Deep Dark Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

When my guy really, really likes a recipe, he gives it grunts. Sometimes one, sometimes two, and on the very rare occasion, three.

I like when my guy gives my recipes grunts. What can I say – I get a certain sort of satisfaction out of it. One grunt makes me smile. Three and I practically jump into the air. Just call me a 50s housewife, I don’t care.

Wait. I just realized you guys might be imagining actual grunts. And now I’m imagining him making actual grunts over food too. And giggling.

No no. Metaphorical grunts. They’re sort of like giving a recipe stars, but in a manly way.

This recipe didn’t quite make it to the coveted three-grunt club, but! It was super, super close.

“Two grunts,” my guy said. “Maybe 2.5.”

Two and a half grunts up! No chump change, that.

While you’re mentally trying to figure out what half a grunt sounds like, I’ll go ahead and tell you a little about this recipe.

It’s really sort of a weird one, in the way that it comes together. You spread a thick batter into the pan. Then you top it with chocolate chips. Then you sprinkle a dry mix of cocoa and sugars over the top. Then you pour some hot water and instant espresso over the top.

Then you bake it, and magical things happen. A rich, gooey cake forms on the top, and a warm, melty, dark, fudgy sauce forms on the bottom.

Things really get real when you spoon it into a bowl along with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The ice cream gets all melty and cuts the super-sweet richness of the cake and the sauce.

Grunt-worthy indeed. Metaphorical or out loud.

Print Recipe

Deep Dark Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

Magical things happen when you bake this deep, dark hot fudge pudding cake. A rich, gooey cake forms on the top, and a warm, melty, dark, fudgy sauce forms on the bottom. Serve with ice cream and life is complete.

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes


  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 7 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa, divided (I like Hershey's Special Dark)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/4 cups hot water
  • 3 teaspoons instant espresso powder (optional, but highly recommended)


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together 3/4 cup of the granulated sugar, flour, 3 tablespoons cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Whisk in the milk, melted butter, and vanilla. Beat until smooth.
  3. Spread this batter mixture into an 8" x 8" baking pan.
  4. Sprinkle with chocolate chips.
  5. In another medium bowl, stir together the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 4 tablespoons cocoa, and brown sugar.
  6. Sprinkle this mixture over the top of the batter.
  7. In a small bowl or glass measuring cup, stir together the espresso powder and the hot water.
  8. Carefully pour the hot water mixture over the top of the cake. Do not stir.
  9. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the center is no longer jiggly.
  10. Spoon cake and sauce into bowls and top with immediately with ice cream or whipped cream.

Adapted from

Originally posted on The Hazel Bloom May 24, 2012. Updated and posted on Kitchen Treaty December 11, 2012. More about this


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19 Responses to “Deep Dark Hot Fudge Pudding Cake”

  1. Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels posted on May 24, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    Oh my word this looks sooooooo good. I’d love to eat the entire cake. YUM!! :)

  2. Emily @ Life on Food posted on May 24, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    Forget grunting, I would be groaning for some of this. I am making one this weekend. I love ooey gooey chocolate. Lovely!

  3. Steph@stephsbitebybite posted on May 25, 2012 at 11:47 am

    Now this is how to kick off a long weekend!

  4. Peter Block posted on May 25, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    this looks decadent!

  5. Mary posted on May 25, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    Can this be made without the espresso powder? Either way, it looks DELICIOUS!

    • Kare posted on May 25, 2012 at 8:37 pm

      Hi Mary, yes, absolutely! Just use hot water. I like the extra oomph the espresso powder gives the chocolate flavor but it’s still plenty rich and decadent without.

  6. Sasha @ The Procrastobaker posted on May 26, 2012 at 8:01 am

    This looks ammmmazzinnggg! This will definitely be made at some point..I hope sooner rather than later :) gorgeous

  7. Baking Serendipity posted on May 26, 2012 at 9:32 pm

    That scoop of ice cream is the perfect addition! The cake looks so rich and fudgey…I think I’d need ice cream to balance it all out. Love!

  8. Jane posted on May 27, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    This looks soooo good! I think I could go for some right now :) Love the grunts!

  9. tanya @ i heart chocolate milk posted on June 8, 2012 at 8:21 am

    wow this looks sooooooo good!!! I always sneaks spoonfuls of brownies baking in the oven before it’s fully cooked because i love that gooey fudgy chocolate stuff! I’ll have to try this one!

  10. Rose Taylor posted on August 27, 2012 at 2:44 am

    I was looking at the pictures and I found myself drooling! I’ll give this pudding 5 grunts.

  11. Brittany posted on January 31, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    I made this tonight for a dinner party and everyone LOVED it! I dislike chocolate cake and I thought this was delicious!

  12. Carlo fionda posted on February 5, 2013 at 7:01 am

    im about to make this Cake the nw

  13. Carol Rood posted on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 am

    I adapted this recipe to make it only 8 sugars per serving. Thanks for the inspiration :-)

  14. Anonymous posted on March 28, 2013 at 1:29 am

    I absolutely love your blog and find most of your post’s to be exactly what I’m looking for. Would you offer guest writers to write content for yourself? I wouldn’t mind creating a post or elaborating on a number of the subjects you write related to here. Again, awesome web log!

  15. Teresia posted on November 14, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    Do you know if this could be made with a boxed cake mix as the base (maybe leave out 1 egg…?) The topping trick is the same as a recipe I found in a “Christian Home” cookbook, but, of course, they didn’t use a box mix either…maybe I’ll just try it.

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  17. SarahC. posted on December 30, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    I put these ingredients in a nice jar and gave them as Christmas presents with the recipe tied to the jar. They loved them as gifts and the taste of it also!! Great recipe!!!Thanks

    • Karen Raye posted on January 4, 2015 at 8:16 pm

      I adore this idea! Thank you for sharing!

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