Dairy Farmers of Canada

Chocolate Coffee Cake with Vanilla Butter Icing

A layered dessert with fluffy butter icing with a hint of vanilla gives this rich chocolate cake the pastry shop touch.

  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cooking: 30 min
  • Refrigeration: 10 min
Yields 12 - 16 servings
chocolate coffee cake with vanilla butter icing


  • Chocolate Coffee Cake
  • 3/4 cup (180 mL) hot brewed coffee
  • 3/4 cup (180 mL) cocoa powder
  • 1 cup (250 mL) butter softened
  • 2 cups (500 mL) packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) vanilla extract
  • 4 tsp (20 mL) instant coffee granules
  • 2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
  • Vanilla Butter Icing
  • 1 cup (250 mL) butter softened
  • 2 cups (500 mL) icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) finely grated semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) chocolate covered coffee beans
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Preheat oven 350 ˚F (180 ˚C).

In bowl, whisk coffee and cocoa powder until smooth and let cool to room temperature.

In large bowl, using electric mixer beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time beating well after each addition. In small bowl combine vanilla extract coffee granules and stir to dissolve. Pour into butter mixture and beat to combine.

In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and powder and salt. Stir into butter mixture alternately with cocoa mixture, making three additions of flour and two of cocoa mixture. Spread evenly into 2 greased and bottom parchment paper lined 9-inch (23 cm) round cake pans.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until cake tester inserted comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from cake pans and let cool completely. Remove parchment paper.

Vanilla Butter Icing:

In large bowl, using electric mixer beat butter until almost white. Beat in sugar and vanilla extract smooth; set aside.

Place one layer on cake plate and using palette knife spread half of the icing to edge. Top with second cake layer and remaining icing and make decorative swirls with icing. Sprinkle edge and centre with grated chocolate and garnish with chocolate covered coffee beans. Chill in refrigerator for 10 minutes before serving.


You can make the cake ahead and freeze it. Simply wrap in plastic wrap and over wrap in heavy-duty aluminum foil and freeze for up to 2 weeks.

The icing is so easy to make it is great for other favourites like cupcakes and sandwich cookies. Try tinting the icing with food colouring for the kid’s next party!

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