It looks and tastes super-naughty, but it’s actually full of super-nice (and good-for-you) stuff. This rich, velvety cake topped with the simplest fudgy icing will become your go-to chocolate cake recipe.






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (958 votes)


  • ¾ cup (180 ml/6 fl oz) light-flavoured extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup (125 ml/4¼ fl oz) milk or nut milk
  • ½ cup (125 ml/4¼ fl oz) pure maple syrup
  • 6 eggs
  • ½ cup (110 g/4 oz) raw caster (superfine) sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp baking powder (use a gluten-free version to make this a gluten-free cake)
  • ¾ cup (75 g/2½ oz) cocoa powder, sifted
  • 3½ cups (420 g/14¾ oz) almond meal (ground almonds)

Chocolate frosting

  • ¾ cup (180 g/6¼ oz) smooth cashew butter
  • ½ cup (125 ml/4¼ fl oz) pure maple syrup
  • cup (35 g/1¼ oz) cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 tbsp milk or nut milk

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


  1. Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F). Line 2 x 20cm (8 inch) round cake tins with non-stick baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl add oil, milk, maple, eggs, sugar and vanilla into a bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. Sift the baking powder and cocoa over the milk mixture. Add the almond meal and mix to combine. Pour mixture into prepared tins, smoothing the surface. Bake for 30–35 minutes until cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool in tins for 10 minutes then turn out onto wire racks to cool.
  4. To make the chocolate frosting, mix together the cashew butter and maple. Sift over the cocoa powder and stir to combine. Add enough milk to make a spreadable consistency. Using a handheld mixer, beat until smooth.
  5. Spread top of base with half the chocolate frosting. Layer with other cake. Top with remaining frosting.