With blackberry puree IN the cake batter itself, blackberry sauce between each cake layer, and a blackberry frosting on top, this blackberry chocolate cake truly packs blackberry goodness in every bite! It's unreal how tender and moist this cake is, with the richness pairing beautifully with the freshness and tang of the blackberries and cream cheese!
I shared a blackberry cupcake recipe a while back, and it was QUITE a hit on Instagram! And a well deserved hit if I want to toot my own horn (I most definitely do want to. They're seriously SO GOOD.)
Sooooo I figured we needed a blackberry cake - specifically, a blackberry CHOCOLATE cake!
But this isn't just a regular ole' chocolate cake with some blackberry jam slapped between the layers (although, that's beyond delicious either way). THIS cake has blackberry puree IN the cake batter itself!
You can ever so slightly taste the hint of tartness from the blackberries in the cake layers - just barely there but most definitely there! It balances so perfectly with the richness of the chocolate.
And if that wasn't enough, we also have homemade blackberry jam spooned between each cake layer and all topped off with a blackberry cream cheese frosting!
It's the summery-iest chocolate cake you could ask for!
Well, this and raspberry chocolate cake.
• cake & pastry flour
• sugar: granulated for the cake and jam, and powdered sugar for the frosting
• cocoa powder
• baking powder + baking soda
• blackberries: for the puree that goes into the cake and the jam that's used to fill the cake and make the frosting!
• neutral flavored oil: I used vegetable oil, but you can also use peanut, canola, corn, or any other flavorless oils
• Greek yogurt or sour cream: either one works fine. You can also use plain yogurt if that's all you have on hand!
• vanilla extract
• water: boiling hot water is the key to an ultra fudgy and moist chocolate cake!! You'll also need cool water to dissolve the cornstarch for the jam.
• cornstarch: to thicken the jam
• cream cheese: make sure to use the block and NOT the package that you spread on your bagels!! The block is more sturdy and better for making frosting
• butter: for the frosting. Using all cream cheese in the frosting would just be overpowering, not to mention overly soft!
how to make chocolate blackberry cake
1. Grease and parchment your baking pans. Set aside.
If you don't have enough cake pans to bake all the layers at once, you can bake them in batches. The cake batter can sit out for up to 1 hour before baking!
Just make sure to allow the cake pans to cool completely, clean them out, and re-grease and line with parchment paper before making the next cake layer.
2. Puree blackberries. You can strain the blackberry puree (which I personally prefer) or leave it as is.
If you choose not to strain the puree, just be prepared for crunchy bites of blackberry seeds in the cake. If you decide to strain the puree, just make sure the total volume comes up to 1 cup after straining.
3. Whisk your dry ingredients together in a bowl.
4. Add all the wet ingredients for the cake (minus the hot water) to the dry ingredients along with the blackberry puree. My favorite part about this cake recipe is that it's a dump everything in one bowl kind of party.
Whisk everything together to get a thick cake batter.
5. Whisk in the hot water. This should leave you with quite a loose cake batter - that's exactly what you need!
6. Pour into your cake pans & bake!
7. Cool cakes for 10 minutes in the pans then invert onto on a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
8. Make your blackberry jam. Cook blackberries and sugar until softened. Make a slurry by mixing cornstarch and water together. Add the slurry to the cooked blackberries and cook until thickened!
Cool the blackberry jam COMPLETELY before using!!
9. Make the base cream cheese frosting. Cream together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add in powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla. Cream together until smooth and fluffy.
If you find the frosting is too thin, gradually beat in more powdered sugar until it reaches a frosting consistency. If you find the frosting is too sweet, mix in more salt to taste.
Set aside 1 cup of the base cream cheese frosting for filling the cake layers.
10. Fold in some of the cooled blackberry jam. You can lightly mix it into the frosting to create a swirled look or mix well to combine for a gorgeous light pinkish purple frosting!
11. Assemble! Layer one of the chocolate cake layers and spread a very thin layer of the plain frosting on top. Pipe a rough frosting boarder along the edges of the cake to keep the blackberry jam in place, and spoon in half of the remaining blackberry jam in the center.
Layer another chocolate cake, and frost and fill with blackberry jam again. Top with the final chocolate cake layer and frost the top and sides of your cake with the blackberry cream cheese frosting.
Decorate with fresh blackberries on top.
12. Slice & serve! It's a lot easier to slice this cake after chilling it for about 20 minutes in the fridge, but you could totally serve it right away! Just a little bit messier, but not any less delicious!
chocolate cake tips
Do NOT use cream cheese sold for spreads. Make sure you're using cream cheese sold in blocks (it usually has a cheesecake recipe on the package!) Cream cheese made for spreading on toast is too soft for frosting.
