Recipe: boozy Guinness chocolate cake

Cake, but with generous splash of Ireland’s national drink… 

No, it’s not St Patrick’s Day, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t add a little Irish to your baking. This dark, rich chocolate cake with lashings of frosting is one of my all-time favourite things to bake (and eat), as the Guinness really does give this it something extra.

The stout alters the texture rather than the flavour, although you do get a slight tang of Guinness cutting through. Yes, it’s surprisingly delicious even without a topping, but it really cries out for lashings of cream cheese frosting (or even a greedy helping of white-chocolate icing if that’s more your sort of thing) on top. If you’d like to try it out for yourself, here’s my recipe.



Recipe: drunken Guinness chocolate cake

Serves: up to 10 slices
Preparation: 15-20 minutes
Cooking time: 35-45 minutes


For the cake
100ml Guinness
120g unsalted butter
50g cocoa powder
200g light brown sugar
100g whole milk (alternatively, use sour cream)
2 eggs
175g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the cream cheese frosting
60g unsalted butter, softened
120g cream cheese (full fat is always best)
300g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract


1. Before you do anything else, preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 160°C, gas mark 4).

2. Butter a loaf tin (900g) and line with baking paper, making sure that it’s hanging over the sides. This will make things easier when it comes to removing the cake.

3. Next, melt the butter over a medium heat. Remove from the hob and pour in the Guinness followed by the cocoa powder, and whisk until the texture is smooth. Then whisk in eggs, milk and sugar.

4. Combine the bicarbonate of soda and salt together in a separate bowl. Pour in the Guinness mixture and whisky briefly (and not too vigorously) until it all comes together into a smooth texture.

5. Transfer the mixture into the loaf tin you prepared earlier and bake for 35-45 minutes (or until the skewer comes out clean).

6. Once ready, leave in the tin to cool for 10-15 minutes before lifting out with care. Then transfer to cooling rack to cool down completely before spreading over oodles of cream cheese frosting.

7. While the cake’s cooling, it’s time to tackle the frosting. Make sure the butter is nice and soft and gradually beat in the icing sugar bit by bit using an electric mixer. Beat until light and fluffy.

8. Then, mix the cream cheese bit by bit, followed by the vanilla, until just combined. Be careful not to over mix.

9. Spread the frosting generously over the completely cooled cake. Then decorate with some grated chocolate.

10. Serve with a lovely cup of tea (or I suppose a pint of Guinness would be an acceptable accompaniment)




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