This chocolate cake with raspberry filling is a lusciously moist and rich chocolate layer cake with homemade raspberry jam. This impressive but simple dessert is perfect for celebrating any occasion!
Chocolate and raspberries are a match made in heaven to me. My chocolate coffee cake is one of my favorite desserts to make when I'm craving something rich so I swapped out buttercream for raspberry filling and it turned out perfect!
This chocolate raspberry cake is easy to make with simple ingredients; I love sharing this cake at birthday parties, holidays, or year-round for a weeknight dessert. Every bite is full of fresh raspberry jam and rich chocolate cake; it's super decadent!
Why You'll Love This Chocolate Raspberry Cake
- This cake has three layers of rich chocolate cake, silky chocolate buttercream, and raspberry filling.
- It has a rich chocolate flavor thanks to the chocolate cake and chocolate frosting.
- Although it looks fancy, it is very easy to make with simple ingredients! I use the same base recipe for my black velvet cake too!
- You will love this chocolate raspberry cake for celebrating any occasion, like birthdays or holidays!
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
Raspberries: I tested this chocolate raspberry cake with both frozen raspberries and fresh raspberries; both will work. The top of the cake is best decorated with fresh raspberries, though!
Milk: Whole or 2% milk is best to keep the cake super moist. I use whole milk in all of my chocolate cake recipes, like my chocolate ganache cake!
Coffee: Don't worry, you won't taste the coffee at all but it makes it extra moist and tender. I use coffee in my mint ice cream cake too!
Full ingredient measurements and instructions can be found in the recipe card below!
Here is how to make this delicious chocolate raspberry cake! Before you start, preheat the oven to 325 F/165 C. Butter and line three 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper.
Step 1: Make the raspberry jam. In a small pot, combine the frozen raspberries, lemon juice, and sugar. Cook until boiling, then use a spoon to mash the berries. Stir in the cornstarch slurry. Cook a few minutes longer, until the jam is thick, then transfer it to a bowl to cool completely (image 1 below).
Step 2: Make the chocolate batter. In a large bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil and sugar. Then mix in room temperature eggs and milk. Whisk in the all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Finally, whisk in the hot coffee (image 2 below).
Step 3: Bake the cake layers. Evenly distribute the cake batter into the prepared pans. Bake them on the middle oven rack until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out covered in a few moist crumbs. Allow the layers to cool on a wire rack then remove them from the pans (image 3 above).
Step 4: Make the chocolate buttercream frosting. In a stand mixer, cream the softened butter with the paddle attachment until smooth. Gradually mix in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder until combined. Then mix in the heavy cream and vanilla and mix until light and fluffy (image 4 above).
Step 5: Assemble the cake. Place one of the cake layers on a cardboard round or cake plate. Spread a thin layer of the chocolate buttercream on top of the cake, then use a pastry bag to pipe a border of the buttercream around the edge (image 5 below).
Step 6: Fill with raspberry jam. Evenly spread ⅓ cup of the raspberry jam in the center, making sure not to go higher than your buttercream border. Continue with the next layer in the same way (image 6 above).
Step 7: Frost the outside of the cake. Place the last layer upside down so that the top of it is perfectly flat. Use the rest of the buttercream to cover the entire cake. Use a small offset spatula in a swooping motion to create swirls (image 7 above).
Step 8: Decorate with raspberries. Decorate the top edge of the cake with lots of fresh raspberries (image 8 above)!
Expert Baking Tips
- Use a kitchen scale. Baking with a scale is much more accurate than cup measurements. To convert this recipe, click the "metric" button next to the ingredients title on the recipe card. If you do not have a scale, use a spoon to fluff the flour first, then spoon it into your measuring cup.
- Don't overbake the cake! This chocolate cake is extremely moist and delicious if baked correctly. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out covered in a few moist crumbs when they are done baking.
