The Pioneer Woman knows her stuff

The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake

This IS the best chocolate sheet cake ever. And I’m not just saying that because it’s the only one I’ve ever eaten. It IS delicious. And super moist and oh so chocolatey.

I’m officially in love. With the cake, not the Pioneer Woman. Well, maybe PW, too.

If you don’t know who I’m referring to (laughing as I type that), here’s her site:

I visited her and the family earlier this year at her ranch in Oklahoma and we baked cupcakes and made cake pops for some guests. Actually, she made this chocolate sheet cake recipe then for the cupcakes we used. However, we made a different frosting to decorate with so I didn’t get to experience the full effect. I don’t know what took me so long to try her complete recipe. I’m kicking myself now. It’s so easy and pretty darn quick, too. You don’t even need a mixer. Nope. No mixer. But you do need a 12 X 18 jelly roll pan. I think that’s what deterred me a little. I kept picturing a 12 X 18 cake sitting on my counter. And, well… that’s a lot of cake.

But then, a couple of weeks ago I received a surprise from the UPS guy… or girl…

It was PW’s soon-to-be-released cookbook. I was so excited to see it. I got a preview of the cover back in March and here it was. Finished. Full of Pictures. And Full of Recipes.

Including her Chocolate Sheet Cake.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks

That settled it. No more procrastinating. Chocolate Sheet Cake here I come.

You’ll need 2 cups flour and 1/4 teaspoon of salt to start. Easy enough.


Then pour on the sugar. Two cups of the sweet stuff. I like how this is going.


Melt some butter. Two sticks. Thank you.

While it’s melting, stir together 1/2 cup buttermilk, two eggs, 1 teaspoon baking soda…


And add a little vanilla. A teaspoon to be exact.


Back to the butter. Drop in four heaping tablespoons of cocoa please.

Mix it up

Mix that all up.

Pouring 3

Add a cup of boiling water and stir. Let bubble for just a minute and turn then off the heat.

Pouring 2

Then pour that over your flour, sugar and salt mixture and stir it all together.

Pouring 1

Add the buttermilk mixture and stir until it’s smooth.

Anyone having a little deja vous here? I kinda feel like PW right about now with all these step-by step photos. But really, I couldn’t resist posting all of these pouring shots.


See… here’s another one. Look at that batter. It’s glorious.

Sheet Cake

Place the pan in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes. I did 18.

And while the cake is baking, you can make the icing.

Butter and cocoa

Melt some more butter. One and 3/4 sticks this time. Add four more heaping tablespoons of cocoa and stir together.


Then add 6 Tablespoons milk and one teaspoon vanilla. Here’s the only thing I did differently. I didn’t have any milk. I know… that bites. So instead I used four tablespoons of evaporated milk mixed with two tablespoons of water. I could have gone all six evaporated, but I wanted to play it safe.

Powdered Sugar

Add ONE POUND of confectioner’s sugar. Thank you again PW. This is definitely going in the right direction.


Mix that all up really, really good. You can also add a 1/2 cup of chopped pecans, but I didn’t have any of those either. And actually, I’m glad I didn’t. This cake was just the way I like it. Non-crunchy.

Pour it on

After the cake is baked , immediately pour on the good stuff. Work the icing all over the cake, so you’ll have less spreading to do. Those little lumps in the photo are just bits of confectioner’s sugar. If you don’t add nuts, you’ll have to stir this really good to get them all out or sift your sugar first. But who has time for that when this cake is waiting.


Let the cake cool completely. Just kidding. Just dig right in.

It was the…

For me

Wait… I need another bite to make sure.

It was the…

Sheet Cake

Best chocolate sheet cake ever.

By the way, this 12 X 18 cake taking up space on the counter? Don’t even think twice about it. The cake won’t last that long.

Man, I really wish I had some milk right now.

Chocolate Sheet Cake

The cake was so good, that I had to take a picture of it on this pedestal. Right where it belongs.


Make this cake. Now. Seriously.

Here is the full recipe from the Pioneer Woman to make things easier for you to follow.

