Ridiculous Chocolate Cake

The most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake I've ever made. Seriously delicious and crazy moist.

This is the most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake I’ve ever made…seriously delicious, super easy and crazy moist (sorry). There is so much to love about this cake!

You all know I am not opposed to using a cake mix from time to time. I, personally, look at cake mixes like any other ingredient. I don’t use them all the time, as I find making a cake from scratch is just as easy, but there are times when there is no substitute. Today is an example of that.

The base for this stupid-good cake is a chocolate cake mix. It’s not negotiable. There is a time and place for “from scratch” cakes, I totally agree, but not today.


Now that we are all on the same cake mix page, let’s talk a little more about this slice of perfection. The texture is so soft…I mean we add pudding mix, sour cream and a whole load of chocolate chips. You honestly could skip the frosting and dust it with a little powdered sugar if you feel so inclined, but since frosting-skipping is against my religion I won’t press the issue.

It’s the perfect little cake to take to any party, or even whip up on a weeknight. I REALLY want you to try this one.

The most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake I've ever made. Seriously delicious and crazy moist. It's a doctored up cake mix recipe and it's like no other cake I've ever had!

The batter is really really easy. Please note, though, I add a box of chocolate pudding to the cake mix, so don’t buy the cake mix with pudding “in the mix”. I know this is confusing…like why couldn’t you omit the pudding and just buy the cake mix with it already added? Great question…

It’s not the same. I’ve tried it both ways and adding your own pudding mix is just BETTER. I don’t make the rules, folks.

Also add in 2 whole cups of chocolate chips to the cake. Seriously good.


Since the batter is fairly thick, the chocolate chips don’t sink at all!

The BEST Chocolate Cake!

The cake batter is so dreamy.

Just spread it into a heavily greased bundt pan…

The BEST Chocolate Cake!

And when it’s baked it will look like this…

My favorite chocolate cake...completely outrageous!

Just invert the cake onto a cake pan and allow it to cool. OR if you aren’t frosting it (blasphemy) try it warm and die at how good it is.

But if you’re a rule follower, go ahead and make some super creamy chocolate frosting…

Creamy Chocolate Frosting

And spread it on top of your gorgeous cake.

The most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake ever! SO SO GOOD!

AND if you’re feeling fancy add a few chocolate chips on top. I mean why not at this point!

The most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake I've ever made. Seriously delicious and crazy moist. It's a doctored up cake mix recipe and it's like no other cake I've ever had!

And then EAT!

The most RIDICULOUS Chocolate Cake I've ever made. Seriously delicious and crazy moist.

I can’t WAIT for you to try this one!


Ridiculous Chocolate Cake

  • Author: Cookies & Cups
  • Yield: serves 12



  • 1 (15.25 ounce) box chocolate cake mix
  • 1 (3.9 ounce) box instant chocolate pudding
  • 1 (16 ounce) container sour cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips


  • 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream



  1. Preheat oven to 350Β°F. Liberally grease a 10- inch bundt pan with butter or shortening and lightly dust with flour. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment combine all the cake ingredients. Mix on low for 30 seconds until combined and then on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Stir in the chocolate chips and pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  3. Bake for 55-60 minutes, until the cake is set. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then invert the pan onto a cake plate. Cool completely before frosting.


  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on low speed beat the butter, cocoa powder and powdered sugar until combined. Add in the vanilla and cream and beat on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until creamy, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  2. Frost the top of the cake and garnish with more chocolate chips if desired.


recipe lightly adapted from all recipes.

Helpful tip… Out of sour cream?











and ps… if you’re wondering if you can do this with vanilla cake and vanilla pudding mix, the answer is YES! I did it for you… CLICK HERE FOR THE RECIPE!








156 Responses

  1. Kate

    This looks so yummy. Here in the UK I can’t find pudding mix, we only have the cake mix,we sell things like Betty Crocker mix, or chocolate fudge cake mix, so should I use two packs of that with the other ingredients, would that still work do you think. Would love to try this for my daughters birthday cake as it would be a super easy one to make. X

    1. Shelly

      I would just omit the pudding altogether. If your cake mixes already have “pudding in the mix” as many of them do (it will be specified on the front of the box) just use that! There isn’t a real substitute for instant pudding mix.

    2. georgie

      Kate, Pudding seems to be a weird American thing. I find it occasionally at the supermarket in Australia. It’s usually near the jelly, and things like DIY mousse. Have a look there just in case. It’s not actually cake like Christmas pudding is. It’s more like thick chocolate custard. So adding a different box mix wont make any difference. And I dont know about there, but none of our cake mixes here come with “added pudding”. So if you’re up for some experimenting check out the jelly (jell-o) section, or the yoghurt section??

