Dr. Pepper Texas Chocolate Cake

Okay, a little Syracuse, NY trivia for you.

When in Syracuse, where’s the best Bar-b-que joint in town?

Why that would be the Dinosaur Bar-B-Que restaurant!

They have the best lip smakin’ ribs, biscuits, bbq beans…..really, must I go on?  My mouth is watering.

So, last year when we were visiting Syracuse I just had to bring home a cookbook from this famous little establishment.  It was hard to decide what to make first, but of course, I chose this very interesting Dr. Pepper chocolate cake. 

Let’s get started.

Sift together the flour, sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, and baking soda into a bowl and set aside.

In a saucepan, combine the Dr. Pepper and chocolate chips.  Heat on low, stirring often, til the chips are just melted.  Pull off the heat and set aside.

In a mixing bowl combine the oil, eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla.

Mix on medium speed until combined.

Add in the chocolate mixture and mix for about 1 minute.  Then add in the dry ingredients.  Mix on medium and beat about 2 minutes more.  Divide the batter between the 2 pans.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick poked into the center of the cake  comes out clean.  Just watch carefully and don’t over bake.  I would start checking around 25 minutes.

Allow the cake to sit in pans for 5 minutes, then remove from pan.

While the cake is cooling, get started on the frosting.  Whip together the vegetable shortening and butter.

Now mix in the cocoa powder and vanilla.

Then slowly add in the confectioners’ sugar, then slowly drizzle in the Dr. Pepper.  Beat until it turns light and fluffy, about one minute on high.

Place about one cup of the frosting for the center layer, then use the remaining frosting to finish the cake.

Yummy!  Can’t wait to go back to the roadhouse again, and when you visit Syracuse, be sure to treat yourself to this delicious Bar-b-Que restaurant.

Dinosaur BBQ Restaurant
Dr. Pepper Texas Chocolate Cake

The magic ingredient in this outrageous two-layer dark chocolate cake is Dr. Pepper, one of America’s oldest soft drinks.  Dr. Pepper was first made and sold in 1885 at Morrison’s Old Corner Drug Store in Waco, Texas.  Just like the state it comes from, this cake is big and impressive.  The soft drink’s carbonation gives the layers exceptional rising power, and its special blend of flavorings makes lickin’ the beaters especially appealing.”

The Cake
2 cups sifted flour
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup Dr. Pepper
1/2 cup chocolate chips (semi-sweet)
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

The Frosting
3/4 cup butter-flavored Crisco shortening (it was really hard for me not to use all butter)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup Dr. Pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour two 9-inch-round cake pans, tapping out any extra flour.  (I sprayed my pans with Pam cooking spray, and cut parchment paper to size to fit the bottom of the pan, then sprayed MORE Pam on the parchment paper).

Sift together the flour, sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, and baking soda into a bowl and set aside.  Pour the Dr. Pepper into a saucepan and add the chocolate chips.  Heat on low, stirring often, til the chips are just melted.  Pull off the heat and set aside.

Combine the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla in a mixer bowl and mix on medium speed until combined, about one minute.  With the mixer running, slowly pour in the Dr. Pepper-chocolate mixture.  Pop the speed back up to medium and beat 2 minutes more.  Divide the batter between the two prepared pans.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes (watch closely, you don’t want a dry, over-done cake), or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean.  Cool the layers in the pans for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edges and flip the pans over onto a cooling rack.  Gently lift off the pans and let the cake layers cool completely.

While the cake is cooling, mix together the frosting.  First drop the shortening and butter into a mixer bowl and beat until soft and fluffy.  Add the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa and continue mixing until combined.  Stir together the Dr. Pepper and vanilla and very slowly pour it into the frosting, beating with the mixer on high speed to thin it down a bit.  Continue beating until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.

Set 1 layer, top down, on a good-looking plate.  Smear on 1 cup of the frosting.  Grab the other layer and slap it on top of the frosted one.  Spread the rest of the frosting all over the top and sides of the cake, making attractive swirls.  Serve, and accept the compliments.

Serves 12.



  1. Hey!

    I love love love Dino BBQ!! I went to SU and lived in Syracuse for several years after I graduated. Oh how I miss me some Dino BBQ :) I never did have dessert there because I was so full from their awesome food. Ill have to try this cake! Thanks for sharing!!


  2. This cake is to die for.. made it the other day.

  3. I never did get to taste it when I made it, but I think everyone really enjoyed it. Glad you did, too! Thanks for stopping by.

  4. Off to get everything to make this for this weekend. Will let you know how it turns out… looks mmmm mmm good!

  5. Pingback: Dinosaur Bbq Dr. Pepper Texas Chocolate Cake | heatbeads - charcoalgrill

  6. This cake came out wonderful…tip: I used actual “cake flour” and the cake was light and moist. For the frosting, the only change I made was I added 2 packets of individual sized instant coffee to make it mocha flavored. The next time, I would cut back on the ‘butter flavored shortening’ and increase the butter. Personal preference for us, I prefer a true buttercream frosting and using this much shortning made the frosting a bit heavy. This recipe did get rave reviews from friends and family!

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