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Mocha Cake Recipe


An image of a slice of Mocha Cake on a blue plate.

Mocha Cake is delicious plain, iced or topped. Just be sure to serve it with coffee!

Lindsey Goodwin
If you love the flavor of a great mocha latte (and who doesn't?) then try cooking with coffee to make a mocha-flavored cake.

It calls for one cup boiling water and four to five tablespoons instant coffee, but you can use one cup of cold water coffee extract if you prefer your coffee to be made with fresh ground beans instead of instant coffee.

For a kid-friendly mocha cake, use decaf coffee and consider using slightly less coffee and slightly more vanilla.

If you want to make this cake recipe into a mocha cupcake recipe, use only 1 3/4 cups flour, keep the oven at 325 degrees F and bake for only 13 to 15 minutes.

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 43 minutes

Yield: 12 servings


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups white granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or sunflower oil
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 5-7 tablespoons instant coffee powder (regular or decaf)*
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Grease one 13 by 9 inch cake pan or two 9 inch round cake pans.
  3. Dissolve instant coffee in hot water.
  4. Place flour, sugar, cocoa, oil, eggs, buttermilk, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the coffee.
  5. Using an electric mixer, beat at medium speed for about two minutes, or until smooth. (Don't worry that the batter is thin! It's fine.)
  6. Pour into the pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until an inserted wooden pick comes out clean.
  7. Cool in the pan for ten minutes before turning the cake out onto a rack to cool completely.
Serving Suggestions * Did you know?
Adding coffee to baked goods makes them more dense and moist. You can sneak a little coffee into desserts with darker flavors (such as chocolate cakes) for a better texture and very few will be able to taste the difference! However, if you want a stronger mocha flavor in this cake, err on the side of too much coffee rather than too little -- it takes more for the coffee flavor to shine through than you'd think!

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