Last updated on January 3rd, 2023.

This Chocolate Cherry cake is a tender and moist cake bursting with chocolate flavors followed by the unique tanginess of cherries.

Chocolate cherry layer cake recipe
Chocolate cherry layer cake recipe

I love how versatile cherries are. For example, they go so well with different flavors such as lime, coconut, and my absolute favorite, almonds. But when it comes to chocolate, cherries perform uniquely, like in this Black Forest Brownies recipe. Firstly its tanginess brings a particular “kick” to the chocolate’s deep and robust flavor. Secondly, the cherry puree I added to the batter enhances the chocolate’s smooth texture.

Chocolate cherry layer cake recipe

Now Let’s Talk About This Chocolate Cherry Cake:

As you can read below, I decided to bloom the cocoa powder by mixing it with melted butter.

What is Blooming?

Unlike other ingredients such as salt or flour, cocoa powder will only dissolve when in touch with hot liquid. In the baking world, this process is called Blooming. Blooming means that the cocoa powder dissolves and releases an intense chocolate flavor into the liquid.

The good news is that if you are ever out of chocolate, you can bloom some cocoa powder. But the very good news is that this extra step will unleash some severe chocolate flavor!

  • As always, please make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.
  • You can bake this cake in 3×8″ round pans or 4×6″ round pans. But you can also bake it in a loaf/bundt pan.
  • The recipe calls for Cherry liquor. However, you can go ahead and skip it.
  • You can omit 1/2 cup of the dried cherries with chopped chocolate.
  • If you wish, you can drop the cherry puree all together. But please keep in mind that the cherry puree is what gives beautiful specs to the buttercream.
  • You can use the leftover cherry purre for other uses such as ice cream topping, cookie filling, etc.


Chocolate cherry layer cake recipe

Here are some more chocolate recipes you might enjoy:

AlsoOne more thing…

Don’t forget to tag @OneSarcasticBaker on Instagram if you bake this recipe. Would love to see your creations!

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3.34 from 3 votes

Chocolate Cherry Cake

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cherry puree, choclate layer cake, chocolate cherry cake
Servings 1 3 layer 8″


Cherry Puree

  • 1 Pkg Frozen sweet (sour is ok) cherries, thawed and water discarded. (450 g / 16 oz)
  • 1/2 Cup + 2 TBS Sugar ( 120 g / 4 oz)

Chocolate Cherry Cake

  • 1 1/2 Sticks Unslated butter, melted (170 g / 6 oz)
  • 1/2 Cup Unsweetened cocoa powder (56 g / 2 oz)
  • 1 Cup Cake Flour (113 g / 4 oz)
  • 1 Cup AP Flour (113 g / 4 oz)
  • 3/4 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp Baking soda
  • 1 Cup Brown sugar ( 200 g / 7 oz)
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 Cup Sugar ( 200 g / 7 oz)
  • 1 Cup Half and Half ( 240 ml / 8 oz)
  • 1/4 Cup Cherry Puree (56 g / 2 oz)
  • 2 TBS Cherry liquor
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 Cup Dried cherries, finely chopped ( 113 g / 4 oz)

Cherried buttercream

  • 6 Large Egg whites (180 g / 6 oz)
  • 1 1/4 Cup Sugar (250 g / 9 oz)
  • 1/4 tsp Cream of tartar
  • 4 Sticks Unsalted butter, soften (450 g / 16 oz)
  • 2-4 TBS Cherry puree

Chocolate drizzle

  • 1/4 Cup Semi-sweet chocolate chip (56 g / 2 oz)
  • 1/4 Cup Heavy cream ( 60 ml / 2 oz)
  • 2 tsp Corn syrup


Cherry Puree

  1. In a food processor, pulse the cherries until smooth.

  2. Place the cherries and sugar in a medium pan over the stove medium-low heat and cook for 20-30 minutes until the liquid has reduced by half.

  3. Remove from the stove and pour it to a glass container. Store in the refrigerator until use.

Chocolate Cherry Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 line the bottom of three 8" cake pans. Set aside.

  2. Measure the cocoa powder into the bowl of a standing mixer and pour the melted butter on top. Mix to incorporate and let sit for 10 minutes to allow the cocoa powder to bloom.

  3. In a medium bowl, sift together AP flour, cake flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

  4. In a large measuring cup pour the half and half, cherry puree and cherry liquor. Mix to combine.

  5. Add the sugar and brown sugar to the chocolate-butter mixture and beat using the paddle attachment on medium-high speed for about 5-7 minutes. Until fluffy. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.

  6. Add the eggs one at a time waiting for each egg to fully incorporate before adding the next. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.

  7. Add the flour mix in three additions alternating with the liquid mix starting and finishing with the flour.

  8. Right after adding the last portion of the flour, stop mixer and finish blending using a rubber spatula.

  9. Fold the chopped cherries in two additions.

  10. Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 25-28 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cakes.

  11. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before frosting.

Cherry buttercream

  1. Mix the egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in a bowl and place the bowl on top of a pan with simmering water. (Do not allow the water to touch the bowl)

  2. Keep whisking the egg-sugar mix until the mix is hot to the touch of your fingers (130F).

  3. Place the egg mixture in a bowl of a standing mixture and whisk on high until a stiff meringue formed.

  4. Add the butter in small pieces and mix until a smooth buttercream is formed.

  5. Add 1 TBS of cherry puree at a time and check the flavor and color. Keep adding cherry puree until satisfied. (make sure not to add too much or it will affect the texture of the buttercream)

Chocolate Drizzle

  1. In a medium bowl place the chocolate chips, heavy cream, and corn syrup and warm in the microwave for 45-60 seconds.

  2. Remove from the microwave and let sit for about 4-5 minutes.

  3. Mix the chocolate until smooth. Use the chocolate when it is slightly cooled and a bit thick.

To Assemble

  1. Place 1 cake on top of a serving dish and spread about 1/3 cup of buttercream on top. Spread a thin layer of cherry pure.

