Baked Chocolate Mousse Cake


My mother made this chocolate mousse cake for me once or twice a year if I was fortunate, and it was the cake I requested for my birthday every year. If you are looking for a quick recipe, you will want to skip this one, but if you have the time it's well worth the investment. The chocolate lover will appreciate its light texture, but the highlight is certainly the rich chocolate flavor. I hope you give it a try, and enjoy it as much as I have over the years.

Prep Time:
45 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs 5 mins
Additional Time:
4 hrs 30 mins
Total Time:
6 hrs 20 mins
1 10-inch cake



  • ¾ cup boiling water

  • ½ cup sifted Dutch-process cocoa powder

  • 1 ¾ cups cake flour

  • 1 ¾ cups white sugar

  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ½ cup vegetable oil

  • 8 eggs, separated, at room temperature

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar

Chocolate Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons cold water

  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin

  • 3 cups heavy whipping cream

  • 1 ½ cups sifted confectioners' sugar

  • ¾ cup sifted Dutch-process cocoa powder

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

  2. Mix boiling water and cocoa powder for cake together in a small mixing bowl until smooth. Let cool, about 10 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, sift flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well in the center, pour in oil, egg yolks, vanilla extract, and cooled cocoa mixture. Mix using a wooden spoon just until smooth.

  4. Sprinkle cream of tartar over egg whites in a large mixing bowl. Beat using an electric mixer on high speed until very stiff peaks form. Pour cake batter over egg white mixture and fold gently using a whisk with an under-and-over motion; be sure not to overmix, but to also fully incorporate ingredients. Pour batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Let cake cool in the pan for 1 1/2 hours. Loosen with a spatula and transfer to a plate.

  6. Add cold water to a glass bowl and sprinkle gelatin on top; allow to soften. Place bowl over a saucepan filled with simmering water. Heat and stir until gelatin is fully dissolved, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

  7. Combine heavy cream, confectioners' sugar, cocoa, vanilla extract, and salt in a large bowl. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Beat mixture using an electric mixer until stiff; keep mousse in refrigerator until needed.

  8. Cut a 1-inch slice crosswise from the top of the cooled cake and set aside. Outline a cavity in the cake using a sharp knife, leaving 1-inch walls around cake side and bottom. Carefully remove cake from the cavity using a spoon; reserve.

  9. Measure 2 1/2 cups of mousse filling and fold in gelatin. Fill the cake cavity and replace top of cake. Mix 1/2 cup filling with cake crumbs and fill center hole of cake. Frost the top and sides with remaining filling. Refrigerate until set, 2 to 3 hours.

Cook's Note:

It's important to follow directions with this recipe. Having your equipment and ingredients pre-measured is helpful.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

603 Calories
36g Fat
68g Carbs
9g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 603
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 36g 46%
Saturated Fat 17g 83%
Cholesterol 191mg 64%
Sodium 370mg 16%
Total Carbohydrate 68g 25%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Total Sugars 45g
Protein 9g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 70mg 5%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 266mg 6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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