Chocolate Mud Cake

September 28, 2008

I have some pretty pictures and things to post, but am quite bogged down with uni work at the moment (1200 word essay due tomorrow, among other things), so today I’m just going to provide you with my chocolate mud cake recipe.

This is the cake I make if I need to make a carved or shaped cake – like a topsy-turvy cake or the car cake I made for my uncle’s 40th. It’s not only utterly delicious, but very dense and easy to shape.

This makes a pretty decent cake – 25cm round, and will easily serve 30+, as it’s very very rich and can be enjoyed in small portions. If you’re after a smaller cake try halving the recipe in a 20cm round tin (although it calls for 5 eggs, halve by using three small or two extra large eggs). Also, for you folk who prefer to work in the imperial system, sorry! I don’t have time to convert – but there are plenty of websites that can do that for you, just search for ‘imperial metric conversion’.

325g white sugar
500g butter, cut into chunks
500g milk chocolate chips
750ml boiling water
325g flour
75g cocoa
25g baking powder
5 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 160 degrees celcius, and grease a 25cm round cake tin (if you’re using a springform tin put a tray underneath, as the batter is thin and can drip. Non-springform is best for this cake).
Put sugar, butter and chocolate chips into a very large bowl, and pour the boiling water over the top. Stir to melt and combine all ingredients.
When you have a chocolatey soup, add all the remaining ingredients, and beat until smooth. Pour into cake tin and place in oven.
Cooking time will vary depending on your oven, but check after 50 minutes, and continue to check every 5-10 minutes until it’s done. You can tell if it’s cooked when a knife inserted into the cake comes out with a cakey-looking substance, as opposed to a batter-looking substance. Unlike other cakes, if your knife comes out clean, you’ve cooked it for too long.
After you remove the cake from the oven, leave it to cool for at least an hour before turning it out of the pan, as it will be very fragile while still warm.

If I’m using this as a base for a shaped cake I would ice it with a chocolate ganache (which I would also use as glue where necessary), and then fondant icing. However, if you just want a mud cake it stands perfectly well on its own two feet – it doesn’t need icing.

And now I’d better go work on that essay!



  1. Hey there, just wondering if this is for a deep cake pan or just a regular one? It seems like a huge amount of butter and water.

  2. This is definitely a deep cake pan. I like my cakes tall, and this one doesn’t layer so well. 🙂

  3. Thanks for the help! The mud cake worked out great! I’ve never tried making or using fondant or making tiered cakes, so this was my first attempt, but I think I did alright!

  4. I love your cake! The little snowmen are so cute – and you did really well with the fondant, it can be so tricksy sometimes. 🙂

  5. Rosa, What would you suggest I use for a topsy turvy cake that would layer well?

  6. I’m not sure I understand by layer well – it’s important to use a cake that has some structure for topsy-turvy cakes – a delicate crumbly cake would probably fall apart – but whatever you like. I prefer this mud cake as it is very dense, everyone loves it and it goes a long way (and since topsy turvy cakes are usually for a crowd this works well).

  7. Thanks! (that’s what I meant) lol 🙂 How much batter does this recipe make? I am making a 10, 8 & 6 inch cake.

  8. It makes two layers of 10″ cake – so you’d need 3 mixes to make a 10/8/6 topsy turvy cake and you might have a bit of batter left over. It’s a pretty big mix (even just one batch!) so make sure you have a big bowl (or pot if you don’t have a bowl). 🙂

  9. I’m in luck, I have a very big bowl! 🙂 Thanks, that helps me a lot! Can’t wait to try it out!

  10. Hi, am going to attempt a topsy-turvey cake with this recipe, with two cakes of each size in each layer. Would I need to have supports in it?
    I’ve never done that before and wouldn’t know what to use, I heard kebab sticks?
    And how would I position them ?

  11. You would need supports – kebab sticks work well for a topsy turvy cake because the layers are tall and you can cut them to size. I would put 3-4 in lower layers (in the centre of the cake so the holes will be hidden by upper tiers), and I’d put a hole in the middle of the base for the top tier and put a longer one through that (but not all the way to the top because you don’t want to see it) – this will hold the tiers in place, and also support the upper tiers. Hope that makes sense!

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