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Home » Desserts » Cake and Cupcakes » Chocolate Ganache Cake

Chocolate Ganache Cake

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Our chocolate ganache cake is decadent and chocolate-y, with moist and tender cake layers and whipped chocolate ganache. The final touch is a shiny chocolate glaze on top of the cake. Needless to say, this is the ultimate cake for chocolate lovers. It’s also one of those cake recipes you’ll revisit time and time again!

Chocolate Ganache Cake on a cake pedestal and decorated with chocolate curls.

This layered chocolate ganache cake is rich and delicious! If you’re looking for an exquisite and impressive chocolate cake recipe, ganache cake is it!

It’s slightly more elevated than our Intense Chocolate Cake and our Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream. Both are amazing classic chocolate cake options (that you should definitely try!) while this one takes it to the next level.

Our chocolate ganache cake is like the dark chocolate version of this White Chocolate Cake and it’s every bit as elegant and sophisticated!

Why this Recipe Works

Layer cakes are one of our favorite baking projects and this chocolate ganache cake recipe is so worth the effort!

Here’s why you’ll love it:

  • it’s a decadent cake with a rich chocolate ganache frosting
  • it is a double layer cake that’s perfect for any special occasion
  • there is rich chocolate flavor in every bite!

The Ingredients

To make this layered chocolate ganache cake, you will need:

  • unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch processed)
  • hot coffee
  • sugar
  • all-purpose flour
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • salt
  • eggs
  • milk
  • vegetable oil
  • vanilla extract
  • semisweet chocolate (for the ganache and the chocolate glaze)
  • heavy cream
  • unsalted butter
  • corn syrup

You’ll need some of the same ingredients for the cake batter, ganache and glaze, so make sure to view the full recipe card at the bottom of the page.

A slice of chocolate ganache cake decorated with chocolate curls on a plate with a fork, a napkin and cup of coffee in the background.

The Recipe

The best chocolate ganache cake is extra rich and chocolatey, which is exactly what you’ll find with this ganache cake recipe. Coffee intensifies the flavor of the chocolate and also creates an incredibly moist chocolate cake.

All in all, this is quite an easy chocolate ganache cake recipe, but like all layer cakes, it will take a few steps and a little bit of time in between those steps to get amazing results.

How to Make Chocolate Ganache Cake

Here’s a quick look at the process (view the recipe card at the bottom of the page).

Overhead view of two chocolate layer cakes on a cooling rack.

Mix together the dry ingredients and wet ingredients then combine. Divide batter between two separate 8 or 9-inch cake pans lined with parchment paper. Bake the cakes, then let them cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife and invert them onto a cooling rack. Let the cakes cool completely before frosting.

Tip: After inverting the cakes onto the cooling rack, immediately re-invert them onto another rack so they can cool with the top of the cake up. That way, they’ll retain more height and you won’t have to worry about the tops of the cakes sticking to the cooling rack.

Ingredients for the whipped ganache frosting.
cutting board with chopped chocolate and a knife.

Pour warm cream over the chopped chocolate and let it sit for a few minutes. Stir gently until the chocolate is completely smooth. Let the warm ganache cool to room temperature, then add the salt and vanilla. Whip the ganache on low speed while slowly adding butter. Increase to high speed and whip until fluffy.

whipped ganache frosting covering a chocolate layer cake. Frosting tools in the foreground and background.

Spread the ganache on the first cake layer, then stack the other cake on top. Frost the cake completely with the chocolate mixture, spreading the ganache along the sides and top of the cake as smooth as possible.

Pouring chocolate ganache glaze on the chocolate ganache cake.

Heat cream in a small saucepan and pour it over the chopped chocolate. Stir until melted, then add the corn syrup and vanilla. Pour the glaze in a steady stream in a circular pattern, gradually widening the circle to the edge so the glaze flows down the sides of the cake.

Tip: Do not spread the chocolate glaze with a spatula. We also recommend practicing the pour by first pouring a small amount into a plate to determine consistency.

Let the cake sit on a wire rack at room temperature until set, then transfer to a cake plate. To serve, dip a long, thin knife in warm water, wipe it dry and slice the cake. Repeat the process with every cut.