Or you could go out and get a copy of The Pioneer Woman Cooks. However, I’m changing the title to The Pioneer Woman Bakes because she has no less than fifteen sweet recipes included in this thing. You might also like:

  • Cinnamon Rolls
  • Iny’s Prune Cake
  • Buttermilk Biscuits
  • Marmalade Muffins
  • French Breakfast Puffs
  • Maple Pecan Scones
  • Perfect Pie Crust
  • Patsy’s Blackberry Cobbler
  • Flat Apple Pie
  • Chocolate Sheet Cake
  • Mocha Brownies
  • Oatmeal Crispies
  • Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
  • Peach Crisp with Maple Cream Sauce
  • Red Velvet Cake
  • Plus … there’s all the real food

Here’s a peek inside.

But you don’t need to peek, because… guess what… I went to the store the same day this book was released and bought another copy to share.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks

That’s right. One for me and one for you. Well, one of you.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks

Enter for a chance to win a copy of
The Pioneer Woman Cooks
by Ree Drummond

Just leave a comment on this post and let me know:

  • Have you tried any of Ree’s recipes from her site? Or which one should I try next? And if you don’t know Ree ( yet, then just go ahead and thank me for introducing you. I’m pretty sure you’ll like her site.
  • Leave your comment with a way for me to contact you if you win.
  • Deadline to enter is Monday, November 2nd at 7 p.m. ET
  • One winner will be chosen at random and announced sometime Monday evening on this post. TIMES UP! Here’s the winner!

Good Luck!

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4,400 comments on “The Pioneer Woman knows her stuff”

  1. I love Pioneer Woman!!! I haven’t tried too many of her recipes but they all look wonderfu.

  2. Never tried any of PW’s recipes but I love chocolate so I may start off with the sheet cake recipe!

  3. that cake looks amazing! chocolate is seriously the best flavor!

  4. That cake looks delicious!!!

    I have tried a few recipes, but last year the Wild Rice/Corn dish was a big hit!

  5. Any time we try a new recipe at home, my husband asks if it is a Pioneer Woman recipe…because he always knows it will be a keeper :) Her Chicken Spaghetti is a weekly meal in our house. Her chocolate sheet cake and carrot cake are TO.DIE.FOR. Penne a la Betsy is great, and I always have a supply of breakfast burritos in my freezer. Please don’t tell her I am a stalker of her deliciousness :)

  6. How funny…I have 8 blogs in my Favorites that I check on a regular basis. Obviously, Bakerella is one but PW is another. Oh, how I covet this recipe book! Has the first commenter ever won?!!

  7. I have not heard of the Pioneer Woman however I am heading to her website now to check it out. I love it when people share new cookbooks.

    My hubby would LOVE this Chocolate Sheet cake. :) Going to make it for him.

    Brenda Gaddy

  8. I have heard of PW many times, but never tried any of her recipes, but this looks amazing!! Can’t wait to try this cake! I’m drooling all over my laptop right now…

  9. I love PW! I’ve made her zucchini cakes and they were YUMMY!

  10. i bit the bullet and made cinnamon rolls because you cant get them in Australia. yeah well im hooked now

  11. I made her Mac & Cheese (not the regular one – the kind of spicy one). I also made some potatoes that involved kosher salt and were very tasty. I want to try the rosemary yeast rolls on her site now…

  12. Love the Pioneer Woman! I love her Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Jalapenos! Mmmmm! Always a hit!

  13. I’ve made a couple of her recipes. The hands-down crowd pleaser is the pumpkin gingersnap caramel cheesecake (or something like that). Just made it again for Halloween! I also love the bacon wrapped cheese-stuffed jalapeno peppers.

  14. I love Ree and everything I have tried is amazing. I would try her lasagna if you haven’t yet :)

  15. I can’t make that cake since I would eat it all! Her herb rolls she just made look really good and the pumpkin spice muffins. Actually, pretty much everything!

  16. wow! i totally love love love your site. i have told everyone i know about it. i will go check out PW site right now. i am so making cake pops for my sons 1st birthday. i am going to try to make them look like fish. any suggestions?

  17. I never hear of PW but that cake sounds so good, can’t wait to check her stuff. I would love to win her book.

  18. I love the step-by-step pictures! they really help, because I lose track of what I’m doing and they help me stay on course…what can I say, I have cooking ADHD – I can’t focus while I’m eating cake batter!

  19. I have been thinking I need a new cookbook to try and was just thinking PW’s would be a great one to look into getting. I love that it has so many pictures!

