Introduction: Mocha Cake

About: I am a cat lover; housing seven domestic cats. Baking and sewing are some of my favorite hobbies along with bike riding. I also have two show rabbits.

Baking is one of my favorite hobbies and for this cake I decided to modify my favorite chocolate cake recipe and add coffee. I also decided to go all out with the theme and make a coffee buttercream. For all the cakes I've made in the past, I've always used the same kind of frosting, but for this recipe I decided to switch it up and try out a buttercream. With a mom who really likes coffee I knew that she would love this cake and I also knew it was a way to have coffee that she would allow (her rule being that I couldn't have coffee drinks until I graduated). This cake is super simple and delicious.

Step 1: Cake Ingredients


  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used olive)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee

Step 2: Preheat Oven and Prep Cake Pans

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (375 degrees Celsius). Grease and flour two nine inch cake pans.

Step 3: Dry Ingredients

Sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Step 4: Wet Ingredients

Add the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Mix for two minutes and boil one cup water. (Accomplish two things at once and put the water in the microwave for two minutes and use that as your timer for mixing.) Measure out the instant coffee into the boiling water and mix until combined. Stir the coffee into your batter. The batter will be thin.

Step 5: Pour and Bake

Pour the batter evenly into your cake pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Test if they're done with a toothpick. (When inserted in the center of the cake it should come out clean.)

Step 6: Coffee Buttercream Ingredients

Coffee Buttercream:

  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons softened butter (salted)
  • 3 1/4 cups + 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons boiling water

Step 7: Make the Coffee and Cream the Butter

Gather your ingredients and mix the instant coffee with the boiling water gradually to avoid lumps.(You'll see in the pictures that I didn't do this. The reason I say to is because when I mixed all the instant coffee in at once I ended up with a huge lump on the spoon. In order to fix this I had to boil more water and put the bowl of half mixed coffee in it to heat it up enough to dissolve the lump.) Set the coffee aside to cool and cut your butter into cubes. Beat the butter with a mixer on low until soft.

I did get one complaint that the buttercream was too strong, (I didn't think so) but everyone else loved it! If you do want to have a lighter coffee flavor though, you can dial the amount of instant coffee down however you want, but keep the water measurement the same so you don't change the texture of your buttercream.

Step 8: Finish the Buttercream

Slowly add the powdered sugar until it's all combined. Then, mix in the vanilla and add the coffee about a spoonful at a time beating after each new addition. At this point your buttercream is finished and is the ideal texture for piping, but if it's a little stiff then add in a small amount of milk. (I didn't have to do that, but just in case.)

Step 9: Assemble and Decorate Your Cake! (And Enjoy Eating It!!)

This is actually one of my favorite parts of making a cake or cupcakes. The decorating!! I lost the pictures of assembling the cake, but I do have a photo of before I put the cocoa powder on for decoration. Frost your cake and have fun decorating! I used tip 96 for piping the frosting ring and for sprinkling the cocoa powder on top it works best to put a little in a sieve and just lightly tap it to dust the cake.

Now comes the best part: eating it! I hope that you enjoy this cake and getting creative with the decorating and flavors. My decoration was a little simple, but have fun building on it or just eating the cake. (: Also, note to self: Don't consume before bed!

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