Weekend Cooking: Chocolate birthday cake with chocolate flour frosting (and sprinkles)


All birthdays need cake. Chocolate cake was the request of the birthday boy for his very important fifth birthday.

Chocolate cake! Chocolate frosting! Sprinkles!

So I think this cake pretty much aced all three requirements.

Chocolate cake?


Chocolate frosting?



Stars and dinosaurs. Check and check!

The chopstick-mounted bunting was a way of eliminating the need for me to (1) pipe words onto a cake that was (2) already covered with sprinkles anyway. And the little dinosaurs on the cake was from a dollar bag of plastic dinos I happened upon at Target the other day.

 But this is a post not just pictures. So here I am, I am going to tell you about “flour frosting”. What the heck is that? I really am not sure how I came across flour frosting. I was googling “chocolate frosting”, looking for those that didn’t require heavy cream as I didn’t have any and didn’t really want to run out in the evening just to get some. And somehow somewhere, this flour frosting appeared. And best of all, seriously, BEST of all, it doesn’t even require powered (or confectioner’s as it is known here) sugar! That was a serious lifesaver because I realized that I had only about 3 cups of powdered sugar and most of these chocolate buttercream frosting recipes seemed to call for some 5 cups or more. And this is a cake for a 5-year-old. It HAS to be sweet. I wasn’t about to reduce the sugar by nearly half!

So I ended up using this recipe from Our Best Bites. It begins rather oddly on the stove – milk, flour, cocoa powder and sugar being stirred and heated together, then cooled in the fridge.

Silly me, it was getting late, I had had a long day (it is spring break and my kids are home ALL DAY and I am going bonkers thinking of how to occupy them!), I didn’t wait for the chocolate-flour mixture to cool enough (a cooled melted chocolate mixture is another part of this recipe) and my butter had been sitting on my counter for far too long. So when I first put it all together, it was more like chocolate pudding than frosting. As in, it was runny. So as any homebaker will do, I stuck it in the fridge and hoped for the best.

I hemmed and I hawed, I played The Simpsons game on my phone, I was too distracted to read. And when I couldn’t wait anymore, I pulled it out of the fridge, still a bit more-pudding-less-frosting, but I just slathered it on my four halves, slapped more on the tops and sides, almost forgot the sprinkles but remembered to sprinkle in time. Then stuck it in the fridge and worried about it all night forgot about it till the next morning.

And you know what? It turned out pretty well. It was actually a frosting that I  liked. It wasn’t too buttery as some buttercreams can be (yes I suppose that is a ‘duh’ moment). It was creamy and a bit silky. And surprisingly not too sweet. So I am saving this recipe for another time. It’s apparently also known as boiled-milk frosting or ermine icing, according to this New York Times recipe.
 The birthday boy declared it ‘the best cake in the world’. And that made my day. Thank goodness for five-year-olds who think homemade bunting is impressive and for sprinkles that make any homemade cake awesome.


Have you made flour frosting/boiled-milk frosting before? Also, if you have a go-to frosting recipe, please send me a link!

Oh and PS, my younger boy’s birthday is coming up in a few weeks and he has already asked for a ‘strawberry cake’ so I would LOVE YOU if you have a strawberry cake recipe that I can borrow because I am not a strawberry person and haven’t a clue where to begin. 


Weekend Cooking at Beth Fish Reads is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, beer, wine, photographs


  1. That smiling face at the end says it all!!! Loved this story. The cake looks so perfect for a kids’ party and I love the Thomas the Tank plate (or at least I assume that’s what it is).


  2. I want to become a five-year-old, if my cake will have dinosaur sprinkles. 🙂 Lovely post, Sharlene. 🙂 And, your pictures tease me, as ever.


  3. Chocolate and more chocolate! How delicious is that? Really sounds tempting.

    I have never tried that recipe. I used to have a decadent and delicious chocolate frosting recipe but it used raw eggs, and I don’t feel confident about that any more. So I was back to butter, cocoa, and powdered sugar, the old standby.

    best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve never even heard of flour/milk frosting before, but it looks great, just the right consistency for the job, you wouldn’t even imagine all the too runny/fridge traumas behind it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. FLOUR frosting. I have never heard of such a thing! I am not much of a baking aficionado, however, which probably accounts for it. By the same token I have absolutely no strawberry cake recipes — when I have fruity cakes they tend to be citrus-based. I have a recipe for a chocolate cake where you put strawberries in between the layers of chocolate? Is that the same thing basically? :p

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha. I think I may just end up putting strawberries on the top of a chocolate cake and calling it “strawberry cake”. I mean he’s going to be three. It’s not like he’s a strawberry cake connoisseur.


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