Dark Chocolate Cake (With A Hint Of Coffee)

Happy Friday!  I have two fabulous things for you today, and both include coffee!   First, I have a deep, dark and delicious chocolate cake, with a hint of coffee.   If you are a chocolate lover, this cake is for you.

Dark, rich, not overly sweet, moist, it’s got it all going on.  It has a hint of coffee, enough to really compliment the chocolate, but if you aren’t a big coffee fan, don’t worry, it’s not overpowering, I promise.     And because this cake was going to be a special delivery to a special birthday girl, I needed to make a few cupcakes to keep around, for, um, “research purposes”.  :)

But this awesome recipe isn’t all I have for you today.   To help you whip up this recipe, I have teamed up with Staples to give you your very own Keurig Coffee Maker, to make your coffee making so easy that you have no excuse not to make this cake.

We LOVE Keurig Coffee Makers in this house.   I bought our first one three years ago, as a Father’s Day gift, when our youngest was a few months old.   Let me tell you, if you are ever looking for a great Mother’s Day gift, Father’s Day gift or gift for new parents, a Keurig is pretty much absolutely perfect.   Seriously, is there a better gift for someone who is sleep deprived, too tired to measure anything and needs caffeine in a really bad way?   I think not!   It also makes a great gift for teachers.   I know quite a few who have them in their classrooms.    This Keurig Mini Plus would make a great end of the year gift for teachers, at under $100, it would be a great way to spend that money that is pooled together from all of the parents.

The Keurig K10 Mini Plus Single-Cup Coffee Brewer allows you to select between three brew sizes, 6oz, 8oz and 10oz.  It brews one 8oz cup in approximately two minutes.  I can’t get over the incredible variety that is available in K-Cups these days.  A quick browse on the Staples site and you can get everything from Green Mountain English Toffee Coffee to Starbucks Breakfast Blend to Bigelow Green Tea to Snapple Peach Iced Tea to Green Mountain Naturals Lemonade!  They have almost 60 varieties in addition to those!

I seriously love Keurigs for the ease of use.  I’m not the best at making coffee and even suffer from flashbacks of struggling and stressing about how to make coffee as a teenager.  I came home a bit late for curfew one night and my creative father told me I better have a fresh cup of coffee ready for him when the sun came up.   Let me tell you I stayed up half the night trying to figure out how the heck to make coffee (back before fancy things like the internet or even home computers – yes, the dark ages!).    My coffee making stress continued during my college years when I worked as a receptionist.  Nothing like being 19 and having to make coffee for important meetings, in big fancy board rooms, with all the partners and opposing counsel at the law firm you work at.   I truly think I have coffee trauma from those years.   And thus I love the Keurig!  Plus how great is it to be able to offer a variety of coffee (and hot chocolate and tea) choices when you have people over? Brilliant really!

Keep reading to find out how to enter to win your own Keurig K10 Mini Plus Sing-Cup Coffee Brewer and pack of K-Cups from the folks at Staples! And while you are over on Staples.com, don’t miss all the awesome Martha Stewart Home Office Products.  Pretty and organized – love it!

And let’s not forget that you can whip up the perfect cup of coffee to use in this incredible cake…

This cake is hardcore when it comes to chocolate.  But it’s also incredibly easy to make.  We are talking as simple as a cake mix (seriously, it is).   I honestly don’t make many cakes from scratch.   Cake mixes are great and so easy to doctor, that I usually go that route.  But this is a variation on one of my all time favorite, easy to make, homemade chocolate cake recipes from Hershey’s.   I’ve made it before, without the coffee, and you can see that post and my how to photos here.

The one thing I always warn people about with this recipe is that the batter is super thin – as in you may think you messed it up it’s so runny, type of thin.   But have faith.  It bakes into this wonderful moist cake, even though it goes into the oven seeming almost like a pan of chocolate water.   And remember, it can also be made into cupcakes (though they are a bit messy to make given how runny the batter is, but they are so worth it).

While I love a fancy cake, for some reason a dark chocolate cake like this, to me, just needs to be kept simple, no piping, nothing fancy, just here I am in all of my chocolate glory.   Like it’s telling you I’m a serious cake, I’m more than just good looks.   I usually top this recipe with just sprinkles or as I did with this, some bittersweet chocolate shavings (made with a bar of bittersweet chocolate and the same peeler I use for my carrots!).

Ready for the recipe? Here you go!

Deep, Dark & Delicious Chocolate Cake With A Hint Of Coffee

Deep, Dark & Delicious Chocolate Cake With A Hint Of Coffee

This rich, delicious dark chocolate cake, with just a hint of coffee, is perfect for chocolate lovers. Recipe adapted from Hershey's Kitchens.


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling coffee
  • Frosting
  • 6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup HERSHEY’S SPECIAL DARK Cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/4 cup coffee (room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)



Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round pans, one 13x9x2-inch baking pan or line a muffin pan with 24 cupcake liners.

Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl.

Add eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of electric mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling coffee (batter will be very thin). Mix until well combined.