  20. That cake looks devine!!! Send me an Email at I would love that cookbook but if I don’t win I’m going to buy it.

  21. Oh my gosh, that looks delicious!! I have been dying to try your cake pops, now I don’t know which one to make first!! Tough problem to have… :)

  22. PW Pot Roast is the BEST!

  23. Yes, I’ve actually tried THIS recipe! And I have a list of about 50 more of hers I want to try!

  24. If you like this cake, just wait until you try her meatballs! And be sure to make the mashed potatoes to go with it! I’m not even a meatball fan and I LOVE these….they are something special, to be sure! The recipe is on her website and in the book…yes, I have the book already, if I were to win I’d pass it on as well, it’s a beautiful book and meant to be shared!

    Now off to print your cake balls instructions, I think I need to practice before one more holiday passes!

    Thanks Bakerella, for all you share with the world!

  25. I’ve never tried any of PW’s recipes, but I’m thinking the sheet cake might be the place to start!

  26. I love Ree! Almost as much as you Bakerella! :)
    In fact she is coming to Denver tomorrow and I finally get to meet her! So excited!!

  27. I LOVE the Pioneer Woman! I haven’t tried any recipes yet! But I read her blog EVERY DAY! :)

  28. I was just checking Flickr and saw this–then I knew you were up to something.

    The cookbooks looks like it is full of pictures. Of course I love cookbooks with pictures!

  29. Ree’s skillet cornbread is amazing! And that chocolate cake is next up on my list of to makes…mmm. Would be so thrilled to get her book –

  30. I’ve heard from a friend that her Chicken Parmigiana is superb!!! I’d love a copy of her book, won or bought.

  31. I definitely need to make this cake it looks delicious. All her recipes look yummy and I would love a copy of her book so I may them all.

  32. Ok, so it’s not really baking, but you HAVE to try her spicy mac and cheese. SOOOOO yummy!!! We had it for dinner last night, and a couple of weeks ago (the leftovers of which my husband stole for a work potluck). You must try it!

  33. I haven’t tried any of Ree’s recipes yet, but I have visited her blog from time to time over the past year or two. I’m definitely going to attempt the chocolate cake soon though. I love me a good chocolate cake! :)

  34. You will FLIP over the caramel apple pie (with her pie crust recipe). I have made it 3 times– and two of them have had virtual strangers propose to me. I swear. (And in the spring/summer you should make the Strawberry Shortcake Cake– amazing.)

  35. I make her Shrimp Penne all the time, I guess it’s actually Wetsy’s recipe..but I love it. The day we moved into our home I made all the menfolk the Marlboro Man Sandwich for lunch!

  36. Yes!! I have made her Enchiladas twice!! They are absolutely the best ever homemade enchiladas! Even better than my mom’s and that’s saying a lot! (but we won’t tell my mom that!)
    Ree’s the best!!

  37. I’m so glad you posted this recipe! Not too long ago, an older Texan woman was telling me about a very similar recipe, and it sounded amazing.

    I’m so excited to try it!

  38. I was just thinking about my mom’s Texas’ Sheet Cake this afternoon… no joke. There is something about that so sweet it almost hurts frosting.Thanks for posting!!

    I haven’t made them yet, but so plan on making PW’s Cinnamon Rolls this Christmas. They look unbelievably good.

  39. Yummy! If I win…I will make them ALL! Think Julia/Julie!!

  40. I have tried several of her yummy recipes. My favorite go to is her roasted potato wedges they are so easy to make and so good! I have tried them several different ways! Her lasagna is also delish! I have been wanting to try this cake….I think it is a must now!

  41. I LOVE Pioneer Woman! I actually found you through her. :)

    Her Chocolate Pie is amazing, and her Garlic Mashed Potatoes are possibly the best on the planet.

  42. I love PW too. :) So far I remember trying some sort of cheese muffins/biscuits off of her website. I need to try more! The pictures always make me hungry, hehe.

  43. I love PW’s site! I haven’t tried any of her recipes yet, but there are so many on my list to try! I almost made her skillet cornbread today to go along with the chili my husband made, but I didn’t have all the ingredients :(

  44. im a die hard fan of sheet cake… mmmmm

  45. I love Pioneer Woman, but I haven’t tried any recipes yet. I am definitely going to try this one! It looks divine!

  46. Oh my, I LOVE this cake!! Her carrot cake is also grand!! But my favorite PW recipe is her Lasagna… Or her Mac and Cheese recipe… Or her Enchilada recipe… Oh, I can’t decide!! Let’s just say I have not found a PW recipe I DON’T like!!

