Mocha Cake with Coffee Caramel {recipe}

photo by Kimberley's Kitchen

I can't take any credit for this. My 5 year old daughter, Georgia May, came to me the other day with her idea for dessert. You see, Georgia and I bake together almost every day. And after watching several Everyday Food videos of Sarah Carey (her personal hero), she had an idea for dessert. I guess Sarah had baked a chocolate cake and Georgia came up with her version of a cake.

"It will be a coffee chocolate cake, in the round Bundt pan, with chocolate frosting, sprinkled with chocolate chips, and drizzled with coffee sauce." She motioned her hand back and forth to show me how to drizzle. And then emphasized, "it has to be drizzled like this."

I shouldn't be surprised. If she isn't actually baking with me she is performing her cooking show at her little play kitchen. Each "episode" starts with, "Hi, I'm Sarah, and today I am making a fabulous..." She truly loves cooking and baking and when she told me her cake idea I just had to help her make it happen.

We started with the cake. Both girls helped to mix the ingredients for this easy, one-bowl chocolate cake that we adapted to a mocha cake. This cake recipe is actually vegan and works well with gluten-free flour mixes too so I highly recommend it for those seeking an allergen friendly chocolate (or mocha!) cake.

Have I mentioned my love of Starbucks' VIA Instant Coffee recently? No? This is my life-saver. I never thought, being such a coffee snob, that I could love an instant coffee. But this is formulated so well that it is as good as a fresh cup of brewed coffee. Amazing! And it dissolves in cold and hot liquid, making it perfect for baking! 

photo by Kimberley's Kitchen
Anytime a recipe calls for brewed coffee or espresso (like my upcoming Tiramisu S'mores!) I use VIA. I also use the decaf so that I am not adding caffeine to a recipe (and can have it as a late night snack if the need arises!)

After you make the cake and pop it in the oven, you can whip up this easy peasy frosting and the coffee caramel that you will forever love me for. Once the cake has cooled, have the kids help frost it, top with chocolate chips or sprinkles, and drizzle away. Just remember Georgia's very specific back and forth drizzle application. Very important!

photo by Kimberley's Kitchen

Mocha Cake Recipe
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a bundt pan (or 8-9" square or round cake pan) with vegetable oil.

In a large bowl, blend 1 2/3 cups flour, 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt. 

Open 2 sachets of VIA and dissolve 1 1/2 sachets in 1 cup of cold water. (you will use other half sachet for caramel so don't discard). Stir to dissolve coffee. (if making just a chocolate cake, simply omit the coffee and only use 1 cup water). 

Add 5 Tablespoons vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract to coffee. Stir to blend. Add 1 cup sugar and mix. Add this to the flour mixture and mix until smooth. 

Pour into prepared baking pan and bake for approx 30 minutes or until baked through. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack in pan for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and continue to cool cake until it is at room temperature.

While cake is baking prepare the frosting and caramel below:

Chocolate Frosting
In a medium bowl, whip 2 sticks unsalted butter (1 cup) with an electric mixer (hand held or stand). Once it is fluffy, add 2 cups confectioner's sugar and 2 Tablespoons of milk. Continue to blend until smooth. Add 3 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder. Blend until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature until cake is ready to be frosted.

Coffee Caramel with Starbucks VIA
In a medium sauce pan, combine 1 stick of unsalted butter (1/2 cup), 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Pour remaining 1/2 sachet of VIA into 1/2 cup of cream and stir to dissolve. Add coffee/cream mixture to butter and sugar. With the stove on medium heat, continue to stir to dissolve sugar and blend ingredients. Cook over medium heat, while stirring, for approximately 10 minutes until mixture has thickened slightly. Remove from heat. Place in a glass measuring cup or jar and place in fridge until ready to use. Caramel will continue to thicken as it cools. 

To serve:
Frost cake with frosting (you may have some frosting left over!) and sprinkle with chocolate chips (or sprinkles, nuts, whatever you like). Slice to serve and drizzle with coffee caramel. 

Cake will keep fresh if sealed for 3 days and caramel will stay fresh in fridge for 1 week. But it won't last that long. So I don't even know why I wrote that.



  1. Looks tasty, I wonder how much the cost of all ingredients.


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