Food & Drinkrecipes

Katie Quinn Davies’ Guinness Cake Recipe

by Kristina Gill

This week’s recipe is by Irish-born and Sydney-based food photographer/food stylist Katie Quinn Davies.  You know her best as the one-woman show behind the blog What Katie Ate.  When Katie and I began to discuss what recipes she might offer, I found out that she was Irish and that changed up the whole game!  I had the greatest time in Dublin last year, and couldn’t wait to see what Katie would propose. As luck would have it, among her ideas was a Guinness Chocolate Cake.  I wasted no time in saying, “Yes, please!” So here you go, a beautiful chocolate cake that even the guys can get excited about! — Kristina

About Katie: Training originally as a graphic designer in her native hometown of Dublin, Ireland, Katie has spent over twelve years working for some of the leading design studios in Europe, the U.S. and Australia. In 2009, Katie re-focused her creative abilities toward hatching a new-found career in food photography and food styling. Working out of her own fully-equipped studio in Sydney and taking all photographs in natural daylight, Katie often creates, styles, art directs and photographs food photography briefs from concept to completion. Her work covers magazine editorial and cookbook commissions, as well as freelance shoots for a variety of Sydney’s gourmet food stores and restaurants. In her spare time, Katie runs a foodie photography blog, What Katie Ate, which covers all things relating to food and drink in Sydney and features recipes and photos from Katie herself.  You can visit her portfolio here.

CLICK HERE for the full recipe after the jump!

Guinness Chocolate Cake

Cake Ingredients
  • 250 g (1 c. and 2 tbsp) unsalted butter
  • 250 ml (1 c.) Guinness
  • 75 g Dutch process cocoa ( 3/4 c.), sifted
  • 275 g (2 +  1/4 c.) all purpose flour, sifted
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 400 g (2 c.)  sugar
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 150 ml (2/3 c.) sour cream
  • 1 tbsp. good quality vanilla extract

Frosting Ingredients
  • 300 g (1 + 1/3 cup) cream cheese
  • 150 g (1+1/2 c.) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 150 ml (2/3 c.) cream, whipped
Preheat oven to 180C/350F.

1. Add butter, cocoa and Guinness to a saucepan. Warm over a medium heat and stir until melted. Set aside for 5 to 10 minutes to cool slightly.

2. Add flour, baking soda and sugar to a large mixing bowl and mix together well. Pour in the Guinness/cocoa/butter mixture, lightly combine, add the vanilla, eggs and sour cream and beat everything together until well combined. The batter should be thick and dark chocolate in color.

3. Pour into a greased and lined 10″ angel food pan (or another straight-sided tube pan) and cook in the oven for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean from the centre of the cake.*Note: This cake is very moist inside, so use your judgment regarding the skewer test. Do not leave in the oven until the cake has totally dried out — cook long enough so there is no uncooked cake on the skewer but there may be a few moist crumbs sticking to it after an hour of cooking.  [Please note:  Katie baked this in an 8.5″ x 3.5″ pan.  If you make this in a regular angel food cake pan, you should start checking for doneness at least 15 minutes early.]

4. Leave to cool for 10 to 15 minutes before removing from the cake tin and placing on a wire wrack to cool completely.

Frosting Instructions
1. Place the cream cheese into the bowl of a mixer and beat on a low-medium speed using a whisk attachment (I find a paddle attachment tends to over-beat the cheese). Whisk until the cheese is smooth and there are no big lumps remaining.

2. Gradually, using a large spoon, add in the sifted powdered sugar and beat gently to combine. After 2 to 3 minutes, stop the machine, scrape any excess frosting from the sides of the bowl and beat on medium speed until lump free.

3. Remove bowl from mixer and gently fold in the whipped cream, mixing to fully combine.

4. Place cooled cake on a cake stand and add the frosting, spreading out just to the edge without going over the side (never go over the sides of the cake) until the cake resembles a pint of the creamy black stuff! The idea is to capture the essence and simplicity of a pint of Guinness. Sláinte!

