Layer cake, coffee, espresso, whipped ganache,
Print Pin
4.77 from 13 votes

Espresso Cake with Whipped Chocolate Ganache

This is the ultimate espresso cake. Moist, rich vanilla cake layers infused with espresso and frosted with a light and fluffy whipped espresso chocolate ganache. Perfect for weekend dessert, entertaining with friends or as a celebration cake. A surprisingly simple and easy recipe with everything you can make ahead of time so you don't have to rush. 
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cake, coffee, espresso, ganache, Layer cake
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 586kcal
Author Veena Azmanov


For the cake

  • 228 grams Butter
  • 330 grams Light brown sugar
  • 3 Eggs large
  • 320 grams All-Purpose flour
  • 2 tsp Baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp Vanilla
  • 60 ml Espresso brewed
  • 4 tbsp Sour cream

For the whipped ganache

  • 150 grams Chocolate 60% cocoa (6 oz)
  • 250 ml Whipping cream 32% or more (1 cup)
  • 2 tsp Vanilla
  • 30 ml Espresso brewed (2 tbsp)

For the vanilla buttercream filling


  • 60 ml simple syrup or sugar syrup
  • 8 chocolate coated coffee beans optional


Prepare Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 160 C/320 F.
  • Grease and line three 6 inch round baking pans or 2 x 7-inch round baking pans.
  • Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add vanilla, followed by the eggs, one at a time.
  • Add the flour and sour cream alternating in three batches.
  • Lastly, add the brewed espresso.
  • Pour into the prepared baking pans.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until a skewer inserted comes clean.
  • Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely before baking.

Prepare the whipped ganache

  • Melt the chocolate and cream in the microwave or over a double boiler.
  • Once all the chocolate is melted add the vanilla and espresso.
  • Chill in the fridge overnight or at least 4 hours.
  • When ready to frost - whip the ganache in the mixer with a whisk attachment to soft peaks.
  • (use the paddle attachment if the ganache is too stiff)

Prepare the vanilla buttercream filling

  • Cream the butter and whipped cream for 2 minutes.
  • Add the Vanilla followed by the powdered sugar and combine well.
  • Continue to whip until light and fluffy.


  • Prepare simple syrup - cool completely before using.
  • Once cooled, cut the domes off the cake layers.
  • Brush each layer with the cooled simple syrup.
  • Place a cake layer on the cake board or cake stand.
  • Top with a big dollop of filling - spread evenly.
  • Then top the second cake layer on top followed by more filling and the last cake layer.
  • Place the cake in the fridge if necessary, so the layers hold together.
  • Spread the whipped ganache around and top of the cake.
  • Create¬†a rustic buttercream look by simply swirling the spatula up and down the side of the cake.
  • Pipe any remaining ganache on the top of the cake with a piping bag.



  • Once decorated the cake does not need to be refrigerated.
  • It can stay at room temperature for three days or in the fridge for up to a week.
  • Once cut always cover the cut side of the cake with cling/plastic wrap so the cake does not dry out.


Calories: 586kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 34g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 131mg | Sodium: 496mg | Potassium: 239mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 19.1% | Vitamin C: 0.3% | Calcium: 9.3% | Iron: 14.1%