Somehow, Texas claimed the sheet cake as its own in the mid-20th century, perhaps because of the pecans, an ingredient that grows in abundance throughout the Lone Star State. The defining element is its shape—and, of course, the icing, which has to be heated and poured on the warm, just-out-of-the-oven cake. The result is a rich, chocolaty treat that’s iconic in Texas.
- 1 1/2 cups spicy, fruity cola soft drink (such as Dr Pepper)
- 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Vegetable cooking spray
- Fudge Icing
- 1 1/4 cups chopped toasted pecans
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°. Bring first 3 ingredients to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring often. Remove from heat.
Whisk together flour and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Add soft drink mixture, and whisk until blended. Whisk in buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Pour batter into a lightly greased (with cooking spray) 17 1/2- x 12 1/2-inch sheet pan.
Bake at 350° for 18 to 22 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Prepare Fudge Icing, and pour over warm cake. Sprinkle with pecans. Cool completely in pan (about 1 hour).