Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

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(105 ratings)

Prep: 40 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 30 mins Plus cooling


Serves 50
This recipe makes the bottom layer of our three tier wedding cake or a simple delicious chocolate cake, perfect with a touch of cream

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal274
  • fat16g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs30g
  • sugars20g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.23g
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  • 650g unsalted butter
  • 650g plain chocolate (70% cocoa)
  • 100ml very strong coffee- espresso is ideal
  • 3 tsp vanilla essence



    The sun-dried seed pod of a type of climbing orchid, vanilla has an inimitable soft, sweet…

  • 650g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
    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…

  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 950g light soft brown sugar
  • 10 eggs



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

  • 2 x 284ml/9½ fl oz soured cream


  1. Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Butter, double-line and wrap the sides of the 30cm deep-round cake tin as before. Put the butter and chocolate into a medium saucepan, then stir over a low heat until melted and smooth. Stir in the coffee and vanilla.

  2. Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into the biggest bowl you have. Add the sugar, breaking down any lumps with your fingertips if necessary. Beat the eggs and soured cream together in a jug or bowl and pour into the flour mix. Pour in the melted chocolate mix as well, then stir with a wooden spoon until you have a thick, even chocolaty batter.

  3. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 2½ hrs – don’t open the oven door before 2 hrs is up, as this will cause the cake to sink. Once cooked, leave in the tin to cool completely. The unfilled cake will keep for up to four days, wrapped as before, or frozen for a month.

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Comments, questions and tips

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23rd Sep, 2015
How much does this cake rise as im using a different shaped tim so need to know how much batter to use. Thanking you
14th Sep, 2015
Hi, could I please have the quantities and oven timing for a 6inch round cake please.
27th Nov, 2015
Hello, I used the following quantities to make 2x 6inch cakes which were at least 2.5 inches tall, plus I had enough batter for 1x extra 8inch cake around 2 inches tall: 217g unsalted butter, 217g dark chocolate (70% cocoa), 35ml very strong coffee (I use instant coffee), 1tsp vanilla essence, 217g plain flour, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 317g light soft brown sugar, 4 large eggs, 190ml sour cream. Bake for around 2 hours at 160C/fan 140C (my oven runs hot so I baked them at 140C).
14th Sep, 2015
Could I please have the quantities and timing for a 6inch round cake please. Thank you so much :)
19th Aug, 2015
Please could you let me know the quantities and timing for a 10 inch round cake please.thank-you
19th Aug, 2015
Please could you let me know the quantities and timing for a 10 inch round cake please.thank-you
27th Nov, 2015
I have used around 2/3 the amounts above to make a 10" round cake :)
16th Aug, 2015
I made this cake last week as a trial run for a wedding cake due next week , I followed it all the way through and sliced it into 2 layers before freezing , it had baked beautifully even, however , when I cut it up to serve today it looked more moist than I expected . Is this normal ? Is it just a very moist cake or could it have been undercooked , I've just baked another one and I've allowed it to bake for 3 hours at 150. I hope someone tells me it's how it should be .
20th Jun, 2015
Does anyone know whether to use large eggs or medium ones for this recipe? Thank you!
27th Nov, 2015
I always use large eggs and have always had a great rise and taste, if that helps :)


21st Jun, 2016
I am making the Jane Hornby chocolate cake in two 8 inch tins. Do I still have to wait 2 hours before checking if its done?
Frankie R
2nd Apr, 2016
Hello! I made this a few years back as the exact recipe and size above; it was incredible and it got such great reviews from the guests. Proper chocolate truffle cake :) I am now making a friends wedding cake and it all needs to be gluten free.... has anyone made the above GF and if so, how?! Was it a straight flour swap plus some xanthym gum? Thank you in advance! Frankie.
3rd Aug, 2016
Hi, I have made gluten free sponge cake but not chocolate...I usually just swap the flour when I'm doing a vanilla sponge, I've never added xanthym gum and it comes out fine but I'm also wondering about this recipe, need to make it gluten free and vegan.
30th Mar, 2016
Hi I am using this recipe to make a 11 inch square topsy turvy cake but I was just wondering if using half milk chocolate and half dark chocolate will be okay?
goodfoodteam's picture
20th May, 2016
Yes it is fine to use different chocolate, but you won’t get the same depth of colour and flavour as they have less cocoa solids. It will still be delicious though.
28th Feb, 2016
Do you have to use 70% chocolate? Has anyone tried it wth lower content and still come out with a good cake?
goodfoodteam's picture
28th Apr, 2016
The cake will still work, but the taste will be sweeter and a little less “grown up”. However 70% chocolate does taste bitter which isn’t to everyones taste. If you are unsure, why not use half normal chocolate and half 70%?
8th Feb, 2016
Is the coffee necessary to the recipe? Wanted to use this recipe to make a birthday cake for my mum but my partner is allergic to caffeine. Also can I use regular fondant icing instead of marzipan? Again due to allergies..
goodfoodteam's picture
21st Mar, 2016
Yes you can leave out the coffee, but you will need to replace the liquid with milk or water. It is also absolutely fine to use fondant icing if you don’t like marzipan. 
26th Jan, 2016
Hello, I am making a 3D Teapot cake for my daughters first birthday and wanted to know if you could give me the ingredient quantities and cook time for 2x 8"x4" hemisphere cake tins? Thank You


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