Decadent Dirt Cake - Signature Groom's Cake or Special Occasion Cake

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 35 min
  • Prep: 35 min
  • Inactive: 1 hr
  • Cook: 1 hr
  • Yield: 16 to 20 servings
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1 cup (2 sticks) butter

2 cups granulated sugar

1 1/3 cups good quality dark chocolate (recommended: Guittard)

2 tablespoons extremely strong coffee

1 1/2 cups self-rising flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup cocoa

2 cups very hot water

3 large eggs, beaten

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla (recommended: Nielsen-Massey)

1/4 cup coffee-flavored liqueur (recommended: Kahlua)

Whipped Chocolate Buttercream, recipe follows, optional

Whipped Chocolate Buttercream

1 cup good quality dark chocolate (recommended: Guittard)

1/2 cup (1 stick) room temperature salted butter

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla (recommended: Nielsen Massey)

1 tablespoon coffee-flavored liqueur (recommended: Kahlua)

1 pound sifted confectioners' sugar


  1. Grease and lightly flour a large Bundt pan or alternatively use a vegetable release spray. Place the rack at the center of the oven and preheat to 300 degrees F. Melt, do not boil, butter, sugar, chocolate, and coffee in a medium-sized saucepan with the hot water, until the sugar is dissolved. Cool completely and pour into a large mixing bowl. Set the mixer on slow to medium speed. Sift together the combined flours and cocoa. In a separate bowl, combine the beaten eggs, vanilla, and coffee-flavored liqueur. Add the flour mixture alternately with egg mixture to the basic chocolate mixture. This is a thin mixture do not over beat. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and place into the preset oven. Bake for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours at 300 degrees F. Check with a skewer to be sure the cake is cooked through. Cool the cake for 20 minutes before removing it from the pan. Cook's Notes: The recipe can be frozen, triple-wrapped, for up to three months. Adding 1/2 to 1 cup of roughly chopped toasted walnuts or pecans can also add punch and a change of pace to the recipe. Serving suggestions: The cake may be iced with chocolate butter frosting or alternatively simply sift confectioners' sugar 'snow' onto the cake top after cooling or place a slice of cake into a pool of commercial raspberry puree then for decoration add whole fresh raspberries. Top with a dollop of whipped heavy cream.

Whipped Chocolate Buttercream

  1. Barely melt the chocolate in a double boiler over gentle heat. Remove from the heat source and pour into a large mixing bowl then cool for five minutes. Add the butter, cream, vanilla, coffee-flavored liqueur, and mix on medium speed until the mixture thickens. Finally add the confectioners' sugar in small batches until the mixture holds a medium peak. If the kitchen temperature is warm, and the icing is not of spreading consistency place the bowl in the refrigerator for a few minutes, then recommence mixing. Slather the icing over the cake with an offset palette knife. Enough icing for 1 cake.
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