The ultimate Creme Egg cake has arrived! Utterly delicious with dark, deep chocolate cake layers, creamy vanilla buttercream and decadent chocolate frosting. Topped off with mini Creme Eggs. How do you eat yours?
The season of chocolate
They’re back! Yes I know we’ve just had Christmas, but those distinctive purple, red and yellow foiled chocolate eggs are out on the shelves.
I would probably swear that they were in the shops before we rang in the New Year; they seem to appear earlier and earlier every year. But although they arrive with plenty of time, as soon as Easter is over they disappear without a trace.
So if I’m going to have any chance of baking with them I have to strike as soon as I can. That is so long as I don’t just eat them. To be honest it wouldn’t be the first time I’d brought chocolate for a bake and it’s not made it!
But this time, I was going to resist...
Intense, dark and mysterious
I’ve been ogling those really dark, rich chocolate cakes that you see in the US for so long. And try as I might, despite pulling out my richest, most chocolatey chocolate cake recipe, I’ve never been able to get that dark colour.
That was until I discovered the secret of intense dark cocoa powder, the stuff they use in Oreos, which ended with my Amazon Prime taking a hammering!
Taking a peek at that dark, dark powder together with the intense smell of cocoa butter, I just knew that it would be ideal for a Creme Egg cake. The slightly deeper flavour would go SO well with the sweeter, creamier milk chocolate and vanilla buttercream.
And boy was I right! I don’t normally toot my own horn like that, but it was seriously one of the best chocolate cakes I’ve made in… forever!
But you don’t want to know that, you want to know how you make it. So here we go...
What is dutch processed cocoa powder?
Intense dark cocoa powder or dutch processed cocoa powder is still the same as regular cocoa powder, where the cacao beans are roasted and then ground down. But it’s how it’s processed after this that gives it that really deep midnight black colour, and acid, or the lack of it.
- Dutch Processed cocoa powder is washed with a potassium solution that neutralises its acidity; this process also gives it that deep intense colour. And because the acidity is removed, you’ll want to use baking powder.
- Regular cocoa powder in comparison is processed in a way that it keeps its acidity. And therefore, is lighter in colour. Because of the acidity, you’ll find it in recipes calling for baking soda, as the two work together to act as a raising agent. But you can also still use baking powder if you prefer.
For this Creme Egg recipe, I really wanted that intense dark colour to my chocolate cake layers so I went for the dutch processed cocoa powder. But don’t panic, if you’ve got regular cocoa powder it will still work just the same. Check how to adapt this recipe below...
How to make the Creme Egg cake
Do I really need to convince you that you need to make this cake?
Take a look at it! Look at that chocolate sponge and that Creme Egg inspired buttercream filling… and don’t forget that beautiful creamy milk chocolate buttercream too!
And believe it or not, it’s pretty simple too. Let’s look at those layers…
The Chocolate Cake Layers
First, that dark chocolate cake! In a large mixing bowl or using a stand mixer, you will want to cream the butter and sugar together, before beating in the eggs.
Next up is the dry ingredients, the flour and that amazingly intense cocoa powder!
Finish off by adding a dollop of Greek yoghurt, melted dark chocolate and a shot of cooled Espresso. For sure, we’re adding coffee… keep on reading to find out why it’s my special secret ingredient.
Get that silky chocolate batter, into non-stick cake pans and bake! When the cake’s cooled and you’re ready to go, you’re onto the filling!
The Creme Egg filling
Now I had thought about crushed chocolate eggs in between the cake layers, or even a runny fondant but it would have been too sickly, so it’s an inspired filling instead.
Using my tried and tested vanilla buttercream, with half coloured using a yellow food colouring gel, for that egg yolk look, pipe alternating rings of white and yellow buttercream, over a layer of Cadbury milk chocolate spread.
Get the layers built up, then there’s just the decoration to go…
The Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
To finish up, it’s time for another of my go-to buttercream frostings… chocolate!
Using an offset spatula, spread the buttercream all over the sides and top of the cake then level off. If you fancy it, you can use a comb to give it texture.
Piping the remaining vanilla and chocolate buttercreams around the top of the cake, and pop on some mini Creme Eggs to complete.
Take a step back look and check out your cake. Impressive right?
Do I have to use Cadbury Creme Eggs?
Quite simply… no, you don’t have to use them. There are lots of different alternatives out there and you could switch up the recipe to match whichever flavour you decide to go for.
Maybe you’ll go for a gooey caramel egg, with a caramel sauce and buttercream?
Or how about a chocolate orange eggs, with an orange jelly or curd layer?
For me, my guilty-pressure is the Cadbury Oreo eggs - these would be amazing with the intense chocolate cake layers, just like Oreo cookies. Pair that with crushed Oreo and chocolate buttercreams and you’d be in cake heaven!
Tips for making the best Creme Egg cake
- Room temperature ingredients - It might seem obvious but having your ingredients at room temperature before you start baking is the number one top tip ever. Not only is your butter easier to cream, and your eggs won’t curdle as much, but when you pop your cakes into the oven to bake, the first part of the bake is bringing all your mixed ingredients up to the same temperature. Therefore the baking process isn’t as efficient as it should be.
