Chocolate & caramel layer cake

Chocolate & caramel ombre cake

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(88 ratings)

Prep: 1 hr Cook: 55 mins Plus cooling

More effort

Cuts into 12 slices
For the ultimate indulgence look no further than Sarah Cook's four-layered chocolate-caramel extravaganza

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freeze before filling and icing

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal1036
  • fat67g
  • saturates35g
  • carbs99g
  • sugars75g
  • fibre3g
  • protein15g
  • salt1.25g
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For vanilla & chocolate sponges

  • 225g very soft butter, plus extra for greasing



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 85g ground almond
  • 1 tsp baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 3 egg



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 150ml pot natural yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 tbsp cocoa powder

For caramel & caramel-choc sponges

  • 225g very soft butter, plus extra for greasing



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 175g light muscovado sugar
  • 50g dark muscovado sugar
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 85g ground almonds
  • 1 tsp baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 3 egg



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 150ml pot natural yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp cocoa

To assemble

  • 397g can caramel (stocked near the condensed milk in stores)



    This is white, granulated sugar melted until it browns, after which it sets clear and hard when…

  • 140g dark chocolate
  • 140g milk chocolate
  • 300ml double cream


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease and line bases of 2 x 20cm sandwich tins with baking parchment. For the Vanilla & chocolate sponges, mix all the ingredients, apart from the cocoa, together with an electric whisk. Scrape half the mix into a second bowl and whizz in the cocoa. Scrape into the tins and bake for 20-25 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean.

  2. Repeat step 1 for the Caramel & caramel-choc sponges, again leaving cocoa out of the first mixing, then splitting the mix in half and whizzing the cocoa into one batch. Cook as above.

  3. While sponges are cooling, melt the dark and milk chocolate together in a bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Remove from the heat, stir in the cream and cool or chill until spreadable.

  4. When the sponges are cool, spread a third of the caramel over the Vanilla sponge and top with the Caramel sponge. Spread over another third of the caramel and top with the Caramel-choc sponge, then the final third of caramel and top with the Chocolate sponge (don’t panic if you mix up the layers, the cake will still look great when you cut in). Spread the chocolate icing over the whole cake to serve. It will keep in a cool place in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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Comments (121)

Ilovethunderstorms's picture

I made this cake for a friends birthday last weekend. It started as a disaster; I only had very limited time, and was over-optimistic - I ended up in the car for an hour with the layers of the still warm cake slopping about all over the place! Despite this, it turned out amazingly well - once it had had chance to cool, I popped it all back together again, slathered it in the icing, and it looked and tasted great. It was really moist, all the layers tasted different (and delicious), and it looked as good as the picture. A real winner of a cake that you will make again and again - my only tip is, give yourself more than three hours in which to do it...!

minicoopergirl's picture

Have made this before from another recipe but only making a three layer cake, ingredients vertually the same as this, I was wondering if anyone has tried making an all chocolate, sandwiching together with blackcurrant jam to have a black forrest gateau/cake going on if so did it work ..interested to know

sarahwparkes's picture

This is just the BEST - better eaten with a fork than fingers though as it's very sticky!!!

kellyhood88's picture


melissa4's picture

AMAZING CAKE! Slightly long winded to make, but don't let that put you off.

TIP: You only need half of the chocolate frosting!

tastycakes's picture

I love baking on a Sunday afternoon, and my colleagues love eating cake on a Monday morning. Unfortunately, a couple of extremely busy weekends meant I had to skip a couple of weeks so I decided to give this recipe a go by way of an office treat.

The only problem I found was that my cake tins were too short to fully accommodate what turned out to be a rather tall cake but I easily fixed that with a little improvisation and the cake arrived at work in one piece.

I was sure it would take my colleagues a good couple of days to get through a cake of this size and richness but by lunchtime on Tuesday all that were left were a few tiny crumbs.

They pronounced it my best one yet and loved that each layer of the cake had a different flavour. Great recipe!!

mama2two's picture

I am from the US so a lot of the ingredients are not called the same here. I am trying to find out what POT NATURAL YOGURT is to us here. Is it a dairy yogurt? Is it plain? It's basically the only thing I haven't figures out. Does anyone know? help please! :)

noonienoo's picture

I would just use dairy yoghurt or possibly easier is buttermilk/sour cream i have used that before and it turned out the same

mrscoyne's picture

Natural yogurt is basically plain dairy yogurt. Hope this helps.

elaineml0044's picture

I've made this a couple of times for celebrations and every time its turned out great. Fairly easy but very impressive, its always well received.

cambridgeginger's picture

Made this for my mum's Bible study group, they absolutely loved it! You know it's good when a bunch of ladies (mostly on diets) can't get enough ;)

Was very easy to make, and the results were spectacular!

It was quite sweet, and had to be careful as the sponges were a little sticky (they didn't want to come off my wire rack), so be careful when moving them around.

scaryjon's picture

Worst cake I have ever tried to make. I made eight sponges in total, the first two took nearly 40 mins to cook, the next two burnt.

So the next 4 turned out great, but then the cake fell over when the caramel was put on it. Managed to save three of the sponges only for it to taste like sweetened sick.

Dont worry about the calories, you'll burn them off in sheer anger trying to make it. "Moderatley Easy"- riiiiiiight

snavenasus's picture

Fabulous and so easy. I followed the recipe to a T and the only thing as others have mentioned was the chocolate ganache was a little stiff when cooled but 10 secs in the microwave and the problem was solved. So many calories though so I sent it with husband to work.

asha3010's picture

Unfortunately this recipe did not work for me. The vanilla sponge was a bit dense - not sure if it was because of the almond flour that I prepared. Also, the chocolate sponge did not taste as 'chocolaty' as I had hoped.

Because I was not satisfied with these sponges, I did not proceed with the rest of the recipe.

kizzey's picture

Right just got to ice it now, "don't think i'll be able to eat this one in one sitting"

lynnettemargaret's picture

I was looking for a special cake for a very good friend's birthday. I've not done much baking before, but this said it was moderately easy. It really was!! My cake was a little wonky but looked amazing covered in the ganache. I couldn't wait for my friend to cut into it to see if the layers looked as good as the photo on here. I wasn't disappointed. It looked amazing. For a first time cake baker I was over the moon. I got lots of complements and orders!!! There are a lot of calories in this cake but it's not something you eat everyday. Also we were a party of 15, we all had a slice and there was a quater of the cake left. You don't need a massive slice, a little goes a long way. Looking for my next challenge now!

kerri-anneh's picture

OMG, this cake is to die for! It's so moist and tasty and looks fantastic. I'm going to make it again next weekend for my Nephew's 15th birthday, he'll love it :o)

anne-rachael's picture

Rach - try ground rice instead of ground almonds - I use it when I can't afford almonds, plus a little almond essence/flavouring if necessary. Ground rice has the same consistency and I've not made this recipe with it, but plenty of others and it always works.
Apart from that, I've had some trouble with the length of time in the oven, but that might well be my oven ... otherwise, gorgeous!

red_rach's picture

Does anyone have suggestions of what to use instead of ground almonds as I can't eat nuts? Thanks

mrs-mac's picture

Wow what a cake. Made this for my son's 18th birthday, he loved it. The cake looked and tasted wonderful. I found that the caramel made the layers rather slippy, so I discreetly put a wooden skewer in the middle- through all the layers and broken to same height as the cake- and hid it under some chocolate curls. Nearly two years later he's still talking about this cake. Yes it has over a 1000 calories a slice but it is a special occasion cake after all and I got more than twelve slices out of it.


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