Guinness Chocolate Malt Cake Recipe

St Patrick’s day is around the corner and of course we’ve got a cake to help you celebrate (not that this cake should only come out once a year).

Guinness, and stout generally, can divide people but honestly a good stout can be a joy to drink, and in fact I’m partial to a pint myself. Plus it’s full of iron and it has less calories than the equivalent of fresh orange juice (yes, I checked before typing). So it’s tasty, could be considered a healthy choice - in certain situations - and is banging in a cake.  

There’s quite a range of Guinness cake styles out there.  For our take on it we’re going with a tried and tested chocolate combo but also leaning into its malty-ness too which gives it a really rounded and more-ish finish. 

The below recipe will see you making a delicious cake to celebrate with this March, not that it’s only for St. Patrick’s day as this can absolutely be enjoyed year round. And while we’ve given you the recipes for all the decoration on top too - a lusciously malty swiss meringue buttercream, a chocolate ganache and a use for any extra crumbs - you can of course add your own decorations too eg. fondant four leaf clovers or green leprechaun top hats. 

If it does, however, feel a bit more than you think you can manage in the time you’ve got we’d be delighted to make one for you - head over here for The Best Chocolate Guinness Cake in the world!

Chocolate Guinness Malt Cake

Guinness Chocolate Malt Cake Recipe

For the Guinness Chocolate Malt Sponge Layers


250g plain flour

200g caster sugar

200g light brown sugar

75g cocoa powder

100g malted milk drink powder

2tsp baking soda

1tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

250ml Guinness or any dark stout

100ml vegetable oil

250ml yoghurt

2 eggs

1tsp vanilla


1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius and prepare three 6 inch round baking tins by lightly greasing them and sprinkling flour over them.

2. Sift the dry ingredients together into a large mixing bowl. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk up the eggs, yoghurt, oil and vanilla.

3. In a small saucepan, heat the Guinness until just simmering. Then pour into the eggy mix, whisking continuously till well combined. Pour it all into the dry ingredients and whisk into an evenly combined batter. It's going to be pretty runny!

4. Pour the batter evenly into the three tins and bake for 25-30 minutes. Check for done-ness with a wooden skewer or cocktail stick. Once baked, pull the tins out of the oven, let them rest at room temp for about 10 minutes before popping the sponges out carefully on a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

5. Once cooled, use a cake leveller or bread knife to tort the cakes into even layers and use the scraps to make crumbs in a chopper. I like using 5 layers of sponge for the layer cake.

Chocolate Guinness Malt Layer Cake - layers

Guinness Malt Swiss Meringue Buttercream


150ml egg whites

225g granulated/caster sugar

Pinch of salt

1 tsp vanilla

300g butter, softened at room temperature

100ml Guinness stout

100g Malted milk powder


1. Follow the Swiss meringue buttercream recipe to make a batch of neutral Swiss meringue buttercream.

2. Pour the Guinness and malted milk powder into a saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring well to dissolve the malted milk drink powder. Do not boil or over-heat!

3. Once the buttercream is ready, pour the malted Guinness paste into the mixing bowl and whip to combine. It's DELIGHTFUL.

Chocolate Guinness Malt Cake Recipe - slice

Guinness Chocolate Ganache


120g dark chocolate

60g butter, cubed

60ml Guinness stout


1. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a bain marie or microwave (make sure it's a microwave-safe bowl!)

2. Stir in the cubes of butter till it has combined well with the melted chocolate.

3. Pour in the Guinness and stir till mixed in.

Chocolate Guinness Malt Layer Cake - recipe

Decorating the Guinness Chocolate Malt Cake

1. Dab a bit of the Guinness malt buttercream in the middle of an 8 inch round cake board or drum. Place a Guinness chocolate sponge layer in the centre.

2. Spread a layer of buttercream evenly over the sponge layer using a palette knife and place another layer of sponge on top. Repeat with buttercream and sponge layers until you've used up 5 layers of sponge.

3. Smooth a crumb coat of buttercream on the outside of the layered stack and place it in the fridge to firm up for 15-20 minutes. Once firm, smooth another layer of buttercream on using an angled palette knife or cake smoother/scraper.

4. Coat the base of the cake with sponge crumbs and place the cake in the fridge to chill until firm.

5. Warm the Guinness ganache until 28-32 degrees Celsius. Spoon it along the top in a 2 inch section at the edge of the cake and using the back of a tablespoon, gently push some ganache over the edge to create lovely drips along the cake. Repeat till all the edges of the cake have drips and then flood the middle of the cake with ganache to cover the top. You can see step-by-step photos of the drip cake technique here.

6. Sprinkle cake crumbs over the top and pipe stars or swirls of buttercream along the edge if you wish.

Chocolate Guinness Malt Layer Cake Recipe

Kick back with a pint of Guinness and enjoy this utterly delectable cake on Saint Patrick's Day, or any other day for that matter. It's divine!

Chocolate Guinness Malt Layer Cake - slice

If you've tried my recipe or have any questions on it please do drop them into the comments below! And if you've got any photos of your cake do tag me on instagram @angesdesucre #angesdesucre so I can ogle your creation! And if you can't be bothered with all this, you know you can just order our blinged out Chocolate Guinness Cake and have it delivered in London or order it via Selfridges for collection.

Lots of love,

Reshmi xoxo 

4 Responses



August 04, 2019

Is there supposed to be butter in the buttercream?

Reshmi Bennett

Reshmi Bennett

April 03, 2019

Hi Annie,
Gah, sorry to hear you’re getting sunken sponges! At first thoughts I would also have assumed it’s down to over-mixing as oil-based cake batters as rule of thumb only need mixing till combined and as it’s a runny batter it tends to happen quite soon. I don’t use cake strips and just grease and flour the tins but I don’t think that would be the issue. The other things that could be the source for sunken sponge is old raising agents eg baking soda and baking powder, which are both used in this recipe, or too high of an internal oven temp whereby the cake rises super fast in the heat but then collapses as the inside hasn’t baked at the same rate as the edges in which case I’d recommend going low and slow ie drop the temp down to 150-160 and increase baking time till done. Hope this helps and so sorry for the late response! xoxo

Annie Solangon

Annie Solangon

April 03, 2019

Hi Reshmi, I’ve tried to bake this twice and I still get a sunken middle :( The first time it happened I troubleshooted it so that the second time I made sure not to overmix it, to put it in the oven straight away and I had an oven thermometer saying it was the right temperature. I put it in for an extra 10 mins and still sunken bottom :( Is it just my oven? Next time should I put it for an extra 10 minutes? I used cake strips – is this the cause? I’d be grateful for your advice! Annie



March 05, 2019

This looks unbelievable….but not sure it’s big enough! Any obvious issues with sizing it up to 8in? Thank you 😍

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