Ann Reardon

Best Chocolate Cake Ever

Best Chocolate Cake Recipe Ever


Have you ever been disappointed by a dry and tasteless chocolate cake? Well then this is the recipe for you. This is my all time favourite chocolate cake recipe. It makes a rich moist cake that tastes like chocolate. The photos below are from making four times the quantities listed in this recipe – to make a cake big enough for 100 people. The picture above is from one quantity of this cake, layered with chocolate mousse, centered with orange creme brulee, coated in chocolate glacage and decorated with tempered milk chocolate.


Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 1 hour 30 min
Total time:1 hour 45 min
Yield: 15 servings
Serving size: 1 medium slice
Calories per serving:460 (1350 kj (322.66 calories))
Fat per serving: 26g (0.92 ounces)

200g (7.05 ounces) 70% cocoa dark chocolate
315g (11.11 ounces) or 1 1/3 cups plus 2 tbl spoons margarine
8 eggs
2 1/4 cups or 486g (17.14 ounces) caster sugar
1 1/4 cups or 200g (7.05 ounces) plain flour (use GF flour if coeliac, this recipe has been tested with gluten free flour and works well)
1/4 cup or 30g (1.06 ounces) cocoa powder (unsweetened)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder


1. Place chocolate and margarine into a bowl.
chocolate in bowl with margarine
melt chocolate in the microwave
2. Melt in the microwave (30seconds, stir, 30sec, stir…).
best chocolate cake step by step
whisk eggs and sugar together
3. Whisk the eggs and sugar together
chocolate cake mixing
combine egg and chocolate
4. Combine egg and chocolate mixtures
sift flour cocoa powder and baking powder together
5. Sift flour, cocoa powder and baking powder together and mix into cake mixture until well blended.
chocolate chocolate cake
chocolate cake making recipe
6. Pour into cake tin or cup cake cases. (tip: if you don’t have a cake tin the right size or shape you can use a plain card board box lined with glad bakewell, make sure the box does not have shiny print or photos on it as then it will have a thin coat of plastic which will melt).
large cake pan lined with baking paper

7. Bake in slow oven 150C (302 degrees Fahrenheit) in 2 x 20cm (7.87 inches) round cake tins.  If you are making a large cake this can take well over an hour.  If the cake is looking done on top but is not yet cooked through put an empty baking tray on the shelf above it in the oven.  Insert a knife into the centre to check if it is done. Moderate oven 180C (356 degrees Fahrenheit) is fine, for cupcakes allow approx 20 mins.

by Ann Reardon How To Cook That

March 6, 2011


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All recipe quantities in the book are in grams, ounces and cups.

295 Comments View Comments

  1. Hi Ann! Would 55% dark chocolate work?

    • Yes it should Sumayya.

  2. Hi Ann, I am going to make a soccer ball cake for my grandson birthday, is your chocolate recipe (Best Ever Chocolate Cake Recipe) in the recipe says 8 eggs do I use medium or large eggs. Many Thanks Alison.

    • Hi Alison, Medium eggs will be fine.

  3. This looks amazing, but I am wondering how far in advance I can make it, and how I can store it so I don’t lose quality.

    • Hi Mandie, Cakes are always best fresh. I would recommend making it on the day required or the day prior.

  4. What will be the size of square or rectangle cake mold for his recipe?

    • Hi Sadia, This cake is designed to be cooked in 2 x 20cm (7.87 inches) round cake tins. A single square pan would need to be around 23 x23 cm x 5cm or a rectangular pan that is close to 39cm x 27cm x 2.5cm.

  5. Hi Ann! I’ve been making this cake recipe for a few years now as it’s become a family favorite for any chocolate cake I need. As much as I love most everything about it, I do always have problems with the top being very “brownie” like. It cracks and crumbles on me. I’ve tried different things to try to prevent it, but with very little luck. I’m wondering if this has ever happened to you and if so if you have a solution? Thank you for the recipe and for any tips you might have.

    • Hi Sheree, Have you tried putting an empty making tray on the shelf above the cake in the oven, just to reduce the likelihood of it drying out on top? I don’t usually have that issue. Usually the top of the cake is removed prior to decorating anyway so no potentially dry bit remain.

      • Thanks for the reply. I have tried putting the baking tray on the shelf above with not much difference. I do use convection, so maybe if I just used the regular oven the tray idea might help. Removing the top of the cake does work fine, I mostly was just wondering on a solution only because mine always looks quite different from yours. I’ll keep experimenting, and thanks again! I’ll include a photo from my first attempt at this cake several years ago..:)

        • Looks fabulous anyway. I would check your oven temperature too to make sure it is heating accurately. My home oven runs much hotter than the indicator so I always need to adjust temperatures down a little.

