A lighter chocolate cake recipe (but absolutely no less delicious)


This definitely isn’t a lighter calorie option, sorry to disappoint, but it is lighter tasting than the normal super rich, cloyingly sticky, chocolate fudge cake. Not that I don’t love chocolate. In fact I challenge you to find anyone who can eat more chocolate in one sitting than I can – it’s my party trick. But chocolate fudge cake just doesn’t do anything for me, I’d much rather eat a bar of Dairy Milk. A big bar. A family sized bar. This cake however gives it a run for its money. It’s just the right level of chocolaty, stays nicely moist and you can finish a slice without having to undo the top button of your jeans.

I never really envisaged myself sharing recipes on my blog but this chocolate cake is just so good that the world (and by that I mean the few people who might come across my blog) needs to know about it.

The actual cake ingredients are standard store cupboard essentials. For the topping I’ve offered two varieties – a classically sweet version that is my personal preferences and a much more bitter recipe which most other people prefer as it balances out the sugary cake, but I can’t stomach it. Basically, if you ever prefer dark chocolate to milk then the second one is probably the one for you. If you’ve got less mature taste buds, like me, then stick to the first recipe or you’ll end up scraping out the filling.

The cake in the picture was MONSTAROUS in size. Absolutely ridiculous. So the recipe I’m giving here is a scaled down version. Should still feed 10-15 people depending on how much they like cake.

Cake ingredients

2 tbsp cocoa powder

5 tbsp very hot water

225g/8oz butter (plus extra for greasing)

225g/8oz caster sugar

225g/8oz self-raising flour

2 tsp baking powder

4 eggs

Cake method

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C
  2. Grease and line two 20cm cake tins (or you can do it as one and then cut it in half later)
  3. Mix cocoa powder with hot water until a smooth paste
  4. You can then either tip all the ingredients into a food processor and mix until smooth (about 2-3 minutes) or if you’re feeling old fashioned and fancy giving your arm muscles a work out…
  5. Cream butter and sugar
  6. Add eggs gradually, mixing well between each addition to avoid curdling (if it does, which it always does for me, just add a little of the flour)
  7. Add cocoa paste
  8. Mix in flour and baking powder
  9. Pour equally into the two tins and bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean
  10. Leave to cool in the tin slightly before removing



85g/3oz butter

50g/2oz caster sugar

250ml/9fl oz evaporated milk

150g/5oz plain chocolate


  1. Heat all the ingredients in a bowl over a pan of simmering water
  2. Stir until smooth and then remove from heat
  3. Continue to beat for 2-3 minutes until thick (though not quite as thick as mine was – do as I say, not as I do) and then spread over the cakes and sandwich together



4oz plain chocolate

2 tbsp sour cream


  1. Melt chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water
  2. Remove from heat and mix in sour cream
  3. Continue to beat for 2-3 minutes until thick and then spread over the cakes and sandwich together

I decorated mine with chocolate stars from Dr. Oetker and some very old candles which were barely legible any more. Maybe you could be a little more creative.


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