Chocolate birthday cake

Chocolate birthday cake

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(84 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 25 mins

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 12

We used colourful candles rather than artificial sweets to brighten up this tasty birthday cake

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Un-iced
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

kcalories
432
protein
6g
carbs
65g
fat
18g
saturates
10g
fibre
3g
sugar
51g
salt
0.41g

Ingredients

  • 140g butter, plus extra for the tin
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 225g self-raising wholemeal flour
  • 50g cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 250g natural yogurt

To decorate

  • 300g golden icing sugar, sieved
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder, sieved
  • 1 tbsp butter, melted
  • 3-4 tbsp boiling water
  • 50g each white, plain and milk chocolate, broken into squares

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Method

  1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Butter and line the base of a 18 x 28cm cake tin or tray. Put the butter and sugar into a bowl; beat together with electric hand beaters until light and fluffy. add the eggs a little at a time, beating well between each addition.
  2. Sieve the flour, cocoa and bicarbonate of soda into the bowl, then tip in any bran left in the sieve. Pour in the natural yogurt. Stir everything to a smooth mixture and spoon into the prepared tin. Bake for 20-25 mins until just firm and shrinking away from the sides of the tin. Cool in the tin for 5 mins, then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. For the icing, sieve the icing sugar and cocoa into a bowl, then pour in the butter and 2 tbsp just-boiled water. Stir together to a smooth, spreadable consistency. if it’s too stiff, very carefully add a little more boiling water, drop by drop.
  4. Spread the icing over the top of the cake, using a palette knife dipped in hot water. Will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
  5. Melt the chocolates in three different bowls in the microwave on High for 1 min or over a pan of simmering water. Spoon the melted chocolates into three plastic disposable piping bags. Snip the ends off and pipe 12 simple shapes on top of the cake. Leave to set. Just before serving, cut the cake into 12 squares and push in the candles.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, July 2007

Comments, questions and tips

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Comments

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preethi17's picture
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I made this cake for my husband's birthday and it was awesome! Thank you very much!

roebuckclaire's picture
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This cake has a very similar dense texture to Nigella's Guiness Cake. It's quite nice, not too sweet but not really chocolatey. I used normal s.r. flour and doubled the quantity. Worked no problem. What it was excellent for was shaping! Dense texture meant few crumbs. We sliced & diced ours into a rocket for my sons birthday. A normal sponge would not have allowed this. Even icing (used Nigella's Cream cheese frosting) was easy and cake did not crumble when spreading. Pleased with overall result.

totybear2's picture
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The best chocolate cake I have ever made or tasted! Healthy too as I used wholemeal spelt flour and organic natural greek yogurt with topping of greek yogurt, cocoa powder and some honey - kids loved it - so light and fluffy and soft - but it did take about 15 mins longer to cook to perfection.

furrycharisma's picture
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As a die hard chocolate lover, I search endlessly for chocoalte cake recipes. This one grabbed my eye as it's made with wholemeal flour. Once I baked the cake, I couldn't understand why. It does nothing but detract from the sweet taste this cake should have. The icing was absolutely superb though, some of the best I've tasted. I added a little canned caramel and some real melted chocolate leftover from the cake mixture and it made it super rich and delightful. Next time I make this though, I'll stick to 'normal' selfraising flour, because the taste of bran in my view, ruined the cake.

rosygirl's picture
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A really fast reliable cake. I had this iced, decorated and we were singing 'Happy Birthday' within 2 hours!
Will definitely become one of my standby recipes.

erbusaig's picture
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Easy to make and so moist and deliciously chocolatey. Is now the favourite in our house by a long way .....

cintia's picture
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I made this cake today and it was perfect!!

laskeridou's picture
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Today I decided that I have to write a comment since I heavily rely on comments of others myself when choosing a recipe. This cake is every bit as special as all the other comments describe. There is a special texture about it, which is difficult to describe but tastes really really good. I am very calorie and fat content conscious and still cannot believe that something can taste so good, have such proper cake texture and be relatively healthy with the wholemeal flour, yogurt and only 2 eggs! Most of the cake recipes call for way more eggs, melted chocolate, crazy amounts of sugar! This one is getting the chocolaty flavor merely from 50 gr of cocoa powder! I actually used 0% natural yoghurt and it still came out great! My husband still cannot believe that its actually relatively low cal. I used 200 gr of sugar for the icing and that was enough (since we are watching the calories!!) Great great great!

lovelyningsih's picture

Made this cake today and Really nice cake but it wasn't sweet enough for my liking so next time will put more sugar. Also, i needed nearly 50 mins to bake this cake till cook thoroughly using my oven.

christina-burdakova's picture

I made this cake for my little brother's birthday but decided to posh it up by cutting the sponge in half and adding some cream cheese and cherry filling. Turned out seriously good!

rhianthomas1984's picture
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This was a complete success. I followed the cake recipe exactly but to decorate I spread dark melted chocolate over the top and then created a white chocolate spider web design to turn it into a Halloween cake. I also used a round cake tin which was more appropriate for this particular cake. I took it into work and had nothing but great comments, can’t wait to make it again!

sana_13301's picture

can i use normal caster sugar instead ofgolden caster sugar as it is impossible for me to golden caster sugar right now. and i have to make the cake urgently !

sarah_clk's picture
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everyone wanted the recipe after i baked this... I used white flour and baked it in a swiss roll tin.

safronthomas's picture
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Awesome cake... one piece is not enough

margaretavery's picture

This cake is brilliant. easy and looks great. Will be making it again and again.

indrielangel's picture
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Hmmm.... Well, my sons cottoned on to the wholemeal flour straight away, and both said they didn't like it very much. It isn't a 'luscious' chocolate cake at all. I like wholemeal bread, and so do my boys, but I'm not convinced that wholemeal flour is the best for this cake. However, it is very moist, and it got better the next day. The topping is very sweet. I'd make it again but with white flour and a dark chocolate ganache topping, which wouldn't be so sweet.

emsaustin's picture

i made this with a melted white chocolate topping after reading some of the comments. i didnt like the cake at all with the s/r wholemeal flour it made the cake too bitty and i kept picking the bran out of my teeth (not what i was looking for in a scrummy choc cake)

jacaline13's picture
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Nice and easy and looks great

clionaf's picture
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This cake was a total disaster! I don't know what I did wrong, but it completely collapsed in the middle and I had to go out and buy a birthday cake instead. It was moist as others have said, but the wholemeal flour gave a very "healthy" texture which wasn't really what I'd like from a chocolate cake (I think it should have been labeled as a "healthy alternative" or something similar).

The comments weren't available when I made the cake, but I made it based on the 5 star rating. Looking through the comments now, there are quite a few negative ones (though they're in the minority) that haven't been given a star rating, which is a pity because it means the recipe rating is biased high.

eleanormayo's picture
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I agree with the minority - this cake was very stodgy and not a great texture. I won't be making it again.

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