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Black-Out Cake with Black Chocolate Ganache

Oct 2020

Sinkology is proud to present Emily Schuermann, our food-loving guest blogger who runs Food for a Year. Emily is here to share some recipes she has created exclusively for the Sinkology blog that reflect her view of a copper sink: simple, timeless, affordable, and beautifully rustic. 

‘What’s a ‘Black-Out’ Cake??’ you might be wondering. Well, it’s a super moist cake that’s full of deep, rich dark chocolate flavors. This Black-Out Cake is a twist on a little recipe I’ve had in my back pocket for several decades. The-most-simple-delicious-chocolatey quick cake you’ll ever come across — trust me.

Two Key ingredients

To bump the tone of this chocolate cake from dark brown to ‘black-out’, I used the darkest cocoa powder available and super black food coloring paste

one-bowl cake recipe

One-Bowl Recipe

Not only is this a delicious, deep chocolate cake recipe, it’s also a very simple recipe! Start by creating a cocoa powder paste by combining the black cocoa powder with boiling water and then combine all cake ingredients in one bowl. Stir to combine, pour into a greased, parchment paper-lined cake pan and bake!

Once the cake is baked, allow it to cool for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack, where it will need to cool completely to room temperature before topping with black chocolate ganache.

Black Chocolate Ganache

Ganache is a surprisingly easy recipe to prepare, traditionally using only 3 ingredients (cream, dark chocolate and butter). I’ve added a pinch of salt and a few drops of black food coloring paste to amplify the black-out theme.

Microwave in 30 second increments until the warm cream begins to melt the chocolate. Then stir vigorously to combine. Allow the mixture to cool for 1 hour before using.

I’ve never been accused of being a cake decorator, but with a recipe this delicious, no one’s taking the time to notice how it’s decorated.

BUT if you want to serve a cute and festive cake (while still amazingly delicious) for G-rated Halloween fun, I have a few tips for a festive & simple cake design!

halloween sprinkles

Cute sprinkles make everything better! I added 2 large candy eyes and an outline of Halloween-colored sprinkles and suddenly the cake was transformed into a party-worthy dessert!

decorated black-out cake

Black-Out Cake


  • 1/4 c + 2 T boiling water
  • 4 t black cocoa powder
  • 1 c all purpose flour
  • 1 c granulated cane sugar
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4 t baking powder
  • 1/4 c + 2 T sour cream*
  • 1/2 stick melted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 t vanilla
  • 3 oz dark chocolate morsels
  • 3 oz white chocolate morsels
  • 7 drops black food coloring paste


Preheat oven to 350°. Line an 8 round cake pan with parchment and spray with a flour-based non-stick spray.

Combine cocoa powder & boiling water, stirring to dissolve (this will form a thick paste).

Combine all ingredients, including the cocoa water/mixture. Beat on HIGH either by hand or using a mixer for 2 minutes.

Add the white and dark chocolate morsels, stirring to combine.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30 – 35 minutes until the center is set and an inserted toothpick doesn’t come out with wet batter on it. (Or it reaches a center temperature of 198°-200° with an instant-read thermometer.

Allow to cool for 10 minutes before inverting on a baking rack.

Top with black chocolate ganache ((see ganache recipe below))


* buttermilk or whole milk can be subbed for sour cream

Black Chocolate Ganache

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 c semisweet chocolate or bittersweet chocolate (high-quality), chopped
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 3-5 drops of black food coloring gel

In a medium microwaveable glass bowl, combine all ingredients. Microwave in increments of 30 seconds, stirring between.

Within 3 microwave sessions, chocolate and cream should be warm enough to melt.

Stir vigorously to combine.

Set aside and allow to cool for approximately 1 hour before pouring over the cooled cake.

  • you’ll likely have extra ganache left over.