- A touch of Greek yoghurt - A beautifully moist chocolate cake can sometimes be tricky even for the best baker - too much cocoa powder and you get dry cake; too little and there’s not enough chocolate. Adding a good tablespoon of Greek yoghurt to your batter will help keep it moist. If you don’t have Greek yoghurt, soured cream works well too.
- A splash of Espresso coffee - I know it sounds strange but it really does work; adding a shot of freshly brewed Espresso into your chocolate cake batter brings out the richness and chocolatey flavour without adding a coffee taste.
- Let the cake cool - Don’t be too hasty to get your cakes out of the tin; they will still be very soft and you could break them. Ideally, you want to leave them to cool in the tin until you can handle them. Then pop them out onto a wire cooling rack to completely cool before assembling your cake. At this point, you could also wrap them for freezing.
Adapting the recipe
- To make cupcakes - This recipe will work perfectly for cupcakes without any major tweaks. All you need to do is to drop the cooking time down to 15-18 minutes, depending on your oven. It will make 12-18 cupcakes.
- To make an 8-inch cake - If you want a slightly larger cake, the recipe can be used to make a two-layer 8-inch cake. If you’d like to make a three-layer cake, then make 1.5 times the recipe, and you’ll be set.
- What if I don’t have dutch-process cocoa powder - Don’t worry if you don’t have or can’t get dutch process cocoa powder, regular cocoa powder can be used as a substitute. The only difference is that it won’t be as dark in colour.
How long will the cake keep for?
This Creme Egg chocolate cake will keep in an air-tight container for up to 3 days, or you can freeze it for up to 1 month. Just remember to make sure it is well wrapped before freezing.
If you have any leftover buttercream, pop it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, or the freezer for 3 months.
More Creme Egg dessert inspiration
Creme Egg season starts early, but is over as soon as Easter passes, so grab them whilst you can and check out these recipes to see what else you could create…
- Creme Egg chocolate traybake
- Twisted Creme Egg cupcakes
- Three ingredient Creme Egg fudge
- Creme Egg trifle
- Creme Egg brownies
- Easy Creme Egg cookies
- Creme Egg buns
- Creme Egg rocky road
- Creme Egg cupcakes
Pin Creme Egg cake
I hope you enjoy this Creme Egg cake as much as my new work colleagues did… as they inhaled it. My first office bake went down a storm! And if you do decide to try it out as an alternative Easter dessert then give me a shout out in the comments below and please rate using the stars.
Creme Egg Cake
For the Cake
For the Vanilla Buttercream
For the Chocolate Buttercream
- Make the cake: Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line three 6-inch cake pans with baking parchment. If you don't have separate pans, you can bake in one deep 6-inch cake pan and split the layers.
- Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until softened. Alternatively, you can make the cake batter, in a large mixing bowl, by hand or with an electric hand whisk.
- Add the sugar and Greek yoghurt, and beat until well mixed. Then add the eggs, one at a time, beating until the mixture is thick, but light, and pale in colour.
- Sift the flour and cocoa powder, and gently mix together until the cake batter is soft and smooth.
- Add the melted chocolate and Espresso coffee and mix through the batter until silky smooth.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes if individual cakes/ 45 minutes for one cake, until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow the cake(s) to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
- Make the vanilla frosting: In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat the butter until soft. Add the half the icing sugar and half the milk, then beat together. Add the remaining icing sugar and milk. Beat until smooth. If the frosting is too stiff, add a tablespoon of whole milk and mix. Divide into two, and colour one half with a yellow food colouring gel.
- Make the chocolate frosting: In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat the butter until soft. Add the half the icing sugar, cocoa powder and half the milk, then beat together. Add the remaining icing sugar, cocoa powder, milk and melted chocolate. Beat until smooth. If the frosting is too stiff, add a tablespoon of whole milk and mix.
- Assemble the cake: Using a large serrated knife, level the top of the cake and split into 3 layers of equal thickness, or if baked in 3 cake tins level each layer.
- Fix the ‘bottom’ layer to a 6-inch cake board with a little of the frosting. Using a palette knife, spread about 2 tablespoons of chocolate spread evenly across the bottom layer.
- Add the vanilla buttercreams into two piping bags fitted with round piping nozzles. Pipe a ring of white frosting on top of the chocolate spread, around the edge of the cake. then a yellow ring. Alternate until the top of the cake is filled. Repeat for the next layer.
- Top the cake with the final layer, bottom-side up, and spread the chocolate frosting on the top and sides of the cake. Use a palette knife or cake side scraper to take off the excess buttercream and finish the cake. Chill the frosted cake for at least 30 minutes in the fridge, to allow the layer of frosting to firm up.
- Add another layer of frosting to the top and sides of the cake, and remove the excess. Chill the frosted cake for another 30 minutes in the fridge.
- Using remaining buttercream, pipe swirls of frosting around the top of the cake. Top each swirl with a mini Creme Egg.
- The Creme Egg cake will keep in an air-tight container for up to 3 days, or you can freeze for up to 1 month; but make sure it is well wrapped before freezing.
- Adding Greek yoghurt to the batter mix helps keep the chocolate cake moist and brings out the chocolatey flavour.
- After the first crumb coat, chill the coated cake in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before adding a second crumb coat. This will give your cake a smooth finish.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.