Texas Sheath Cake (Sheet Cake)

imageThis recipe was passed down through my wife’s family and ended up in my hands and now is a staple for birthdays at our home.  I received a photo copy of the hand written recipe with the name Texas Sheath Cake on it.  I’m not sure if “sheath” was supposed to be “sheet” and I kept the name as it was given because I’m a stickler for authenticity and uniqueness of the past.  Enjoy!




  • 2 C Flour
  • 2 C Sugar
  • 1 Stick Butter
  • 1/2 C Crisco
  • 1 C Water
  • 4 Tbsp Cocoa
  • 1/2 C Buttermilk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon


  • 1 Stick Butter
  • 4 Tbsp Cocoa
  • 6 Tbsp Milk
  • 1 box (1 pound) confectioners (aka powdered) sugar (about 4 1/2 C)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 3/4 C Chopped Pecans

Make the magic happen:

  1. Combine flour and sugar, set aside.
  2. Place in saucepan butter, Crisco, water and cocoa. Bring to a boil, mix then pour into ingredients from step #1.
  3. To above, add buttermilk, vanilla, eggs, baking soda, and cinnamon.
  4. Mix then pour into greased 9X13 pan (I always use glass for this recipe).
  5. Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes (turns out like soft brownies!)
  6. Five minutes before the cake is finished, make the icing. This will be poured while hot over the cake.
  7. Bring butter, cocoa, milk, confectioners (powdered) sugar and vanilla to a boil and mix well.
  8. Turn off heat and stir in pecans.
  9. Pour over cake and let cool.
  10. (the hard part) Try not to eat too much!

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