This chocolate peppermint cake is rich, chocolaty and loaded with deliciousness! It’s drizzled with a mint chocolate ganache, then garnished with plenty of peppermint candy, sprinkles and chocolate shavings. Make this holiday cake a part of your celebrations!
Hi there friends!
Sharing a festive holiday cake with you all today.
I made a version of this chocolate cake a little while back for my dad’s birthday. It turned out so well, I knew I needed to ‘Christmas-ify’ it (is that a thing?)
I opted for a chocolate and peppermint version with plenty of mint candy and sprinkles, of course! We gotta go all out during the holidays, don’t we?
Looking for something to enjoy with this chocolate peppermint cake? Try a cozy mug of homemade hot chocolate!
Ingredients for Chocolate Peppermint Cake
- All-purpose flour
- Cocoa powder
- Baking powder, baking soda and salt
- Cream cheese
- Vanilla extract and peppermint extract
- Chocolate chips
- Chocolate milk
How to Make This Cake
Full details on how to make this chocolate peppermint cake are in the recipe card below, but here are the basics:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (or using a mixing bowl with hand mixer) blend together cream cheese, butter and sugar until fluffy and combined.
- Add eggs, one at a time, blending after each addition.
- Peppermint extract goes next.
- Then, add vanilla extract.
- In a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt) and add to the mixer …
- Alternating with chocolate milk.
- Mix in flour-dusted chocolate chips.
- Once combined, stop to scrape your mixing bowl with a spatula to get all that goodness from the sides of the bowl.
- Pour cake batter into a greased pan and bake.
- Once baked, allow the cake to cool a little in the pan. Then, remove and allow to fully cool before glazing. Note: Though this is not exactly a pound cake, it does have a rich batter. Don’t worry if the bottom of the cake cracks; that’s totally okay!
- Pour over chocolate ganache and decorate.
- Portion a piece and enjoy!
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How to Make Dark Chocolate Ganache
Chocolate ganache is basically equal parts chocolate and heavy cream. What’s not to love, right? So to make homemade ganache:
- Heat heavy cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Don’t boil, just heat through until it starts to bubble a little around the edges and it’s hot.
- Place chopped chocolate into a bowl and pour hot cream over top. Let sit for a few minutes.
- Slowly start to stir chocolate into cream.
- Stir until cream and chocolate are combined and everything is nice and smooth. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes and then pour over your cooled cake. It’s kinda magical watching this come together into a lush, rich chocolate glaze.
Full details are in the recipe card below.
Can I Use Another Topping Instead of Ganache?
If you wanna keep things ultra simple you could, of course, enjoy as is or:
- Drizzle with a simple icing sugar glaze
- Dust with icing sugar (also known as powdered sugar)
- Use store-bought chocolate sauce and drizzle over
- Serve with whipped cream (or make that whipped cream extra special by adding a little peppermint extract)
- Enjoy with ice cream (go all out and serve with candy cane ice-cream (a personal favourite of mine during the holidays)
Ensure the cream cheese and butter are softened. It makes things super easy to blend to a creamy consistency.
A 10-inch fluted cake pan was used for this chocolate peppermint cake. If you use a different size, your bake time may need to be adjusted accordingly. Simply bake until a wooden skewer comes out clean of wet batter when inserted.
When you insert the wooden skewer, you may see chocolate from the chips and that’s okay. You’ll know when it’s baked when there is no actual cake batter on there.
The style of your cake pan will have an impact on how your chocolate ganache flows. Not a big deal, but something to keep in mind.
Pour over the chocolate ganache when the cake has FULLY COOLED.
This chocolate peppermint cake is garnished with shaved chocolate, crushed mint candy and sprinkles. This is a great guide to make chocolate curls.
Don’t have mint candy? Use crushed candy cane instead.
More Yummy Holiday Treats
Hope you love this Christmas cake as much as we do!
If you make this chocolate peppermint cake, be sure to leave a comment below. Love to know how you enjoyed!
Chocolate Peppermint Cake (fun holiday dessert!)
Chocolate Peppermint Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (plus 1 tablespoon for chocolate chips (or use cocoa powder for the chips))
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 8 ounces cream cheese , softened (about a 250 gram package)
- 1 cup unsalted butter , softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 2 cups chocolate chips
- ½ cup chocolate milk
- baking spray or other type of baking grease (to grease cake pan)
- ¾ cup heavy cream (also known as 'whipped cream', 35% milk fat)
- 6 ounces dark chocolate or semi sweet chocolate , chopped into small pieces
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
Garnish Ideas (optional)
- ½ cup Peppermint candy , roughly chopped
- Chocolate shavings
- Festive sprinkles
- Fresh mint leaves
Chocolate Peppermint Cake
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, spoon 1 tablespoon of flour or cocoa powder over chocolate chips, stirring to coat. Set aside.
- In another bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or in a bowl using a hand mixer) blend (on medium-high speed) cream cheese, butter and sugar until smooth, combined and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stop to scrape the sides of the bowl once or twice with a rubber spatula.
- Add peppermint extract and vanilla extract and blend about 30 seconds.
- Reduce speed and add eggs, one at a time, and blend until just combined.
- Blend in reserved flour mixture, alternating with chocolate milk. Don't over mix.
- Add chocolate chips and blend until just combined.
- Grease a 10-inch, non-stick fluted cake pan with baking spray. Scoop batter into pan. Smooth top with a spoon. Tap the pan down 15 to 20 times on a hard surface to allow it to settle.
- Bake for approximately 55 to 65 minutes or until a wooden skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Because ovens vary (as well as cake pans), check on at the 50 minute mark to see how it's doing.Note: Though this is not exactly a pound cake, it does have a rich batter. Don't worry if the bottom of the cake cracks; that's totally okay!
- Once baked, let the cake cool 30 minutes in the pan. Then, carefully release the cake from the pan, allowing it to cool completely on a rack before glazing.
- Allow cake to FULLY cool before pouring over ganache. Once cool, pour over chocolate ganache and garnish, as desired, with peppermint candy, chocolate shavings, festive sprinkles and/or fresh mint leaves. Ganache will set as it cools. Slice and enjoy!Note: Wrap cooled leftovers, store in the fridge and enjoy within a couple of days or wrap and freeze for up to a month.
- Heat cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Don't boil. Heat through until it bubbles around the edges and it's heated through.
- Placed chopped chocolate in a heat-safe bowl. Pour hot cream over top and allow to sit 5 minutes without stirring.
- Gently stir to incorporate until everything is smooth and combined. Stir in peppermint extract. Allow to cool 10 minutes before pouring over cooled chocolate peppermint cake.
- Ensure the cream cheese and butter are softened. It makes things super easy to blend to a creamy consistency.
- A 10-inch fluted cake pan was used for this recipe. If you use a different size, your bake time may need to be adjusted accordingly. Simply bake until a wooden skewer comes out clean when inserted. Tip: When you insert the wooden skewer, you may see chocolate from the chips and that’s okay. You’ll know when it’s baked when there is no actual cake batter on there.
- The style of your pan will have an impact on how your chocolate ganache flows. Not a big deal, but something to keep in mind.
- Pour over the chocolate ganache when the cake has fully cooled.
- Don’t have mint candy? Use crushed candy cane instead.
Nutrition estimate (if provided) is based on 1 Serving.
Nutrition information (if provided) is provided as a courtesy and should be considered an estimate only. Ingredients can vary and Girl Heart Food makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
A note on times provided: appliances vary, any prep and/or cook times provided are guidelines only.