Delicious Espresso Cake Recipe: Your New Favorite Dessert

Are you looking for a delicious treat that packs a punch of caffeine? Look no further than the Espresso Cake! This recipe is perfect for coffee-lovers who want to enjoy their favorite beverage in a new and exciting way.

The rich, smooth flavor of espresso pairs perfectly with the chocolatey goodness of this cake. It’s the perfect dessert to serve after dinner or to enjoy with a cup of coffee in the morning. And for those who are looking for a vegan option, this recipe can easily be adapted to fit that dietary need too!

Not only is this cake delicious, it’s also simple and easy to make. All you need are basic baking ingredients and instant espresso powder, which can easily be found at your local grocery store. Let me guide you through the process to create a silky espresso-infused cake that will make your taste buds dance with joy!

So, whether you’re an avid coffee drinker or just looking for a unique dessert option, this Espresso Cake recipe is sure to impress. Let’s get baking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Espresso Cake
Espresso Cake

Are you a coffee lover? Do you crave something sweet that can give you a boost of energy in your daily routine? Look no further, as this Espresso Cake recipe will be your new favorite dessert.

Picture it, rich espresso cake layers combined with silky espresso frosting and hints of bittersweet chocolate chips. One bite of this Espresso Chocolate Chip Cake will transport you to the warm embrace of your favorite coffee shop.

This recipe has been crafted with care and attention to detail, making it a true showstopper at any event or gathering. But don’t just take my word for it, once you try it yourself, it will become a staple in your baking repertoire.

The perfect combination of unbleached all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, and instant espresso powder creates an explosion of flavor in each bite. The ingredients balance perfectly, creating a moist and decadent texture that every cake enthusiast craves. And if that wasn’t enough, the chocolate chips add a layer of crunchiness to the cake.

But wait, there’s more! This Espresso Cake is not only delicious but can also be vegan-friendly with small tweaks to the recipe – just substitute eggs with ground flax seeds mixed with water and unsweetened applesauce for the butter. Incredibly easy to make!

This recipe will surely impress any coffee or chocolate lover and make you the star baker. So why not indulge yourself in this exceptional creation? Give this Chocolate Espresso Cake recipe a chance, and I guarantee it will become your new favorite dessert!

Ingredient List

 A slice of heavenly goodness.
A slice of heavenly goodness.

Before you begin your journey into the espresso chocolate cake world, it’s time to take stock and gather all the necessary cake ingredients. The following is a comprehensive list of everything you’ll need to make this delicious cake recipe:

Dry Ingredients:

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups turbinado sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 2 cups brewed coffee, cooled
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed mixed with 3 tablespoons water (or use an egg if not vegan)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon espresso coffee powder

Optional Add-Ons:

  • Chocolate chips for an extra hint of sweetness, or try using orange espresso or mocha to mix things up!

Ensure you have all of these ingredients ready before beginning the recipe; it will be worth it in the end when you’re enjoying a silky, rich espresso chocolate cake.

The Recipe How-To

 Perfect for coffee lovers and dessert enthusiasts.
Perfect for coffee lovers and dessert enthusiasts.

Preheat Oven and Prepare Pans

First and foremost, it is crucial to preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). This temperature ensures that the cake rises evenly and remains fluffy. While the oven is heating, prepare two 9-inch round baking pans by greasing them with a little bit of unsalted butter or oil. Dust the buttered surface with flour and tap off any excess.

Mix Dry Ingredients

Sift together 1 ¾ cups of unbleached all-purpose flour, ½ cup of whole wheat flour, 2 teaspoons of espresso powder, 1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder and 1 teaspoon of baking soda into a bowl. Add in ¼ teaspoon of salt and give everything a good mix.

Mix Wet Ingredients

In a separate bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons of ground flax seed with 5 tablespoons of water. Let it sit for about 5 minutes until it gets thickened up. Once it’s ready, add in 1 cup of unsweetened applesauce, ¾ cup of turbinado sugar, ½ cup of neutral oil, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and combine everything.

