March 21, 2013

Guinness chocolate cake

I have seen so many insanely delicious Guinness dessert recipes lately. I knew I wanted to make this Guinness chocolate cake for our St. Patrick's Day dinner this year because the recipe comes from Nigella Lawson (as modified here) and her Guinnness gingerbread is now a holiday tradition for us. It's just so, so good. The chocolate cake did not disappoint. I only made a few modifications, mainly changing the amount of sugar (I almost always lessen it and still find my desserts to be plenty sweet) and changed the frosting. Because guess what? I do not like frosting. Neither does my mom and she was coming to our dinner. Frosting is just too sweet for me and I almost always end up scraping it off. I do like a cream cheese frosting on a carrot cake, but, in general, no thanks. For this cake, I added a tiny bit of sugar and vanilla to mascarpone cheese. It was perfect for me. Plus, what isn't delicious slathered in some mascarpone cheese?

I don't think that this cake should be relegated to St. Patrick's Day only just because it contains some Guinness. The Guinness adds a bit of maltiness to the chocolate and makes the flavor richer - but you certainly would never guess there was beer in it from the taste.

Guinness chocolate cake 
1 cup Guinness
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
3/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour 
1/4 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 teaspoons baking soda

for the frosting:
1- 8 oz. container mascarpone cheese
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1-inch of vanilla bean, optional

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of an 8 or 9-inch springform cake pan with parchment paper and grease the rest of the pan with butter.

In a medium saucepan heat the Guinness and butter over medium heat, stirring often until melted and combined. Whisk in the cocoa and sugars. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sour cream, eggs, and vanilla until very well combined. Slowly whisk in the cooled butter-beer mixture. 

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Add the mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.

Pour into the cake pan. Tap the pan firmly onto the counter a few times to release air bubbles. Bake until an inserted toothpick comes out cleanly, about 40-45 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Release the springform and gently slide a knife around the edge of the cake. Remove from the pan.

If using the vanilla bean, scrape out the pulp with a knife. Mix up the frosting until the sugar is dissolved and it is spreadable. Spread on the top of the cake. Serve and refrigerate any leftovers. 

What was I cooking one year ago?: Mexican spiced bean and egg breakfast stacks
Two years ago?: tarragon chicken
Three?: chicken gyros        


  1. I'm having trouble with this recipe. Every time I pour the first ingredient, it disappears. I need a solution.


    1. That is a dilemma, Ryan. I'm not sure what to do for you. Maybe the fourth or fifth time, it will work :-)

  2. I plan on still baking with guinness even though St. patty's day has passed...and this cake looks like the perfect place to start!

  3. I've always wanted to try Nigella's gingerbread cake, and now I want to try this one, too!

  4. YUMMY! Sounds & looks so tempting ! Bookmarking this recipe , will be making it pretty soon! ;)

  5. you and i are exact opposites in that the frosting is most often my favorite part! regardless, i'd enjoy all aspects of this one. :)

  6. This sounds like a delicious chocolate cake, one that I must try.

  7. The cake looks fantastic, and I love the simplified frosting. Yum!

  8. Sounds delicious! And I love the idea of a mascarpone frosting.

  9. Looks great. I'm with you on frosting - almost always too sweet and unnecessary

  10. Looks good! When I was in Dublin last year they served Guinness bread, you should try baking some.

  11. Ahh YUM! I love a good Guinness cake, and St. Patricks day is a perfect excuse :P Hope it was tasty!

  12. Looks fabulous! I love baking and cooking with beer, especially guinness!

  13. I love guinness in baked goods, and your cake looks divine. YUM!

  14. Never baked with guinness, looks like a great recipe!
    Amy ,love your idea to replace the traditional frosting with a mascarpone frosting.
    Not to sweet but still tasty and for sure it gives a magic touch to the cake :)

  15. What a decadent cake! I agree Guinness should be for anytime! I am a frosting lover! Wish I wasn't but I have such a bad sweet tooth.

  16. Hi Amy, your guinness cake look good, sound interesting. Love the cheese frosting. :))

    Have a nice week ahead,regards.

  17. I actually just posted something similar today- and linked to you! :)


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