Chocolate Ganache Cake on a pedestal.

Recipe Tips for the Best Results

  • You can bake this cake in 9-inch or 8-inch pans. Baking in an 8-inch pan will give you thicker layers that you can tort (or slice horizontally) into a four-layer cake.
  • A tablespoon of espresso powder mixed into 1 cup of hot water can be substituted for the coffee.
  • For best results, choose good baking chocolate rather than standard semi-sweet chocolate chips. Chocolate chips will work, but they don’t melt as smoothly as standard chocolate.
  • Use a heavy whipping cream with at least 36% to 40%.
  • The greater the amount of chocolate used in your glaze, the thicker it will be.
  • The longer the glaze sits, the cooler and thicker it will get. If the glaze gets too cool, it will be difficult to pour it over the cake. You can zap it in the microwave for 3 to 5 seconds to warm it up and make it easier to pour.
  • Corn syrup is optional, but it will make the glaze shiny.

This dreamy chocolate ganache cake will have you going back for seconds! The combination of rich chocolate cake and a fluffy, whipped chocolate ganache creates a silky, delicious cake that will please any palate.

The whipped ganache frosting was adapted from King Arthur.

If you give it a try and love it too, let us know with a comment and five-star rating below!

Helpful Tools

Some of the following are affiliate links. We may receive a small commission if you click on these links and purchase something. You don’t pay any extra, but it will help us keep the lights on. 

Some Other Recipes We Are Sure You Will Love:

This Irish Coffee Chocolate Cake combines rich chocolate cake, coffee, and fluffy chocolate mousse spiked with Irish whiskey. Each bite of this moist cake is a sweet indulgence and a chocolate lover’s dream.

Thick and creamy, our Raspberry Mousse makes a delicious dessert served with a fresh raspberry sauce. It is also incredibly versatile and can be enjoyed as a fluffy and fruity cake filling or topping on your favorite sweet treat.

Flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake features everything we love about rich chocolate truffles, but in cake form! Dense and chocolatey, this fudgy, flourless truffle cake has a subtle amaretto flavor and is covered in a thin layer of ganache topped with toasted almonds.

A slice of chocolate layer cake with ganache topping.

Chocolate Ganache Cake

Yield: 12 Servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 37 minutes
Total Time: 57 minutes

Our Chocolate Ganache Cake is a moist, decadent chocolate layer cake with a tender crumb. A fluffy whipped chocolate ganache mousse gets spread between the cake layers and over the top of the cake. Finally, the cake is enrobed with a shiny chocolate glaze!

The cake has a tender, velvety crumb and the chocolate ganache mousse is light, fluffy, and rich. It is a decadent combination that will be a favorite.

Ingredients

For the Cake:

  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (80 grams)
  • 1 cup hot coffee (240 ml)
  • 2 cups sugar (400 grams)
  • 1-¾ cups (210 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1-½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk (240 ml)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (100 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Whipped Ganache Frosting:

  • 12 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate (340 grams)
  • 1 cup heavy cream (227 ml)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons softened butter (170 grams)

For the Ganache Glaze:

  • 16 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (454 grams)
  • 2 cups heavy cream (480 ml)
  • 3 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

For the Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Line the bottom of two 8-inch (or 9-inch) round cake pans with parchment paper. Grease, and flour the sides.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the hot coffee and the cocoa powder until smooth.  Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, add the sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Whisk briefly to blend.
  4. Add the eggs, milk, oil, vanilla, and cocoa mixture to the dry ingredients.  Mix on low speed for 30 seconds until the dry ingredients are moist.  Increase the speed to medium and beat for 1 minute.  Scrape down the sides and beat for another minute.  The batter will be thin
  5. Pour the batter equally into the prepared pans and transfer to the center of the preheated oven.  Bake for 33 to 37 minutes for 8-inch pans and 30-35 minutes for 9-inch pans (a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes should come out clean).
  6. Remove the cakes from the oven and allow them to cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edge of the pans to loosen the cake from the pans.  
  7. Invert the cakes onto a cooling rack and remove the parchment paper and let the cakes cool completely before frosting.