Combine Both Mixtures

Add the wet ingredients mixture to the dry mix, and whisk both well until they’re completely combined. To ensure there are no lumps remaining, stir the mixture until smooth yet firm but be cautious not to overwork it.

Pour Batter into Pans & Bake

Pour an equal amount of batter into both prepared pans then put them in the preheated oven on a middle rack position. Let them bake for 25-30 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Cool Before Plating

Once cooked, remove from oven to cool on wire racks for about 10 minutes while still in their pans until they’re completely cooled down. At this point, you can slide a knife around the edges of the pan to release any stuck edges. Lastly, slide a palette knife along the bottom of each pan to make sure the espresso cake layers are fully released from the pan’s surface.

Congratulations, you’ve just baked a rich and decadent espresso cake!

Substitutions and Variations

 Indulge in the rich and bold flavors of espresso.
Indulge in the rich and bold flavors of espresso.

We understand that everyone has different dietary restrictions and preferences, so we’ve put together some substitutions and variations for our Espresso Cake Recipe. If you’re looking to make this cake recipe vegan, simply swap out the large eggs with a flax egg mixture consisting of 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed mixed with 3 tablespoons of water per egg. Additionally, you can use unsweetened applesauce or mashed bananas as an egg substitute as well.

For those looking for a gluten-free option, you can substitute the unbleached all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour with a 1:1 gluten-free flour blend, such as Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. You can also use almond flour or coconut flour in place of the all-purpose flour if you prefer a denser consistency.

If you’d like to switch up the flavor profile of our Espresso Cake Recipe, consider adding in chocolate chips, chopped nuts or dried fruit to the batter before baking. You could also try using orange zest or cinnamon to enhance the espresso flavor in a unique way.

For an extra caffeinated kick, dissolve 1 tablespoon of instant espresso powder into the water used to make the batter instead of using brewed coffee. This substitutes perfectly without changing the texture of your cake. By adding extra cocoa powder into your chocolate orange recipe, this helps boost rich mocha and chocolate flavors.

Whether you’re making changes for dietary reasons or just looking to experiment with different flavors, these substitutions and variations will help you get creative with our Espresso Cake Recipe while still achieving that silky espresso goodness.

Serving and Pairing

 Satisfy your sweet tooth with this decadent cake.
Satisfy your sweet tooth with this decadent cake.

This exquisite espresso cake recipe is perfect for those who love a rich espresso taste with a touch of chocolate in every bite. This cake is excellent for special occasions or simply as a delightful addition to your dessert menu.

Pairing your espresso cake with hot coffee will not only complement and enhance the flavors, but it will also add a coffee-forward profile to the already-present espresso flavor. I recommend pairing this cake with a nice cup of silky espresso or brewed coffee to elevate the experience.

If you want something more indulgent, serve each slice of cake with a dollop of whipped cream and summer fruits such as strawberries, blueberries or blackberries. These fruits provide an exciting contrast of sweetness and tartness that elevate the rich flavors of this decadent dessert.

For those who prefer something more refreshing, try serving this cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or top it off with delicious chocolate sauce. You could also garnish the cake with toasted almonds or hazelnuts to add a little bit of crunch and nuttiness to each bite.

This recipe is perfect for any occasion – make it when you’re having guests over or just looking for something sweet and comforting after dinner. Its richness and balance make it perfect for rounding up a meal or for sharing an indulgent afternoon treat. Serve it however you like it: whether that’s fresh out of the oven, cold from the fridge or room temperature; you won’t be able to stop at just one piece!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The perfect pairing for a warm cup of coffee.
The perfect pairing for a warm cup of coffee.

As a barista, I know that not everyone has the time to make a cake from scratch whenever the mood strikes them. That’s why I’m happy to say that this espresso cake recipe is perfect for making ahead of time!

If you’d like to make the cake layers in advance, simply store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days or in the freezer for up to three months. To thaw frozen cake layers, move them to the fridge for about 12 hours before you plan on assembling your cake.

