Chocolate Bundt Cake

This chocolate Bundt cake recipe looks elegant but is secretly simple to make. Good strong coffee and bourbon knock its flavor out of this world. With an even crumb and a fine texture, it’s an ideal chocolate Bundt cake for company.

Chocolate Bundt Cake Recipe

Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

This chocolate Bundt cake is not your run-of-the-mill chocolate cake!

What Makes This Chocolate Bundt Cake Special

In it, you'll find close to 2 cups of strong coffee and a quarter cup of bourbon.

Yes, you can sub the bourbon for another whisky or for just more coffee. But I do recommend using the bourbon if you have some on hand.

Bourbon has a wonderfully smoky flavor, and the cooking process cooks out almost all of the alcohol.

So the use of it is more akin to using vanilla, just a different flavor note. The cake will not taste like coffee—the coffee intensifies the chocolate flavor.

perfect chocolate bundt cake

Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

This recipe comes from my friend Chef Kathi Riley who used to work with Chef Judy Rodgers at the historic Union Hotel in Benicia, California in the early 1980s (pre-Zuni Cafe). This cake recipe was a favorite on the menu there and was served with whipped cream.

The cake has an even, fine crumb, has a complex chocolate flavor, and is relatively light. Perfect for pairing with vanilla ice cream. I hope you like it as much as we do!

picture perfect bundt cake on pedastal

Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

The Best Chocolate For This Bundt Cake

For a truly outstanding cake, use the best chocolate you can. Look specifically for bittersweet chocolate — 70% cacao works well — because it has more cacao solids and less sugar than semisweet chocolate. Bars are best, but you can (and should) make this with chocolate chips if that's what you have on hand.

How To Store Chocolate Bundt Cake

Store covered with a cake dome or plastic wrap on the countertop for up to 3 days. After that, refrigerate it tightly covered for up to another 4 days. Note: It will start to dry out as it sits in the fridge.

Freeze the whole cake or slices tightly wrapped in plastic wrap and a layer of foil for up to 2 months.

More Chocolate Cake Recipes To Try

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Chocolate Bundt Cake

Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 75 mins
Total Time 100 mins
Servings 12 to 16 servings
Yield 1 cake

The baking temperature is lower than one would usually use for baking a cake — 275°F.

If you're skipping the whisky, just use more coffee.

If using salted butter, reduce the salt to 1/8 teaspoon.

Ingredients

  • 7 ounces bittersweet chocolate (around 70% cacao), finely chopped

  • 1/2 cup (113 g) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan

  • 1 3/4 cups strong brewed coffee

  • 1/4 cup bourbon whiskey

  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3 tablespoons cocoa, for dusting the Bundt pan

  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar, for dusting the cake

Method

  1. Preheat the oven and prep the pan:

    Preheat the oven to 275°F. Grease inside of a 2-quart Bundt pan with a thin layer of butter. Sprinkle cocoa over the butter and tap out the excess. Set aside.

    Bundt pan greased and dusted with cocoa for nonstick

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  2. Melt the chocolate and butter with the coffee, bourbon, and salt:

    Place a metal bowl over a saucepan filled with an inch or two of water, making sure that the water is not touching the bottom of the metal bowl. Place the chocolate, butter, coffee, bourbon, and salt in the metal bowl. Heat the saucepan to a low simmer. (You are creating a double boiler to gently melt the chocolate mixture.)

    chocolate on a double boiler

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

    melting chocolate on stovetop

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

    Stir occasionally as the chocolate melts. Once the mixture is melted and smooth, remove the bowl from heat and let sit to cool for 15 minutes (you can chill it in the refrigerator if you want to speed up this process.)

  3. Mix the dry ingredients:

    In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the flour and baking soda.

    using a whisk to mix dry cake ingredients

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  4. Beat the eggs, sugar, and vanilla:

    In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, and vanilla together until light and foamy (you can use a hand mixer for this or a stand mixer).

    mixing bundt cake batter with a mixer

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  5. Finish the batter:

    Once the chocolate mixture has cooled sufficiently, slowly whisk it into the egg-sugar mixture. Then, stir in the flour mixture, a third at a time. Whisk until smooth. (The batter will be rather liquidy. Don't worry about it.)

    adding chocolate to cake batter

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

    whisking flour into cake batter

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  6. Bake:

    Pour batter into the prepared Bundt pan. Place on the middle rack of the preheated oven. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

    bundt pan filled with batter

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

    baked chocolate bundt cake

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  7. Cool slightly, then unmold:

    Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then gently remove from the pan and cool on a rack until completely cooled to room temperature.

    unmolded chocolate bundt cake on a cooling rack

    Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

  8. Sprinkle with powdered sugar:

    Transfer cake to a serving platter. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if using. Slice with a serrated bread knife to serve. Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
282 Calories
13g Fat
35g Carbs
4g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12 to 16
Amount per serving
Calories 282
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 13g 17%
Saturated Fat 8g 39%
Cholesterol 39mg 13%
Sodium 246mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 35g 13%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 19g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 21mg 2%
Iron 3mg 19%
Potassium 144mg 3%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.