Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Buttercream
This Chocolate Cake is perfect for a party! Moist chocolate cake layers, filled and frosted with a sweet and delicate raspberry Swiss meringue buttercream, for a pretty pink dessert that’s sure to delight!
Isn’t this a pretty pink cake?
Is it bad that I made it for my husband’s birthday? Be honest.
It’s ok. I know it is. This cake has no business being at a grown man’s birthday celebration. I feel terrible about it. But what can I say? After the dude food bonanza known as Superbowl, I just really needed something frilly and flowery for Valentine’s Day.
When it comes to desserts, I’ve got two top favorite categories: one is sweet/salty and the other is chocolate/fruit. Chocolate and raspberry is a gorgeous combination and it works beautifully in this towering triple-layer beauty. Besides being lovely for your Valentine, I think it would be equally fitting for a bridal or baby shower, a little girl’s birthday party, or even for Mother’s Day.
The cake itself is rich and deeply chocolate-y. It’s actually just this cupcake recipe, baked in three 8-inch round cake pans. The recipe is tried and true. It is, hands-down, the most popular recipe on my site. Everyone loves it because it’s easy to make, moist, and the flavor is off the charts. When combined with a subtly sweet, light and fruity raspberry Swiss meringue buttercream, it’s just dreamy.
I know the decoration looks fancy but honestly, you won’t believe how simple it really is. I will be demo-ing it this Wednesday on Fox Good Day, so if you’re in the Philly area keep an eye on the tv around 9:30 am EST. If not, I’ll be putting the clip up later that afternoon, so I’ll add a link back to this post then.
*UPDATE: Watch the clip here.*
Just FYI, I love this kind of piping bag for decorating with buttercream. And the tip I used here is a 1M. One tip makes both kinds of rosettes that you see here. I also added a sprinkling of these and these, to make it extra pretty. Maximum impact; minimal effort.
PS- I don’t think my husband really minded all that much!
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Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Buttercream
For the cake
- 1 1/2 cups (300 g) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (125 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (62.5 g) cake flour
- 1 cup (86 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons (1.5 teaspoons) baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) kosher salt
- 1 cup (227 g) unsalted butter, (2 sticks), softened
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup (200 g) plain Greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the frosting*
- 2 cups (240 g) frozen raspberries,, thawed
- 6 egg whites
- 2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar
- 2 cups (454 g) unsalted butter, (4 sticks), softened
Make the cake:
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Generously mist three 8-inch diameter cake pans with non-stick spray, and line with circles cut from parchment paper.
- Place the sugar, flours, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl, and whisk to combine.
- Cut the butter into smaller pieces and add it to the dry ingredients. Mix on low speed until the mixture resembles damp sand (30 seconds to a minute).
- Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula after each addition.
- When all of the eggs are fully incorporated, add the Greek yogurt and vanilla, and beat on medium speed for about 60 to 90 seconds, to aerate the batter and strengthen the cake's structure.
- Divide the batter evenly between the three prepared pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the thickest part of the cake comes out clean or with one or two moist crumbs. Cool completely, then fill and frost with raspberry buttercream.
Make the frosting:
- Puree the thawed berries in a food processor, then strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve, discarding the seeds.
- Place the puree in a small pot and cook on medium-low heat until thickened and reduced by about half. You should have about 1/4 cup of cooked puree. Set aside to cool.
- Place the egg whites and sugar in a large mixing bowl set over a pot of simmering water.
- Cook, whisking occasionally, until the mixture is smooth, thin, and translucent, and it no longer feels gritty when rubbed between the thumb and forefinger.
- Remove the bowl from the heat and whisk on medium-high speed until fluffy and stiff, and no hint of warmth remains when you place your hand on the side of the bowl.
- Add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, whipping after each addition. If the mixture seems runny, place it in the refrigerator for 10 to 20 minutes, then re-whip. When all the butter has been added and the mixture is fluffy and spreadable, stir in the cooled raspberry puree until fully incorporated.
Wow, what an amazing, decadent recipe…I may just bite the bullet and try the frosting! Can I use jam/preserves to flavour the frosting instead of making the puree, and if so, how much? Alternatively, if I wanted to make strawberry puree, is it the same process (grind, sieve, cook)?
OK. I rarely leave comments on recipes I try. I am a self taught baker. Its my calming place to be baking. I made this for a friend’s daughter’s birthday. I gotta say it turned out perfect. I was super excited it went so well. I have never made or tasted swiss buttercream before this. I made the puree the day before I made the cake and frosting. So it would be cool.
My husband thought I was crazy when I squealed with delight after starting to whip up the hot sugar and egg whites. I was so excited. I have pics of my cake..but not sure how to share. I definitely was proud. And my friend’s daughter was super excited.
Thaak u for an awesome cake and frosting recipe. I loved the frosting. Im gonna try making it again tonight with peanut butter. And topping your chocolate cupcake recipe with it.
So happy it worked so well for you Gina! I love hearing that. Feel free to tag me on Instagram @bakingamoment. I would love to see.
It looks super delicious! I am making it next week for a movie night with friends, but we’re meeting directly after work, so we are trying to cut back on cooking time.
I am planning on making the cakes the day before and I was wondering if I could also make the buttercream the day before?
Yes, absolutely! You may just have to re-fluff it with your mixer. Good luck!
This cake batter is one of the best I’ve ever made…so simple and so light and fluffy. Hopefully my work colleagues enjoy it tomorrow.
I made a three layer cake and a batch of these as cupcakes, they are perfect. I tried the lemon cupcakes today as well but they didn’t rise very well and are a bit dense. I will try them another day and see where I went wrong.
