Craving chocolate cake after a friend mentioned SHE was craving "warm chocolate cake", I decided Thursday night was a perfectly acceptable time to stop everything and bake one. Knowing it would only be warm for that short time after baking, I decided to give it its own heat with a little kick of spice. I combined my favorite "go-to", easy-peasy, (one bowl!) chocolate cake recipe (Hershey's Perfectly Chocolate Cake) with an uncommon ingredient: cayenne pepper. Often used in a spicy flourless chocolate cake, I figured it couldn't hurt this old-fashioned staple. Not super spicy, just enough to give a little hit of lingering flavor. (And if the idea of cayenne in your chocolate cake doesn't appeal to you, you can omit it and it's still a really good chocolate cake made in one bowl. ONE BOWL. What could be better?) Recipe below image.

Perfect spicy chocolate cake

2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.
  2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cayenne pepper and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.
  3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Frost with Perfectly perfect chocolate frosting (below). 10–12 servings.

Perfectly perfect chocolate frosting
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
2/3 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency.
Add small amount additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.