Cool everything completely! The temptation to try to speed through some steps is REAL especially when chocolate is involved. But it's super important that anything you bake / cook in this recipe cools COMPLETELY before you add it to the next part.
A warm cake or a warm jam can instantly mess up your whole show.
Make sure your cake layers are straight before assembling. This recipe bakes up pretty flat as is, but if you notice the tops are overly domed, slice off the rounded parts to get a flat top.
Freeze your cake layers. It really helps make assembly easier!
Avoid slicing until you're ready to serve. This helps keep the inside of your cake moist for longer because the frosting is a protective layer!
blackberry chocolate cake storage
This chocolate cake keeps moist for DAYS!!
Keep your cake covered and stored in the fridge, and it will keep for up to 1 week. It was seriously just as soft and delicious towards the end of the 1 week!
freeze chocolate cake layers
You can freeze the chocolate cake layers and make the jam and frosting later when you want to assemble! To freeze, wrap each cake layer with plastic wrap followed by a layer of aluminum foil.
Freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw on your counter for a few hours or in the fridge overnight before using.
check out these other recipes!
Blackberry Chocolate Cake & Blackberry Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
For the blackberry infused chocolate cake:
- 2 & ½ cups (285g) cake & pastry flour, spoon and leveled
- 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (80g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (240mL) strained blackberry puree, about 2 cups fresh blackberries blended *see notes
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup (120mL) vegetable oil, or any neutral flavored oil
- ½ cup (120g) Greek yogurt or sour cream
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ¾ cup (180mL) boiling water
For the blackberry jam:
- 3 cups fresh blackberries, washed and drained well
- ¼ cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 3 teaspoons cool water
For the blackberry cream cheese frosting:
- 10 ounces (280g) block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup (2 sticks / 225g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 7 & ½ cups (975g) powdered sugar, sifted
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease and line the bottoms of 3 (8 inch) round cake pans with parchment paper, and set aside.
- Make the chocolate blackberry cake layers: In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together.2 & ½ cups (285g) cake & pastry flour,, 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar, 1 cup (80g) unsweetened cocoa powder, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt
- Add your blackberry puree, eggs, vegetable oil, yogurt, and vanilla to the dry ingredients. Whisk together until you no longer see any dry streaks. Take care not to over mix - some clumps are fine! The batter will be a bit thick.2 large eggs, 1 cup (240mL) strained blackberry puree,, ½ cup (120mL) vegetable oil,, ½ cup (120g) Greek yogurt or sour cream, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Add boiling water to the cake batter, and whisk to combine. The batter will be loose!¾ cup (180mL) boiling water
- Divide the cake batter evenly between your cake pans. Bake in the center of your preheated 350°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
- Cool the cakes for about 10 minutes in the pans, then flip onto a wire rack and set aside to cool completely.
- Make the blackberry jam: In a medium saucepot, combine fresh blackberries and sugar. Cook over medium heat until they release water and start to boil. Carefully mix and mash the blackberries with a fork, and cook for 5 minutes, or until softened. Move off the heat.3 cups fresh blackberries,, ¼ cup (50g) granulated sugar
- In a small bowl, whisk cornstarch into your water until dissolved. Mix the cornstarch mixture into the blackberries. Return the pot to medium heat and cook, mixing constantly, until it boils and thickens to a jam consistency (about 1 minute).2 teaspoons cornstarch, 3 teaspoons cool water
- Transfer your blackberry jam to a heat safe bowl, and set aside to cool completely to room temperature before using.
- Make the blackberry cream cheese frosting: In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and butter. Using an electric mixer fitted with the beater attachment, cream together until well combined and smooth (about 1-2 minutes on medium speed).10 ounces (280g) block cream cheese,, 1 cup (2 sticks / 225g) unsalted butter,
- Add in powdered sugar, salt and vanilla. Mix together on low until the sugar dissolves, then mix for another minute on medium speed to add some air!* If you find the frosting is too loose, you can gradually mix in more powdered sugar, or chill it in the fridge for 30 minutes, or until it reaches a frosting consistency. If it's too thick, mix in a splash of milk to loosen!7 & ½ cups (975g) powdered sugar,, ½ teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Set aside 1 cup of plain cream cheese frosting for filling between the cake layers. Mix ¼ cup of your blackberry jam into the rest of the base cream cheese frosting.
- Assemble your cake! Stack one of the cool chocolate cake layers on your cake platter. Spread a very thin layer of the plain cream cheese frosting on top, then pipe a little frosting boarder around the edges of the cake to help keep the blackberry jam in the center (see above for visual).
- Spoon in half of the remaining blackberry jam into the center and spread out to the boarders. Stack another cake layer and repeat the process of frosting and spreading the remaining jam in the center.
- Stack the last cake layer on top and frost the outside of the cake with the blackberry cream cheese frosting. Serve right away or chill for 20 minutes in the fridge to make it easier to slice!