A special thank you to Donna Hay for the cake stand and wire cooling rack!
Why Katie Chose this Recipe:
I chose this cake as I’m a mad keen baker but even more so because I love the strange reaction from people when they hear its name.  They always ask “Chocolate and Guinness?? In a cake?! You’re kidding?!”  Also, it’s nice to introduce a bit of quintessential “Irish-ness” or “Oirish-ness” from my homeland into my cooking especially to my Aussie mates for a laugh, so I often make this cake when I’m going to a BBQ or dinner party if asked to bring a dessert as it’s quite the norm to “bring a plate” here in Oz. To most people, and still myself even after 30 years of living in Ireland, Guinness is an acquired taste.  I honestly find it too bitter for my palette to drink alone.  So when I initially made this cake a good few years ago, I was super surprised to find there is no lingering taste from “the black stuff” whatsoever and I was totally bowled over by the incredible moistness of the cake.  Honestly I really think it’s one of the best chocolate cake recipes out there.  It is heavy, so I would never be tempted to add anything to the middle of the cake or layer it and add frosting inside.  The essence with this cake is to keep it simple and don’t complicate it, enjoy its subtlety. 

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  • Gorgeous pics. Looks absolutely delicious. I just know that my sweet-toothed Irish husband will love this!

  • i’m a huge fan of her work as well. gorgeous photos and yummy recipe! will be trying this soon. reminds me of the chocolate bourbon cake i made recently. so good!

  • This is looks lovely and delicious. One question: what temperature is the oven? That bit of information seems to be missing!

  • Katie’s photos are so gorgeous! I made this cake last year and have been waiting for cooler weather to make it again, it’s so delicious.

  • The pictures are just stunning. I don’t even know what to say, other than I am both inspired and intimidated! Thankfully, baking doesn’t intimidate me. I’ll be making that cake pronto for my Guinness loving husband.

  • I have that same Swans Down Cake Pan! I inherited it from my uncle, who was a Chicago-based pastry chef. :)

  • I saw Guinness-flavored gelato at a local gourmet market yesterday, along with the same flavor sprinkled with pretzel pieces.

  • i have been following kate’s work for about 2 years now and she has such distinct and beautiful style. love her work and this was another mouthwatering post.

    • You are absolutely correct! I just checked and it is exactly the same recipe. Hmmmm…..
      I suppose the wheel is not re-invented only re-discovered.

  • Mmmmm. I did Guineness cupcakes from Smitten Kitchen last month for my husband’s birthday, that was paird with a Baily’s Buttercream Icing, which is a fun way to booze it up even more. My cupcakes were not nearly so pretty as this though, I envy that pan!

  • this looks decadently delicious! definitely going to make it for my fiance – he LOVES guinness and chocolate : )

  • I am saving this recipe. Someday I will make this. It sounds so delicious! I’ve always thought that Guinness would taste good with some cocoa in it, but I never tried it. Now I’m going to have to!

  • Very nice but I have this recipe since 2004 from Nigella Lawson’ s Feast book! It’s my favourite in her chapter called Chocolate Cake Hall of Fame.

    Is this a lucky coincidence or did she forget to mention the obvious? It even looks the same!! Very pretty pictures though and yes I strongly suggest this cake.

    • hi guys

      there are many guinness cake recipes on the web, including nigella’s delicious recipe. this recipe varies slightly from nigella’s (primarily in terms of the proportions of ingredients to each other), but in general the guinness cakes that i’ve seen online before have the same basic ingredients. some throw in details like orange flavoring or mint, but the basic ingredients are the same from recipe to recipe. if you’re looking for any other variations on the cake, other favorites of mine are:


      of course, i’m going to double check with katie about the recipe, but if there was an conscious overlap with nigella’s recipe we definitely would have credited it. :)


  • Making this now!!! Can not wait to try it, especially since cream cheese frosting is a always yummy!!!

  • This is a beautifully styled and photographed cake…thanks so much Katie!

  • If I only have natural cocoa powder, can I substitute it for the dutch process? What other changes need to be made?


  • Love Katie’s site. This is so gorgeous and perfect for my boyfriend’s birthday later this month. Thanks to Katie & D*S for sharing. Happy weekend, y’all!

    xo, A

  • Hi – thanks all for the lovely comments re: the photos.

