Orange Chocolate Stout Cake

I love beer.

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

I know, not exactly shocking if you know me.  So many of my recipes are born of the odd craving, and this one is no different.  One afternoon, during a particularly stressful day at the office, I found myself craving a nice, stout beer.  I was also thinking how nice a slice of chocolate cake would be, because nothing takes the edge off a bad day like cake.  Of course, this led me to think about stout cakes.  I love them, in general, but I have never tried to make my own recipe.    That was all the encouragement I needed.  I decided to come up with my own recipe and top it with brown butter frosting.

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

I added orange juice and zest to my cake to brighten it up just a bit.  Dark, rich stout  beer gives the cake a slightly bitter finish, and paired with the deeply caramel notes from the brown butter frosting I knew a little brightness would go a long way.  The orange is by no means overpowering.  In fact the orange is fairly subtle until you exhale.  That is when you really get the sweet, floral and citrus flavors.  The finished cake is moist, tender, and beautiful in the way only homemade cake can be.

Orange Chocolate Stout Cake      Yield 8-10 servings

For the cake:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, melted
1 cup stout beer, at room temperature
4 eggs
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/3 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla

For the frosting:
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) butter
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 – 1/3 cup whole milk

Heat the oven to 350 F and spray two 8″ cake pans with non-stick cooking spray.Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar.

In a medium bowl combine the melted butter, beer, eggs, orange zest, orange juice, and vanilla.

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and whisk until well combined and no large lumps of flour remain.  Do not over-mix.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the cake starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and the center springs back when lightly pressed.  Let the cakes cool in the pan for ten minutes before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely.

While the cake cools prepare the frosting.  (For a full tutorial on brown butter frosting, with step-by-step pictures see my recipe for Chocolate Spice Cake with Brown Butter Frosting)

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

In a small pan over medium heat brown the butter until it is nut brown.  Be sure to stir the butter constantly.  Allow the butter to cool to room temperature.

Beat the butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until combined.  Add the milk, a little at a time, until you reach your preferred spreading consistency.

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

Place one of the cakes on your serving plate, or board.  Spread 1/3 of the frosting evenly over the cake.  Top with the second cake.  Spread 1/2 of the remaining frosting evenly on the top, making sure you go all the way to the edge, then frost the sides with the remaining frosting.

Chocolate Orange Stout Cake


Chocolate Orange Stout Cake

© 2010, Evil Shenanigans. All rights reserved.

Author: Kelly

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  • I am usually not a fan of frosting but I want to jump through the screen and dig in. That looks incredible sinful!

  • This sounds beyond heavenly. The next chance I get to make something like this, I’m taking it.

  • This sounds like a delicious recipe! I am sure it would be the perfect treat after a long day at work… good job!

  • Incredible looking cake! What an interesting flavor combination, it sounds delicious!

  • This looks absolutely perfect. And love the addition of orange 🙂

  • I’m with you when it comes to browning butter. I think it adds a rich nutty, buttery flavor that is wonderful.

  • I’m with you about browning butter – I love how it adds to the buttery flavor.

  • RavieNomNoms

    I love beer too! This is just the best looking cake ever! I love the ingredients

  • I love orange and chocolate and then you add stout and brown butter? Sign me up!

  • Just came back to this site after a few months. LOVING the redesign!

  • Sounds amazing!

  • I love chocolate and orange together! Great recipe!

  • Joy

    I’ve only begun to really love beer this year, and this cake sounds just the kind of thing to solidify our pact. Oh, and I’d love to make this just to experience that orange exhale!

  • This looks AMAZING!

  • I make a Guinness cake around St. Patty’s Day so I totally know the love of a good stout cake, but I would have never thought to add OJ! I love it.. sounds delicious.

  • Yum!! You are evil 🙂 I am now craving some cake!

  • Haven’t had a cake yet with beer in it. The orange sounds really good though. So light and sweet with the dark beer. Tasty!

  • Oh no you didn’t! Pure evil genius!

  • Great looking cake. Love the use of a stout in the cake!

  • OMG! Your cake looks magnificent! I would love into a big hunk of it right this second!

  • Bravo! You should create more of your own recipes. I want a piece!

  • Oh, man…this looks seriously addictive, it sounds awesome! The pictures came out fab!

  • Bitter is fine with chocolate, the darker the cocoa, the more bitter it should be, so I think mixing a stout with dark chocolate would be great. Thanks for sharing.

    Giveaway Last Chance: http://thechocolatecult.blogspot.com/2010/09/chocolate-t-shirttout-giveaway.html

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  • The contrast between the beautifully creamy icing and the rich, dark chocolate cake is amazing!

  • wow… what a freakin delicious looking cake. this looks soooooooo good. i didn’t know you could add beer to cake.
    great job!

  • Yum. Can you open a bakery that ships :o)

  • Any post that starts out with “I love beer” immediately grabs my attention…LOL

    I made stout cupcakes last summer and even though I was uneasy about adding the stout, that turned out wonderfully. This cake looks delicious!

  • Yoiur stout cake #rukes!

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  • What a cool cake idea! Plus those photos are completely drool-worthy! 😀

  • Beer and browned butter. Sure sounds like a sinful combination. Looks delicious 🙂

  • My husband made this for my birthday and the cake layers came out really flat! Like half the size of yours. Any clue what we could’ve done wrong? The beer wasn’t all the way to room temperature – would that have caused it to not rise properly? Everything else, we followed exactly. Don’t know what went wrong!

  • I can just see it… an enormous piece of chocolate cake with a stout chaser. Yes please!

  • Sounds delish and your pictures… as always make me want to reach into the computer and have a slice.

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  • Hi Evil Shenanigans,

    I would like to ask for your permission to feature your recipe for Orange Chocolate Stout Cake on CraftBeer.com.

    One of the main goals of this site is to bring craft beer to the dinner table, through pairings or as an ingredient in a dish.

    I would create a post similar to this one: and include your bio/photo/and link to Evil Shenanigans.

    Please let me know if this would be possible or if you have any questions!



  • Chelsea

    So I can vouch that this cake is SCRUMPTIOUS! I made it for my boyfriend for his birthday and we loved it! I was a little nervous about all of the butter at first since I’ve been a health freak lately but this was AWESOME! Make it! lol

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