Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

Looking for the perfect everyday cake?  This chocolate fudge bundt cake is it!  A rich chocolate cake, covered in chocolate ganache, with a soft, fudgy center.  Easy enough to make any day, but delicious enough for a celebration.

a dark chocolate bundt cake covered in chocolate ganache on a white cake plate

This is it.  We’ve reached the end of the 2017 yearlong Bundt Cake of the Month series.  Talk about bittersweet (and not the chocolate variety… ba-dum ching!).

In all seriousness, though, it really is bittersweet.  I thought maybe I’d be bored of bundt cakes by the end of the year, but instead, I’m even more convinced that they are literally the most perfect form of cake.

A bundt cake is an anytime cake; it’s perfectly in place at your brunch table, a potluck, or for dessert after dinner with friends. It’s just so much more approachable and relaxed than a traditional layer cake, but a step up from a plain sheet cake.

Don’t get me wrong — I love a good layer cake, with multiple layers of cake stacked tall, sandwiched between cinnamony cream cheese frosting, filled with blueberry cardamom curdcovered with candy, or fluffy peanut butter frosting.

But bringing out a whole layer cake at the end of a dinner for four on any old Saturday just seems… pretentious. Excessive. Over-the-top.

side view of a chocolate fudge bundt cake covered in shiny chocolate ganache on a white cake plate surrounded by chocolate sprinkles

Instead: the bundt cake. The same great cake flavor you love, but somehow, so much more appropriate for a small gathering.  It’s less fanfare and celebration — no need for birthday candles or a baby shower — and yet just as tasty.

You can cover it with frosting, if you like, but I think a little bit of my love of the bundt cake is because you don’t have to use frosting.  A delicious lemon glaze!  A dollop of whipped cream!  A scoop of ice cream!  Or, of course, for you chocolate lovers out there — a nice smothering of ganache.

I’m sharing a tried and true old favorite for my December Bundt Cake of the Month.  This chocolate fudge bundt cake is truly an every occasion cake.  It may actually be the first bundt cake I ever made, come to think of it, and I’ve made it nearly 15 times.

If I’m making the same cake more than a dozen times, you know it has to be good.  And friends, this chocolate fudge bundt cake is g-o-o-d.

overhead photo of a chocolate fudge bundt cake covered in soft shiny chocolate ganache on a white serving plate

Rich Chocolate Fudge Center

Why is it a fudge cake?  Because if you bake it correctly (don’t overbake!), the middle of the cake stays nice and soft, like a decadent hidden center of fudge.

You’ll notice the directions state it’s done when the edges begin to pull away from the center.  This is your best method to determine doneness, rather than a tester. 

The center stays so soft and fudgy, a tester will still come out with wet batter-like coating, even when the cake is fully baked.  Resist the urge to poke the cake!

a slice of chocolate fudge bundt cake on a decorating floral dessert plate with the rest of the bundt cake visible in the background

Easy Chocolate Ganache

Remember what I said about not needing to frost a bundt cake?  For this, we’re using chocolate ganache instead of frosting.

It’s basically a creamy layer of melted chocolate, and it’s amazing.  It’s like eating pure, soft chocolate.

Ganache gets its soft consistency — almost chewy when chilled — because it’s an emulsion, made from combining chocolate and heavy cream.

Chocolate ganache is a permanent emulsion, meaning it will remain unified as a thick mixture for an extended period of time.

What’s an emulsion and how does it work?  It’s time for my favorite subject… kitchen chemistry!

Kitchen Chemistry

An emulsion is a mixture of liquids that normally would not mix.  Ganache is a fat-in-water emulsion, combining melted chocolate and heavy cream.  Little droplets of the cocoa butter (from the melted chocolate) and droplets of the butterfat (from the heavy cream) separate and are suspended in the remaining water (from the cream) and sugar (from the chocolate).  Casein, proteins found in milk, act as the emulsifier, helping to keep the fat and water from separating.

To make the best chocolate ganache, add chopped chocolate to warm cream (rather than adding hot chocolate to cold cream).

Heat the cream until steaming, then pour over the chopped chocolate and allow this mixture to sit for 5 minutes to melt the chocolate, releasing the cocoa butter into the solution.  Stir with a rubber spatula until smooth and creamy.