  2. Lisa

    Could you please give me the brand or brands of cake mix that DONT have pudding in the mix?? Impossible for me to locate! Thank you so much!

    1. Shelly

      I used Duncan Hines. There were a lot with the pudding in the mix, but there are a few without πŸ™‚ So sorry you’re having trouble!

  3. Jody

    I’ve made this cake before, but it had a different icing. The one I made had a frosting that tasted just like slightly hardened fudge. This is a really good cake & easy to make.

  4. Using a boxed cake mix as a base is totally acceptable, IMO. πŸ™‚ With the sour cream and pudding add-ins, this cake has to be as amazingly moist as it looks! SO easy, too! Great for when you need quick prep for a summer get-together!

  5. ShaNae

    This looks absolutely delicious! A question. Anytime I have used heavy whipping cream for frostings, mine always turn more liquidy then what they should be. The last I tried was a raspberry whipped cream, and well it was a disaster. Any suggestion to what I am doing wrong? I would love to make the frosting for this cake. Thank you!

    1. Shelly

      That’s so funny… whenever I use heavy whipping cream in frostings I find they come out thicker!! So strange! What I would recommend if you have issues is start with just 1 tablespoon at a time. You don’t have to add the amount of liquid a recipe for frosting calls for, necessarily. Just one tablespoon at a time until the consistency that you desire is reached!

    2. Samantha Mae Reed

      A suggestion with the raspberry or any other fruit whipped cream from scratch that calls for heavy cream, try to adjust your recipe so you balance a mix of raspberry extract and fruit. The fruit is so juicy that it’s most likely watering down the frosting and compromising the stability of your whipped topping structure. I’ve noticed when I do this with whipped toppings I’m less likely to get frustrated, because you’re absolutely right, it’s much thinner and just isn’t what’s expected, ya know. Also, I’ve been meaning to do research on it, butt maybe there’s some kind of “sciency” explanation with maybe the acid or sugar level of the fruit breaking down the dairy. Or maybe the sugar from everything else breaking down the fruit too much.

    1. Shelly

      You could probably sub buttermilk for the water with no issue. If you sub butter for the oil the consistency of the cake will become a bit more dense, but it should work.

    1. Anjalika

      ?? Sounds delish!! How much kahlua? And are the measurements of the other ingredients the same? Would love to try it!!!

  6. Nav

    Question: is it possible to make this into cupcakes? If so, how?

    By the way – just ordered your book here in Canada, so very excited!!

  7. laura

    This looks amazing! But I’m in the UK what could I use as ‘pudding’ as we don’t have that here? Or if we do its not called that lol

    1. Katie

      Puddings in the US are just cornstarch (corn flour in the UK), sugar, milk, plus any flavoring you want to add (cocoa powder for chocolate, mashed bananas for banana pudding, etc.). The French call our style of pudding “creme dessert”, so perhaps you’re familiar with that term in the UK?

  8. Veronica

    Hi! Do I need to put flour on the chocolate chips before I add them to the batter so they don’t fall to the bottom of the cake? Thanks!

  9. Jamie

    2 questions!
    First one how do you store this? In the fridge? On the counter?
    Second do i have to use the paddle attachment when making the frosting or can i use the whisk attachment?

  10. Mrs. G.

    I have been making this cake for several years now. It’s on All Recipes under Extreme chocolate cake. It is wonderful and the one my family wants for all their get togethers. I frost with a smooth chocolate glaze from the same site. However, I have also made the recipe using a yellow cake mix, butterscotch pudding abd butterscotch chips. That was also pretty great. Some day I want to try it with peanut butter chips.

    1. Jasminr

      Mmm, butterscotch! Peanut butter!!! If you like pistachio or strawberry, you could try that! Pistachio with dark choc chipd. Or, maybe, strawberry with chocolate chips inside and a chocolate glaze πŸ™‚ Lemon. I’m gonna stop here ??

    2. Traci

      I made the chocolate and can I say it was awesome. I want to make butterscotch for my dad. What icing did you use for butterscotch? Thanks!

  11. Isha

    Can I use betty crockers cake mix box i.e chocolate fudge cake? any pudding mix can work right or there needs to be a specific flavor of it? TIA!

    1. Shelly

      I used Duncan Hines, but Betty Crocker would be fine as long as it doesn’t already have pudding in the mix πŸ™‚ Also chocolate pudding is what’s required as listed in the recipe πŸ™‚

  12. Karen

    I have been making a version of this cake for years and it’s always a hit. I use DH moist supreme Devils food which does have pudding in the mix and I add an extra egg. I never frost, just add preferred powdered sugar. This is the only cake I make that I can keep in my cake carrier sealed, which is the trick to keeping it moist.