    I have made this cake so many times and used so many different ‘variations’ of the recipe over the past 3 years – all of which I initially found on the web years and years ago. Most are identical and at this stage I could make this cake in my sleep, standing on my head if asked (!) When I wrote out the recipe for Kristina, it took me 2 seconds to do so as it’s in my head from memory. Bérangère thanks for pointing out the similarities to the recipe in Nigella’s book from back in ’04. On reflection I really do think I should have provided a credit or at least a note saying ‘adapted from Nigella Lawson’s recipe’ as in fairness when I look at her recipe now, the one I have been churning out for the past 3 years is most similar to this. I always credit chefs (as I am not one myself – I’m a food photographer) in any recipe I use on my blog so I was not meaning in any shape or form to claim the recipe as ‘mine’ – upmost apologies if it appeared that way.

    Regarding the styling of the cake – if there are strong similarities to any existing on the web – aka again – Nigella’s – this is a total coincidence. The style of the first photo is the same as a lot on my photography site. Anyone who is familiar with my work knows I use slatted wooden backdrops frequently in my pics along with similar tones. Also let’s face it, there’s only so many ways one can photograph – what in essence is a pretty bland looking cake, as in, it’s very simple in its appearance. The frosting on the top I styled in an effort to get it looking as deep, frothy and whipped as possible – like the head on a glass of Guinness. It really has to be shot side-on to show the contrasting profile of the black and white ‘Pint’ similarities. I initially was given a beautiful tall, high cake stand from Donna Hay (thanks again Donna) for the shoot but when I placed the cake on it, the stand swamped it as this is a low, single layer cake suits a lower height stand. I used a shorter depth of field with the final cake pic to try and offer a slightly ‘dreamy’ feel to the cake as I guess there’s I bit of an ‘romaticised notion’ to the whole ‘Guinness/Irish’ idea and again I used my usual natural textured fabrics to reflect a rustic ‘Irish’ tweed-like feeling to the pic.

    I hope this helps to clear up any confusion. Do try the cake, it’s really a fab texture and taste :)

  • Also – I should have added in my post – thanks to my wonderful friend Tracey who carried that ancient bottle of Guinness all the way over to Oz from her recent trip to Ireland. And to her husband’s mum who lent me the bottle in the first place :)

  • oh katie, you go! it has been a pleasure to see katie’s work become the stylistic delicious presence that it certainly is. how great to share and receive the recognition!!! (oh, and totally yummy too, but that’s a given with her :)

  • I love Katie’s blog and once again she has outdone herself again with this stunning cake! (although I can’t eat it I’m visually lapping up the scrummy photos!)

  • I used to make as chocolate Guinness cake with a Bailey’s Irish Cream frosting for my ex…
    his favorite drink was a Car Bomb, so we called it Car Bomb cake!

  • Actual recipes — lists of ingredients; methods — cannot be copyrighted. Obviously, anything else written in a cookbook IS copyright.

    I made this cake — or one very similar! — a few months ago, and the reaction was mixed. I’m thinking of trying it with Malta Goya next time. I read some fascinating stuff about cooking with Malta Goya on a website last year.

  • Made this last night! We used a Russian Imperial Stout instead of Guiness (looked like syrup when we were pouring it into the pan!), and also added a healthy dose of Irish Cream to the frosting. Absolutely delicious.

    I realized halfway through that I had misplaced my cake pan, so we poured the batter into cupcake tins. It made 18 cupcakes and baked for 15-18 minutes. Absolutely delicious! Thanks so much for the recipe :D

  • Wow! Kaitie thank you for taking the time to write such a long, well described and honest reply! I recognize a perfectionist in you with great attention to detail! I love that! :) I’m an illustrator myself who also started as a graphic designer and I’m an avid food obsessed, nerdy amateur photographer in the kitchen. I totally understand where you are coming from with your explanation. Being a total food nerd, I sometimes take things too seriously with recipes. Especially the ones I love! My husband was laughing at me because he said I reacted like if I created the cake myself! Yeah sorry. I just got obsessed over this cake for a good 6 years after receiving Feast for Christmas. I also love (thanks to my husband again) Guinness! An acquired taste that I couldn’t pretend to like when we first dates if my life depended on it. Now it’s my favourite beer!

    Sorry if I put you on the defensive! LOVE your photos and your site (which I bookmarked with pleasure) and certainly LOVE the cake. Thank you for sharing!

  • Oops! Glitch happened when I wrote. Meant to say (… when we first dated even if my life depended on it) : )

    I would also like to add that I am a HUGE fan of Design*Sponge since 2005 and want to take this opportunity to congratulate Grace and her team on the amazing work that inspires so many!

