Black Cocoa Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Black Cocoa Cake
Chocolate lover? Cocoa connoisseur? You're in the right place!
Introducing our signature black cocoa cake. This cake is dark and delicious unlike any other. It's a two-layer cake topped with our black cocoa cream cheese frosting. Of course, it goes without saying that this cake pairs incredibly well with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a glass of milk.
If you're unfamiliar with black cocoa, it's a Dutch-process cocoa that is renowned for its dark color. The alkalization process helps to give it its dark color without any of the bitterness. It's what lends dark color to Oreo sandwich cookies, and can help bakers to achieve all-natural, deep, dark color and rich chocolate flavor in their baked goods. These days, many black cocoas tend to be bitter and are often paired with a warning to use them only as a coloring agent. However, Modern Mountain black cocoa imparts both dark chocolate color and rich chocolate flavor. Ultimately, it's what makes this chocolate cake a cut above the rest!
You'll see that we use 3/4 cup black cocoa to achieve a dark chocolate color, but feel free to toss a bit more in if you're looking for an even blacker chocolate cake. If you're looking for the blackest black, you may need to pair a bit of black food gel with this cocoa.
1 ¾ Cups All-Purpose Flour
¾ Cup Modern Mountain Black Cocoa Powder
1 ½ TSP Kosher Salt (or 1 TSP Fine Salt)
1 ½ TSP Baking Soda
1 TSP Baking Powder
2 Large Eggs, Room Temperature
1 ¾ Cups Granulated Sugar
½ Cup Vegetable Oil or Canola Oil
1 Cup Brewed Coffee, Room Temperature
1 Cup Buttermilk, Room Temperature
1 TSP Vanilla Extract
12oz Cream Cheese, Room Temperature
1 ½ Sticks (6oz) Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature
3 Cups Powdered Sugar
1 TSP Vanilla
½ TSP Kosher Salt (¼ TSP Fine Salt)
1-2 TBSP Heavy Cream or Whole Milk, if needed
Black Cocoa Cake
Black Cocoa Cream Cheese Frosting
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 2, 9-inch round cake pans with butter. Line the bottom of each pan with a round piece of parchment paper. Grease parchment. Coat in black cocoa powder, shaking out excess.
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Whisk to evenly combine. Set aside.
In another large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until pale, fluffy and creamy in appearance, 3-5 minutes. This can be done by hand, with beaters or with a stand mixer.
Slowly drizzle oil into egg and sugar mixture while whisking until fully incorporated.
Combine coffee, buttermilk and vanilla in a measuring cup.
Alternate between adding the flour mixture and coffee mixture into the bowl containing the eggs and oil. Add about 1/3 of the wet and dry ingredients at a time. Whisk until evenly combined, but do not overmix.
Divide cake batter evenly among prepared pans. Bake on the center rack of the oven for approximately 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
TIP: For more even baking, swap placement of cakes on rack after cake has some structure to it, about 18-20 minutes into baking time.
Allow cakes to cool in pans over a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Invert out of pan onto wire rack to cool completely.
While cakes cool, prepare the frosting. Combine softened cream cheese and butter into a mixing bowl. Using hand beaters or a standing mixer, beat over medium speed until fluffy and evenly combined. Add powdered sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt. Starting on low speed, beat to incorporate the dry ingredients. Increase speed to medium once most of dry ingredients are incorporated, and beat until well-combined and fluffy.
TIP: If the frosting is a bit too stiff, add up to 1-2 tablespoons of heavy cream or whole milk to loosen the mixture.
Once cakes are completely cooled, you can frost the cake. Place one round of cake on a serving plate or cake stand. Add a generous amount of frosting on top and spread out in an even layer. Top with the second cake round. Frost tops and sides of cake with remaining frosting.