Once you've tried this recipe, you won't want to go back to your old chocolate cake recipes.
What is a Molly Cake?
This is my fave chocolate sponge cake and it has its own name, we call it chocolate Molly Cake and it's simply the vanilla molly cake recipe in a chocolate version that is super popular in France.
This is the best chocolate sponge cake recipe, it has both a fluffy and tender texture which makes it a great recipe for cake layers.
And it is precisely a secret and unusual ingredient that is not found in regular sponge cake recipes, the whipped cream that gives it this incredible fluffy texture and that makes it a perfect sponge cake.
And this chocolate sponge cake made with unsweetened cocoa powder and no butter but instead whipped cream is super easy to make at home.
More Sponge Cakes
Why you'll love this recipe
Try it and you'll love it, make chocolate sponge cake for all your birthday cakes and other occasions, it's really amazing.
- Easy recipe with this step-by-step and video recipe with simple ingredients and my tips for success.
- Perfect texture, both airy and light and firm enough for layer cakes. The whipped cream gives it enough fat to moisten it and does not firm up like butter, so it keeps a soft crumb.
- Delicious chocolate taste provided by unsweetened cocoa powder.
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Ingredients and substitutions
Here are the ingredients needed to make this fluffy chocolate sponge cake and possible substitutions, scroll down the page to see the quantities in the recipe card.
- Eggs: Use room-temperature eggs.
- Sugar: A white granulated sugar (no powdered sugar) that you can replace with flavored sugar, such as brown sugar for more flavor.
- Vanilla: Essential to flavor the recipe even if it is chocolate.
- Flour: White wheat cake flour which you can replace with all-purpose flour, or with a gluten-free flour mix.
- Cocoa: Use bitter cocoa powder and especially unsweetened.
- Yeast: Measure the quantity of baking powder with a scale, you can replace it with baking soda but be careful with the quantity because it is 4 times more powerful than baking powder.
- Salt: Essential for the texture and to bring out the flavor.
- Heavy cream: To make the whipped cream, you must use cold, full-fat heavy cream with at least 30% fat.
- Chocolate chips: For more flavor, you can also add chocolate chips at the end of the preparation.
- Nuts: To add texture, crushed almonds or hazelnuts.
- Fruit: Fresh raspberries or berries go well with chocolate.
⚠️ You will find the quantities and complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of the page.
How to make a chocolate sponge
Mix the dry ingredients
- In a large bowl mix the dry ingredients together, flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder.
- Sift the flour mixture twice, if possible, through a fine sieve to get a smooth mixture.
Tip: Mixing and sifting the dry ingredients together in advance ensures that the baking powder is well dispersed in the mixture and allows the sponge cake to expand evenly.
Whisk eggs and sugar
- Place eggs at room temperature with granulated sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer.
- Whip eggs on high speed for 5 to 7 minutes until the mixture is white and fluffy.
Tip: The mixture should double or triple in volume, if you don't whip the egg mixture long enough, your cake will be too compact and you will have a heavy and dense cake.
- Place the cold heavy cream in a large bowl.
- Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed for about 3 minutes until smooth and firm.
- Set aside.
- While leaving the mixer running at medium speed, gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until completely incorporated.
- Add the whipped cream and mix again with a spatula until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
- Preheat the oven to 320°F/160°C and line two 6-inch/15 cm diameter round cake pans with parchment paper on the bottom only.
- Divide the chocolate sponge cake batter into two separate baking pans and bake for about 45 minutes until puffed on top.
- Remove the chocolate sponge cake pan from the oven and let them cool a bit before removing them from the baking pan and placing them upside down on a wire rack and let them cool completely.
- When completely cooled, wrap with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours before cutting into layers with a cake leveler
Tip: The sponge cakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If you still have some liquid batter, extend the baking time by a few minutes.
Tips for making this cake
- Use room temperature ingredients, mainly for the eggs which will be quite voluminous.
- Whip the eggs for at least 5 - 7 minutes, An essential step, the egg mixture must double or even triple in volume.
- Do not over-mix after adding the dry ingredients, Mixing too much after adding the dry ingredients may make the dough heavier.
- Be careful with the baking process, if it is overbaked you will have a chocolate sponge cake dry.
Room temperature: This chocolate sponge cake will keep at room temperature for about 3-4 days wrapped in plastic wrap or in a storage box.
In the fridge: Once assembled into a layer cake and filled, you can store it in the fridge for 3-4 days in a storage box.
In the freezer: Wrapped in plastic wrap or in a storage box, you can keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let it thaw gently at room temperature.
Frequently Asked Questions
The difference is that a sponge cake is very soft and light and mainly made with eggs and no fat, whereas the cake is made with extra milk and butter and has a heavier texture.
If your sponge cake is too dry it's probably because you left it baking in the oven too long.
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