  • mmm…yum! i am going to try this immediately! or perhaps wait a bit till after lunch. eyebrows will raise if i crack a bottle of stout before then. ;)

    my family makes a great stew with guinness and or/irish whiskey depending on what’s at hand. we nicknamed it red eye stew after discovering a stronger version in banff, alberta (cowboy country).

    isn’t it amazing how good ideas regarding good food evolve? i guess that’s the draw of traditional cooking – and thanks irish cooks through the centuries who have been evolving this one for our enjoyment!

    thanks katie!

  • Just tried the recipe. Made 1/2 the recipe and baked it in a round 6″ cake pan that once belonged to my Grandmother.

    Fabulous, simply fabulous! Taste is subtle. I used a storebought cream cheese icing and it worked out well, but I iced it like I would a cake. I will do this again! It goes into my recipe book tonight!

  • I’m glad we were able to clear up the situation with the recipe here! Thank you for weighing in again Bérangère.

    I would just like to add a note as far as the styling of the cake goes. In my experience, icing a cake only on the top (and only between the layers when there are layers) is quite common in the UK and Australia. In the United States, we tend to cover the cake completely, unless it’s a glaze that we let drip down the sides. (We tend to be criticized for having overly sweet, overly adorned cakes.)

    However, this is just my general personal experience when noticing cakes styled in UK/AUS food shops/photography vs those in the US!

  • Penelope, you’re spot on Guinness in a stew is wonderful. I started making one 2 or 3 years ago after seeing Canadian chef Michael Smith from ‘Chef at Home’ on TV cooking one. I really like watching his shows, I love his calm and gentle demeanour. I will try and find the recipe and post the link up. I’m away at the mo. but back in Sydney in the morning as I’m off on a shoot, will find that link and post up when I get home :)  

  • Us Irish will use any excuse to add alcohol to our food! Guinness stew is an excellent dish. I am nursing a slight hangover from last nights Guinness consumption:(

  • chocolate and guinness is a great combo and after 2 amazing trips to ireland, we have a soft spot for anything irish! huge fan of katie’s blog and her beautiful work!

  • this looks amazing. my husband’s birthday is next week so i will have to try this out on him (and maybe something else for the kids;) thanks for sharing!

  • Sigh… Katie – your pictures just make me want to run to the nearest pub and buy myself a bottle of this guinness so I can make this cake.

  • I just made these tonight…as cupcakes and they turned out perfect! (Baked 14 minutes at same temp. Made 24 standard size.) This is hands-down the best chocolate cake ever. Moist, dark, chocolatey, great texture. The Guiness is a slightly mysterious flavor lurking in the background. It’s stunning! The frosting is superb as well. It’s like lightly sweetened over-whipped cream…but it holds up. Would be great with all sorts of fruit desserts. This is definitely going to be one of my go-to recipes. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • WOW! These photos are gorgeous! Love the contrast! I’ll be making this recipe for my hubby for his birthday! Thanks!

  • My boyfriend’s birthday was this past Sunday, as soon as I saw this recipe I knew I had to make if for him. It was absolutely amazing! I’m not much of a baker, but I found it simple enough for a “from scratch” dessert. MAKE IT! It will blow your mind!

  • Made it yesterday for husband’s birthday. Extraordinary. Frosting is perfect for this cake. I used natural cocoa powder, adjusting by adding 1/8 tsp. for every three Tbsp. of cocoa powder.

  • @KimRose hey thanks for letting us know the adjustment for the baking soda if you’re not using Dutch process cocoa!

  • I’m obsessed with that cake pan! And that cake! Surely, this cake would pair well with Suzanne Goin’s guiness ice cream. Beautiful styling and photos.

  • Stephanie – yes you can use just normal cocoa powder, I have done in the past with this cake and it’s fine. I listed ‘Dutch process’ as I do tend to use this most often when cooking but it’s not mandatory.

    Penelope – I found the recipe I mentioned above, it’s: http://www.lifestylefood.com.au/recipes/2118/beer-beef-stew

    He used Guinness in this on his show when I saw it years ago and I did too, it was a really good recipe.

