Black Magic Mocha Cake


Black Magic Mocha Cake with Espresso Buttercream

Birthday cake time! I love making birthday cakes, it’s like baking to order but then I try to add extra bits, bobs and flavours to make it extra special and more of a surprise on the day. This time I was asked for a chocolate cake but I knew he would love a mocha monstrosity! A really rich, sweet indulgence cake offset by bitter espresso coffee, this cake is dark, tasty and magical! I went for a solid cake with buttercream topping but this would be just as good as a sandwich cake with extra buttercream in the centre, just halve the batter into 2 tins and reduce the baking time by 1/3.


For the cake:

  • 350g sugar
  • 150g plain flour
  • 100g dark cocoa powder
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 100ml vegetable oil
  • 150ml strong black coffee
  • 70g dark chocolate chips
  • 200ml buttermilk (I used this combination of yoghurt, milk and lemon)
  • 1 tbp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • Extra black coffee, butter, and icing sugar for the butter cream.


First off, heat the oven to 300F/160C. Take out a deep 9-inch or 23cm diameter baking tin and grease/line the bottom with baking parchment or grease-proof paper.

In a heat-proof bowl, pour the hot coffee over the dark chocolate chips and stir until melted. Leave to cool for later or place in the fridge if you are being speedy. This mixture needs to be cooled (but not re-set) before mixing with the eggs.

In a mixing bowl combine all the dry ingredients (sugar, flour, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt) and stir well.

In a second large mixing bowl, add the eggs and beat well until light and increasing in size. This step is key to aid the leavening of your chocolate cake, making it light and fluffy despite the heavy chocolate. Next, combine the rest of the wet ingredients (coffee/chocolate, buttermilk, vanilla and oil) and pour carefully into the eggs. Combine slowly to avoid losing the air in the eggs. Likewise, add the flour sugar mixture a couple of tablespoons at a time and stir slowly to fully mix, creating the final ultra thick chocolate batter.

Pour the mix into the prepped tin and place in the centre of the preheated oven. Bake for 50-55 minutes until a skewer comes out clean and leave to cool completely.

For the buttercream, the total amount depends on how much icing you want! Generally add equal amounts of slightly softened butter and icing sugar to a bowl and beat until a creamy consistency. Then add equal amounts of coffee to icing sugar until the desired colour or flavour is found! I like to just pout it all over but if the cake is totally cool you could halve it and spread between and on top of the cake layers to rich chocolately goodness!

Serve and enjoy!



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