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Chocolate Whiskey Cake - Food Gypsy

Chocolate Irish Whiskey Cake – Recipe

This Chocolate Irish Whiskey Cake could very well entice a leprechaun into exchanging his pot of gold for a slice of chocolate sin. A dense, rich, dark chocolate cake that is moist and not too sweet, with that bite of good, clean whiskey and a hint of walnut.

Chocolate Whiskey “Brownies” For Grown-Ups

Sometimes when you’re testing recipes… you fail.  That’s why we test the recipe! This was a third time lucky recipe. The boozy icing gave me trouble. I hate wasting butter. Almost as much as I hate wasting chocolate.

I feel compelled, at this juncture to assure you I was not in fact ‘sampling’ the whiskey (not that there’s anything wrong with that, just ask Julia Child.) Had I been sampling, I assure you, the cake would have been tossed, rather dramatically out the window, aiming for the parking lot.

Butter & Sugar Pan Lightly toasted walnuts Pulverizing the walnuts

Mmmm. Espresso. Irish Whisky... it's good for ya'. Espresso & Chocolate & Whisky... someone has to...

Mixing, butter, sugar, vanilla... Batter in pan, oven ready. Cooling on the rack.

Baking Science To The Rescue

In consultation with the Chef-in-my-life we adjusted the ingredients to make life easier. Rather than the smooth butter and chocolate drizzle I’d originally envisioned, switched things up to finish with a sassy ganache. Just cream and chocolate and silky smooth, it won’t let you down. That way you can finish the top and have that ‘brownie’ effect.  (Leprechaun Brownies.  It’s a thing now.)

One of the reasons I test every single recipe — no matter what, is because it should be consistent every single time.  I want your time in the kitchen to be HAPPY. Chocolate cake should make you happy… not cranky.  Maybe what I need is a piece of Chocolate Irish Whiskey Cake.

Oh… look… leftover whiskey.  Well, I am part Irish!  Here’s mud in ‘yer eye!

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Chocolate Whiskey Cake - Food Gypsy

Chocolate Irish Whiskey Cake

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  • Author: Cori Horton
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 1 - 8 inch cake 1x


A dense, rich chocolate cake spiked with good Irish Whiskey for a very adult approach to dessert. Chocolate Irish Whiskey Cake warms the belly on St. Patrick’s Day, or any time you feel the desire for a little boozy finish to your sweet tooth.



1/2 cup Irish Whiskey
6 ounces bittersweet (70% cocoa) chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup espresso (or strong coffee)
1/3 cup toasted, ground walnuts
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 Cup sugar
3 Eggs, separated

Chocolate Ganache

3/4 cup whipping cream
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 350⁰F (180⁰C).  Butter and sugar coat 8-inch springform pan.  Set aside in fridge to cool.
  2. In sauce pan, bring 1/2 cup of whiskey to boil, reducing by half (approximately 3 minutes).  Transfer to metal bowl, add chopped chocolate and espresso.  Place bowl over sauce pan of simmering water and stir until mixture is smooth, about 2 minutes.  Remove bowl from hot water and reserve.
  3. In small bowl mix together flour, walnuts and salt – reserve.
  4. Using electric mixer. Beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg yolks, one at a time, mixing well after each.  Gently fold in chocolate mixture with spatula.
  5. Using clean, dry attachments use electric mixer to beat egg whites to stiff peaks.  Fold 1/3 egg whites and 1/3 flour mixture into chocolate batter, follow in same manner, mixing 1/3 at a time until batter is mixed.  Transfer into prepared pan, gently smoothing the top with a spatula.
  6. Bake in centre of 350⁰F (180⁰C) oven until tester inserted into center of cake comes out clean — approximately 30 – 35 minutes.
  7. Cool on rack for 10 minutes, and then move to fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
  8. For ganache:  Heat cream in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil.  Remove from heat and add chopped chocolate.  Allow to melt slightly then stir until glossy and smooth.  Spread over chilled cake to approximately 1/4 inch thick.  Then refrigerate again to set (15 minutes), then remove springform collar. Serve. Consume.


What to do if you have leftover ganache?  Allow to cool, roll into balls and cover in cocoa and you’ve got TRUFFLES.  Or, eat with a spoon.  (It’s just what I’ve read…)

  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Modern

Cori Horton

Fearlessly cooking in her home kitchen just outside Ottawa, Canada; Cori Horton is a food photographer, food marketing consultant, recipe developer and sustainability advocate. A Cordon Bleu trained chef, Cori spent five years as the owner of Nova Scotia's Dragonfly Inn and now shares all things delicious - right here.

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