    Fantastic to hear all the success stories from everyone who has made the cake :)

    Thanks Kristina too for mentioning the way ‘most’ (but not all) Aussie and UK cakes are frosted – aka a lot are just frosted on top and not necessarily all the way down the sides too. Donna Hay is a big fan of this way of styling a cake. Here’s a link (if it’s OK to post this on D*S) to a video of Donna showing this year’s Masterchef Australia’s contestants some general styling tips, including icing the cake which was featured on her 50th edition magazine cover: http://bit.ly/aKBeDm

  • so excited to try this recipe, i had a really yummy guiness bread when i stayed at a hotel in Belfast so i expect this will be even yummier. can’t wait! :)

  • Katie’s photos are so deliciously decedent sometimes I feel like I’m feasting on them and don’t actually need to make the recipe! Felt like I needed a shot of Armagnac and an espresso after looking at that Guinness cake recipe! YUM

  • This looks amazing and soooo decadent. Dying to try it out… Fantastic photos Katie you’re a genius! ;o) x

  • I have just tried the recipe and it is absolutely delicious!!! I thought it was very unique and the beer taste is not that dominent. Katie, great photos as always!

  • When are we supposed to add the vanilla? I threw it in at the end as a precaution, but it wasn’t listed anywhere else in the recipe instructions.

  • Kat – whoops thanks for noticing that, I usually stick the vanilla in as I’m mixing up everything, just after I’ve added the eggs and sour cream.

  • I made the cake on Monday night and it is excellent. I strongly recommend it. I will definitely make this again!

    Kat, about the vanilla — I didn’t add any to the cake because I forgot vanilla was in the ingredient list. However, I added a tiny bit to the whipped cream for the frosting, because I usually make whipped cream with vanilla anyway. The frosting was excellent.

    I think you could probably add vanilla to the cake batter if you want (probably that was the intent), when stirring all the ingredients together. I may try it next time, but, truthfully, it wasn’t needed. The cake was very good and rich.

  • This was a beautiful and different treat. The texture for me was more like a dense torte and loved by everyone. I loved the cream cheese/whipped cream frosting!

  • I love food, especially deserts!! the cake looks fantastic, the photos capture it perfectly and make me want to bake it right now, great shots!

  • Regarding the recipe being stolen from Nigella:

    Welcome to The World of Food Blogging, kids! Didn’t you know that every food blogger out there steals recipes, changes one or two ingredients (or measurements, for that matter), and calls said recipe their own?

    Get realz, people. Food bloggers aren’t any more adept at cooking or baking than anyone else, and they certainly aren’t doing anything original.

    They just have better cameras.

  • This cake looks amazing ;) especially colors contrast :)
    But i want to ask, maybe somebody has tried it ? and if yes, how is it? :)

  • LOVED this cake! I made it with gluten-free flour and subbed Green’s Double Dark gluten-free beer for Guinness and it was a huge success.

  • Ever since I saw these photos I’ve been dying to make this cake. The photos are amazing. I finally made it last night and took it to a local LA restaurant to celebrate my big brother’s 40th. I’m not a regular baker and apparently a poor time manager because I didn’t allow myself enough time to let it cool properly before frosting. I was already very late for the dinner so I slapped on the frosting anyway and crossed my fingers. When we got to the restaurant and took off the lid on the cake, the frosting had all dripped beautifully down the sides and looked exactly like a pint of Guinness that had been over-poured. It wasn’t quite like Katie’s gorgeous cake (actually, nothing like it) but it tasted amazing and was a huge hit. Thanks for the idea!

  • I tried this recipe today and it turned out well for me (I’m just someone who likes to try recipes for fun.) I used Ghirardelli unsweetened cocao. I actually forgot to put in the Vanilla extract and it still turned out great. I couldn’t get my cream cheese frosting to be as fluffy as the pics but I believe that’s just because I didn’t have any whisk attachments for my handheld blender. Still, it was fun to bake and my roommate and I have enjoyed a couple slices.

  • This cake is amazing. I made if for a reception and it got rave reviews. I have two comments/questions:

    When should you add the vanilla? I almost forgot both times I made it.

    And I’m confused about the frosting. Your pictures show it like it’s stiff, and all the cream cheese frosting I’ve made in the past is stiff. But the recipe does not call for NEARLY enough sugar to either taste great or be stiff. So I used LOTS more sugar (like I usually do), but when I added the whipped cream it, it got runny again. It tasted wonderful, but dripped all over the sides. Do you have any tips on the proportions of the frosting? Should I maybe refrigerate it before spreading?