Pour into prepared pans.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes for round pans, 35 to 40 minutes for rectangular pan, approximately 20-25 minutes for cupcakes, or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely prior to frosting. (Cake may be left in rectangular pan, if desired.)


Beat butter in medium bowl. Add powdered sugar and cocoa alternately with milk and coffee, beating to spreading consistency (additional milk may be needed depending up your desired consistency). Stir in vanilla and salt (if using).


Now I did promise you a Keurig giveaway from Staples!    To enter, use the Rafflecopter Widget below (remember, it can be slow to load, so give it a minute if you don’t see it).   Open to US Residents ages 18 and older.  No purchase necessary and a purchase will not increase your chances of winning.   This is a sweepstakes, with the winner being selected at random.  Chances of winning depend on number of entries received.  Void where prohibited.    Here is the Rafflecopter Widget to enter, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: The prize in this post is being provided by Staples.   I was provided with a similar product in order to review it and share my review with you.  All opinions expressed however are mine and mine alone, this post was not reviewed by a third party prior to posting.


  1. Sandi O says

    Newman’s Own Cafe Almond Biscotti would be my first choice – because it has the word “Biscotti.” I love saying that word…. and eating biscotti…

  2. Brenda says

    Oh, my husband would love this for Father’sDay. I woul use it to have coffee and hot cocoa. Thanks for offering this great giveaway. My birthday is June 18, so it coul be a great gift to myself.

  3. Stephanie Dreier says

    I am just starting to enjoy coffee and would love to win this so I can continue all the coffees’s out there with this machine.

  4. Aida Caballero says

    I would love to make either Original Donut Shop™ Sweet & Creamy Hazelnut Iced Coffee or Green Mountain® French Vanilla Coffee. :-)

  5. Rebecca Schear says

    I would use the Keurig® K-Cup® Cafe Escapes™ Chai Latte. Always love a good spicy Chai! Your cake looks Fabulous, i’m pinning for later. Thanks for always sharing and for this fabulous opportunity =D

  6. says

    I would have to say that I would HAVE to make the English Toffeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Yummeeeeeeee! Thank you for the chance to win. We don’t keep appliances on our counter so if I won, that would give me an excuse! lol

  7. Martha says

    Donut Shop decaf is what I drink at my daughter’s house. We bought her a Keurig, but would love one of my own!

  8. says

    They all sound so good I know I want to try them all, eventually. But I would love to try the Keurig® K-Cup® Newmans Own® Café Almond Biscotti Coffee first. :) Thank you for hosting this giveaway. I’ve always wanted a Keurig brewer in my kitchen.

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

  9. says

    I’m just home from a trip to Baton Rouge….I saw Community Coffee in k-cups at a grocery store there…I would love to try those!!! Been wanting a small Keurig….fun, thanks!

  10. Reyna V says

    I love my Keurig, but two of my faves aren’t made any more… Kona Blend Extra Bold and the Berry Lime Brew Over Ice. :(

  11. Sharon Riegsecker says

    I’d go for the Snapple Peach Iced Tea. Just seems pretty cool to get Snapple from a Keurig!

  12. Brandi Mizner says

    I would like to try the medium roast variety pack from Staples for that beautiful Keurig!

  13. Sarah says

    I’m going to go with the Sweet and Creamy Regular Iced Coffee! Summer is just around the corner and that means I go for iced coffee every morning vs. hot!

  14. Mary Ellsworth says

    I would love to make the Keurig® K-Cup® Newman’s Own® Organics Special Blend Coffee.

  15. Mirtha says

    I had no idea there was a mini. I live in a shoebox so my kitchen is small = minimal counter space. I only make coffee for me so I don’t make even half a pot. Perfect. I’d be forever grateful!!!!

  16. Megan says

    Awesome giveaway! My husband would be SO happy if I won this for him for Father’s Day! I think if he could survive on coffee alone, he would. His favorite K-Cup would be a toss up between Donut Shop and Dark Magic, but I had no idea there are Snapple K-Cups and he really likes peach tea, so I think I would go for that one, just to try something different.

    Love your blog and this chocolate cake sounds amazing – I plan to make it soon!

  17. Shelly says

    English Toffee,,,,,I can’t wait to try this recipe – my husband loves anything chocolate!

  18. Carol Jameson says

    Ooooh this recipe will be made! I would LOVE to enjoy one of those devilish little cupcakes with a cup of Cafe Carmel or English Toffee from my new Keurig (hint hint)

  19. MorriesLori says

    The suspense! I love raffles. Maybe as much as I love coffee. Oh, coffee. French Roast. Love how it smells in my kitchen when it is brewing.

  20. Becky says

    I have never had coffee from a Keurig, only tea and cocoa. But I love green mountain coffee so that will have to be my choice. I also and going to try your Dark Chocolate Cake (With A Hint Of Coffee) for my mom for mother’s day.

  21. Erin Hurst says

    I’m not a huge coffee drinker, but love to have it on hand for guests. I’d love to try the cocoas and teas though!