Tip:  

After inverting the cakes onto the cooling rack, immediately re-invert them onto another rack and let them cool with the tops up.  They will retain more height, and the tops of the cakes won't to the cooling rack.  

To Make the Whipped Ganache Frosting:

  1. Place the chopped semisweet chocolate in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Heat the cream in a saucepan or in the microwave until it begins to steam and almost comes to a boil (but don't let it come to a boil.)  
  3. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Cover the bowl, and let sit for 3-5 minutes.  Stir gently with a rubber or silicone spatula until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth.  Stir in the vanilla extract and salt, then set aside to cool to room temperature (68-73°F).
  4. When the ganache cools to room temperature, add four tablespoons of butter and beat with an electric mixer on medium-low speed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the remaining butter in two more batches. Beat well between additions.
  5. After you add all the butter, whip the mixture on high speed for 3 to 5 minutes until fluffy. Stop the mixer to scrape down the sides and bottom several times.  
  6. Spread a layer of frosting on one cake, then stack the other cake layer on top. Frost the top and sides of the cake, spreading as smoothly as possible.
  7. Let the cake sit at room temperature while preparing the glaze.

For the Ganache Glaze:

  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl.
  2. Add the cream to a small saucepan and heat just until it barely starts to boil (or place it in a bowl and heat it in the microwave). Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. 
  3. Cover the dish and allow it to sit for 5 minutes. Stir gently with a silicone spatula until completely melted and smooth, then stir in the corn syrup and vanilla.  (Do not use a whisk, as it will create bubbles).
  4. If there are unmelted bits of chocolate remaining, set the bowl in a larger bowl of hot tap water and continue to stir until all the chocolate has melted.
  5. The chocolate is ready to pour while it is still slightly warm. If it cools down, it will get too thick to pour. If that happens, zap it in the microwave in 3-second bursts and stir well between bursts until it thins out again. Optionally, you can place the bowl in a larger bowl of hot water and stir the glaze until it is warm enough to pour.

To Glaze the Cake:

  1. Place the cake on a wire rack set over a rimmed sheet pan.  Beginning at the top center, pour the glaze in a circular pattern, using a steady stream. Gradually widen the circle to the edge of the cake and allow the glaze to flow over and down the sides of the cake.  Do not spread the glaze with a spatula, as it will mar the surface.   
  2. Allow the cake to sit on the wire rack at room temperature until set, then transfer it to a cake plate.  
  3. When ready to serve, dip a long, thin knife in warm water, wipe dry, and slice. Repeat the process for each slice.

Notes

  • The coffee gives the cake a richer flavor. If you don't want to use coffee, replace it with hot water.
  • For best results, use good baking chocolate rather than standard chocolate chips.
  • Use a heavy cream of at least 36% to 40% fat.
  • If the glaze is too cool, it will be too thick to give an even pour over the cake. The longer the glaze sits, the cooler and thicker it will become.
  • Before pouring the glaze on the cake, pour a small amount on a plate and tip the plate to determine the flow. It should flow easily and smoothly.
  • Corn syrup will make the glaze shiny.
  • It is helpful to transfer the glaze to a spouted pitcher to pour it over the cake.
  • After removing the cake from the rimmed sheet pan, scrape up the dripped excess chocolate from the pan and reserve it in a covered container for another application.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 931Total Fat: 64gSaturated Fat: 34gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 26gCholesterol: 130mgSodium: 344mgCarbohydrates: 93gFiber: 5gSugar: 77gProtein: 8g

Nutrition information is a guideline only. It is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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Dahn Boquist

Dahn is a retired nurse, recipe creator, home cook, baker, and self-proclaimed foodie. She loves creating in the kitchen and cooking for family and friends. She lives in Washington State with her husband and dog. When she isn't cooking or baking, you can usually find her spending time with her grandson or exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

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angiesrecipes

Friday 27th of January 2023

This is a pure chocolate heaven!

Dahn Boquist

Friday 27th of January 2023

I agree, thanks Angie

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