- Make ahead! Make and assemble it ahead of time and store it in the fridge until ready to serve. Let it sit out at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Yes, but I found that store-bought jams are much sweeter than homemade and can make it too sweet.
Absolutely! You could easily make this with strawberry, blackberry, or any other jam you love in place of the raspberries!
Store any slices of leftover cake wrapped in plastic wrap or in an airtight container for 5 days in the fridge. You can also store the cake whole in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Yes! Pour the batter into two 9-inch pans. The layers will take longer than 18-20 minutes so be sure to check them occasionally so they don't overbake.
Yes! Store it whole and uncut in an airtight cake container for up to one month. You can also cut it into slices, wrap them in plastic wrap, and store them in a freezer bag or airtight container for up to one month.
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Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Filling
- 3 8 inch cake pans *SEE NOTES FOR OTHER PAN SIZES*
For the Batter
- 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cups unsweetened dark cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- ½ cup canola oil
- 2 large whole eggs room temperature
- 1 cup whole or 2% milk room temperature
- ⅔ cup hot coffee or water I recommend coffee for an even richer flavor. You won't taste it in the cake at all!
For the Buttercream
- 1 ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened dark cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream or milk
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- fresh raspberries, for decorating
For the Raspberry Jam
- 3 cups frozen raspberries can sub fresh berries
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 ½ tablespoon corn starch
- 1 tablespoon water
Make the Jam
- In a small pot, combine the raspberries, sugar, and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat for 12 minutes until they are boiling, then mash them with the back of your spoon.3 cups frozen raspberries, ⅓ cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- Whisk together the corn starch and water and pour it into the jam. Let it cook for another 2-3 minutes until it has thickened.1 ½ tablespoon corn starch, 1 tablespoon water
- Transfer the jam to a bowl to cool completely before using.
Make the Batter
- Lightly oil and line the bottoms of three round 8-inch cake pans. Preheat the oven to 325 F/165 C.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.1¾ cups all-purpose flour, ¾ cups unsweetened dark cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon baking soda, 1½ teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt
- In a large bowl, whisk together the oil and sugar until combined.2 cups granulated sugar, ½ cup canola oil
- Whisk in the eggs one at a time until completely combined.2 large whole eggs
- Whisk in the milk.1 cup whole or 2% milk
- Whisk in the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Finally whisk in the hot coffee until just combined.⅔ cup hot coffee or water
- Pour the batter evenly between the prepared pans. (about 385 grams in each)
- Bake the layers on the middle rack for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs.
- Let the layers cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then run a small offset spatula around the sides to release and remove them from the pan. Let them cool completely.
Making the Buttercream
- In a stand mixing bowl, cream the butter until smooth with the paddle.1 ½ cup unsalted butter
- Gradually mix the powdered sugar and cocoa powder into the butter.2 cups powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon unsweetened dark cocoa powder
- Mix in the heavy cream and vanilla, then increase the speed to medium and let the buttercream mix for 1-3 minutes or until it looks light and fluffy.1 tablespoon heavy cream or milk, 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Place one layer on a platter or cardboard round. Evenly spread a thin layer of frosting across the top.
- Pipe a border of frosting around the edge.
- Fill the center with ⅓ cup of the raspberry jam and evenly spread it to the buttercream border. The jam should not go higher than your border otherwise it will leak out of the sides!
- Continue layering the next layer the same way.
- For the last layer, place it upside down so that the top is completely flat.
- Cover the sides and top of the cake with the rest of the buttercream. Use a small offset spatula or spoon in a circular motion to create swirls on the side or decorate it as you wish.
- Decorate the top border with fresh raspberries and enjoy!fresh raspberries, for decorating
- Make ahead: Make and assemble it ahead of time and store it in the fridge until ready to serve. Let it sit out at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving.
- Fridge: To keep it super moist, store the slices in the fridge after cutting.
- Freezer: Store the whole cake in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks. You can also cut it into slices, wrap them in plastic wrap, and store them in a freezer bag or airtight container for up to one month!