  • Hi Amy – yes, I refrigerated the icing for a few hours before icing the cake. I’ve made this cake so many times now I found this helps the frosting to become easier to style on the cake. The cake mixture itself is very sweet – there’s a load of sugar in it and whilst yes, adding more powdered sugar will made the frosting thicker – I personally am hesitant to do so as overall then the cake would be too sweet for my liking. When I fold in the cream at the end, I do this stage very gently, I find the whipped cream adds more volume to the frosting.

  • Ooops! Sorry Amy – the vanilla goes in when you add the eggs and sour cream to the mixture. Kristina – maybe you could mention this in the recipe to avoid confusion. I totally forgot to type it out when I wrote down the recipe. Tks :)

  • I didn’t have any trouble with the frosting being runny, and I made it according to directions — however, I think I might have refrigerated it briefly. Maybe half an hour at most while waiting for the cake to cool more. But it seemed stiff enough before then. It tasted perfect, as well, and did *not* need more sugar. Wonderful stuff.

    To give you an idea how it turned out, here’s a photo of my cake: http://www.flickr.com/photos/litlnemo/5053317327/in/photostream/

  • That cake is simply to die for. The fotos and styling are divine. The shot of the part-eaten cake with a dash of Guinness beside the plate has such a “wish you were here” look about it. Here’s to the Aussies and the Irish. Long may they continue to have craic and cake!

  • made this cake for my daughter-in law’s birthday. so moist and delicious. we all like just the top iced. can’t wait to make it again Thanks for sharing.

  • Could someone perhaps list the correct amount of Cocoa and bakind soda for the recipe if you are not using Dutch process cocoa? (I didn’t know the difference before and just used Ghirardeli…still turned out alright. But I’m not sure if I should be adding extra baking soda plus what’s already called for in the recipe?) Thanks!

  • Also, my frosting was not as firm either. But I believe this was because I didn’t refrigerate it, and used too much whipping cream (could not find ‘whipped cream’ in the store). Still, everything tasted great! Ha ha.

  • Katie I have to say your site and photography are beautiful. I will strive for this. This is one of my favorite cakes, you know the ones with beer. I look forward to reading all that you have to offer.

  • “…used too much whipping cream (could not find ‘whipped cream’ in the store).”

    Forgive me if I’m misunderstanding, but it sounds as if you possibly didn’t whip the cream before adding it to the frosting. That would indeed affect the texture. I bought whipping cream, then whipped it to a nice texture (but not all the way to butter!) :) and folded that into the mixture. It worked beautifully.

    I’ve now made the cake and frosting twice and the frosting has not been too runny, nor did I have to change the amount of sugar or anything like that. The second time I made it I did not refrigerate it before frosting the cake, but it still was firm enough.

  • I made this cake for an avid baker and partier in one of my Saturday classes for her birthday. It was a hit. I noticed the comments about the whipping cream and have to say that it takes longer than one would think to get it to the right texture, but once it gets there, it happens quick before it turns to butter. This cake was delicious.

  • Lovely photos but this is Nigella’s recipe…you could at least credit her??

  • @litlnemo: You are correct. :) I don’t have wisk attachments for my mixer (it’s just a cheap hand held one I’ve had for many years). So my frosting wasn’t quite right, but tasted fine. I’m wondering what would happen if I just mix the softened cream cheese and powdered sugar…

  • My daughter made this cake for a St Patrick’s day party and everyone thought it was fantastic! I was lucky enough to get a piece to take home…she will be making it again!

  • I absolutely love chocolate guinness cake! The beer really lifts the chocolate flavour without tasting like beer (!) making it velvety, smooth and delicious. I always top mine with a cream cheese frosting – so it looks a little like a pint of guinness!

  • I made this cake for my husband for his birthday this past December. So easy to make, and it looked gorgeous on my white cake stand. He is a home brewer—a cake made with beer is perfect for him. The guinness taste does increase over time, sort of like when you add rum to a fruit cake, so I think this is best consumed within a day or two of baking.

  • I tried this recipe over the weekend and it was a big hit! So delicious and rich, with such wonderful flavors. It was such a highlight to my fourth of July weekend to bake it for family and friends, it will definitely make many more appearances on our menus!