  47. What ISN’T good????? :) The Mac & Cheese is awesome–I love the addition of mustard powder. I also loved the blueberry french toast casserole using the Stacey’s chips instead of bread. Super yummy! Ohhh and the baked fudge is to. die. for! I always have to cook mine waaaay longer though. But it’s worth it! I can’t wait to get my hands on that cookbook! I asked for it for Christmas, but I want it now!!

  48. I haven’t tried any of PW’s recipes, but that cake looks delicious. I just popped over there and her rosemary rolls, look so yummy, I need to make them ASAP! Thanks for introducing me!! That cookbook looks amazing.

  49. I love the Pioneer Woman and would absolutely LOVE to have this cookbook! I visit her blog all the time, but have yet to try a recipe (although I have been incredibly tempted every time I see a new recipe!)

  50. I have always meant to check out the Pioneer Woman. I have never heard a bad thing about her recipes. I’m thinking that is on my to do list tonight :)

  51. Everything I have tried of the Pioneer Woman’s has been delicious. And I think her cookbook would be such a great Christmas gift! Please get my Christmas shopping off to an easy start by choosing me for your giveaway!! :-)

  52. I love love love The Pioneer Woman! I check her site religiously every day. I’ve tried lots of her recipes, but the one I use the most is for Crash Hot Potatoes, my husband can’t get enough of those!

  53. PW’s Hot Crash Potatos are delish!

  54. I made the chocolate sheet cake yesterday!! So good…I hope it lasts long enough so I can have it with vanilla ice cream. I’ve also tried Ree’s Oven roasted potatoes and garlic. Divine! I had made something similar but never added any wine. It makes all the difference:)

  55. Yes, I have tried many of her recipes…and so far my favorite is her pot roast! Sooooooo yummmmmy!

  56. LOVE so many of PW’s recipes. Been a fan for a while now. I think her BBQ Meatballs are the best!

  57. OMG this post had my mouth watering like no other. I have heard of Pioneer Woman, in fact, the day i found her site, I sat there and read the entire story of how she became a country girl.

    I haven’t tried any of her recipes but now I want to try this cake recipe. It looks delicious!

  58. I just discovered your blog yesterday and added it to my blog roll. I have heard of PW and added her recently as well. I’d love a chance to win her cookbook!

  59. I haven’t tried her recipes yet… but I have 2 of them from her website on our menu for the week! Turkey brie & apple grilled cheese for tomorrow night, and tortellini spinach tomato soup for the next. We can’t wait to try them – would love the book too so we can try more!

  60. I just discovered your blog, so I’ve spent today reading old posts. I guess I’ll spend tomorrow night with the The Pioneer Woman!

    helenmfisher at gmail dot com

  61. Potato Bundles, Potato Bundles, Potato Bundles!
    So wonderful and so easy! Everyone LOVES them!

  62. Sadly, I have not tried any of PW’s recipes. I have only admired her blog. I should definitely bake this cake. My thighs may not thank me, but at least my tummy will =)

  63. I love Pioneer Woman! Her sheet cake has been my sheet cake recipe for many years and I can honestly say it’s the best cake of any kind I’ve ever put into my mouth. Sometimes I make it in a 9x13x2 pan and bake for around 25 minutes.

    Please don’t enter me in the contest as I’ve already got my own copy of The Pioneer Woman Cooks. Can’t wait until she gets to Dallas so I can have her sign it!

  64. This cake looks so delicious!!! I’ll definitely have to check out the Pioneer Woman’s website!

  65. That’s a Texas Sheet Cake! I haven’t seen one of those outside my own kitchen since I moved away from the south!

    I hadn’t heard of Pioneer Woman before, but I’ll definitely have to check out her site since she just brought back some great memories for me. :)

  66. i have tried several of PW’s recipes, the first of which was Crash-Hot Potatoes—- loved them. My favorite (and the one that left the pan faster than i could make more) was the bacon-wrapped jalapeno thingies…. yum!

    *can’t wait for Ree to visit Nashville!*

  67. I love Ree!! I have tried at least 10 of her receipes but her chocolate sheet cake is by far my favorite!

  68. I tried Baked Fudge once. It was good, but the texture was a little weird, which was probably my fault. It was delicious with ice cream, though. YUM!

