This Chocolate Pound Cake recipe is dense, rich, moist, and easy to make in a loaf pan! Finished with a chocolate glaze, it’s a delectable and simple dessert for brunch, luncheons, holidays, or any occasion.
Chocolate Pound Cake
Satisfy your chocolate craving with this rich and moist snack cake! Our Chocolate Pound Cake recipe is easy to make and delivers a moist, dense crumb. It’s got big chocolaty flavor, but not overly sweet. The silky ganache poured over the top takes the cake to level 11. Enjoy a slice in the morning with some coffee, or serve as a simple dessert for brunch, luncheons, holidays, and any occasion.
Chocolate Pound Cake Recipe
This easy chocolate pound cake loaf calls for pretty standard ingredients, but each one serves an important role. Every bite you eat is dense and indulgent! Here’s what you’ll need:
(Scroll below to the printable recipe card for details and measurements.)
- Butter: Butter is the base of pound cake. Use unsalted butter, so the cake doesn’t end up too salty.
- Eggs: Eggs provide structure. You can’t make pound cake without eggs.
- Cream cheese: Cream cheese is one of the ways to make pound cake moist. Dry pound cake is the worst.
- Sour Cream: Added sour cream is another way to prevent the cake from being dry, plus a hint of tanginess.
- Sugar: For sweetness and to properly cream together the butter and cream cheese. Remember, this is a dessert cake!
- Cake flour: For best results, use cake flour. It’s lighter than all-purpose flour and produces the most soft, tender, and delicate crumb.
- Cocoa powder: Unsweetened cocoa powder is what makes the pound cake chocolaty. We love Ghirardelli or Hershey’s.
- Espresso powder: Instant espresso powder adds depth of flavor and enhances the chocolate taste. The cake will not taste like coffee.
- Baking powder: A leavening agent that gives the cake lift.
- Salt: Boosts the other flavors.
- Vanilla extract: A little bit of vanilla extract enhances all the other ingredients.
- Chocolate glaze for pound cake: For the smooth chocolate ganache, you’ll need powdered sugar, unsweetened cocoa powder, butter, and milk.
Tips for Success
Making pound cake is not complicated at all, but there are a few tips to ensure perfection.
(Don’t miss the complete printable recipe card below with all the details.)
- Line the loaf pan with parchment paper: By doing this, the cake will have a quick release once cooled and not stick to the pan.
- Measure the flour correctly: Spoon and level the flour, don’t scoop. Too much flour could result in the cake being dry and like a brick!
- Wet ingredients should be room temperature: the butter, cream cheese, sour cream, and eggs should all be room temperature before starting. This allows everything to incorporate better and trap air, which expands while baking. The end result is a fluffier baked good.
- Don’t over-mix: Over-mixing will make the cake too dense and tough.
- Remove air bubbles: Once the batter is poured into the pan, bang it on the counter once or twice to bring up any air bubbles.
- Bake at a lower temperature: This cake recipe bakes at 325 degrees, not 350. Baking at a slightly lower temperature allows the pound cake to bake from within and evenly.
- Cool in the pan: Allow the baked cake to cool in the pan for at least 1 hour before transferring it to a rack to cool completely.
- Don’t use the chocolate glaze too soon: Wait for the pound cake to cool completely before pouring the chocolate glaze on top, otherwise the cake will just absorb it instead of forming a solid coating.
How to Store Chocolate Pound Cake
To store: This pound cake loaf can be stored up to 3 days at room temperature in an airtight container or wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and again in foil or up to 6 days in the refrigerator.
To freeze: Wrap baked and cooled pound cake in 1-2 layers of plastic wrap, then a layer of aluminum foil, and transfer to a freezer-safe bag. It can stay frozen for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bring to room temperature before slicing and serving. We recommend freezing without the chocolate glaze and then applying that fresh the day you’ll be serving.
What to Serve with Chocolate Cake
This pound cake recipe is perfect with just the simple chocolate glaze, but nobody would complain if you served it with a drizzle of chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, or strawberry sauce, and a dollop of homemade whipped cream on top!
More Chocolate Cake Recipes:
Who doesn’t love cake?! It’s the perfect dessert for at work, a brunch, birthday, party, or any occasion. Here are some other favorites:
Chocolate Pound Cake
For the Cake
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter , softened to room temperature
- 4 ounces (1/2 block) full-fat cream cheese , softened to room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs , at room temperature
- 3 tablespoons sour cream , at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup cake flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
For the Chocolate Glaze
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons butter , softened to room temperature
- 2-4 tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 325°F (not 350°F.) Line a standard 9×5 loaf pan with parchment paper.
- Using a handheld mixer (or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment), beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy, 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the cream cheese and beat until completely smooth and combined, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and beat until combined, about 1 minute. Then add the sour cream and vanilla extract; beat until combined and creamy. Scrape down the bowl again.
- On low speed, beat the eggs in 1 at a time allowing each to fully incorporate before adding the next. (Careful not to overmix after the eggs have been added.) Once the 3rd egg is combined, add in the cake flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking powder, and salt all at once. Beat on medium speed just until combined. (Do not overmix.) Using a rubber spatula, give the batter a final turn to make sure there are no lumps at the bottom of the bowl. The batter will be a thick and very creamy.
- Pour batter evenly into prepared pan. Bang the pan on the counter once or twice to bring up any air bubbles. Bake for approximately 65-75 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.*I highly recommend you 1) Loosely tent the pan with foil halfway through bake time to ensure the surface does not over-brown, and 2) start checking at 65 minutes. Alternatively, if the cake needs longer then 75 minutes, bake longer. All ovens run differently.)
- Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool for 1 hour inside the pan. Then invert the slightly cooled pound cake onto a wire rack or serving dish. Allow to cool completely.
- Make the ganache: Whisk together the sugar, cocoa powder, and softened butter. Then add in 2 tablespoons of milk, adding in an additional tablespoon of milk at a time, if necessary, until mixture is smooth and drizzling consistency.
- Make sure the pound cake is 100% completely cooled, then drizzle the ganache over the top in an even smooth layer.
- Allow chocolate ganache to harden and set completely, then slice and enjoy!
- NOTE: Refer to the full article for helpful tips and storage info.