Once your cake is fully assembled, you can store it at room temperature, covered loosely with plastic wrap or foil for up to three days. If you’re not going to finish it within that time period, consider refrigerating it instead. Just be sure to bring it back up to room temperature before serving.

If you prefer your cake slightly warm with a silky espresso glaze, reheat individual slices by placing them in the microwave for 10-15 seconds or in a toaster oven for 3-4 minutes. This will give you that freshly baked goodness without having to start from scratch every time.

Overall, this espresso cake recipe is versatile and great for any occasion – whether it’s made fresh or made ahead of time!

Tips for Perfect Results

 A chocolatey delight topped with creamy frosting.
A chocolatey delight topped with creamy frosting.

Now that you have all the ingredients in front of you, here are a few tips that can help you achieve perfect results with this delicious espresso cake recipe.

1. Strong and Smooth Espresso

What’s an espresso cake without the rich and bold flavor of espresso? Use good quality instant espresso powder to enhance the flavor profile of your chocolate espresso cake. You can also use brewed espresso or even add silky espresso shots to your cake layers for added intensity.

2. Proper Measurements

Measurements matter when it comes to baking, especially with cakes that rely on specific ratios and proportions for the perfect rise and crumb texture. Be sure to measure your ingredients correctly, using measuring cups and spoons instead of eyeballing them to get accurate results.

3. The Cake Layers

To ensure that your espresso cake layers are perfectly baked without drying out, use a toothpick or a cake tester to check for doneness before removing them from the oven. Remember not to overmix the batter as this can lead to tough and dry cakes.

4. Cooling Times

It’s important to cool your cake layers completely before starting to frost them to avoid any melting frosting issues. Additionally, cooling helps the flavors meld together for a more balanced taste.

5. Room Temperature Ingredients

Allowing room temperature ingredients such as eggs, milk, and butter will help these ingredients incorporate into the batter more easily, leading to better texture and consistency of the resulting cake.

6. Different Types of Flours

Experiment with different types of flours like whole wheat flour or almond flour for added flavor dimensions in your chocolate espresso cake recipe.

7. Substitutions

If you’re looking for vegan substitutions, consider replacing eggs with ground flax seed and unsweetened applesauce instead of butter.

8. Portion Control

Be sure to cut your cake slices evenly so that everyone gets an equal portion of the deliciousness!

By following these simple tips, you can elevate the taste and presentation of your espresso cake recipe, impressing everyone at the table.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this mocha-inspired chocolate espresso cake recipe is the perfect indulgence for any coffee lover. Its rich flavors and silky texture will leave you wanting more with every bite. Whether you’re a vegan or not, this recipe is easy to make and perfect for any occasion – from birthday parties to holiday gatherings.

With simple substitutions and variations, you can customize this chocolate espresso cake to fit your personal preferences. Serve it with a cup of brewed coffee or pair it with some fresh fruit for the ultimate dessert experience.

So why wait? Preheat your oven, gather your ingredients, and get ready to indulge in the ultimate chocolate espresso cake. Trust me when I say that this will be the best cake recipe you’ll ever try. Enjoy!

Espresso Cake

Espresso Cake Recipe

This is a recipe from the Food Network show "Sarah's Secrets" that I've modified to be vegan. She recommends serving the cake with fat-free frozen yogurt or raspberry sauce and powdered sugar.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Global
Calories 50.1 kcal


  • 2/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup turbinado sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 9 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup strong brewed espresso


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Spray a 9 inch cake pan with cooking spray and dust with additional cocoa powder. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the flours, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and flaxseed.
  • In another bowl, combine the applesauce, water, vanilla, and espresso.
  • Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and pour into the prepared pan.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  • Run a knife around the edge of the cake and invert onto the wire rack to cool completely.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 49gCalories: 50.1kcalCarbohydrates: 9.7gProtein: 2.1gFat: 1.4gSaturated Fat: 0.4gSodium: 107.3mgFiber: 2.6gSugar: 0.2g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Beginner Cook, Dessert, Easy, Egg-free, For Large Groups, Free Of..., Vegan
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