My church fellowship committee (of which I'm a member) prepared 12 of these cakes for a dinner for 200. It was so popular that we did it again for another event.
The frosting is easy and quick.
The recipe calls for 1 can cherry pie filling, but when I prepared this for my family, I bought 2 cans and used just a little of the 2nd can to dollop on top of cool whip topping to make it look pretty. We used the remainder over ice cream several days later.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 pan with non-stick baking spray containing flour and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix, cherry pie filling, almond extract, and eggs. Beat until well mixed, then beat 1 minute at medium speed. Pour into prepared pan. Baje 35 - 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
When cake is almost finished baking, make the frosting: Combine sugar, butter and milk in large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add chocolate chips and vanilla. Stir with a wire whisk until the chips are melted and frosting is smooth. Pour over WARM cake and spread to cover. Let cool on a wire rack. Cut into 15 or 20 pieces. Before serving, top each piece with a dollop of Cool Whip. If you have that 2nd can of pie filling, place a couple cherries with a bit of juice in the center of the Cool Whip.