Chocolate Cake, one bowl

chocolate cake recipe

One Bowl Chocolate Cake is a basic necessity in every household and every kitchen. Here’s a simple, drop, stir, bake recipe to impress your family with! 

This Chocolate Cake is: 

  • Moist
  • Rich and fudgy
  • Made with (lots of) cocoa
  • Requires only one bowl
  • Uses store cupboard ingredients
  • Perfect for weekend baking

Chocolate cake can make the world go round. I would know, ‘cos this is the effect chocolate has on me and my world. I must say that I am not the biggest chocolate fan out there. Given the option between a lemon and chocolate cake, I would more often than not pick the lemon one. I love a good citrus burst, but there are times when only chocolate will do. This cake is for those days when you know nothing will hit the spot like chocolate. 

My lust for chocolate cake goes as far back as when I was a child and pre-teen, where my family could easily quiet me with a bar of chocolate, or, and this is very important even today, a McDonald’s Chocolate Milkshake. If it wasn’t for the heaty element of chocolate, I think this obsession would have never broken. Alas, the pain of a sore throat was much too heavy to bear. 

For more on heaty/cooling foods, click here!

Good for you

No, but really. Is chocolate at all good for you? Yes, it can. When raw, or unsweetened, chocolate can do more wonders for your body than bad. So when does it all go south, you ask? With the addition of sugar. Sugar helps to sweeten chocolate and make it more palatable, because raw cocoa tastes more bitter than anything we’d care to put into our mouths. Having said that, cacao nibs and raw cacao has been met with great reception in the raw and organic markets. 

If you’re still wondering what benefits raw chocolate can bring to us, read this. Essentially, raw chocolate can: 

  • Help you manage stress
  • Focus better
  • Promote clear skin

With these wonderful benefits in consuming raw and unsweetened chocolate, why do we insist on adding sugar to cakes and other chocolate confectionery? Because it damn well tastes awesome, that’s why. And look, I’m not campaigning for the benefits of chocolate with this cake recipe. I can tell you, however, that eating this cake will definitely help alleviate a whole lotta stress. Speaking from experience, of course. 

Easy Chocolate Cake

This is a one-bowl recipe. This essentially means you have to just load all the ingredients into a large, large bowl, then whisk, pour and bake. That’s it! I can’t think of an easier, or faster way to make a delicious cake. This recipe yields a rather runny batter. Do not panic seeing how runny the batter actually is, this is a very good thing. 

Cocoa powder has highly drying properties. That is to say, recipes that require cocoa powder usually need to be as wet as running water. Cocoa, unlike cooking chocolate, tends to suck up the moisture in a cake when developing in the oven. When this happens, additional water molecules are required to keep the cake moist in the oven because don’t forget, the heat from the oven will also cause moisture to evaporate. An extremely runny batter like this one ensures that you get a moist cake with a soft, close crumb rather than a dry, mealy one. 

Also a point to note, this cake has an exceptional amount of cocoa powder: 75g. I know that in theory, this does not sound like a lot. However when you compare it to most recipes that call for 40g or at most 50g of cocoa powder, this one is a heavy hitter. All the more reason for the cake to be wet, no? 

For more on the differences between cocoa powder and actual cooking chocolate, click here.

Given how runny this batter is, a spring-form cake pan will not work here. If you only have springform cake pans, then I would advise you to wrap up the pan in aluminum foil before you place it in the oven to catch the drips. The batter will just flow out of the pan otherwise. And depending on how tight the seal is on your springform pan, create a mess that will not be worth the clean-up. Trust me. I’ve also used an aluminum tin to bake this cake, as opposed to coated metal. I find that this helps to distribute heat more evenly throughout the batter in the given time. For more on the types of cake tins you should be using when baking cakes, click on the link below! 

The secret to a moist chocolate cake

Chocolate cake, like pointed out earlier, can come out super dry if the cocoa is not accounted for. In addition to a wet better, buttermilk, yoghurt or sourcream are perfect to balance the moisture and bring out the chocolate flavour. I do not buy sour cream from the market, unless I’m making a chocolate cake. Call me Asian, but I hardly have a need for sour cream otherwise in my kitchen. And when it comes to this rather sinful and delectable chocolate cake, I use buttermilk. 

