Decadent Chocolate Cake With Custard Filling

This chocolate cake with custard filling is made with a rich and moist chocolate cake layered with an indulgent chocolate custard cream, easy and mouth-watering!

chocolate cake with custard filling

About The Recipe

This chocolate cake with custard filling is the easiest chocolate you’ll ever make, the chocolate cake is an easy, one bowl recipe, and while the cake bakes, you can quickly make the chocolate custard filling. Assemble the cake, refrigerate, and enjoy!

This recipe is great because it’s an indulgent and rich chocolate cake that anyone can make. No fuss of making buttercream, chocolate ganache, whipped cream or anything to frost the cake, whip up the chocolate custard filling in minutes, layer the cake and you’re all done!

I could have made this chocolate cake with custard filling way quicker to prepare by using store bought chocolate pudding, or custard mix, but the taste and richness of this homemade chocolate custard cream is soo worth the few extra minutes. This chocolate custard is kind of like a chocolate pastry cream, what is pastry cream? It’s a thick custard used as a filling in many desserts, and is thought to have originated in France or Italy, read more here.

What You Need To Make This Recipe

Ingredients for chocolate cake:

Flour: use regular all-purpose flour, not cake flour.

Sugar: use white granulated sugar, you could add up to 1/4 cup extra based on your liking.

Baking soda and powder: these are leavening agents, make sure your baking powder and baking soda isn’t expired or the cake might fail to rise,

Oil: use a flavorless vegetable oil like sunflower or canola oil.

Buttermilk: the acidity in buttermilk activates the baking soda, which produces gas causing the cake to rise. Don’t have buttermilk on hand? Make it at home with one simple step!

Coffee: helps to intensify the chocolate flavor, you won’t be able to taste it at all.

Ingredients for chocolate custard filling:

Milk: use whole milk for the best results.

Egg yolks: add richness into the custard.

Corn starch: helps thicken the milk.

Sugar: use regular granulated sugar, the amount can be adjusted to the level of sweetness you prefer.

Vanilla extract: this is an optional ingredient, but it helps get rid of the smell of eg yolks.

Dark chocolate: use a dark chocolate bar chopped roughly, chocolate chips will also work fine. I prefer dark chocolate rather than milk chocolate because it has a rich chocolate flavor to it, plus it helps balance the sweetness of the custard filling.

How To Make Chocolate Cake With Custard Filling

Step 1: Prepare the chocolate cake.

Whisk together all the dry ingredients of the cake recipe. Add in all the wet ingredients and whisk until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into a lined and greased 8 inch round baking pan. Bake at 180 °C / 350 °F for 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Once baked, let the cake cool down completely in the pan or on a wire rack. Cut the cake into 3 layers.

Step 2: Make the chocolate custard filling.

Heat up the milk in a saucepan until its about to simmer and small bubbles appear on the sides. In a separate pot whisk the egg yolks and sugar until pale. add in the cornstarch and mix until combined. Pour in the hot milk while constantly whisking.

Place on medium heat and cook until the custard thickens, whisking continuously so the custard doesn’t form lumps. (Lumpy custard? Check the tip below)Take off the heat, add in the chocolate and mix until fully melted and combined. Cover and cool completely before using it on the cake.

Divide the custard into 3 portions, 2 large portions and one small portion for the top.

Step 3: Assembly.

Place a cake ring or the sides of a spring form pan(8 inch) on a cake board. Line the sides with parchment paper or some acetate, it doesn’t have to be too tall.

Optional Step: in a small bowl mix some warm milk and sugar and/or espresso powder, for soaking the cakes to get an extra soft and moist chocolate cake with custard filling.

Place the first layer of cake at the bottom. Brush on some of the milk mixture all over the cake layer. Add a few tablespoons of chocolate custard and spread it out. Add the next layer of cake and repeat the same process.

Add the rest of the custard on the top cake layer (you only need very little to help the cocoa powder stick) and spread it out. Refrigerate the cake for 3-4 hours to ensure the custard sets.

Once chilled, carefully remove the cake ring/side of spring form pan and the parchment. Use an offset spatula to clean up the side if needed. Dust on some cocoa powder or powdered sugar on top, you could also add some fresh berries on top, I didn’t have any at the time. Enjoy!

Storing The Cake

Store any leftover cake in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.

Freezing The Cake

If you want to freeze this cake, I recommend freezing the cake and chocolate custard separately and then when you’re ready to assemble, thaw both at room temperature or in the refrigerator overnight. Then assemble following the steps given in the recipe.

To freeze the cake, wrap it with a layer of plastic wrap, then in one layer of aluminum foil and freeze for up to 2 months.

