If making the 3-layer version of the cake, triple the ingredient amounts listed above.
Sift together dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
In a separate mixing bowl, combine wet ingredients. Whisk together by hand or with a mixer, but take care not to overwork the batter.
Once wet ingredients are incorporated, slowly pour into bowl with dry ingredients, mixing as you pour.
Stir chocolate chips into batter. Pro tip: Dust chocolate chips in flour before you add them to the batter. This light flour coating helps prevent the chocolate chips from sinking to the bottom of the cake when baking.
Divide batter evenly among three circular cake pans.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350°F. Check with a toothpick - if it comes out clean, the cake is done. If batter sticks to the toothpick, bake for 5 additional minutes. Repeat until toothpick comes out clean.
Allow cakes to cool completely before frosting.
Put it all together:
Place the first cake layer on a large plate or cake stand. Trim the top so it is flat, then coat with chocolate frosting. Add the second cake layer and repeat.
Add the final cake layer and coat the entire cake liberally with chocolate frosting. Sprinkle the top of the cake with brown sugar and press brown sugar into the sides of the cake. This step can be messy, so place towels, newspaper, etc. under your cake stand so excess sugar is easy to collect.
Note: Nutrition information is a rough estimate only; actual values will vary based on the exact ingredients used and amount of recipe prepared.