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Chocolate Magic Custard Cake

One simple batter, three distinct layers. Pure magic!

This is not our first go-round with Magic Cake because it’s, well… just so magical! We have a banana version and a vanilla version and we just couldn’t stop there. You see, this is a situation where just one batter is poured into a baking pan and yet when it emerges from the oven you somehow have three distinct layers. Magic Cake gives you a crumbly crust, a creamy custard, and spongy cake all in one, and in this case, it’s chocolate-chocolate-chocolate all the way through.

This is one of those recipes that seems too good to be true. One easy batter and you get a layered dessert like this? Yes, please! It doesn’t take a ton of ingredients, but the key is in how you combine them. More or less, the recipe relies on folding whipped egg whites into a very liquidy cocoa powder-based batter. It doesn’t seem magical when you’re mixing it up, but when it comes out of the oven and you see those layers, it feels like a magic trick occured.

It will be a bit jiggly but don’t stress about it and over bake or you’ll lose some of the custard texture. This is such a simple, delicious cake. There’s no need for frosting or frills because it’s all baked right in – a sturdy bottom crumb, a silky custard center, and a spongy cake top. Pure magic!

Serves 9

15m prep time

1h cook time

Rated 3.2 out of 5
Rated by 6 reviewers

Allergens: Eggs

  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 cups milk, lukewarm
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F and grease and flour an 8x8-inch baking pan. [Grease with butter. Add flour, tap flour around and turn over to tap out excess. Don't need to do on camera.]
  2. Separate the eggs. Add yolks to a mixing bowl along with a tablespoon of water and sugar. Beat with an electric mixer until well combined and creamy.
  3. Add melted butter, salt, and vanilla and increase mixer speed to high. Beat until light and fluffy.
  4. Mix flour and cocoa together and add to egg yolk mixture in three batches, mixing after each addition.
  5. Add the milk gradually and mix in thoroughly. Batter will be liquidy.
  6. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and vinegar with whisk attachment until stiff peaks form.
  7. Add a heaping spoonful of the egg whites to the chocolate mixture and gently fold in. Then, add the chocolate mixture to the egg whites and fold until no white streaks remain.
  8. Transfer batter to prepared dish and bake 1 hour. Cake will still jiggle in the center. Let cool completely before dusting liberally with powdered sugar, cutting in to squares, and serving. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Hugs and Cookies.

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