  • Just made the cake. yum. didn’t have any cream cheese so made a ganache and tipped it on the warm cake. mmmmmmmmmm, delicious! Thanks for sharing

  • I have made this cake about three times since reading this recipe. It’s a great, moist cake and everyone seems to love it! I swapped out the icing for my mother’s recipe as she really makes the best icing in the world. It still tastes great! I linked to this article/recipe on my blog as well – I hope that many more people get to enjoy it too!

  • This is a mindblowing cake! I made it for my birthday and my friends lurrved it! I loved using the unexpected combo of chocolate and guiness and the frosting is a lovely, tangy addition. Superb Katie!

  • I made it about a week ago. My brother was like, why can’t I make something usual?! I said, you wait till you have tasted it. I was right, the whole family, my sweetheart (even the cat:D) loved it. It is just great! Thanks for sharing, Ida from Hungary.

  • I recently made this cake for my boyfriend’s birthday! He is a huge chocolate fan.

    I actually used a different stout for a more creamy flavor: the St Peter’s Cream Stout. Next time, I would try it with a few of my favorite local dark beers. Real Ale Coffee Porter. (512) Pecan Porter. Southern Star Buried Hatchet Stout! Those are all delicious Texas beers (and in my opinion preferred to Guinness). The possibilities are endless!

  • I tried this recipe and really liked it, however my cake did not rise in the pan quite as high as this…what did I do wrong? I even used a scale to measure the ingredients exactly.

  • My first reaction–It’s Nigella’s recipe and looks the same as the one she published several years ago. While various responses to this observation have been made throughout the comments, it is obvious that a credit to her should have been made. At the very least, acknowledgement that the recipe is an adaptation, if not a copy.

  • Oh WoW, You have inspired me to make this lovely Tall cake. I have purchased the exact Swans Angel Food cake pan to make it in. I personally love Guinness Stout AND Chocolate. So, for the Tall cake pan am I correct that I need to add a 1/2 tsp of Baking soda to the batter? Reading the comments above, I think I am supposed to, but not sure. Thank you and I will let you know how it turns out. I have also ordered special Onyx black cocoa for this cake as well.

  • Does it really use baking soda? I’ve been told dutch processed cocoa takes baking powder, so now I’m confused!

  • I have made this cake several times since first seeing it on your blog. I absolutely love it, and so do all of my friends and family! One tip I’d like to add, is to be sure you use the right beer, I accidentally used a special Christmas Guinness Ale which was lighter. I realized it as soon as I poured it into the butter. So I replace 2 tablespoons of the Ale with 2 tablespoons of cold brewed coffee concentrate, hoping it would Bring out more chocolate flavor like the stout would have. The cake still turned out delicious this time, but I’ll be sure and check for correct ingredients next time!
    Thank you for a great and easy recipe! And your beautiful cover shot helped me to find your recipe online when it came time to make it again. I was looking for the memorable photo with the Swans cake pan to ensure I had the right recipe, among the dozens of other Guinness cake recipes online! Thank you again, Nani in California

  • I have made this cake before and loved it! However, I would like to use this recipe to make cupcakes for a party, would you recommend altering the oven temp or cook time?

  • I know this post is really old, so I hope someone can answer … Is the heavy cream supposed to be whipped (turned into whipped cream) before it gets folded into the cream cheese?

  • Hi there.
    I’m just about to back your cake tomorrow (Friday) in readiness for my Irish Day while the rugby match is in (England v’s Ireland) .
    Can I make it in an ordinary cake tin (springform)? You say to line the tin in your recipe. Just with greaseproof paper? Thanks.

  • Wonderful wonderful wonderful! I followed this recipe exactly (used a scale to measure all the dry ingredients), making sure to use the the full fat versions of sour cream and cream cheese, a high quality Dutch process cocoa, and the Guinness i used was labeled as “extra stout”…the results were a huge hit with my Irish themed dinner club last night. The only thing I did differently was I made cupcakes instead of cake. Baked at the same temp in cupcake liners filled 3/4 full for 15 minutes. The frosting was divine and worked well through my piping bag with a 2D drop flower tip and held up perfectly in the fridge after piping. I’m not usually a cream cheese frosting fan but this fluffy version was so good and I plan to use it for any recipe that calls for a cream cheese frosting – YUM!

  • Hi, I was wondering how you recommendtoring this cake? I typically make the cake the night before, and the forsting the day I serve it. How do you like to store it if its not eaten all at once?