  2. Repeat the above step with the second layer.

  3. Place the third and last cake on top and use the remaining of the buttercream to frost the cake.

  4. Drizzle the chocolate.

Dee Signature
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25 Comments on " Chocolate Cherry Cake "

  1. Dikla

    Hi, I’m desperate to make this cake but we don’t have cake flour in the UK. Can you help with an alternative please?

    1. Dikla

      Sure thing, use regular AP flour and add 1 TBS potato starch to the dry ingredients mix.

  2. Dikla

    Hi, I’m following you from Sevilla-spain
    Among the ingredients you say “1half and half cup (240ml/4 onza), but I don’t know which ingrediente you mean. You can tell me, I am very interested in making the recipe.
    Thank you.

    1. Dikla

      Hi Manuela,
      Here on the states half and half is sold in most markets and it means half milk and half heavy cream.
      Hope this helps

  3. Dikla

    Thanks for your answer, you’ve been a great help to me ?

    1. Dikla

      any time!

  4. Dikla

    Hi, I made this but I must have done something wrong – are the ingredients for 1 layer or all 3?

    1. Dikla

      you need to divide the batter between the 3 pans. what do you think you did wrong?

  5. Dikla

    5 stars
    Hi, your cakes looks great want me to try them all LOL. decide to bake this one first as I have sour cherries that been keept in moonshine for last 12months (it will be boozy cake), got two questions as I dont have 3 baking pans and same as you i’m impatient been wondering or it can be baked in one go and then sliced? im afraid that make it really dense and it will not rise properly, second thing is using egg whites for butter cream as 130F is not enough to kill bacteria that can be harmfull been thinking of substitution with something like “McDougalls MeriWhite Meringue & Royal Icing Mix” but never been using it with butter and or other additions any experience in this matter?

    1. Dikla

      Hi Max!
      I would not bake the cake in one pan because the batter is very dense which means it will take a very long time for the cake to bake. Meaning the sides and outside of the cake will over bake and become dry while the center will be chewy and maybe underbaked. Most local markets sell disposable cake pans which might be a good option. Another option is to bake the can as a bundt cake, simply use a bundt pan.
      About the eggs, if you feel uncomfortable you can cook the eggs for up to 140F, BUT please note that you have to control the temperature because at 140F the egg whites start to cook. Another option is to use store-bought pasteurized eggs or even use a different buttercream recipe.

  6. Dikla

    4 stars
    Can you clarify what ingredient youre talking about on step #5 please? You say, “add the raw and brown sugar….” …whats “raw”?

    1. Dikla

      it refers to the regular sugar

  7. Dikla

    1 star
    Hi! Loving some of your spelling ‘Cheery’ liquor! LOL

    However, not loving your conversions – 1 cup of sugar is NOT 120g, it is more like 195g etc etc
    So, do I go for your cup measurements or your grams measurements, because they’re not true conversions. I’m in the UK, I do have a cup measure but nothing is sold here by the cup, grams only

    1. Dikla

      Hi Lucy,

      Well, we all need some Cheery in our lives ;).

      The recipe calls for 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar which is 120 g. (though it would be just fine with a full cup )

      1. Dikla

        Hi Dikla,

        thanks for getting back to me (and amending the recipe) so quickly – I can see it now says 1/2 a cup



        1. Dikla

          any time!

  8. Dikla

    My chocolate powder stock is sweetened, can I reduce the sugar? Cause we don’t like it to be so sweet.

    Thank you.🍒❣️

    1. Dikla

      Hi Josha
      The sweetened powder will not give the same enhanced chocolate flavor, I can not say how much of the sugar you can remove since I don’t know how much sugar is in the powder.

  9. Dikla

    Hi Dee, I hope you can tell me what you think I did wrong with the buttercream. I followed the directions carefully. I used an instant read thermometer to get the egg white-sugar-cream of tartar mixture to 130 degrees. I whisked it until the meringue wouldn’t thicken anymore. Then I added the butter about a tablespoon at a time, but it was very runny when I had added all the butter. I tried adding powdered sugar to thicken it. I added quite a lot and it did thicken somewhat, but it was more the consistency of pudding, and I could not use it to ice the cake. It did not look like the beautiful buttercream in your photos. If you have any ideas of where I went wrong, I’d be grateful. Thank you.

    1. Dikla

      Hi Carolyn,
      I don’t think you did anything wrong other than not allowing the meringue to cool enough so the butter melted and it looked like it is runny.
      Next time, remove the meringue from the heat, and keep whipping until it’s thick and has cooled down to lukewarm. Then add the butter and keep mixing until it’s has a buttercream considering. If it’s runny that’s ok as you mix the butter will cool and thicken.
      Hope this helps but please let me know if you have any much better.

      1. Dikla

        Thanks, Dee. That makes a lot of sense. It was a very hot day yesterday and I probably didn’t whisk the egg white mixture long enough so it wasn’t cool enough when I added the butter. I put the runny buttercream into the refrigerator for a few hours and it did thicken up considerably. So I think it will be fine (just a bit different because of the added powdered sugar.) Next time I’ll know what to do.

        1. Dikla

          So glad it worked out, Carolyn! thank you for the update!

  10. Dikla

    Where do you get cherry purée or do you make it?

    1. Dikla

      There is a cherry puree recipe in the recipe card

  11. Dikla

    Potentially stupid question… which cherry liqueur do you recommend? I’ve never baked with any kind of liqueur before and am not very versed in that area of ingredient!

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