Triple Chocolate Cake Recipe

The most amazing decadent triple chocolate cake with chocolate frosting! This cake is best served at room temperature and frosted with chocolate buttercream or ganache.
↓ Recipe Never Miss A Cake
Total Time: 50 mins
Serves: 8 cups
triple chocolate cake

Triple chocolate cake with chocolate ganache is a chocolate lovers dream

Triple chocolate cake was my favorite chocolate cake for a long time. I loved the little chunks of chocolate in each bite. I used to pair it with easy buttercream and it really reminded me of a Ding Dong cupcake from my childhood. Over the years I have begun pairing it with either chocolate ganache or chocolate buttercream. Maybe it’s old age but I just want MORE chocolate in my triple chocolate cake. I mean… the more chocolate the better right?

triple chocolate cake

What makes this triple chocolate cake so good?

Triple chocolate cake isn’t for the faint of heart! I wasn’t about to skimp on any part of this delicious, decadent cake! I carefully tested this recipe so that each ingredient in the cake added to the overall moisture and tenderness of the cake. 

  1. The reverse creaming method – gives this cake a super fine and decadent crumb that melts in your mouth.
  2. Dutched cocoa powder – this cocoa powder has a stronger chocolate flavor than natural cocoa.
  3. Mayonnaise – gives the chocolate cake an added boost of moisture!

How to make triple chocolate cake

This triple chocolate cake recipe is adapted from my favorite chocolate cake recipe. This cake recipe uses the reverse creaming method

  1. Bring your water to a boil and pour over your cocoa powder. Whisk it until it’s smooth. Add in your mayonnaise (straight from the fridge) so it cools the chocolate mixture a bit.
  2. Then add in your vanilla and eggs and whisk to break up the eggs. Set aside to cool. 
  3. Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt) in the bowl of your stand mixer
  4. Attach the paddle attachment and blend on low. Slowly add in your softened chunks of butter and mix until it resembles coarse sand.
  5. Add about 1/3 of the chocolate mixture into the flour mixture and let mix on setting 4 on your Kitchenaid for two full minutes. Trust me, let it mix the full two minutes or your cake will collapse.
  6. Scrape the bowl and then add in the rest of your liquids and let mix for another 30 seconds or so until there aren’t any streaks.
  7. Pour the batter into two 8″ round cake pans prepared with cake goop or pan spray.
  8. Bake the triple chocolate cake for 30 minutes at 35oºF or until a toothpick comes out from the center with a few gooey crumbs still attached. Don’t over bake!
  9. Let your cake cool for 10 minutes in the pan then turn them out onto a cooling rack. I wrap mine in plastic wrap and leave them at room temp to frost the next day because the cake is firm enough but you can also freeze them to seal in moisture.triple chocolate cake

Need more information on how to make your first cake? Check out my tutorial on how to trim your cakes, frost, fill them and decorate them. All the basics for the ultimate beginner!

What frosting goes best with triple chocolate cake?

Since this is my daughter’s favorite cake, I made her favorite which is chocolate ganache. She LOVES dark chocolate but her friends prefer milk. I made a compromise and went with semi-sweet chocolate chips for the ganache. 

This ganache is a 2:1 recipe so it’s a lot smoother and creamier than the traditional ganache I make for sculpted cakes or wedding cakes. 

After I make my ganache I let it cool at room temperature with plastic wrap over the surface. Yes you can leave ganache on the countertop and the cream will not spoil. Food science! 

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Cups of Batter Needed

8 cups

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Note: measurements are estimated based off the vanilla cake recipe using standard US cake pans and sizes. Measurements used are for 2" tall cake pans only. Your results may vary. Do not overfill cake pans above manufacturer's recommended guidelines.

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triple chocolate cake

Triple Chocolate Cake Recipe

The most amazing decadent triple chocolate cake with chocolate frosting! This cake is best served at room temperature and frosted with chocolate buttercream or ganache.
4.97 from 27 votes
Print Rate Never Miss A Cake
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 35 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
Serves: 8 cups
Calories: 381kcal

Ingredients

Cake Ingredients

  • 3 oz (85.05 g) Dutch cocoa powder
  • 8 oz (226.8 g) water
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 oz (142 g) Mayonaise
  • 14 oz (397 g) Unbleached cake flour
  • 15 oz (425 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 6 oz (170 g) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 8 oz (227 g) mini chocolate chips or chopped chocolate

