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An easy chocolate cake that's moist, delicious and packed full of chocolate. It can be made in any size of round, square or rectangular tin so you can use whatever tins you have in the cupboard, and can feed a few or a whole crowd.

Easy Chocolate Cake

An easy chocolate cake that's moist, delicious and packed full of chocolate.
4.55 from 31 votes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 12 servings


For the chocolate cake

  • 190 g plain flour
  • tsp baking powder
  • 100 g milk chocolate
  • 40 g cocoa powder
  • 230 g caster sugar
  • 230 g margarine or butter - if you're using butter it must be soft at room temperature
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp milk

For the chocolate buttercream

  • 250 g butter - soft at room temperature
  • 250 g icing sugar
  • 150 g milk chocolate
  • 40 g cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • A little milk

This recipe makes a 20cm round cake. If you would like to make a different size of round, square or rectangular cake, you can find the ingredients you need just above the recipe.


    • Pre-heat your oven to 160C/140C fan.
      Line two 20cm round sandwich tins with greaseproof paper or re-usable baking tin liners (I use these tins and these liners).
    • Melt your milk chocolate (100g) - You can either melt it in the microwave (heat for 30 seconds, stir and then heat for a further 30 seconds. Repeat until the chocolate has melted), over a bain marie, or in a saucepan over a very low heat. Set the chocolate aside to cool.
    • Put all of the other cake ingredients into a large bowl (190g plain flour, 2½ tsp baking powder, 40g cocoa powder, 230g caster sugar, 230g margarine or butter, 4 large eggs, ¼ tsp vanilla extract and 2 tsp milk). Beat together (either using an electric mixer on a low speed or by hand) until the ingredients are combined. Add the melted chocolate and mix in (again at a low speed) until combined.
    • Split the cake mixture between the two tins. Smooth the mixture using a palette knife or the back of a spoon. Bake for 30-35 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
    • Once the cakes are cooked, remove them from the oven and leave to cool in their tins for about 10 minutes before removing them from the tin and moving to a cooling rack to cool completely.

    While the cake is cooling, make the chocolate buttercream

    • Melt your milk chocolate (150g) and set aside to cool - It is essential that the chocolate has cooled before it is combined with the other ingredients so it doesn't melt the butter.
    • Beat the butter (250g) until soft - This can either be done with an electric mixer at a low speed or by hand. Add the icing sugar (250g), cocoa powder (40g) and vanilla extract (¼ tsp) and beat together on a low speed until combined. 
    • Slowly add the melted milk chocolate and beat until combined. Your buttercream needs to be a spreadable consistency. If it is a little too thick, beat in a little milk (no more than 1 tsp at a time) until it reaches your desired consistency.

    Build the cake

    • Place the bottom layer of chocolate sponge on to your serving dish. Spread half of the chocolate buttercream onto the bottom layer using a palette knife or the back of a spoon. Add the top layer of chocolate sponge and then spread the remaining buttercream on top of the cake. To create the swirl effect shown in the pictures have a look at my tips above the recipe.
    • Enjoy!


    ❄️ Suitable for freezing
    See storage and freezing instructions above the recipe.


    Calories: 656kcal | Carbohydrates: 62.9g | Protein: 7.1g | Fat: 41.1g | Saturated Fat: 20.7g | Sodium: 290.2mg | Fiber: 2.4g | Sugar: 50.4g

    Any nutritional information provided is the estimated nutritional information per serving. Please refer to my guide to Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen nutritional information if you would like to learn more about how this is calculated.

    Course: Dessert
    Cuisine: British
    Keyword: Celebration Cake, Layer Cake
    Author: Charlotte Oates