We’re also adding a little corn syrup to our ganache; it helps make the ganache even softer and shinier.  It’s not necessary, however, and can be left out if desired.

overhead view of a chocolate fudge bundt cake covered in chocolate ganache with one slice missing and placed on an orange floral dessert plate

Tips and Tricks for The Best Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

  1. Looking to perfect your bundt cake baking sills?  Give this post on ESSENTIAL BUNDT CAKE TIPS a quick read — it covers everything from how to make sure your bundt cake doesn’t stick to how to prevent the bottom of the cake from doming!
  2. Don’t overbake the cake!  Bake just until the edges begin to pull away from the edge of the bundt pan and the top is springy when pushed back.  An instant-read thermometer should register as 200 ºF when inserted into the middle of the thickest part of the cake.
  3. Make sure the cake is fully cooled before adding the chocolate ganache.  Warm ganache on a warm cake will just run right off the cake, rather than covering the cake in a thick layer.
  4. Chop chocolate into small, uniform pieces, no larger than 1/2-inch.  This will allow the chocolate to melt in the warmed cream, which is essential to form the emulsion.
  5. If the ganache looks curdled or grainy, the emulsion has broken, meaning the fat is separating out from the liquid.  To fix broken ganache, warm it in a double boiler while whisking fast and continuously until the emulsion comes back together and is smooth.
  6. Leftover cake can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.  Thaw the frozen cake at room temperature before eating.  (Storing the cake in the refrigerator makes it taste even fudgier – it’s our favorite way to eat it!)

This is truly a cake for chocolate lovers — rich, decadent, and delicious.  So delicious, my toddler opted to double fist his slice of cake.  Adults are usually able to restrain themselves to one fork at a time, but I won’t blame you if you also dig in with two hands!

More Outrageously Chocolatey Recipes:

2017’s Bundt Cake of the Month Series:

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake

Yield: Serves 16
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Cooling Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours

A rich, fudgy chocolate cake, covered in chocolate ganache, easy enough for everyday.

Ingredients

For the Cake:

  • 1/2 cup (113.5 grams) boiling water
  • 2 ounces (57 grams) chopped bittersweet chocolate, divided
  • 1 cup (198 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (160 grams),light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/4 cups (282 grams) butter , room temperature
  • 5 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, divided
  • 3/4 cup (63 grams) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 2 cups (240 grams) flour
  • 2 cups (227 grams) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the Ganache:

  • 8 ounces (227 grams) chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 3/4 cup (170 grams) heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup (78 grams) light corn syrup

Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 °F.  Grease a 12-cup bundt pan.
    2. Melt the chocolate. Pour boiling water over 2 ounces (57 grams) of chopped chocolate in a medium bowl and whisk until smooth.  Cool to room temperature.
    3. Mix the batter. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter until light and fluffy.  On low speed, add eggs and 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract until combined, about 30 seconds.  Add the chocolate mixture and beat another 30 seconds, until incorporated.
    4. Beat in remaining dry ingredients (cocoa, flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt) until just combined.
    5. Bake the cake. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake 40-45 minutes, just until edges are beginning to pull away from the pan.  Cool upright on a wire rack for 1 hour, then invert onto a serving plate and cool completely.
    6. Make the ganache glaze. For the glaze, combine heavy cream, corn syrup, and remaining chopped chocolate in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until smooth.  Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.  Set aside until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes.  Pour glaze over cake.

Notes

  1. Don’t overbake the cake!  Bake just until the edges begin to pull away from the edge of the bundt pan and the top is springy when pushed back.  An instant-read thermometer should register as 200 ºF when inserted into the middle of the thickest part of the cake.
  2. Make sure the cake is fully cooled before adding the chocolate ganache. 
  3. If the ganache looks curdled or grainy, the emulsion has broken.  To fix broken ganache, warm it in a double boiler while whisking fast and continuously until the emulsion comes back together and is smooth.
  4. Leftover cake can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.  Thaw the frozen cake at room temperature before eating.  (Storing the cake in the refrigerator makes it taste even fudgier – it’s our favorite way to eat it!)

Recipe adapted from Cook's Country

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 515Total Fat: 28.1gCarbohydrates: 63gProtein: 6g
Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake: a rich, moist, fudgy made from scratch chocolate cake, covered with ganache.  An easy enough recipe for everyday, but delicious enough for a birthday or celebration! #bunsenburnerbakery #cake #chocolatecake #bundtcake #fudgecake