Chocolate Self-Saucing Cake

Chocolate Self-Saucing Cake

This fun and easy recipe takes inspiration from the self-saucing chocolate puddings that are popular in Britain and Australia. The basic composition is a simple chocolate cake batter topped with a sauce made from sugar, cocoa powder and hot water. While the cake bakes, the sauce magically works its way down to the bottom of the pan, so you have moist chocolate cake on top and gooey sauce on the bottom. Some recipes make a dense and fudgy cake, but this one is a bit lighter, resulting in a fluffy cake with lots of chocolate sauce to spoon over the top. Serve the cake warm, scooped from the pan, with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if you like. This is best served the day that it is made. The cake will absorb the sauce as it sits.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 8 persons



  1. Step 1

    With a rack set in the center, heat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter a 1 1/2-quart metal, glass or ceramic baking pan. (An 8-by-8-inch pan works well.)
  2. Step 2

    In a large bowl, whisk the flour with 1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar, 1/3 cup/30 grams cocoa powder, the baking powder, baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt. 
  3. Step 3

    In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the sour cream, 6 tablespoons butter and the egg.
  4. Step 4

    Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the sour cream mixture. Use a rubber spatula to stir until well combined. Transfer the thick batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  5. Step 5

    In another small bowl or measuring cup, whisk the remaining 1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar and 1/3 cup/30 grams cocoa powder, plus the boiling water and a pinch of salt. Immediately and carefully pour the sugar and cocoa mixture evenly over the top of the batter.
  6. Step 6

    Bake the cake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the cake is puffed and cooked through. Let the cake rest for 10 minutes before serving warm, with ice cream or whipped cream, if you like.