A dreamy Small Chocolate Cake made using just one 6-inch cake pan. This cake is soft and moist and paired with a super fudgy three ingredient chocolate frosting. It’s the perfect Small Batch Chocolate Cake that’ll feed just 4-6 people.
Meet the cake of my chocolate-covered dreams ❤️
A simple, moist Small Chocolate Cake covered in a super fudgy, stick-to-your-fork chocolate frosting. This tiny one-layer 6-inch cake makes just 4-6 slices, perfect for small celebrations or birthdays.
It’s easy to make – and even easier to eat!
why you will love this recipe
- It’s a chocolate lover’s dream
- It makes just one small 6-inch cake
- The cake is soft and moist and the frosting is oh-so-fudgy
- It’s perfect for small celebrations, anniversaries or birthdays
We are back with another fabulous small batch recipe today. This time, it’s all about chocolate cake. When dreaming up this recipe, I knew I wanted a simple, one-layer chocolate cake that could be made using a 6-inch cake pan.
I was looking for a soft and moist cake with a light and tender crumb. One that would pair perfectly with a thick layer of chocolate frosting. So I took inspiration from my favourite Chocolate Fudge Cake and scaled it down.
My first few attempts were average at best, but it didn’t take long before I had the ultimate Small Chocolate Cake. Add a thick layer of frosting and you have your hands on one AMAZING dessert.
Tell me more
While many chocolate cake recipes use oil for moisture, like my Chocolate Swiss Roll, this cake uses butter. Butter adds oodles of flavour and helps to create a truly tender crumb. And don’t worry, I made sure this buttery chocolate cake did not compromise on texture.
Using the creaming method to beat the butter and sugar until creamy and fluffy, ensures this cake has an oh-so-tender crumb. We also add sour cream to make sure this cake stays soft and moist for days.
After all, you know we have a strict ‘no dry cake’ policy around here. Honestly, this Small Chocolate Cake is so good, you can even eat it straight without any frosting!
tips for making perfect cake
- Start with softened butter: Using room temperature butter will make it quick and easy to beat together the butter and sugar, helping to create a soft and tender cake.
- Weigh your dry ingredients using a baking scale: Adding too much flour or cocoa powder could result in a dry or crumbly cake. Use a baking scale to make sure you don’t accidentally over-measure any ingredients.
- Don’t over-mix your cake batter: Your mixer won’t need to go higher than medium speed; any faster and you’ll risk over-mixing your cake batter.
- Try not to over-bake your cake: Check your cake is ready by inserting a skewer into the centre, if it comes out clean your cake is good to go. Over-baking your cake can also make it dry.
- Remove your cake from the pan: After five minutes, carefully remove your cake from the pan. If you let it cool completely in the hot pan, the sides will continue to cook and may harden and dry out.
fudgy chocolate ganache frosting
The perfect frosting for this cake is my three ingredient chocolate ganache. It’s thick, creamy and super fudgy. And it’s a scaled-down version of the frosting we know and love from our popular Chocolate Orange Cake (without the orange).
It’s super easy to make – you don’t even need an electric mixer – and it’s seriously face-plant-worthy. This recipe makes enough frosting to generously cover the top and sides of the cake. And it’ll take this cake from homemade to bakery-style.
- Thickened or heavy cream: Be sure to use a full fat thickened or heavy cream, minimum 30% fat for best results.
- Dark or semi-sweet chocolate: I recommend using a good quality chocolate that’s somewhere between 45-70% cocoa.
- Butter: Salted or unsalted is fine.
how to make chocolate ganache
- Heat cream: Add cream to a small saucepan and place it on a low heat, stirring as it warms.
- Add chocolate: Once the cream is warm (but not boiling), add chopped chocolate. Continue to stir while the chocolate melts and becomes smooth.
- Add butter: Finally, add the butter and stir until melted. Ganache will be smooth and glossy.
- Let it chill: Let the ganache cool slightly before placing it in the fridge for about 2 hours or until it’s thick enough to spread.
frequently asked questions
Of course! You can use chocolate buttercream, or any buttercream really. But this chocolate ganache frosting is so easy and really does make this cake next level good.
I’ve specifically designed this recipe to make only one small 6-inch cake. If you want to make a larger cake, try my Chocolate Fudge Cake recipe.
Sure! This recipe will make 4-6 regular-sized cupcakes.
more small batch recipes
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Small Chocolate Cake
A dreamy 6-inch chocolate cake topped with fudgy chocolate ganache. It serves 4-6.
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) hot water
- 75 grams (1/3 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 150 grams (3/4 cup) caster sugar or granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 90 grams (2/3 cup) plain flour or all purpose flour
- 20 grams (1/4 cup) cocoa powder, sifted
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) full fat sour cream, room temperature
Chocolate ganache frosting
- 180 ml (3/4 cup) thickened or heavy cream
- 150 grams (1 cup) dark or semi-sweet chocolate (50-70% cocoa), roughly chopped
- 10 grams (2 teaspoons) butter
- Small chocolate cake
Grease and line one 6-inch round cake pan with baking or parchment paper. Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F) standard / 160 C (320 F) fan-forced. Boil the kettle and pour out 1/4 cup water and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add butter, sugar and vanilla and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined and creamy.
- Add egg and beat briefly until combined. In a separate bowl, add plain flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt and lightly whisk.
- Add dry ingredients to the wet, along with the sour cream and hot water, and beat on a low speed just until the cake batter is combined and smooth.
- Pour batter into prepared cake pan and bake for approximately 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
- Leave the cake to cool for 5-10 minutes before carefully removing the cake from the pan and transferring it to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Chocolate ganache frosting
Pour cream into a small saucepan. Place on a low heat. Stir gently with a spatula while cream is warming.
- Once the cream is warm (but not boiling), add chopped chocolate. Continue to stir while chocolate melts and becomes smooth. Add butter and stir until melted. Ganache should be smooth and glossy.
- Remove chocolate ganache from heat and transfer to a heatproof bowl. Let it cool for 15 minutes and then place it in the fridge for about 2 hours or until it’s thick enough to spread. Give it a stir every 30 minutes.
- Once the ganache has thickened, generously frost the top of the cake using a small spatula.
Cocoa powder: I recommend using an unsweetened natural cocoa, but Dutch processed cocoa will work as well.
Sour cream: If you can get your hands on sour cream, use it. It will produce a lovely moist and tender cake. Alternatively, a full fat Greek or natural yogurt will also work well.
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