Triple layer chocolate cake recipe

(6721 ratings)

Our triple layer chocolate cake is one of our most indulgent bakes and it’s perfect for birthdays, parties and bake sales.

Triple layer chocolate cake
(Image credit: Getty Images)
Preparation Time20 mins
Cooking Time45 mins
Total Time1 hours 5 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories606 Kcal30%
Sugar61.7 g69%
Fat31.2 g45%
Saturated Fat19 g95%
Salt0.88 gRow 4 - Cell 2
Protein6 g12%
Carbohydrates74.8 g29%
Salt0.88 gRow 7 - Cell 2

Kids will love this triple layer chocolate cake. It’s easy to make and can serve around 20 people. 

If your little one loves chocolate, firstly we think they have excellent taste and secondly, you need to make this chocolate sponge cake together! The sponge ingredients are combined using an electric mixer and kids will enjoy helping to measure and add all the ingredients. We’ve made the buttercream extra indulgent by using melted chocolate instead of just cocoa powder. 


For the cake:

  • 150g cocoa powder
  • 600ml boiling water
  • 360g butter, softened
  • 600g caster sugar
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 eggs, room temperature
  • 360g self raising flour
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • ½tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½tsp salt

For the buttercream:

  • 250g butter, softened
  • 500g icing sugar, sifted
  • 200g dark chocolate plus extra
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 2tbsp milk

You'll also need:

  • 3x 25cm round baking tins or 4x 20cm round baking tin




  1. Heat the oven to 180C (160C fan, Gas 4). Lightly grease and flour the 25cm round cake tins.
  2. Combine the boiling water with the cocoa powder and stir until smooth. Leave to cool. Sift the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and salt, set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla then the eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition. Add all of the flour, gently mix until just combined. Fold in the cooled cocoa.
  4. Divide the mixture into the prepared cake tins and bake for 35 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. Loosen the edges with a knife to reduce cracking the cake as it cools and shrinks. Leave to cool for 20 mins then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. While the cake cools, make the buttercream. Melt the chocolate over a bain marie. Set aside to cool a little.
  6. Cream the butter until smooth, gradually add the icing sugar and continue to cream until light and fluffy. Add the chocolate and beat until combined. Finally add the vanilla and the milk, creaming until combined and the mixture is soft, add a little extra milk if you feel it is not a spreadable mixture.
  7. Level the top of the sponges so they are completely flat. Using a palette knife spread a coating of buttercream onto the top of the bottom two cake layers. Sandwich the three layers together.
  8. Spread a coating of buttercream over the top of the cake, then coat the sides. Garnish the top with grated chocolate, if you like. 

Watch how to make this triple layer chocolate cake

Top tips for making triple layer chocolate cake

If you don't have a bain-marie simply melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Make sure the bowl doesn't touch the water and stir until it's melted. You could also melt the chocolate in the microwave in small short bursts of 10-20 seconds of heat at a time - stir each time. 

Can you freeze this triple chocolate cake?

You can freeze the un-iced chocolate sponges once baked and cool. Wrap tightly in clingfilm and freeze for up to a month. Allow to defrost fully before decorating. 

Can I fill the cake with double cream?

Chocolate and cream are a delicious duo. If you want to fill the cake with double cream instead of chocolate buttercream we recommend whipping it to soft peaks with a little vanilla essence. Cakes with a fresh cream filling need to be kept in the fridge. 

Profile picture of Jessica Ransom
Jessica Ransom

“One of my favourite combinations is chocolate and cherry. To give this cake a Black Forest makeover I would spread a generous layer of cherry jam or compote over the sponge cakes before topping with the buttercream. You could even soak the middle sponge with a little kirsh for an adult-only flavour twist!”

In the video for this recipe we show how easy it is to make the cake using a stand mixer. If you haven’t got one, read food editor Jessica Dady’s full KitchenAid stand mixer review.

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Design Series 4.7L Blossom - Artisan - View at KitchenAid 

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Design Series 4.7L Blossom - Artisan - View at KitchenAid 

Although a mixer is a big investment, when you see how much easier it is to bake and cook with it, the cost per use will even out the price. There are so many colours available so you can match it perfectly to your interior design and it will look very attractive on your kitchen side. 

Mary Berry's chocolate fudge cake is another delicious recipe for any chocolate lover. Our chocolate drip cake is an impressive option for birthdays or our chocolate ganache cake is another great option. 

Rosie Conroy
Food Writer

Rosie is an experienced food and drinks journalist who has spent over a decade writing about restaurants, cookery, and foodie products. Previously Content Editor at and Digital Food Editor on Woman&Home, Rosie is well used to covering everything from food news through to taste tests. Now, as well as heading up the team at SquareMeal - the UK's leading guide to restaurants and bars - she also runs a wedding floristry business in Scotland called Lavender and Rose.

With contributions from