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Easy Fudgy Chocolate Cake Recipe with Ganache

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This easy Chocolate Cake recipe is fudgy and decadent. And when topped with chocolate ganache, it becomes irresistible! And so simple to make in one bowl that it will soon become a favorite.

Side view of sliced Chocolate Cake recipe with fresh strawberries on a white plate with a red and white striped kitchen linen.

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Dressed up or down it’s a cake you’re going to love. Serve with an amazingly easy chocolate ganache or as a simple snack cake.

I call cakes like this… an anytime cake.

Anytime cakes are super simple to make, but utterly delicious too. They are cakes you want to bake when you’re craving homemade… but easy.

This one layer cake is fudgy, rich, and so incredibly delicious!

And easy? Absolutely! No mixer is required.

Just simple chocolaty goodness and 25 minutes in the oven.

Special enough for holidays, like Christmas or Valentine’s Day, and casual enough for picnics, BBQ’s or weekends.

Dress it up with ganache icing and fresh fruit, or make it casual with a dusting of powdered sugar. Both ways are supper yummy!

Top closeup view of slice of chocolate cake with a sliced fresh strawberry

Homemade Chocolate Cake Recipe

There are cakes… and then there are chocolate cakes. And I think chocolate cakes should be simple and easy without a lot of fuss or preparations needed.

But they should also be incredible rich and chocolaty.

This chocolate cake recipe is that… and more. And contains an uncommon ingredient designed to further enhance that chocolate. It’s simply and utterly delicious.

Side view of chocolate cake slice with ganache  and chocolate dipped strawberry slice on a white scalloped plate

More Anytime Cakes

If you’re looking for more simple anytime cake recipes, 31Daily reader favorites include Simple Anytime Almond Cake and Anytime Maple Banana Snack Cake.

Or for more ideas, you may want to take a look at 32 Anytime Snack Cakes You’ll Love to Bake.

Top view of sliced chocolate cake with fresh strawberries on a white plate with fork.

Chocolate Cake Ingredients

Exact ingredients measurements are in the recipe card below.

  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Baking powder
  • Espresso powder: This is an optional ingredient but really does enhance the chocolate flavor.
  • Milk: Buttermilk, almond milk or coconut milk can also be substituted.
  • Cooking oil: use your favorite
  • Large eggs
  • Vanilla extract

Kitchen Equipment

As mentioned, this incredibly simple chocolate cake recipe is easy to make in one bowl with a spoon or spatula. No mixer is required.

Baking pan variations: There are several ways you can make this cake. The batter nicely fills a 9-inch round cake pan but could also fill an 8-inch round pan too.

Or, if you want to bake this snack cake style, you can also use a square 8-inch pan or 9-inch pan.

This cake is so versatile that I’m choosing a non-stick 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. I love the fluted edges it creates.

Top view of unbaked chocolate cake in a tart shell

How to Make this Easy Fudgy Chocolate Cake

Step-by-step instructions are in the recipe card below, but this will give you an idea of how simple this chocolate cake is.

Preheat the oven to 350°F and generously grease a baking pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Then whisk in the milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.

Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 35 minutes.

Let the cake cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack to cool.

Top view of baked Chocolate Cake on a white cake plate

How to Make Ganache

This chocolate ganache icing is an equally simple recipe, perfect for such an easy chocolate cake. If you want to serve the cake as a snack cake, you can simply dust the cake with powdered sugar (or leave it plain) and it’s good to go.

If you want to add a delicious, decadent touch, here’s how to make this ganache:

  • Place chocolate in a medium, heat-proof bowl.
  • Heat the cream and then pour over the chocolate. Stir until smooth.
  • Let cool until it thickens; about 30 to 40 minutes.
Top view of Ganache frosted Chocolate Cake recipe with fresh sliced strawberries

Chocolate Cake Variations

  • When using olive oil, it becomes a delicious olive oil chocolate cake recipe!
  • Rather than ganache, try buttercream frosting!
  • If you love nuts, try topping the frosted cake with chopped walnuts, pecans or sliced almonds!
  • Dust powdered sugar over the top for a simple snack cake.

How to Store the Cake

Cover the cake or store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Unfrosted cake can be frozen for up to 3 months.

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Chocolate Cake closeup view  on a white plate with red and white striped kitchen linen
Side view of sliced Chocolate Cake recipe with fresh strawberries on a white plate with a red and white striped kitchen linen.

Easy Fudgy Chocolate Cake with Ganache

This easy Chocolate Cake recipe is fudgy, decadent, and irresistible with a super easy ganache. It's a one-bowl, anytime cake you'll love!
4.6 from 9 votes
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12 servings

Equipment

Ingredients 

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk or buttermilk, almond, or coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Ganache

  • 3/4 cup chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and generously grease a 9-inch round cake pan or a 9 x 9-inch or 8 x 8-inch square pan.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, espresso powder, and salt.
  • Whisk in the milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
    Top view of unbaked chocolate cake in a tart shell
  • Let the cake cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack to cool.

Ganache

  • Place chopped chocolate in a medium, heat-proof bowl and set aside.
  • Heat the cream until it begins to simmer. Pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate and stir until smooth.
    Top view of heated heavy cream poured over chocolate chips
  • Let cool until it thickens; about 30 to 40 minutes. Before serving, spread onto cooled cake and enjoy!
    Top view of still warm chocolate ganache in a glass bowl with heatproof spatula

Video

Notes

To freeze: Wrap the cooled cake with plastic wrap followed by a layer of foil. Store in a freezer bag for up to 2 months. To serve, thaw in the refrigerator overnight in its wrapping.

Nutrition

Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 104mg | Potassium: 118mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 82IU | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate cake
4.56 from 9 votes (9 ratings without comment)

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