  22. JaNet says

    Coffee + chocolate is always a wonderful combo.The Cafe Escapes Chai Latte would be one I would make my first time. :-) Thank you for another awesome give-away!

  23. Laura Scott says

    That Keurig would be perfect for my desk, as I have been looking at one. The cake always is good with hot coffee!!!!!

  24. Karen Lynch says

    Since our weather has been so wacky, 80s one day, snow 36 hours later, if it is cold Newmans Almond Biscotti, if it is warm Celestials half and half, half tea half lemonade, love A. Palmers. Thanks for the giveaway.

  25. Barbara Bradford says

    Big thanks for this opportunity… My fav has to be Staples Green Mountain Golden French Toast..

  26. Leslie says

    I would love to make some iced lemon tea this time of year….well maybe hot chocolate with the weather lately!

  27. Julie S says

    I made the cake last night. It is delicious! SO moist! I baked it in a Bundt pan for about 55 minutes and it came out great. I mixed only a half recipe of the frosting, since I wanted to just frost the top and allow some to run partway down the sides. The cake was a hit at the gathering I took it to, and sliced up so nicely. Now I have an easy, attractive, delicious go-to recipe whenever dark chocolate deliciousness is called for. Thanks!

  28. Stephanie Breznau says

    I would LOVE to win this! A keurig mini has been on my wish list for a long time. 😀 If I won it, I would definitely be drinking either the English toffee or the Chai Latte!

  29. Ande H says

    I love the Green Mountain Breakfast Blend. This cake combines my two favorite foods: chocolate and coffee. Yea!

  30. Rhiannon says

    I’d love anything with chocolate or hazelnut in it. I just need extra caffeine because I’m about to bring my baby home from the NICU!!

  31. Cassie says

    This would make a perfect addition to my kitchen! My boyfriend and I love our morning coffee, but he is always complaining that its not strong enough and when he makes it, WATCH OUT! It is so so strong. This would solve all of our problems, plus there are just so many that I would love to try! Like the green tea, yum! Thanks for such a wonderful giveaway!! That cake looks so good, I might have to make cupcakes with the recipe (:

  32. Lori Pelfrey says

    So far my favorite k cups are Green Mountain’s breakfast blend and the hot cocoa! I’ve even mixed the two together to get a mocha! YUM!

  33. Staci says

    I’ve never tried any of the flavors! I love anything cocoa or mocha so I know I would love many of the flavors!

  34. Desiree C says

    Just printed the recipe to make for a gathering this weekend! Would love a Keurig coffee maker to go with it!

  35. Tabathia B says

    I like the Keurig® K-Cup® Coffee People® Original Donut Shop™ Coconut Mocha Coffee, Regular

  36. says

    I would love to make cocoa or tea (I’m not much of a coffee drinker) but my hubby LOVES coffee and would go crazy over trying all different flavors! That cake looks AMAZING! Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  37. Elissa Rojas says

    mmmmmmm! This cake looks delicious! I’m a Chocoholic and I’m sure making this cake soon!

    I don’t think I can live without chocolate or coffee, a dark and yummy Starbucks Sumatra Dark mmm my favorite!

  38. Penny Carey says

    OMG, about to trip over my own drooling tongue. I don’t think there is anything better than a rich chocolate cake made with coffee. I am hoping to get lucky with this one! 😉

  39. Nancy G says

    I have always wanted to try one of those. Heard so much about it. Trying to save up some money so that I can get one and finally try it. :)

  40. Jennifer Appleton says

    I would love to make English Toffee Coffee, Milk Chocolate Hot Cocoa, Cafe Caramel, and Cafe Vanilla! So many yummy choices

  41. Tanya K. Moyer says

    I am a tea drinker so I would definitely choose Keurig® K-Cup® Twinings® of London Breakfast Tea, 18 Pack!!! I love English Breakfast tea!!! :)

  42. says

    Newmans special decaf, or kahlua, or Starbucks pike place blend :)
    (Honestly though… I would take whatever flavor or beverage type you award, I like teas and juices, chocolates and ciders, so I am not too picky, I love coffee though and so I gave ya my top 3 😉 thanks.)

  43. says

    I haven’t tried this frosting, I usually just wing it. I’ve made so much frosting over the years I only do loose measuring anymore. But I do believe this is my go-to chocolate cake recipe. I haven’t made it in a while but it’s always a huge hit. Even picky eaters rave over my chocolate cake & cupcakes with this recipe.

    • says

      Justin, if it wasn’t for having to share measurements on a blog, I’d never measure anything for frosting either. Absolutely a bit of this, a bit of that, all taste type of thing. :)

  44. Bruce says

    This was the cake and frosting my Mom made me for my birthday every year!!!! Only difference was using regular Hershey’s Cocoa powder. They didn’t make Special Dark cocoa back then.

    • says

      Bruce, it’s such a great cake! I’m pretty dedicated to that dark cocoa, though I have to admit, only one store I go to ever carries it (and I think I buy enough for them to keep stocking it!). I”ll have to make this one again soon, my hubby has a birthday coming up actually… :)


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