Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s chocolate cake recipe

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25 min


30 min

The secret to this rich, velvety, moist and easy chocolate cake is to use good-quality chocolate with at least 70% cocoa solids.


  • 250g dark chocolate (around 70% cocoa solids), broken into chunks
  • 250g unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 4 medium eggs, separated
  • 200g caster sugar (or 100g caster mixed with 100g soft light brown sugar)
  • 50g plain flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • You'll also need:
  • 23cm springform cake tin


  • Grease a 23cm springform cake tin and line the base with baking parchment.

  • Put the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and place it over a pan of barely simmering water, making sure the water doesn’t touch the base of the bowl. Stir occasionally until the butter and chocolate have melted.

  • Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a large bowl until well combined.

  • Stir the melted chocolate and butter into the egg and sugar mixture. Combine the flour and almonds and fold these in, too.

  • In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they hold firm peaks. Stir a large spoonful of egg white into the chocolate mixture to loosen it, then carefully fold in the rest of the egg whites with a large metal spoon or spatula, trying to keep in as much air as possible.

  • Pour the mixture into the prepared tin. Place in an oven preheated to 170°C (gas mark 3) and bake for about 30 mins, until only just set.

  • It should still wobble slightly in the centre – this means the cake will have a divinely sticky, fudgy texture once it’s cooled down. Leave to cool for 10-15 mins before releasing the tin.

  • Serve warm or cold, on its own or with a dollop of thick cream, creme fraiche or Greek yogurt. For a more adult version, you could stir a slug of whisky into whipped cream sweetened with a little icing sugar and serve it spooned over each slice of cake.

    Looking for a classic chocolate cake? Mary Berry’s chocolate cake recipe is the ultimate choice!

Top tip for making Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s chocolate cake

Top tip: If you use the caster and muscovado mix, the cake will have a lovely hint of caramel, but caster sugar on its own is fine too.

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