dark chocolate pound cake

…with chocolate chips.  Because sometimes, you just need some chocolate, okay?

Dark Chocolate Pound Cake
Dark Chocolate Pound Cake

For most of us corporate folks, this past week was the first full work-week since mid-December.  Five whole days, uninterrupted by a Tuesday or Wednesday holiday… no matter how much you love your job, going from vacation mode to full-blown work-mode can definitely be a rough transition.  And in times of peril, we turn to chocolate.  Lots of chocolate…. in the form of dark chocolate pound cake loaded with chocolate chips.

Dark Chocolate Pound Cake
Dark Chocolate Pound Cake

I use the term “pound cake” with reservations here.  This cake has a more crumbly crumb than a traditional pound cake, but it follows a more traditional pound cake recipe than chocolate loaf recipe because there are no chemical leaveners.  Call it what you will, it’s super chocolatey, super dense, and super moist.  You will definitely need milk.

Dark Chocolate Pound Cake
Dark Chocolate Pound Cake

I kept the cake moist by adding buttermilk to the batter.  Usually dairy mellows chocolate flavors, but in this case, I found that the tang of the buttermilk not only helped keep the cake moist, but also helped contrast and emphasize the flavors of the chocolate and the coffee.  Yes, the coffee.  I added a healthy dose of instant coffee to the batter to help enhance the flavor of the chocolate, and to make the cake more appropriate for breakfast consumption.  I’m serious.  I feel like as long as there is coffee in the batter, I can call it a breakfast mocha dark chocolate pound cake.  But mostly, I can feel less guilty about starting my morning with cake.

dark chocolate pound cake

prep time: 20 minutes

cook time: 1 hour


  • 1 1/2 C cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp table salt
  • 1/4 C Dutch processed cocoa
  • 1/4 C boiling water
  • 2 oz semisweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
  • 2 TBSP instant coffee granulates (decaf or regular)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 C buttermilk
  • 1 C unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 C granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 8 oz chocolate chips (semisweet or milk, your choice)


  1. Mise en place, and read this recipe all the way through.
  2. Remove 1 tsp of flour and toss chocolate chips in it. (This will prevent them from sinking to the bottom)
  3. Whisk together the remaining flour, and salt. Set aside.
  4. Combine cocoa, chocolate, and instant coffee in a small bowl. Pour boiling water over the mixture and whisk until smooth. Set aside to cool.
  5. Stir vanilla extract into buttermilk and set aside.
  6. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl as needed.
  7. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating into a homogenous mixture after each addition.
  8. Add the cocoa mixture and beat until completely combined. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure that there are no streaks in the batter.
  9. Add the flour and buttermilk in 5 additions - 3 parts flour, 2 parts buttermilk. Start by adding 1/3 of the flour mixture with the mixer on low speed. Beat until it almost disappears, then add 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture. Repeat with the flour, then buttermilk, and finally finish with the flour. Mix until just combined.
  10. Add the chocolate chips (coated in flour) to the batter and fold in with a spatula. Make sure the chips are evenly distributed, but try to do this in the smallest possible number of turns of your spatula. Overmixing will lead to a tough cake!
  11. Transfer to a loaf pan that has been buttered and lined with buttered parchment paper.
  12. Bake at 350 for 55-65 minutes, until the cake springs back when poked gently, or a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out with only a few crumbs.
  13. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  14. Slice and serve, or wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil, and freeze for up to 1 month.


Adapted from Joy of Baking and Cook's Country via Tracey's Culinary Adventures


Happy eating!  Let me know if you have any questions about this recipe in the comments below.

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