However, I also do not buy buttermilk from the stores. You can, of course. But I use a nifty little trick to get my buttermilk for cakes like these. So buttermilk is essentially curdled milk. You can make this by adding lemon juice or vinegar to plain milk and leaving it out for about 10 mins to curdle naturally. This is but one option. I use my pantry to my advantage here, so I get my buttermilk by mixing yoghurt (which I always have) and milk (which I also always have). Essentially, buttermilk can be made with 50% each of yogurt and milk! Fancy yet simple, huh? 

chocolate cake quick recipe

Do you love chocolate cakes? 

I do, too! Here are some of my favourite chocolate cake recipes my kitchen and stomach have witnessed over the years: 

For more chocolate recipes, click here! This includes the original recipe for a one-bowl chocolate cake that I made a couple of years ago, though it’s not as rich as this one. 

Making the cake 

Why do we need instructions for a one bowl cake, you ask? Because everything in life has a system, and my personal OCD tendencies appreciate this fact. 

I know that most oven-related recipes require you to preheat the oven before anything else, and this recipe is no different. Once you have the oven going, go ahead and melt the butter. The butter needs to be slightly cooled before being added to the batter.

When the butter is melted, set it aside and work on making the buttermilk. Like what I said earlier, this is essentially an instant-fix buttermilk; so measure out equal portions of milk and yoghurt in a measuring jug and whisk with a fork to combine. Then set this aside while you gather all the remaining ingredients. 

I find it particularly easy on the post-baking-wash-exercise if you sift everything directly into the bowl in which you’re making the cake. This would mean you do not need separate bowls for everything. 

Measure out everything into a large bowl, and whisk it using a large wired-whisk. This will come together in under 3 minutes. Then just pour it out into the baking tray and place the cake into the oven. 

Although this cake takes longer than usual to cook (up to an hour), you don’t need a foil to cover the top because the temperature is kept quite low. 

Eating cake

I know no one, and I believe this, NO ONE, should tell you how to enjoy your chocolate cake. However, this cake is extremely good on its own, with a blob of fresh or clotted cream, or with fresh berries. 

Chocolate Cake, one bowl

Recipe by Krishy MalCourse: DessertDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



One Bowl Chocolate Cake is a basic necessity in every household and every kitchen. Here’s a simple, drop, stir, bake recipe to impress your family with! 

You’ll need;

  • 190g Unsalted Butter, melted and cooled

  • 2 tsp Instant Coffee

  • 125ml Hot Water

  • 250ml Buttermilk (see notes)

  • 220g Brown Sugar

  • 120g White Sugar

  • 75g Cocoa Powder

  • 2 Eggs

  • 150g Plain Flour

  • 1½  tsp Baking Powder

  • ½ tsp Baking Soda

  • 70g sliced/chopped Almonds

You’ll need to;

  • Preheat the oven to 160°C, fan. Mix the instant coffee and hot water together, set aside. Grease an 8-inch deep round cake tin with cooking spray or butter, and line the base with parchment. You can dust the tin with cocoa powder, but this is not necessary; I didn’t do it!
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients for the cake, except the chopped almonds. Mix with a whisk or hand-held mixer until it’s one homogeneous mixture. Pour out this mixture into your prepared tin, and strew the top with the chopped nuts.
  • Transfer the cake to the oven and bake for 50 mins to 1 hour. Check to see that the cake is cooked at the 50 min mark by inserting a skewer into the centre of the cake. You are not looking for dry crumbs, this cake will never be that way. You are looking for damp crumbs clinging to the skewer.
  • Remove and let cool for up to an hour, before transferring the cake out and serving it for everyone to enjoy.


  • You can use store-bought buttermilk, or make your own with equal parts of yoghurt and milk.
  • The chopped nuts at the end are totally optional.
  • I would not recommend using a stand-mixer for this; it’s a very wet batter and the mixture goes everywhere when mixed fast.

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