Chocolate Ganache Frosting

  • 8 oz (227 g) heavy whipping cream Heat to a simmer, do not boil
  • 16 oz (454 g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Equipment

  • Stand Mixer
  • Food Scale

Instructions

Cake Instructions

  • Pre-heat your oven to 335ºF. Prepare two 8" cake pans with cake goop or other pan release. I prefer to make my chocolate ganache the day before I need it so to give it time to cool down.
  • Bring the water to a boil and pour over the cocoa powder. Whisk until smooth then add in cold mayonnaise, vanilla and eggs. Whisk to break up the eggs. 
  • Weigh out all dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt) and place into a stand mixer bowl and attach the paddle attachment.
  • Turn mixer on low (setting 1 on Kitchen Aid mixers). Add in your room temperature butter in small chunks. Combine on low until you achieve a sandy mixture.
  • Add 1/3 of your liquid ingredients into your dry ingredients and mix on medium for 2 minutes. If you do not do this step, your cake could collapse.
  • Turn your mixer back down to low and add in the rest of your liquids slowly. Stop once or twice to scrape the bowl as needed.
    Once they are all combined, turn back up to medium for another 30 seconds.
  • Fold in your chocolate chips or chocolate
  • Bake for 35 minutes at 335ºF depending on how big your pans are. The bigger the pan, the longer it will take for them to bake. 
    When a toothpick comes out of the center with a few sticky crumbs on it, the cake is done.
  • After the cakes have cooled for about 10 minutes, or the pans have cooled to the point they can be touched, flip the cakes over and remove from the pans onto a cooling rack to cool completely. I cover mine in plastic wrap to keep them from drying out why they cool.
  • Once the cakes are completely cool you can trim them and frost them.  

Chocolate Ganache Frosting

  • Heat your heavy whipping cream until it's just starting to simmer, do not boil.
  • Pour your hot cream over your chocolate chips, making sure they are fully submerged.
  • Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, then add in your vanilla and salt
  • Whisk until smooth. If you have any un-melted pieces of chocolate, heat the mixture for 30 seconds in the microwave and whisk again. Do not over-heat or you can break your ganache.
  • Cover the surface with plastic wrap and let cool at room temperature for 24 hours before using.

Notes

This recipe works great for carving sculpted cakes! I use the same recipe for wedding and sculpted. I always bake them, de-pan them, wrap them in plastic wrap and then chill in the fridge or freezer (depending on how much of a rush I’m in) and then carve. Chilled cakes make carving or stacking SO much easier!

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 381kcal (19%) | Carbohydrates: 42g (14%) | Protein: 5g (10%) | Fat: 22g (34%) | Saturated Fat: 11g (55%) | Cholesterol: 52mg (17%) | Sodium: 211mg (9%) | Potassium: 236mg (7%) | Fiber: 3g (12%) | Sugar: 25g (28%) | Vitamin A: 359IU (7%) | Vitamin C: 1mg (1%) | Calcium: 48mg (5%) | Iron: 2mg (11%)
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51 comments on “Triple Chocolate Cake Recipe

  1. Hi Liz, would you recommend this recipe for your spiderman bust cake, and how many batches would I need for a full sheet? Thank you!

  2. Regarding the buttercream. Are you supposed to add the cocoa to the melted butter and then add to the whipped mixture?

  3. Hi Liz where do you put the melted butter? mix it with the cocoa powder? above in your instructions you say:

    “Reserve 8 oz of your butter and melt in microwave until JUST melted, don’t over heat.
    Once the meringue is light, white, and shiny, add in your butter in chunks. Add in vanilla and salt and whip on high until light.
    Add in chocolate mixture and continue whipping until mixture is combined. Scrape bowl if needed. ”

    PLEASE clarify! thank you!!!

    1. So sorry, I have updated the instructions. The melted butter is combined with the cocoa powder to help it incorporate into the buttercream better 🙂

  4. Hi Liz ! I tried this cake recipe and it was DELISH!!!!!!!! I do have a question ! I would love to make cupcakes out of it … will the same exact recipe work ? If not can you please let me know how it will work for cupcakes ? Thank you !

  5. 5 stars
    Making this as we speak batter is in the pans but I just realized that I used bleach cake flour, instead of unbleaches DOH! . Is this going to affect the recipe ? Thanks for any help !!

  6. 5 stars
    WOW! this was the best tasting chocolate cake that I have ever made! Thank you Liz you are the best. I was able to make a dozen cupcakes, one 8 inch cake round and one 6 inch cake round (freezing for later). Thank you for this great recipe !