So happy you like it Lizzie! Hope you and your work friends enjoy!
If I halved this recipe could I make it in two six-inch pans?
That would probably work but you’ll just have to adjust the bake time. Good luck!
Hi Allie, I just wanted to thank you for another beautiful recipe. I made your simply perfect vanilla cake and paired it with the raspberry icing in this recipe for my two year old’s birthday cake. My first attempt at Swiss meringue buttercream, I was nervous but it came out perfectly. I’ve become known for making a “mean cake” and really I just follow your excellent recipe to a T! Thank you again. Rita x
That is so nice to hear, Rita! Thank you so much for the great feedback; you really put a smile on my face. Happy belated birthday to your two-year old!
Just made this for the third time, but this time I used frozen black cherries instead of raspberries and it was awesome! Added a teaspoon of almond extract to the cake (instead of 1 of the tsp of vanilla) and icing plus a pinch of salt.
Also, I finally invested in 3 8-inch pans instead of the two, different brand 9 inch pans and am so happy with the results. Thank you for your recipes and insight on technique! Everyone thinks I am such a pro now, haha.
That’s so great to hear Kim! I love a smaller, taller cake and I think those pans will be a great investment for you. The chocolate/cherry/almond combo sounds amazing!
Made it today. It’s really lovely. I just have to perfect my frosting abilities. The folders came out great through. ?
So happy it worked well for you Kelly! Thanks so much for the positive feedback!
Have you ever converted this to Gluten free flour?
I haven’t, but I have gotten comments from other readers who have done so and had success. If it’s a flour blend that’s meant to substitute 1:1 with regular flour, then it should work!
This is the exact flavor of cake I was looking for to serve at my friends baby shower. Would a chocolate fondant work over this frosting? I’ve tried many of your recipes and their all winners!!
That’s awesome! How perfect. This would work very well coated in fondant! When I worked in bakeries we always used a Swiss or Italian buttercream under the fondant. Have fun and congrats to your friend!
Hi! This cake looks delicious! My daughter wants a chocolate and strawberry cake for her birthday. Do you think I can replace the raspberries of your recipe by strawberries?
Hi Anne Sophie! I’m so happy you like this cake. I think that would work just fine! Good luck and happy birthday to your daughter!
Thank you Allie! I’ll let you know how it turned out!
I made this cake for my daughter’s birthday. I had trouble with the icing. I followed your directions… not sure where I went wrong….. the icing seemed to thin…. I did put the icing in the fridge as suggested. I iced the cake anyways and put the iced cake in the fridge over night. It appears that the icing has hardened. Could you give me some pointers on how to make the icing? I made sure the raspberry puree was cool…
Hi Angela! Sorry you had some trouble. How long did you refrigerate the buttercream, and did you continue to whip it once it had been chilled?
This cake is AMAZING!!!! Well-worth the effort. Made this for Boss’s Day today. My, oh my…she and all my co-workers were in heaven ?. Thanks so much for a fantastically delicious recipe, Allie!
My pleasure Liz! So happy you and your co-workers enjoyed. And I hope you get a big raise for being so awesome on Boss’s Day!
Hi Allie!! I fell in love with the look of this cake and I had to make it for my mother in law’s birthday! (It was more as a challenge for me ha ha ha !! Than a gift for her! OOOPs! ) I tagged you in my IG post here https://instagram.com/p/BYPruj0jAOS/
Oh my goodness it looks amazing! Well done! I don’t think it could have come out any prettier. I hope you were happy with the taste! Thanks so much for sharing on Instagram 😀
Your cake is absolutely stunning. And so delicious. I made it for my sons birthday, it didn’t look as good, but everybody loved it, my husband even requested it for his b-day. Thank you for the recipe!
Really beautiful! Would you be able to tell me about how tall a cake these 3 layers will make? I love tall cakes! Thank you!
Hey Paula! I’d estimate it’s probably 6 or 8 inches tall, but if you want something taller you could use 6-inch cake pans. You’ll probably have to adjust the bake times a bit to account for the thicker layers, but that would give you a very tall cake! Hope that’s helpful 🙂
How long does this cake last if I want it for a wedding will it last a couple of days?
It should last at least that long Amber, and it freezes very well too!
Hi Allie!! I am such an amateur baker, but I love trying new recipes. My husband picked your recipe out just from looking at the picture and asked me to bake it for his birthday. I didn’t dissolve the sugar enough and it was still runny after doing the butter, so I put it in the fridge like you said and it helped a lot. I actually had to leave it in the fridge for an hour because we had a game to go to, but it turned out well. And SOO YUMMY!! I am in love. I also noticed that my cake became brownie like and sank a little in the middle, but hey, I am easy to please, and it still tastes good. But for next time, how can I avoid the sinkage? Thank you again for your recipe!
Hey Suzy! So happy you and your husband enjoyed for the most part! I think that sinkage is probably a result of either a) opening the oven before the cake’s structure has fully solidified (perhaps to test for doneness?) or b) slightly underbaking. So maybe next time just give it plenty of time in the oven 😉 Hope that’s helpful!
Heyy ? This cake looks amazing!!!! But I have a question I tried such a frosting last weekend and it was really disgusting I don’t know what I did wrong… It was perfect at the beginning but then I put it out to cool down and when I mixed it again it was really flaky and crumbling and not smooth do you know what I did wrong eventually the egg whites and the sugar were to hot when I mixed it with the butter… I have no idea what went wrong can you help me because I really want to try this cake because tomorrow is my birthday….
Hey Zora! I’m a little confused- did you use this recipe or was it from somewhere else?