No Oven Chocolate Cake is a great cake baking hack that bakes up a light, moist cake, and avoids using the oven. Completely made from scratch, delicious and a decadent chocolate flavor. Steam is the secret to what makes the batter cook into a wonderful super moist cake.
Easily bake a deliciously rich, moist chocolate cake without an oven! Steam makes this no oven chocolate cake super moist as it cooks in a pot on the stove top. It’s super easy and a quick fix for that big chocolate craving.
Pour the batter into a greased cake pan and allow the pot to do its magic. Then cover the cake in a delicious homemade chocolate frosting!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- It’s homemade from scratch which means it’s free of preservatives and processed ingredients.
- The combination of cocoa powder, brown sugar, and espresso powder gives this cake a rich, deep chocolate flavor that is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.
- The addition of yogurt and melted butter to the batter keeps the cake moist and tender, while the baking soda helps it rise and stay fluffy.
- It's perfect when you don't want to use an oven since it's all made on the stovetop!
- Steam completely cooks this cake, making is moist and so delicious!
Ingredients You’ll Need
For the Chocolate Cake:
- All-Purpose Flour: Builds structure to the cake.
- Cocoa Powder: A key ingredient in chocolate cakes and gives the cake its chocolate flavor.
- Baking Soda: A leavening agent that helps the cake rise as it bakes.
- Kosher Salt: Less processed than table salt and has larger crystals. It's used in this recipe to enhance the flavor of the cake.
- Brown Sugar: Adds moisture, sweetness, and a caramel-like flavor to the cake.
- Eggs: Helps to bind the ingredients together and provide structure to the cake.
- Espresso Powder: Used to enhance the chocolate flavor of the cake.
- Yogurt: Adds moisture and tenderness to the cake.
- Butter: Adds richness and flavor to the cake.
- Vanilla Extract: Enhances the flavor of the cake and complements the chocolate.
- Water: Used to create steam in the pot.
For the Chocolate Frosting:
- Butter: The base of the frosting and adds richness and flavor.
- Cocoa Powder: This is the key ingredient that gives the frosting its chocolate flavor.
- Powdered Sugar: This sweetens the frosting and helps to thicken it.
- Vanilla Extract: This adds flavor and complements the chocolate.
- Warm Water: Added to the frosting to thin it out and make it easier to spread on the cake.
Step 1: Place a trivet at the bottom of a wide, deep pot. The pot will need to have a tight fitting lid. The pot should be wider than the cake pan, and deep enough for the cake to rise with the lid on. Coat the bottom of a 6-inch round cake pan with cooking spray and set aside.
Step 2: In a small bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda, then mix in the salt.
Step 3: In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, espresso powder, yogurt, vanilla and butter. Add the flour mixture to the bowl and mix until incorporated. You'll get a thick cake batter.
Step 4: Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Pour water into the pot, then carefully place the cake pan on the trivet in the pot.
Step 5: Cover the pot and heat on high until the water boils. Reduce heat to low and steam, covered, for about 40-45 minutes, or until the cake batter is baked through and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Step 6: Turn off the heat and remove the lid. Wait for 10-15 minutes before turning the cake out onto a cooling rack.
Step 7: If you are frosting the cake, let the cake cook completely.
Step 8: In a mixing bowl, combine the butter cocoa powder, powdered sugar, vanilla and water, until the mixture comes together.
Step 9: Once the cake cools pour the frosting over the top and spread to cover the entire top and sides of cake.
NOTE: You can print the FULL recipe with all ingredients & detailed instructions below!
- Be sure to whisk the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt) together thoroughly before adding them to the wet ingredients. This will help ensure that they are evenly distributed and prevent lumps in the batter.
- Use room temperature eggs for the best results. If your eggs are cold, place them in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes to bring them to room temperature.
- Use good quality cocoa powder for the best chocolate flavor. Dutch-processed cocoa powder will give the cake a richer, smoother flavor, but natural cocoa powder will work too.
- Don't overmix the batter. Once the dry ingredients have been added to the wet ingredients, mix just until the batter is smooth and no lumps remain.
- Grease the baking dish well with butter or cooking spray to prevent the cake from sticking.
- Allow the cake to cool completely before frosting it. If the cake is still warm, the frosting will melt and slide off.
- Add chocolate chips or chopped nuts to the batter for extra texture and flavor.
- Substitute the yogurt with sour cream or buttermilk for a tangier flavor.
- Add a teaspoon of cinnamon or a pinch of cayenne pepper to the batter for a spicy kick.
- Use different extracts to vary the flavor of the cake. Try almond extract, peppermint extract, or orange extract for a different twist.
- Instead of frosting the cake, dust it with powdered sugar for a simple and elegant look.
Storing & Freezing
Storing: To store the no-oven chocolate cake, allow it to cool completely and then cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. You can store it at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you want to store it for longer, you can refrigerate it for up to 5 days.
Freezing: To freeze the cake, allow it to cool completely and then wrap it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Place it in a freezer-safe container or freezer bag and freeze it for up to 2 months. When you're ready to eat it, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight and bring it to room temperature before serving.
Instant espresso powder is optional, but it enhances the chocolate flavor of the cake. If you don't have it, you can skip it or substitute with a tablespoon of instant coffee granules or omit it altogether.
The cake doesn't bake IN the water. The cake pan sits above the water, with a cover on the pot, and bakes from the steam.
Yes! You don’t want any steam to escape because this is what bakes the cake.
You can make a makeshift trivet by using heavy duty aluminum foil. Cut off a piece approximately 12 inches long and roll it up and join the ends to form a circle. Place it in the bottom of the pot and set your cake pan on top of it.
If your lid isn't secure, place a piece of parchment paper over the top of the pot before covering with the lid. This should prevent any steam from escaping.
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No Oven Chocolate Cake
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- ½ cup yogurt
- 6 tablespoons butter melted
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup butter room temperature
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup warm water
- Place a trivet at the bottom of a wide, deep pot. The pot will need to have a tight fitting lid.
- The pot should be wider than the cake pan, and deep enough for the cake to rise with the lid on. Coat the bottom of a 6-inch round cake pan with cooking spray and set aside.
- In a small bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda, then mix in the salt.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, espresso powder, yogurt, vanilla and butter.
- Add the flour mixture to the bowl and mix until incorporated. You'll get a thick cake batter.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Pour water into the pot, then carefully place the cake pan on the trivet in the pot.
- Cover the pot and heat on high until the water boils. Reduce heat to low and steam, covered, for about 40-45 minutes, or until the cake batter is baked through and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Turn off the heat and remove the lid. Wait for 10-15 minutes before turning the cake out onto a cooling rack. Let the cake cook completely.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the butter cocoa powder, powdered sugar, vanilla and water, until the mixture comes together.
- Once the cake cools pour the frosting over the top and spread to cover the entire top and sides of cake.
- Make sure your eggs are at room temp. This really does give the best results!
- If you like to dust your cake pans with flour, try using cocoa powder instead.
- Try to be as precise as possible with your measurements.
- Storing: Cover the chocolate cake with foil or plastic wrap and store at room temperature for 2-3 days. If you prefer to store your cake in the refrigerator, cover with plastic wrap or foil and store for up to a week.
- Freezing: Wrap chocolate cake tightly with aluminum foil or plastic freezer wrap, or place in zip top freezer bag and store in the freezer for up to 4 months.
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.