    1. Renee

      Excellent question. Following this thread. Also, any tips to get my cakes to NOT stick in a bundt. I have awful luck.

  13. Jill

    I made this cake tonight and it was easy and very moist. I did substitute the coffee for the water. Wouldn’t know it was in the cake. Just brings out the chocolate flavor. Turned out great. Loved it!

  14. gloria

    This seems to be the same cake my Mom used to make back in the seventies, but she used mini chip. Skipped the frosting, and severed warm with whipped cream. I don’t care for chocolate, but I could eat a small piece of her cake.

  15. Marisa

    I liberally greased and floured the bundt pan but half the cake stayed in the pan. Any idea what to do differently?

    1. Shelly

      I’ve never tried it in a 9×13, but I am sure it would work, you would just need to adjust your bake time down!

  16. I just made this with vanilla cake mix/pudding (omit chocolate chips) in two 8″ cake pans. vanilla cream frosting and a layer of fresh raspberries in the middle and on top and my husband says it is the best cake he’s ever had! Extra moist on day two with berries that it turned into more of a pudding cake and still ridiculously good!!
    I’ve made the doctored chocolate cake mix recipe with one cup sour cream and more oil before and it was really good, but this was even better!

  17. Eileen

    Yummm! Super moist chocolate cake. Followed recipe exactly, except I made 24 cupcakes. Only took about 15 minutes to bake. I made a white buttercream frosting.

  18. Marki Salcido

    This is the same recipe I’ve been using for years from Kevin and Amanda’s website “Best Chocolate Cake.” She posted it in 2008. http://www.kevinandamanda.com/the-best-chocolate-cake/

    Yes you can make cupcakes out of it – I did for the 4th of July. Also, be careful about checking when it’s done – the chocolate chips make it a little hard. It is the best damn cake around.

    1. Shelly

      Love Amanda! I didn’t realize she had this recipe too! I got mine from all recipes…probably just one of those recipes that’s been around for years!

    2. Kristi

      I have made this and could not tell when done even though I used a tooth pick it wasn’t done, second time too done.

  19. Sarah

    I just made this cake for when friends came to stay at our house and it was a definite crowd pleaser! The cake comes out so moist and fudge, and the frosting is just right too! I can’t believe how easy it was to whip together for such a pretty and tasty product! πŸ™‚

  20. Mary

    I’m going to try this devilish desert . But one thing I need to know. Is there a certain brand for the cake mi x and pudding? Sometimes it might make a difference. But this sounds so devilish. Thanks

  21. Mark Harbour

    Sounds so good. But what to do if you can’t buy a chocolate cake mix? We live in Taiwan and no store in the whole country sells chocolate cake mixes.

    1. Shelly

      Nope, it’s there.. in step two of the recipe it says to add ALL of the cake ingredients and the pudding is listed in the ingredients πŸ™‚

  22. Natalie

    Hi, this looks delicious!! Not sure if anyone already asked this question, but can you omit the 1/2 cup of water and replace it with a 1/2 cup of coffee? I’ve seen recipes call for this, as it makes the cake even richer in flavor. Thank you!!

      1. Shelly

        Thank you so much. If I end up having any issues, I’ll check back in and let everyone know. So excited to try this recipe. Thank you!

    1. Lanie B

      Hi Colette,
      I was wondering the same thing about the 2-cups of sour cream. I have seen similar recipes and they only use 1 cup which is what I used.

  23. Mary

    I’m going to be making this for my daughter’s birthday but it will be baked in Albuquerque so what would change due to the high altitude ? Thanks

  24. Pam

    I would like to make this with a gluten free mix. Since most mixes only make a 9 inch square, would I have to use 2 mixes or could I get by with just one?

    1. Shelly

      I would use a mix and a half, but that’s strictly a guess. The best way to gauge amount would to be weigh the mix. This recipe calls for a 15.25 ounce boxed cake mix.

    1. Ann

      I would suggest you look at the altitude adjustments on the cake mix and try that. I haven’t made this cake but I always make the adjustments on the mix box and my cakes turn out great. I live at an el of 5,400 ft.

  25. Wowie Ortiz

    I just made this cake and its super moist and chocolaty.. This will be my go to recipe from now on. I frosted it with Chocolate Italian Meringue Buttercream.. Perfect! 10 stars

  26. Kathy

    Just took this out of the oven. I baked the cake in a 9×13 cake pan and it took 55 minutes in my oven. Hope everyone at the family Bar-B-Que likes it.

