Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake

A three-layer chocolate sponge cake, sandwiched with a deliciously decadent chocolate buttercream.

I’ll be honest, I’ve been meaning to add my recipe for a basic Chocolate Sponge Cake to my website for a good long while now, but it always seemed to get pushed back in favour of other projects.

If I’m honest, I try to be quite clever with my recipes and write them up when I have a cake due for a specific project, a brand partnership or at least as a gift for a family member. However, would you believe that I don’t actually make my Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake all too often? When it comes to chocolate cake, I tend to gravitate more towards my Chocolate Mud Cake recipe, at least for decorated cakes and that can mean this one doesn’t always get much of a look in.

However, while my Chocolate Mud Cake is very rich and good for a very adult celebration cake, my Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake is much lighter and when paired with a delicious chocolatey buttercream, it makes the perfect centrepiece for an afternoon tea or even a child’s birthday celebration.

So, without much further ado, let’s get stuck into making my Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake…


This recipe makes a three-layer 8” cake.

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Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake

  • Author: Mr Baker's Cakes
  • Prep Time: 60mins
  • Cook Time: 30mins
  • Total Time: 90mins
  • Diet: Vegetarian


A three-layer chocolate sponge cake, sandwiched with a deliciously decadent chocolate buttercream.


Units Scale

For the cake:

  • 400g slightly salted butter
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 8 medium eggs
  • 320g self-raising flour
  • 80g cocoa powder
  • 1tsp instant coffee powder

For the chocolate buttercream:

  • 150g milk chocolate
  • 300g slightly salted butter
  • 600g icing sugar
  • 8tbsps cocoa powder
  • 4tbsps milk

To decorate:

  • Chocolate shavings or chocolate sprinkles


Start by preheating your oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and grease and line three 8” cake tins.

In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl), cream together the butter and sugar until light, fluffy and pale in colour.

Crack the eggs into a separate bowl and beat until smooth.

Running the mixer on a low speed, begin to add the beaten eggs to the butter/sugar mixture a little at a time. If the mixture starts to curdle, add a tablespoon of flour.

Sieve the flour, cocoa powder and instant coffee powder into the bowl and mix until just combined. Be careful not to over-beat the mixture.

Divide the mixture equally between the three tins and level off with your spatula, before baking in the preheated oven for around 30 minutes (until the cakes are soft and springy to the touch and a skewer comes out clean).

Once your cakes are baked, remove them from the oven and leave to cool in the tins for around 5-10 minutes, before inverting onto a wire rack to cool down completely.

To make the buttercream, begin by breaking up your chocolate into cubes and placing in a microwave-safe bowl.

Heat the chocolate in a microwave for 30 seconds, before stirring. Continue to heat and stir in 30 second intervals until the chocolate is completely melted.

Set the chocolate aside to cool for five minutes while you cream your butter in the bowl of a stand mixer until pale and smooth. This may take a while, but the longer you leave it, the better.

Add in half of the icing sugar and mix on a low speed until it is fully incorporated. Add the second half of the icing sugar and again mix until fully incorporated. This shouldn’t take more than 1 minute.

Finally, add the cocoa powder, the melted chocolate and the milk, and mix again until smooth.

Cover the bowl of buttercream with clingfilm and set aside until ready to use.

When your cakes have fully cooled and you are ready to assemble your cake, begin by giving your buttercream a final pulse in the stand mixer.

Place one of the cake layers right-side up onto your serving plate and pipe ‘kisses’ around the edge of the cake. Fill the centre of the cake with more of your buttercream, using an offset spatula to ensure it is evenly distributed.

Add the next layer of cake and repeat the above step, piping kisses and filling the centre.

Next, add the top layer of cake and cover it entirely with piped ‘kisses’.

Finally, scatter over a handful of sprinkles and set aside until ready to serve.


Your cake will keep for up to three days in a cake box at room temperature.

  • Category: Cakes

If you have a go at my Simple Chocolate Sponge Cake, don’t forget to share your results over in my Facebook group (find it here) or tag me on Instagram.

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