  6. Hey Ann! Whenever I use a tin that has a removable bottom the mixture always leaks out of the bottom, is there anyway to prevent this?

    • If you have a spring form pan or similar where the base is loose, you could try lining or double lining the base with non-stick baking paper. making sure the paper actually is locking into or through the join to reduce any seepage.

  7. Hi Ann,
    I was wondering if you have any recipe quantities for this mud cake to make it white chocolate.,

    • Hi Roz, no we don’t as Ann hasn’t yet landed on a recipe that she is really happy with. She usually prefers this recipe for a chocolate cake, though it is not as heavy as a true mud cake. Otherwise she prefers a vanilla or sponge cake.

  8. Hi your chocolate cake says to use margarine ? Is it like flora table margarine or butter ? Thanks

    • Hi Michelle, Any standard table margarine will be fine. Use butter if you prefer.

  9. If your arctlies are always this helpful, “I’ll be back.”

  10. Hi Ann
    Can I replace with White choc for this recipe? Thanks

  11. Hi Can you freeze this cake?

  12. In order to make the rainbow dash cake, do I need to triple this recipe? And if I use butter instead of margarine, should it be salted or unsalted butter? Making this tomorrow for my daughter’s 4th birthday!

    • Hi Susan, Guessing you have made this cake now so I hope it turned out fabulously. Ann usually uses margarine unless butter is indicated in the recipe. Her preference is for unsalted. The My little pony recipe requires 1 and a half times this recipe.

  13. Thanks for showing so much information in such easy to follow videos. I have watch many of your videos so far and here is my first fondant chocolate cake. The chocolate cake is amazing.

    • Awesome first fondant cake Matt W. Well done!

    • thats really cool

  14. Dear Ann, this is your rich chocolate cake combined with the cherry mousse per your strawberry mousse recipy , I have just substituted strawberries with cherries. I also reduced by third the quantity of lemon juice in the lemon curd and substituted the 2/3 by cherry juice in order not to have it too acid.
    I also added cream and mascarpony frosting.
    thank you for the inspiration you share!
    With love,

    • Hi Yullia, This looks so yummy! Thanks for the feedback.

  15. Hi Ann,
    I’m going to make this cake for the My Little Pony cake. My husband has, by mistake, bought the ring sized baking tray. So I’m going to have to bake it in a 40inch X 32inch X 6inch (height) tray. If I double the quantities in the above recipe and bake it twice in this tray, would that be ok? I’m planning to sandwich the two cakes with buttercream. I’m assuming baking the whole lot at once is not a good idea, as the cake might not get cooked in the middle? What do you think?
    Please help!

    • Sorry, I meant 40cm X 32cm X 6cm.

    • Hi Daffodil, That is a massive tray! Do you have an oven that can take that tray? if you have a smaller rectangular tray it may be easier. I think you could get 2 layers from the one slab of cake to make this, so try using the same quantity and cook one of the large slabs. It may be a little thiner than Ann’s.

  16. Hi there could I substitute the margarine for butter? Thanks so much!

    • Hi Marilee, yes you can.

  17. I tried out this recipe though not strictly as i did not have dark chocolate. It turned out really nice. Thanks

    • Your article perlfctey shows what I needed to know, thanks!

  18. I ann i just wanted to take the time to ssy that this cake tastes AMAZING!!!!!!!
    and thats really all and yeah thanks for doing what your doing

    • Thanks Livi for the feedback.

  19. Hey Ann! I was just wondering what the weight of this batter would be

  20. Hi Ann,
    This sounds scrumptious – am just about to attempt a minecraft cake for my son! Your recipe is for 2 x 20cm round cake tins, but I’m going to be having a 20cm x 20cm square tin. I’m not going for the full cube shape, so probably going to try instead for two fairly deep layers (7cm per layer perhaps?) Please can you help me with converting the ingredient amounts – how much mix do I need? And how long will I need to bake each layer and at what temperature (I will be doing each layer separately, because my oven is crap!!) 🙂 Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Geesha, 20cm x 5 cm round cake pan will give you a volume of around 1.5L. a 20 x20 x 4cm pan will give you about 1.5L in Volume. So to achieve 2 deep cakes, you have to more or less double the recipe. As you are not concerned about getting a full cube shape ND Ann’s recipe is fairly generous, so I would suggest making 1.5 times the batter and cooking three 20 x 20cm cakes. They should cook easily at that size and give you a combined height of around 15cm. If you think that is not going to be cube-like enough then make a double batch and either cook in 3 batches and extend the cooking time, or go for four. If the oven is creating issues for you, a good short cut is to order a pain chocolate cake slab or sheet from a ;local supplier, then put your energy into the minecraft decoration.

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