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    1. Kristi Fisher

      This cake sounds and looks amazing. Is there a way to make this a little healthier. Of course replace the sour cream w/ greek yogurt. What about sugar free pudding and dark choc chips? Same question regarding frosting?

  29. Sandra in NM*

    We have made this for years and call it “death by chocolate” cake. We’ve never iced it just sprinkled with powdered sugar. It is so delicious!!

    1. Shelly

      I have never tried it that way. I always buy the cake without the pudding and add it. I imagine adding the pudding mix into the cake with the cake mix already in it would make it a little denser. I am sure the flavor would be great though!

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  32. Tracy

    Just got it out of the pan to cool. It turned out beautifully! Had a problem with sticking on one side, but was able to get the little piece that hadn’t come out back in place..I think the frosting will cover it. I plan to make a cream cheese frosting/glaze since I have a lot of cream cheese for some reason lol.

  33. Natasha

    Seen this recipes and ran straight to town(country folk) for the ingredients I didn’t have. Huge waste of time and money. Even after a 1 hr and 20 mins of baking it still was raw and gooey pudding in the middle. I was excited because the batter taste amazing but I could not get this cake baked thru. Hoped after sitting all nite it’d magically taste better…no still gross. I used used the Ghirardelli box mix so if u try it to make this cake DON’T use it! The icing however is Amazing!!! I will Def def be trying this icing again on a different cake one day!

  34. Jacqueline

    Would love to make this cake, however, I’m not a fan of chocolate chips in cakes, brownies or cupcakes. Will omitting them change anything like cook time or amount of liquid?

  35. Sheryll R

    This is a great cake! I frosted it with a chocolate cream cheese frosting and everyone loved it. I did make it in a a bundt pan but the next time I will make it in a cake pan. Delicious!!!

  36. Kim

    Very easy to follow recipe, and an amazing cake! Turned out way better than my expectations, and was a big hit with the kids!!!

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  38. Sue

    I made this cake a few weeks ago for a get-together and everyone is STILL raving about it. I did it a little different – put half the batter in a nundt pan, made a well and layered crushed oreos. When cake was done, I iced it and added oreos on top. Going to try it with a vanilla cake and pudding mix next time. Thank you for the amazing recipe!! πŸ™‚

  39. How would I modify bake time and temperature if using a mini bundt came pan ( makes 6 mini bundt cakes in one pan) ? Ideas? Feedback iis greatly appreciated.

  40. Ben Miller

    Can cooked pudding mix be used instead of instant?

    I know … why mess with “Perfection?” I can’t help it. I am an engineer.

    Thank you! Ben

  41. Jessy

    Cake was just ok. It collapsed within 10 mins. And it was certainly not the best cake I’ve made. I have made cake from scratch that’s better. Cake does not look rich or anything like the picture posted. But when the craving hits I guess a box mix will have to do. Will not be making this again.

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    1. Shelly

      I always use a bundt, but some readers have told me they have made it in a 9×13 and it’s worked great! Just lower the bake time to 25-30 minutes and check it from there!

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  45. Carol

    Made the cake! Very good and equally easy because few ingredients and little measuring. Made two 9″ round layers to serve separately. Frosted one with leftover cream cheese frosting and left other unfrosted…equally good. Thanks.

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  47. Meg

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! These β€˜Ridiculous’ cakes are a hit! I have made both the chocolate and the vanilla and everyone asks β€œWHAT did you put in that cake??!!” They are both delicious, not to mention ridiculously easy to make. Plus, so pretty once iced with chocolate sprinkled on top!

    Do you have any tips for changing this to a cupcake recipe?

  48. Rita

    Almost every recipe I check out says to use the paddle attachment. I have an old mixer. Works great but does not have a paddle attachment. Why do recipes use a paddle attachment and can I just use my regular attachments?

    1. Shelly

      You can… I make most of my recipes with the paddle attachment on my mixer, so that is how the recipe has been tested. In most cases you can use the regular whisk-style attachment as long as you don’t over mix the dough!

  49. Anne

    I apologize if I missed it, but I looked to see if you mentioned/gave credit. This exact recipe has been around for at least 25 years! Previously referred to as Death by Chocolate and other names. I think in the interest of your blog and integrity you need to say this.

  50. Traci

    I made this and can I say it was Awesome! I’d like to make a butterscotch for my dad. I would use a yellow cake mix, with butterscotch pudding and chips. Any idea what icing would be good and recipe for the icing. Thanks!

  51. Tricia

    Does the chocolate chips melt in the cake? A woman here makes what she calls a chocolate chipy cake and I’m trying to duplicate it! The chips in her don’t melt and it’s wonderful.

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