To freeze the chocolate custard filling, transfer it into a freezer safe container or bag and freeze for up to 2 months.

Pro Tips

  • You could make both the cake and custard a day ahead and refrigerate until you’re ready to assemble.
  • Measure the dry and wet ingredients properly. For the flour spoon it into a measuring cup and level it using the back of a spoon.
  • If you have a convection oven (oven with a fan setting) I recommend reducing the temperature by 20 degrees.
  • If your custard turns lumpy, strain it through a sieve while using a spatula to mix and scrape off the smooth custard on the other side.
  • The chocolate cake batter will be runny and this totally normal.
  • Baking time may vary: all ovens are different, your cake might take a longer to fully bake, or it might bake faster. So it’s best to start checking on the cake at 25 minutes.
  • If the baking time is over and your cake is still raw in the center, cover the top of the cake with some tin foil and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes, or until fully baked. This will prevent the top from burning.
chocolate cake with custard filling
Chocolate Cake With Custard Filling

FAQ’s

How do I make buttermilk at home?

It’s super easy, just add 1 tablespoon of vinegar for every 1 cup of milk. Let it sit for a few minutes and it’s ready to use!

Can I make this cake in a 6 inch cake pan?

Absolutely, just use two 6 inch pans instead of one 8 inch pan. Also no need to cut the cake into layers, use them as is. If you want you could also cut the two 6 inch layers into four layers and then divide the custard filling accordingly.

Can I cover the cake in another frosting?

Of course! I wanted to keep this cake as simple as possible so I made it a naked cake with no frosting on the sides of the cake.

Can I use vanilla custard instead of chocolate?

Yes, all you have to do is skip adding the chocolate at the end of making the custard, and you got yourself a vanilla custard!

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Recipe Card

Chocolate Cake With Custard Filling

This chocolate cake with custard filling is made with a rich and moist chocolate cake layered with a creamy and indulgent chocolate custard cream, a dream come true for any chocolate lover!

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 35 min

Chill Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hour 55min

Course: Dessert

Servings: 12

Calories: 444kcal

Ingredients

Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups all purpose flour (250g)
  • 1 + 3/4 cups granulated sugar (350g)
  • 2/3 cups cocoa powder (80g)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk (230ml)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (118ml)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup hot brewed coffee (158ml)
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature

Chocolate Custard Filling

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (100g)
  • 1/3 cup corn starch (42g)
  • 2 cups milk (500ml)
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate, chopped/chips (100g)

Optional Topping

  • cocoa powder
  • powdered sugar
  • fresh berries
  • chocolate ganache

Instructions

For Chocolate Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C / 350 °F and grease and line an 8 inch round baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine all purpose flour, cocoa powder, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. Create a hole in the middle and add in the buttermilk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, hot coffee and eggs. Mix until fully combined.
  4. Pour all of the batter into the pan and bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  5. Let the cake cool completely, then cut it into 3 layers.

For Chocolate Custard Filling

  1. In a small saucepan heat the milk until it almost stars boil, small bubbles will form on the sides of the saucepan.
  2. While the mil is heating, in a separate small pot / saucepan whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until pale and creamy. Add in the corn starch and whisk until combined.
  3. Pour in the hot milk while whisking continuously. Place the pot on medium heat and cook until the custard thickens while constantly whisking.
  4. Turn off the heat and add in the chocolate. Mix until fully melted and combined into the custard.
  5. Transfer the custard into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until fully cooled.
  6. Divide the custard into 3 portions, 2 large and one small.

Assembly

  1. Optional Step: in a small bowl mix some warm milk and sugar and/or espresso powder, for soaking the cakes to get an extra soft and moist chocolate cake with custard filling.
  2. Place a cake ring or the sides of a spring form pan(8 inch) on a cake board. Line the sides with parchment paper or some acetate, it doesn’t have to be too tall.
  3. Place the first cake layer at the bottom, brush on the milk mixture all over the cake. Add 5 tablespoons(1st large portion) of the custard filling and spread it out.
  4. Add the second layer of cake on top and repeat the same process.
  5. After adding on the last layer, spread on the remaining custard on top. Refrigerate the cake for 3-4 hours to ensure the custard sets fully.
  6. Once chilled carefully remove the cake ring and parchment paper from the sides.
  7. Dust with some cocoa powder or powdered sugar.
  8. Slice and enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 444.18kcal

Total Fat: 17.46g

Carbs: 68.63g

Protein: 7.72g

Sodium: 388.54mg

Fiber: 3.53g

Sugars: 43.73g

** Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more. **

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Chocolate cake with custard filling video tutorial

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