  7. can you use natural cocoa powder or does it have to be dutch processed?

  8. How much icing does this recipe make? It seems like a lot with 36oz of butter (9 sticks?) Can you cut the recipe in half and still have enough icing to cover the standard 8 inch cake?

  9. I made this cake this weekend and the icing is amazing!!!! My cake on the other hand came out very dry and crumbly. Any thoughts as to why? I don’t think they were over baked. I pulled them right around the 30 minute mark when the tooth pick was clean.

  10. How do you thicken the icing? Add more powdered sugar?

  11. Hi sugargeek
    How much WATER is used to pour over the cocoa powder… in this recipe Please?
    Regards
    COLLEEN DU PLOOY

  12. Hi Liz! What type of cocoa powder do you use?
    Thank you!

  13. Hi! Do you use a specific type of cocoa powder? Should it be sweetened or unsweetened?

  14. Hi Liz, can I triple this recipe? Thank you!

  15. 5 stars
    OMG!! This recipe is amazing!!!… I’m actually nibbling on a slice while I type this coz I can’t seem to stop… ? it’s so rich,moist and chocolatey!!! Even better than the oil based one … Who knew mayonnaise would do such wonders on a sweet dish!!! ? I’ve always been nervous to try the reverse creaming method but I’m sooo thrilled to see fantastic results after following every single step especially the crucial 2 min mixing one… thank you Liz!!! ? I couldn’t be happier with any other butter chocolate cake recipe… quick question, being butter based, do we have to use sugar syrup to moisten the layers? Or its best to avoid doing so for butter cakes? Thanks again!!! ??

  16. Hi Liz… Is it ok to use cake flour substitute with corn flour and AP flour for this recipe? I tried it with this chocolate cake and the texture seemed perfect… Was going to try your vanilla recipe but it specifically said no.substitutes for cake flour… We don’t get cake flour here so I was wondering if it would work ok if I tried the substitution? Coz the chocolate cake was amazing…

  17. 5 stars
    Hello Liz 🙂 Can I use a sheet pan for this recipe? I have 9 x 13 pan by the way 🙂

  18. Hi Liz, can I make this gluten free by using bobs 1:1 gluten free flour? Also can I make the actual cake dairy free?

  19. The ganache lists two quantities for vanilla, which one do you prefer?

  20. 4 stars
    I really loved this recipe thanks a bunch! My only problem was that the choc chips stick to my cake pan (even after using cake goop) and meant that one of my cakes broke in half. Do you have any suggestions for how avoid this in future?

    1. Place some parchment paper at the bottom of your cake pan or flip the cakes out of the pan a little sooner so they are not completely cooling.

  21. I use this recipe all the time Liz, I use it with AP flour and it’s still super soft but definitely a little more dense than with cake flour (It’s hard to get hold of in the UK). My question to you though is roughly how long will this cake keep in the fridge covered in ganache and not cut?

    My daughter wants to make it (with my help) for her teacher as a leaving gift but the only time we have to bake/decorate is a week before it’d be needed xx

    1. You can frost the whole cake, freeze it then wrap it in plastic wrap and keep it in the freezer. When you’re ready to use it, it needs to be defrosted in the fridge (unwrapped) for 24 hours so it does not condensate. Then you can take it out of the fridge and leave it at room temperature until serving so it’s soft and ready to eat.

  22. 5 stars
    Ah great! I wasn’t sure how well this cake would freeze! Thank you <3

  23. Perfect recipe! I just want to know if I can use coffee instead of water. I really love coffee in my chocolate cakes 🙂

    Thanks!

  24. Hi, I’ve tried this recipe a couple of times now, it’s so delicious!
    The only thing is that my ‘liquid’ ingredients aren’t that liquid, it’s fairly thick so when adding your third to the mixer, it’s more like a paste. is this normal? I always end up having to add more of it or even a bit of water (but i suspect this might be why it take ages to cook).
    Also, mine always dome up really high and this creates so much wastage when torting for a fondant covered cake.
    I’m not sure if it’s a difference in ingredients or my method (although i’ve made your vanilla cake with the same method and that comes out fine).
    Do you have any advice for me?

  25. How can I use cocoa powder unsweetened instead of Dutch?

    1. Yes you can but I would increase the baking soda and reduce the baking powder by the same amount, maybe 1 tsp to account for the acidity in the regular cocoa powder.

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