Recipe: The ultimate, best ever, chocolate fudge cake

Iced chocolate fudge cake on a pink stand with daffodils

Make our easy chocolate fudge cake recipe - Credit: Charlotte Smith-Jarvis

There are some recipes which just cannot be bettered. And this incredible chocolate cake is one of them. 

Deep, dark, fudgy and just the right amount of sweet, it’s the stuff dreams are made of. It comes via a friend’s mum, well known in our circle for her dangerously delicious baked goods. The original recipe is neatly tucked into a binder alongside a treasure trove of other delights, including the chocolate oaties recipe I’ve shared before. 

I love the concept of a family recipe book. All those nuggets of information and wisdom set aside, ready to be bestowed on the next generation. Another friend has a book of recipes passed on from her mother-in-law (including an ice box type cake referred to as polar bear poo!). And another, from South Africa, has a gorgeous book of family recipes, complete with pictures and illustrations – how amazing is that. 

It all makes me think I really should handwrite my own family’s recipes ready to dose them out to my kids – from my ‘famous’ brownies, to mum’s bara brith, and my Jewish grandpa’s almondy kichel biscuits. 

If you’ve got family recipes to share in these pages it would be wonderful to hear from you. Email me at 

Anyway, back to the chocolate cake. For me, it’s the inclusion of black treacle in the sponge that makes it. This enhances the power of the cocoa, and gives the whole flavour a more grown-up profile. The idea of eating this pervades all my senses when I know I have it sitting on the side in the kitchen. 

I’m rather like the child in Michael Rosen’s famous poem – I just can’t leave it alone! 

For best results, and to allow the cake to reach its full, fudgy potential, wrap in foil and stow away where no one can find it...except perhaps you. 

Best ever chocolate fudge cake 

Most Read


170g plain flour 

2tbsps cocoa powder 

1tsp bicarbonate of soda 

1tsp baking powder 

140g caster sugar 

2tbsps treacle 

2 large eggs 

140g vegetable oil 

140g milk 


45g butter 

2tbsps water 

2tbsps brown sugar 

1/2tsp vanilla extract 

85g icing sugar, sifted 

28g cocoa powder, sifted 

Pinch salt 


Pre-heat the oven to 170C and grease and line a deep 20cm round cake tin. 

Place all the cake ingredients in a bowl and beat with an electric whisk for around two minutes until super smooth and creamy. 

Pour evenly into your prepared tin and place in the middle of the oven for 40 to 45 minutes. A skewer should come out clean once it’s ready. 

Allow to cool completely and turn out of the tin. 

For the icing, in a small pan melt the butter with the brown sugar, vanilla and water – but do not boil. Sift in the icing sugar and cocoa into the liquid and beat to a thick, creamy icing. Add a pinch of salt. Spread over the cake immediately as it sets quickly.