This Decadent Chocolate Layer Cake is dedicated to all the chocoholics who appreciate the sweeter things in life. It’s three layers of chocolate cake goodness topped with homemade chocolate buttercream icing.
How To Make a Chocolate Layered Cake
As with all recipes, be sure to read all of the instructions before beginning. Then begin by assembling all of your ingredients together. There is nothing worse than getting halfway through the instructions and then realizing that you are missing some key ingredients.
Just as there are multiple layers to this cake, there are multiple steps that you must take.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare 3 8-inch cake pans.
- There are three components of the cake batter. The first is a creamy mixture that is made of butter and sugar. I like to make my creamed mixture look nice and fluffy. While you can overbeat cake batter, you don’t have to worry about over-mixing this mixture.
3. The next component is the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl combine the flour, leavening agents (baking soda and baking powder), and salt.
4. And finally, to make it chocolatey, there is cocoa. To bring out the best of the cocoa, add boiling water and whisk to make sure that there are no clumps. (If you want to add more oomph to your cake, add a tablespoon of instant coffee or espresso now.)
5. Now it’s time to combine all three – the creamed mixture, the dry ingredients, and the chocolate mixture. The best way to do this is to alternate them. This is the step in which you do NOT want to overmix the batter.
6. Divide the cake batter between the three cake pans and bake for 22 – 28 minutes. Use a toothpick to determine if the cake is done. You want to be able to insert it into the middle of the cake and to withdraw it and not see any batter on the toothpick.
7. Once the cake is done, remove the pans from the oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes. Next, run a knife around the edge to be sure that the cake is loosened from each pan and then invert them on a wire rack to cool completely.
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 2½ cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoon real vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2¼ cups boiling water
- Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 3 8” round cake pans, then line bottom with round parchment paper. Set aside.
- Cream the butter and sugars in a large mixing bowl. Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix until well blended.
- In a separate large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- Mix the cocoa powder and boiling water in a medium bowl until well combined and no lumps remain.
- Alternating between the two, slowly add dry ingredients and chocolate mixture to the bowl with the butter and sugar. Mix on low speed to incorporate ingredients.
- Divide the cake batter evenly between the three cake pans and place in the pre-heated oven. Bake 22-28 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and set aside to cool for approximately 10 minutes before transferring the cakes from the pans to a wire rack to cool completely, approximately 10-15 more minutes. (Cakes should no longer be warm to the touch before frosting).
- To assemble the cake, place the first layer top-side down on a cake plate. Add 1/3 of the frosting to the top of the cake layer and spread it out evenly. Take the second layer and level off the rounded top with a knife or cake leveler. Place the second layer on top of the first layer, top-side down. Add frosting to this layer and spread out evenly. Repeat this with the 3rd layer, and spread the remaining frosting out on the top layer. Slice and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 479Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 104mgSodium: 368mgCarbohydrates: 72gFiber: 2gSugar: 44gProtein: 7g
Nutrition information is an approximation. Calories are for unfrosted cake.
How To Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Now this chocolate cake would not be complete without a homemade chocolate buttercream frosting. It’s so much better than the stuff you find in a can on the grocery shelf. Trust me. And it is not difficult to make. The results are worth a few minutes to whip it up.
The secret to making buttercream is to beat the butter first until it is light and fluffy. Next, add cocoa powder to the butter and mix until it is well blended.
Now it’s time to add powdered sugar to the cocoa-butter mixture. Be SURE that there are no clumps of powdered sugar. Tip: Shake the powder sugar through a colander with small holes. This will help catch any clumps and prevent you from having white spots/clumps in the frosting.
Use a mixer to combine the powder sugar. You should achieve the perfect consistency after about 3-4 minutes of beating it at medium speed.
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 16-oz. powdered sugar
- 1-2 Tablespoon whole milk
- 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
- Beat the butter on high-speed for 3 minutes until light and fluffy.
- Mix the butter and cocoa powder in a large bowl until well blended.
- Add the powdered sugar and mix on low-speed until all of the sugar is combined.
- Stir in milk and vanilla extract, if needed, to reach desired consistency.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 299Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 4mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 1gSugar: 37gProtein: 1g
Nutrition information is an approximation.
What is a naked cake?
A naked cake is one that is minimally iced or frosted. That means that you can spread frosting between each layer and on top. If you get a bit too much on the sides, you can just smooth it out for a wispy and trendy look.
If you want to add more to the cake, you could add the following:
- chocolate curls
- chocolate covered coffee beans.
How do you like your chocolate cake topped?
There is nothing better than a friend – unless it is a friend with chocolate.