Irish chef Clodagh McKenna shares an easy Guinness chocolate cake recipe that's perfect to share with friends and family.

Calling all chocolate lovers and baking enthusiasts! Prepare to embark on a culinary adventure that combines the rich, velvety goodness of chocolate with the distinct flavors of the iconic Irish stout, Guinness.

This Guinness chocolate cake recipe is a true delight for the senses, with its moist texture, intense chocolate flavor, and a hint of malty goodness. So, gather your ingredients, preheat the oven, and let's dive into the world of extraordinary chocolate bliss!

Clodagh McKenna's Guinness chocolate cake recipe

Makes one cake, serves 8

Prep time: 20 minutes

Difficulty: Easy

Ready in: 1 hour.


For the cake:

  • 260g butter 
  • 300ml Guinness/another stout/ non-alcoholic stout
  • 100g cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 420g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 180ml buttermilk
  • 300g plain flour
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder

For the icing:

  • 300g icing sugar, sifted
  • 100g butter 
  • 340g cream cheese


Preheat the oven to 170°C /325°F/gas mark 3. Line the base of a 30cm round spring form tin with baking parchment.

To make the cake, heat the butter in a saucepan over medium heat until melted. Stir in the Guinness (or other stout/non-alcoholic stout), then remove from the heat and stir in the cocoa powder.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract and buttermilk and then slowly add the Guinness mixture, whisking all the time.

Next sieve in the flour, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder, and whisk into the wet mixture until it is all well combined.

Transfer the mixture into the cake tin and bake for approximately 55 minutes. Test to make sure the cake is cooked by inserting a dry skewer into the middle of the cake - if it comes out clean, the cake is cooked. Set aside to cool a little, and then remove from the tin and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. 

Meanwhile, make the icing by blending all the ingredients together using an electric whisk until light and fluffy. 

Place the cooled cake on a plate and generously spread the icing on top. The cake will keep for up to 1 week in an airtight container. 


You can find more great Irish-inspired recipes on Clodagh McKenna's website.

* Originally published in 2019, updated in June 2023.