Right? Well, if you are still scratching your head wondering what the heck I am talking about, let’s discuss!

A quick chocolate cake recipe with poured chocolate frosting was a staple of my childhood. I have my Grandmother’s Sunday Chocolate Cake Recipe here on my site that is one of my most favorite cakes of all time, and it’s remarkably similar in context to this Dr Pepper Cake. What we have here is an ultra soft, sweet chocolate cake, with Dr Pepper baked right in, and a chocolate frosting that you pour all over the warm cake. Interested? I thought so!

How To Make Dr Pepper Cake

What Is the Flavor of Dr Pepper?

The fun thing about this cake recipe, is that the Dr Pepper adds to, and enhances the flavor of the chocolate. I know you have heard of adding coffee to chocolate cake, or espresso powder to brownies, right? Well, same concept! Dr Pepper has a really interesting flavor. Of course, it’s got that cola flavor, but beyond that it has a whole undercurrent of flavors that you might not be able to detect on their own, like cherry, licorice, vanilla, amaretto, plum, nutmeg…and the list goes on. It’s a complex combination, but that’s the magic of Dr Pepper I guess!

btw this is totally NOT sponsored! haha

AND please note, that even if you don’t like Dr Pepper, you will like this cake. The flavor isn’t prominent, it just adds a little something.

How Do You Make Dr Pepper Cake?

The beauty of this recipe is that it’s very simple to make and it’s a great chocolate cake to prepare for a party or potluck! It’s a classic sheet cake recipe that is a single layer cake, and like I said before, the chocolate frosting is poured on top while the cake is warm. so it half absorbs into the cake and half remains on top making it fudgy and delicious!

What Ingredients Do You Need For This Cake Recipe?

This is a great cake for the beginner baker. It’s an easy cake recipe to make, and the ingredients are simple. Here is what you will need:

  • Dr Pepper. This adds liquid and flavor to the recipe, plus the carbonation aids in how the cake rises!
  • Vegetable Oil and Butter. The combo of the two is where the magic happens. The oil keeps the texture light, and the butter adds flavor. You could use all vegetable oil, or all butter, but you would lose some flavor and texture if omitting the butter, and if you use all butter you will get a slightly denser cake. Also you can use any light oil, like canola if you would prefer not to use vegetable oil.
  • Cocoa Powder. Use unsweetened cocoa powder. You can use regular or Dutch Process, or even Hershey’s Special Dark. I’ve done it all the ways! Pictured here the Hershey’s Dark Cocoa Powder was used which is why the cake is a little darker in color. The Dark cocoa powder adds a deeper chocolate flavor.
  • Granulated Sugar. You need a little more sweetener than the soda offers, and granulated sugar is a mild sugar, allowing the soda and cocoa flavors to come through!
  • Flour. Just regular all purpose flour works great!
  • Baking Soda. You need a little baking soda in this recipe so the cake rises.
  • Eggs. Eggs in baking cakes add to the light texture, and moisture. Eggs help trap air to aid in the lightness of cake baking!
  • Buttermilk. Buttermilk is another ingredient that will aid in the lighter, moist texture in baking cakes, due to the acid breaking down the strands of gluten!

What Ingredients Do You Need For the Frosting?

The frosting for this will be one you make on the stove top to melt all together. And then you pour it right onto the warm cake, which like I said before melts into the warm cake while still leaving a layer of fudgy frosting on top. It’s beautiful.

  • Butter. I used salted butter here, and in almost all of my recipes, to add a little more flavor, but it’s up to you if you would prefer to use unsalted.
  • Cocoa Powder. Again, use unsweetened cocoa powder, and just use whatever you used in the cake! If you used Dark in the cake, stick with Dark in the frosting!
  • Milk. Use whatever milk you have in the fridge…2%, Whole, Skim, it will all work!
  • Powdered Sugar. It’s frosting after all! Just make sure to get all the lumps out!
Easy Chocolate Cake Recipe made with Dr Pepper

Do You Have To Use Dr Pepper?

Nope! You can easily sub in any other type of soda in this recipe that you think will pair with chocolate, just don’t use diet soda! Here are a few ideas of what you can use in place of Dr Pepper:

  • Coca Cola
  • Root Beer
  • Cream Soda
  • Pepsi
  • Mr Pibb
  • Cherry Coke

Looking For More Chocolate Cake Recipes? Try These:

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Dr Pepper Cake is an easy chocolate cake recipe

Dr Pepper Cake

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 6 reviews
  • Author: Shelly
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 12 1x
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Dessert


This super easy, nostalgic chocolate cake recipe is made with Dr Pepper!




  • 1 1/2 cup Dr. Pepper soda
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1/2 cup salted butter
  • 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

Chocolate Frosting

  • 1/2 cup salted butter
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 cups powdered sugar



  1. Preheat oven to 350° F°. Coat a 9×13 baking dish with baking spray. Set aside.
  2. Combine the Dr. Pepper, oil, butter and cocoa powder in a large saucepan over medium heat. When it comes to a simmer, mix well and remove from heat.
  3. Whisk the sugar, flour, and baking soda together in a large bowl. Add the dry mixture into the saucepan and stir until combined with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon.
  4. In a separate small bowl lightly beat the eggs and buttermilk together. Add the buttermilk mixture into the saucepan and stir until combined and smooth.
  5. Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 23-28 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Chocolate Frosting

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine butter, cocoa powder and milk together over medium heat, stirring occasionally until melted and smooth.
  2. Whisk in the powdered sugar a little at a time, combining after each addition until smooth.
  3. Pour over warm cake.
  4. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Store airtight at room temperature for up to 3 days


  • Serving Size: 1 slice
  • Calories: 580
  • Sugar: 67.6 g
  • Sodium: 255.9 mg
  • Fat: 26.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 86.2 g
  • Protein: 4.7 g
  • Cholesterol: 73 mg

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12 comments on “Dr Pepper Cake”

  1. What are your thoughts on making this a vanilla cake with Dr pepper. Thinking I omit the coco but add vanilla instead.

  2. I/we Looove ur Buttermilk Brownies… & have been looking for a Dr. Pepper cake… I came a cross this… going to make it now! However I’m curious
    Can this be made into a layer cake ? (Round)
    Thanks again.
    Have a great weekend

  3. Gretchen Mayer

    I want to make a 1/2 sheet cake. This looks like the ingredients are the same as the recipes I see for a 1/2 sheet cake. Do you happen to know if it can be made into one?

    1. Yes it can. I like my cake a little thicker, but this will work in a 1/2 sheet pan it will just be thinner!

  4. Jolie Restivo

    This looks amazing and I can’t wait to make it! Would it be okay to do a half recipe for a smaller cake?

  5. I can’t for the life of me figure out what I did wrong I followed the recipe exactly but it has a distinct floral taste to me I’m not a big Dr Pepper drink or so I’m not really sure what Dr Pepper tastes like it like I said it tastes like flowers I don’t know lavender rose something I can’t really put my finger on it

  6. Macy Brown From MakeTheBread

    Amazing…this looks sooo yummy & sound soo delicious, it such a mouthwatering cake..i can’t wait make it..Thanks for sharing…keep shared your new amazing recipe…!

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