  69. Cinnamon Rolls. Be still my heart…

  70. That cake looks totally yummy!

  71. I always love the other bakers you introduce me to! I’m excited to get to know (and love) Pioneer Woman :)

  72. Thanks for introducing me to her! I honestly would go for trying the cinnamon rolls. Cinnamon rolls are always good.

    I’d love the book. :D

  73. I love the PW and Bakerella! You are both big time inspirations to me.

    And yes, the chocolate sheet cake is the BEST! It’s now the only cake my three kids request for their birthdays. :)

  74. Her jalapeño bacon party poppers! So tasty! I made them for my brothers high school graduation party. We had a bacon theme. We also made the crackers wrapped in bacon. An 80’s appetizer. I made your graduation reese’s caps. Obviously a successful party!

  75. I wanted to make your 14 layer cake for my birthday, but this sure seems tempting too..mmmh maybe I’ll just have to celebrate my birthday with the PW chocolate sheet cake later this month since it is my birthday month, right? Oh and the cookbook looks pretty and pretty amazing.

  76. I have made her cinnamon rolls and they were yummy! She has lots more recipes that I would like to try!

  77. Oh man, I’ve heard people mention her before, but I’ve never been to her site. But that cake looks so good, I might have to add her to my favorites! I LOVE to bake and I would love to win this cookbook!

  78. I have not tried Pioneer Women, in fact I forgot about her until now. The cake looks delish, and I’ve bookmarked PW’s site to look at from now on. Thanks!!

  79. Oh, I so need her book!

    Definitely the cinnamon rolls. I made them just this week! They are FAB-U-LOUS. And the dough makes great, soft rolls too (I made her rosemary rolls in a cast iron skillet she posted this week, too!) Mmm….

  80. I have not heard of Pioneer Woman before but I am soooo glad you introduced her to me. Her recipes look wonderful and since I am a chocoholic I am going to try this cake first. Thanks!

  81. OK, so if you have a man in your life, you have to make “Marlboro Man’s Favorite Sandwich” for him. Trust me ~ he will fall in love with you all over again!

    So good!

  82. I’ve tried a few (bacon-wrapped jalapenos, lemon pasta), and there are several more I’ve been wanting to try. My friend already bought the book and said it is fantastic! Would be fun to go to the book-signing together!

  83. Her whiskey glazed carrots are to die for! I would love a copy of this book. it’s currently on my Amazon Wish List!

  84. Would love a copy of the PW cooks. I need some inspiration to cook some of the good stuff!

  85. There’s not really anything I have tried from her site that I did not love. I’m thinking about the brisket right now!

  86. I love Ree! I have not made any of her recipes but drool everytime I read any of of recipes and have gained weight just by looking at them and all that butter!

  87. Thank you Thank you Thank you…even the day after Halloween and all the candy…I am drooling and wanting to make chocolate cake. Love all the pouring pictures! Inspiring

  88. That book looks like a lot of FUN!!!

  89. This cake looks delicious! I actually make a cake very similar to it :)

  90. Anything I have tried so far I loved! The cinnamon rolls are delicious. Next I am going to try the cookie dough and candy recipe with all of the halloween candy we have collected.

  91. Thank you so much for posting the sheet cake recipe! My mom made one growing up and I have not been able to find one as good as this since! Thank you thank you! I would love a copy of the PW cooks too!

  92. I have made one of her pastas but can’t remember the name. I would really like to try her cinnamon rolls. They sound yummy.

  93. I’ve heard lots and lots about PW, from you and from other people across the web, but I’ve never actually been to her site. I do love a good cookbook, though!

  94. I’d love to see the Tres Leches cake! Ooh, what a great book. I’m adding it to my wishlist.

  95. PW cookbook? Yes please!

  96. I check her site every day! I made her pasta salad with the kalamata olives to take to a 4th of July party and I made her guacamole and pico de gallo recently. I just love looking at her food and the photos of how to make it!

  97. I really enjoy both of you gals and your talents!! I would LOVE to have her cookbook :) I make her ck spaghetti and get lots of compliments. You have to try it!

  98. I’ve tried several of her recipes including the chocolate sheet cake. The bacon wrapped jalapeno thingies are a must for family get togethers. And Marlboro Man’s favorite sandwich was a big hit too. Oh also the Olive Cheese bread! Yummy!

  99. I LOVE PW!! (And you too!!!) I have tried several of her recipies, but my favorite is still the bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers… yummo!!

  100. I would love a copy! I want to be PW! :)

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