Black and White cake is a rich, decadent chocolate layer cake with a center of chocolate ganache and creamy white chocolate frosting on top. Perfect for chocolate lovers!
Chocolate cake is one of my favorite desserts of all time. I mean really. On just about any occasion, nothing beats a slice of decadent chocolate cake. Celebrating? Eat cake! Sad your favorite TV show is ending? Eat cake. Craving something out of this world chocolatey just because it’s Friday? Eat this Black and White Cake.
I’m not going to lie and say that this cake is really easy to make. It’s not hard but there are several steps. It is afterall, composed of three layers of deliciousness: Dark Chocolate Cake, Fluffy Chocolate Ganache and White Chocolate Buttercream.
First let’s talk about the ingredients you need to make it.
This cake recipe is broken into three separate parts: the chocolate cake, the ganache filling and the frosting.
For the dark chocolate cake you’ll need the usual suspects: sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, buttermilk and salt but you’ll also need:
Chocolate Ganache Ingredients:
This one is easy, peasy! You only need two ingredients to make the chocolate ganache filling.
White Chocolate Buttercream Ingredients:
I know that making a layered cake can be kind of daunting, but don’t let that intimidate you. Follow along with these step by step photos to walk you through the process. You’ll have this gorgeous cake ready in no time!
STEP #1: You’ll make the cake first. Using a stand mixer (or a handheld mixer) mix the dry ingredients together. Then add in the eggs, canola oil, buttermilk and vanilla and beat just until combined. Turn the mixer down to low and then slowly pour in the boiling water. Continue beating until well combined.
STEP #2: Butter and flour two 8 inch cake pans. Divide batter evenly between the two pans and bake at 350 degrees for 25 – 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs on it. Allow to cool slightly before removing it from the pan. Remove it from the pan, transfer to a cooling rack and allow it to cool completely.
STEP #3: While the cake is cooking, make the ganache. Place the heavy cream and chocolate chips together in a microwave safe boil. Heat for 30 seconds. Allow to set for 2 minutes then stir until smooth. If the chocolate chips don’t seem like they are melting, you can heat them for another 15 seconds. Allow to come to room temperature then use a stand mixer (or hand mixer) to beat until lightened in color and fluffy.
STEP #4: Make the buttercream by beating butter until it is light and fluffy. Then beat in the melted white chocolate and vanilla. Finally, slowly add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until a stiff but spreadable mixture forms. This is a very thick frosting, if you want it to be a bit creamier add 1 – 2 tablespoons of milk.
STEP #5: Now it’s time to assemble the cake! First use a serrated knife to cut the rounded tops off the cake so that the cakes are level.
STEP #6: Place one cake on your cake stand (or other serving platter) and spread the chocolate ganache filling on the top. Place the remaining cake on top and using 1/3 of the buttercream frosting, spread a thin layer on the top and sides of the cake to form a crumb coat. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
STEP #7: Once the cake has chilled, spread the remaining frosting all over the cake and sprinkle with chocolate shavings. Slice and serve.
Because of the chocolate ganache layer, it is safest to keep this cake covered and in the refrigerator. Remove it about 1 hour or so before you want to serve it so that it can come to room temperature. For the best taste, I’d eat within 3 days, it starts to get a little dry after that.
A crumb coat is a thin layer of frosting that helps the crumbs of the cake stay in place and seal in the moisture of the cake. I like to use it with chocolate cakes with white frosting because it prevents chocolate cake crumbs from being in the outer later.
Adding espresso powder to chocolate cake enhances and intensifies the chocolate flavor.
To err on the side of caution, it is best to refrigerate ganache.
You guys, my family LOVED this Black and White Cake. It is pretty enough to make for a special occasion but also sometimes you just need to make a cake. Make this one
Looking for more show stopping dessert recipes? Try these:
Pumpkin Cake with Chocolate Ganache is a must year round, not just in the fall!
Like chocolate? You’re going to LOVE this Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake.
This Cherry Cheesecake is a gorgeous addition to any dessert table!
Note: This post was originally published in 2015. It was updated with a modified recipe, new photos, step by step photos and instructions in 2023.
snadraAugust 21, 2022 at 2:12 pm
Well, I tried it. Despite my apprehensions–curdled ganache and bubbly cake– the end result was divine. The icing was especially delicious. Will make it again.
DesereeAugust 25, 2022 at 1:44 pm
Thank you Sandra! I am happy to hear that you enjoyed it!
sandraJune 26, 2022 at 3:52 pm
Interesting things happened when I made this cake. (1) the cake formed large bubbles on top, and of course, these were air pockets.I did smack the pans on the counter before putting them into the oven. (2) The ganache separated. Tasted good but didn’t look too appetizing. It had a curdled appearance. (3) I found that 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar was ample. I still have some left too.
Have yet to try it, but I eat quite a bit of the ingredients off my finger while making it. Looks good.
DesereeJune 29, 2022 at 9:44 pm
Thank you for the feedback, Sandra!! I hope you enjoyed it!
SabrinaApril 9, 2015 at 1:24 am
Quick question, can I used regular Cocoa? Hershey’s or tollhouse? I don’t think I’ve seen any dark cocoa in my baking section of choice… And espresso powder, is that like really fine coffee grounds? I really wanna make this cake but I don’t wanna mess it up!! 😊
DesereeApril 9, 2015 at 1:29 pm
Sabrina- I was a little unsure but did some research and found this that states that you can substitute regular cocoa powder for dutch processed but not the other way around (http://joythebaker.com/2013/10/baking-101-natural-vs-dutch-processed-cocoa-powder/) so I think you should be good! Also, you can buy espresso powder. This is the brand I use http://www.medagliadoro.com/find-a-store.aspx
JaneFebruary 16, 2015 at 5:01 pm
Can you please explain chocolate jimmies? I’m in Australia, I don’t think we have them here. Also, when you say cake flour is that all purpose (we call it plain) or self raising flour?
DesereeFebruary 16, 2015 at 10:11 pm
Jane- Chocolate jimmies are basically chocolate sprinkles :) Cake flour has a little less protein then all purpose flour. If you don’t have any, Joy the Baker has a great tutorial on how to make your own. http://joythebaker.com/2013/12/baking-101-the-best-cake-flour-substitute/
marye audetJanuary 23, 2015 at 7:39 am
This is beautiful! I am totally in for chocolate cake!
Heather @FrenchPressJanuary 23, 2015 at 7:37 am
we don’t eat much cake around here, but your cake is making me seriously crave a slice
KristaJanuary 23, 2015 at 6:14 am
Yeah, I’m a chocoholic so this cake is so happening… totally helps that it is gorgeous making it irresistible for me to make! Love this Des! Hope you have a great weekend, I know I will stuffing my face with this this! :)
Krista @ Joyful Healthy Eats
JulieJanuary 23, 2015 at 4:03 am
Wow, this is one gorgeous cake! Wish I had a slice right here… :)