Featuring the best chocolate cake batter, this Bundt cake is super rich, fluffy, and moist! It looks incredibly complex and fancy, but it’s so, so easy to make! A smooth and silky chocolate ganache makes the perfect finishing touch.
I’m a firm believer that everyone needs a good chocolate cake recipe up their sleeves … for cake related emergencies (those exist, okay?!)
And this is the one to keep on hand.
Outrageously moist? Check.
Easy and quick? Double check.
Looks and tastes like it came from a bakery, when in reality it only took you 15 minutes of work? Triple check!!
Chocolate Bundt cake ingredients:
• cocoa powder: I actually debated for longer than I’d like to admit about whether or not I should add cocoa powder, melted chocolate, or a combination. But I really didn’t want to overcomplicate this recipe, and I didn’t notice enough of a difference to justify adding an extra step. So here we are! This is a cocoa powder only cake.
• baking powder + baking soda: based on my other cake recipes, you should know that I love a combination of baking soda and baking powder, especially in cakes that can sometimes end up on the denser side of things. Chocolate cake is so intensely fudgy that I think it especially benefits from a combination of leaveners to keep it from becoming hockey-puck-esque!
• buttermilk: you know the drill: regular milk works in a pinch, but you can make your own buttermilk at home with just milk and acid! Here’s how.
• oil: any neutral flavored oil will do. I use vegetable oil usually, but you can also use canola, peanut, mazola, or any other similar oils
• water: boiling water is my favorite special touch to add to chocolate cake, because it helps make it extra rich, moist, AND it kickstarts the leavening process so it ends up extra bubbly and soft!
• espresso: espresso powder is my second favorite special touch! It’s optional, but it helps bring out the chocolate flavor. Your cake WILL NOT taste like coffee – so don’t worry about that
• chocolate + heavy cream: for the ganache topping!
How to make chocolate Bundt cake:
1. Preheat oven and grease pan. Bundt pans can be tricky because they either release like a dream or stick like a nightmare! There’s no in between.
You have to gauge how your pan holds up. I love my Lagostina pan because it really never gives me trouble – all it takes is a light brush of oil and it’s good to go. I used to have a pan that was seriously out to get me and my cakes, so it needed a coat of butter and flour. See which one works for you! When in doubt, use butter and flour – it’s almost a surefire way to get your cake out.
Once the pan’s greased, set it aside to prep the batter.
2. Whisk together dry ingredients. Set aside.
3. Combine most of your wet ingredients. Whisk together your sugar, oil, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Basically everything except for the water and coffee.
4. Combine wet & dry ingredients. Mix together until just combined. The batter will be a bit thick at this stage.
5. Add coffee. Dissolve the espresso powder into your boiling water, then add to your cake batter. Working relatively quickly, whisk the coffee into your batter. Now the batter will be quite loose.
6. Pour into your pan & bake. Cool for about 15 minutes in the pan, then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely. It’s important to turn the cake out of the pan while it’s still warm because it’s less likely to stick.
7. Make ganache. Combine cream and chocolate, and melt either in a microwave or over a bain-marie.
8. Glaze cake. Pour the ganache over your cooled cake. Slice & serve!
Chocolate Bundt cake storage:
I’ve made this cake a million and one times, and every time I get shocked at how long it keeps! This cake really stays moist for days!
Keep your cake tightly wrapped to keep it from drying out. It should keep for about 5 days at room temperature or 1 to 2 weeks in the fridge! If you store your cake in the fridge, it’ll be slightly harder – so if you prefer a softer cake, just let it come to room temperature before serving.
Check out these other recipes!
Chocolate Bundt Cake with Chocolate Ganache
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 & 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- 1 teaspoon espresso powder
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9 inch Bundt pan with vegetable oil or butter. If your cakes tend to stick to your Bundt pan, I'd recommend giving it a light dusting with flour as well. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to combine and set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, combine sugar, buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Whisk to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and fold together until just combined. The batter will be thick at this stage.
- In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine hot water and espresso powder, and mix until the coffee is fully dissolved. Pour the hot coffee into the cake batter. Working relatively quickly, whisk the coffee into the batter until just combined. It should be quite loose now (that's normal!)
- Pour the cake batter into your prepared Bundt pan and smoothen into an even layer. Bake the cake in the center of your preheated 350°F oven for 45 to 55 minutes, or until puffed and a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Cool your cake for 10 to 15 minutes in your cake pan, then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely to room temperature.
- Make your ganache: In a medium bowl, combine chocolate and heavy cream and melt in your microwave or over a bain-marie. To melt in the microwave, heat the mixture on high for 30 seconds. Pause to stir, and continue heating in 10 second intervals, stirring after each burst, until fully melted and smooth. To melt over a bain-marie, fill a small pot with about 1 inch of water and bring the water up to a gentle simmer. Place the bowl on top of the pot (making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water). Heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is melted and smooth.
- Let the chocolate ganache cool for about 5 to 10 minutes to set up slightly. Pour your chocolate ganache on top of your cooled chocolate cake. Slice and serve!