simple chocolate cherry cake

June 5, 2012

in Cakes & Tea Cakes

This simple chocolate cherry cake is just that – uncomplicated, perfect to make on a leisurely Sunday afternoon or a weekday morning to share later with friends. There’s no layer of creamy frosting or glossy glaze here, yet this cake shines in its own quiet way. Any such adornment might upset the otherwise beautiful balance.

Chocolate and cherry work in unison, neither one overpowering the other. Cinnamon adds an unexpected warmth that is most welcome against the pillowy chocolate cake dotted with fresh cherries. I find a wedge makes a lovely afternoon pick-me-up, though I also enjoy a sliver topped with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.

I am entering this cake in the OXO Cherry Recipe Contest.

Simple Chocolate Cherry Cake
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1 1/4 cups cherries, pitted
1 Tbsp turbinado sugar

Preheat oven to 375°F and spray an 8-inch cake pan with nonstick spray. Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla; beat well. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk.

Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth top with an offset spatula. Arrange cherries on top and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 25 minutes, until cake springs back to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly on a wire rack before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days and warm before serving.

Yield – 8 servings (serving size: 1 slice)
Calories – 192
Carbs – 30

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1 the wicked noodle June 5, 2012

You’re spoiling us with all these delicious fresh cherry recipes! I love that you didn’t glaze the cake; the cherries add enough sweetness on their own. My kind of cake!


2 Sandra's Easy Cooking June 5, 2012

What a great description of a I am reading my mouth is watering!:)))
It certainly is very tempting and appealing cake, and i love combination of cherry with chocolate.


3 Valerie June 5, 2012

The cherries look like tiny sunken treasures! I love simple recipes that are bursting with flavor, can’t wait to try this one!!


4 Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious June 5, 2012

What a gorgeous looking cake. I love the marriage of chocolate and cherries together!


5 Laura @ Family Spice June 5, 2012

You had me at ‘simple.’ I love desserts that can be whipped up quick!


6 Rowena @ Apron and Sneakers June 5, 2012

Love this recipe. If I didn’t do a couple of cherry desserts today, I would have done yours. Simple is exactly what it is and yet so delicious looking. I bet it was really good!


7 Jennifer June 5, 2012

What a wonderful cherry recipe! Looks easy and delicious.


8 Patty June 5, 2012

Yes, please to your lovely chocolate cake with cherries and yes, please to the scoop of vanilla bean ice cream, yes,please to your beautiful dessert;-)


9 Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet } June 5, 2012

What a perfect combination – chocolate and cherries – just classic! Never can tried of cherries. This is a winner recipe and looks super tasty. Nice job! Pinning!!!


10 Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen June 5, 2012

I’m so excited that it’s cherry season, I can never get enough of cherry desserts!


11 Priscilla@ShesCookin June 5, 2012

Lovely description! You’re absolutely right – cherry and chocolate are perfect together and, in a moist cake like this nothing else is necessary!


12 Jennifer (Delicieux) June 5, 2012

Chocolate and cherries are always a winning combination in my book, and your cake looks so delicious. In fact I’d love a slice right now :D


13 Jenny @ Ichigo Shortcake June 6, 2012

You’re making me so sad right now because there’s no cherries where I am! It’s winter here in Australia and whatever cherry is available is VERY expensive. :(( Going to have to keep this recipe until summer. :)


14 Carrie | acookgrowsinbrooklyn June 6, 2012

I would love a slice of that cake now – and it’s only breakfast time here in Brooklyn. There is something about chocolate paired with cherries that always feels so indulgent. I love the fancy look to it – with the cherries dotted along the top. Yum.


15 Jessica@AKitchenAddiction June 6, 2012

This is lovely! I’m all about desserts that are quick and easy!


16 Deb June 6, 2012

Oh my goodness! Another scrumptious cherry recipe! Even though we had unseasonal rain earlier this week, I should be able to pick cherries soon. Seeing each new cherry recipe on your blog is such a teaser! I have been daydreaming of pairing chocolate and cherries and today’s splendid post is an indication that that may be a very good plan. What a scrumptious treat!


17 Jen L | Tartine ans Apron Strings June 6, 2012

chocolate and cherries is one of those classic pairings! i grew up eating black forest cake, so i am positive i am going to love this one! and NO, I never get tired of chocolate nor cherries nor both of them together.


18 Liren June 6, 2012

My kind of baking! These are my favorite types of desserts. We both were thinking along the same line…I have a simple cake coming up but I know my son would prefer yours better since yours is beautifully chocolate-y :) He’s been complaining that I “never” make his favorite flavor cake. I am sure if I made this for him (and I will), he will forgive me.


19 Nami | Just One Cookbook June 6, 2012

Cherry picking in almost 2 weeks! I can’t wait to make cherry desserts. I know my kids will prefer having some chocolate in the dessert… :-) Or I should say that’s a requirement for me. Beautiful cake, Laura!


20 marissa @ the boot June 7, 2012

laura, you and i are on the same wavelength, because i made a cherry cake today too! yours looks positively divine! :)


21 Charles June 7, 2012

Looks so pretty Laura – I love the cute little wells made by the cherries. I think I read someone recently saying they hated the combination of cherries and chocolate… can you believe it? It’s a wonderful combo!


22 Averie @ Averie Cooks June 7, 2012

Laura it’s gorgeous and I love that the recipe doesn’t make 2 or 3+ layers! One layer will be just plenty of amazingness :)

thanks for the pins, as always, too!


23 Cakewhiz June 7, 2012

Being a chocoholic, i love everything to do with chocolate and this cake is no exception! I love the idea of addng cherries…it probably gives the cake a huge burst of flavor!


24 Baker Street June 8, 2012

Chocolate and cherry absolutely work in unison! What a gorgeous looking cake, Laura! :)


25 Laura June 8, 2012

Yum! Love seeing all these great cherry recipes. Love summer!


26 Susan June 8, 2012

Laura, this would be perfect with the cherry chocolate ice cream I made last week! I love cakes like this – they’re perfect for a weeknight.


27 Lora @cakeduchess June 9, 2012

I love every thing about this beautiful cake, Laura. Chocolate and cherries is a favorite combo of mine. Your photos are lovely and enticing:)


28 foodwanderings August 11, 2012

This Simple, operative word simple, cherry chocolate cake looks delicious. Thank you for coming to the rescuse on twitter!


29 Carol August 24, 2012

I have been looking for a good choc ‘n cherry cake for a while, and this one looks just right. Trouble is, in England, we only use ounces or grams to measure ingredients, and I have no idea what equivalent your “cup” would be.
Can you help?


30 Tutti Dolci August 24, 2012

Hi Carol, thanks for your comment! Here’s a handy cooking conversion guide for you:
Select a “substance” from the drop-down menu and then you can convert. So for this recipe, you’d want to use:

85 grams flour
28 grams cocoa
95 grams sugar
4 ounces milk
185 grams cherries

Hope that helps!


31 Riann February 17, 2013

This was really easy and tasty! Thanks so much!



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