Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Chocolate-whiskey cake


I'm excited to finally tell you about one of my absolute favorite cakes! I first made this cake over two years ago for a dinner party - I came across the recipe in Gourmet Today and decided to try it simply because, well, how can you turn down chocolate + booze for dessert? It was a major hit with my friends - perfectly moist and chocolatey, with just enough whiskey flavor to elevate the cake to a level of sophistication that you don't usually find in chocolate cake. And if the deliciousness of the cake wasn't enough to convince you to try it, it's actually quite straightforward to make and improves if made ahead of time! It is the perfect choice if you are looking for a simple but impressive dessert to serve to guests (but if you eat it all yourself, I wouldn't blame you).


What is your go-to dessert for guests?

Chocolate-whiskey cake
Adapted from Gourmet Today
Serves 12-16

1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process), plus more for dusting pan
1 1/2 cups brewed coffee
1/2 cup American whiskey (Jack Daniel's works well)
2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs, left at room temperature for 30 minutes
1 tsp vanilla extract
Confectioner's sugar, to garnish
Whipped cream, for serving (optional)

Special equipment: a 12-cup Bundt pan

Put a rack in the middle of the oven, and preheat to 325 deg F. Butter the Bundt pan well and then dust with cocoa powder. Knock out any excess cocoa powder after dusting.

In a 3-quart saucepan, combine 1 cup cocoa powder, coffee, whiskey, and butter. Heat over moderate heat, whisking, until butter is melted. Remove pan from heat, add sugar, and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

While chocolate mixture cools, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In a separate small bowl, whisk together eggs and vanilla. Slowly pour egg mixture into the chocolate mixture, whisking constantly, until well combined. Add flour mixture and mix until just combined (some small lumps is fine).

Pour batter into the prepared Bundt pan. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Transfer pan to a cooling rack and cool cake completely (still in the pan).

Run a thin knife around the sides of the pan to loosen the cake and then invert the cake onto a serving plate. Sift confectioner's sugar over the top of the cake and serve with whipped cream if desired.

If you make the cake ahead, store it in a cake keeper or wrap it well with plastic wrap. You can store it at room temperature for 1 day or refrigerated for up to 5 days. Cake should be served at room temperature.


  1. There's something about bundt pans that I love. This boozey cake sounds phenomenal!

  2. When I saw this listed in your earlier post, I was curious if it was the same one I've made. The recipe I used came from NY Times though. Lots of ways to do chocolate and whiskey!

    1. Oooh, I think I'll need to try that one too =). Sounds like we should do a boozy cake taste test - I also know of cake recipes including beer and red wine

  3. hmm, i have a go-to cookie, but not really a go-to dessert for when people are over. i should work on that :)

  4. Booze in dessert is always a good think. This cake looks very delicious. I was wishing I had some dessert tonight, and now I'm wishing I had a piece of your cake.


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