This Rich and Fudgy Chocolate Cake with Mint Buttercream is a perfect celebration cake. Whether it’s for a birthday, St. Patrick’s Day, or just because, this fudgy cake is fun and festive!
This past weekend we celebrated Julia’s 6th birthday. Last year, we threw her a colorful art party and invited her friends from school. This year we went the simple route and kept the party to just family. Julia had lots of fun playing with her cousins and so long as there was cake she was a happy girl!
As soon as the kids are old enough to have an opinion on what kind of birthday cake they want, I let them decide. When I asked Julia what kind of cake she wanted for her 6th birthday, she said chocolate with green frosting. For the longest time, I could not figure out why the request for green frosting. I was pretty sure she didn’t know that her birthday fell just a few weeks before St. Patrick’s Day, and that the chocolate-mint combo would be all over the blogosphere…
Then one day she told me that what she really wanted was chocolate cake with mint frosting. Ahhh. It all became clear. So it was settled. Chocolate cake with mint frosting it would be.
This Rich and Fudgy Chocolate Cake is just what it sounds like, rich, fudgy, and decadent. Basically the chocolate cake of your dreams.
To go with this deliciously fudgy cake I whipped up (quite literally) a batch of sweet buttercream frosting, added a little mint extract and a few drops of green food coloring, and this Rich and Fudgy Chocolate Cake with Mint Buttercream was born.
After frosting the cake I sprinkled on some chocolate shavings, to make this Rich and Fudgy Chocolate Cake with Mint Buttercream reminiscent of mint chocolate chip ice cream. Julia loves mint chocolate chip (don’t all kids?) so of course we went all out with the chocolate and mint and served the favorite ice cream alongside the cake.
My mom and sister helped me decorate for the party by putting together these fun table centerpieces. Isn’t this “Celebrate” sign that my sister found so cute? I’m packing it away to use again for future parties.
Each year I’ve made a Happy Birthday banner for the kids’ birthday parties. This year, rather than making a new one, I reused this one from Julia’s butterfly birthday party. We also decorated with balloons in Julia’s favorite colors.
Julia, I can’t believe how fast you are growing! You will always be my first baby girl, no matter how big you get. We had so much fun celebrating your 6th birthday with you. We can’t wait for all of the fun times that the next year is sure to bring!
- 1 cup (3 oz) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tsp. instant espresso powder
- 1 cup boiling water
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool
- 1 ¾ cups (12 ¼ oz) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups (6 ¼ oz) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pans
- ¾ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 ½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 cups (475 grams) powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp. milk
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp. mint extract
- 3-4 drops green food coloring
- chocolate shavings
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees with a rack in the middle position. Butter two 9-inch round cake pans, and cut a round piece of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of each pan. Butter the parchment and dust the pans with flour, tapping out the excess.
- Combine cocoa powder and instant espresso powder in a bowl. Add the boiling water and whisk until smooth. Let cool to room temperature and then stir in the sour cream and vanilla.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth and shiny, about 30 seconds. Gradually mix in sugar and beat until the mixture is fluffy and almost white, 3-5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing for a full minute after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the mixer bowl.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
- With the mixer on low speed, add one third of the dry ingredients and then one third of the cocoa mixture, mixing until almost incorporated. Repeat twice more until all of the flour and cocoa mixtures are incorporated into the batter. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and mix for 15 more seconds on low speed until the batter looks satiny.
- Divide the batter evenly between the two cake pans and use a spatula to even out the batter. Bake until cakes feel firm in the center when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs, 23-30 minutes.
- Let cakes cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of each pan; invert the cakes onto the racks, and peel off the parchment paper. Reinvert the cakes onto additional racks and cool completely before frosting.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter on medium-high speed until pale, 6-8 minutes.
- Reduce the mixer speed to medium-low and add the sugar, one spoonful at a time. Mix in the milk, vanilla, and salt.
- Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Mix in the mint extract and green food coloring until combined.
- Place bottom cake layer on a cake plate and spread 1 cup of frosting on top with a small offset spatula. Gently place 2nd cake layer face down on top. Place a generous scoop of frosting on top, spreading evenly with a small offset spatula and working your way down the sides until you have a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake. Chill until set, about 30 minutes.
- Remove from refrigerator and apply a final coat of frosting, if desired. Immediately dust with chocolate shavings.