Homemade Small 6 Inch Chocolate Cake For Two is a moist and delicious one layer chocolate cake from scratch without a cake mix. Top it with strawberry cream cheese frosting or chocolate ganache.
Happy (belated) Chocolate Cake Day! I recently found out January 27 was National Chocolate Cake Day.
Funny thing is I already planned on posting this recipe before I found out. Yes, yes I totally planned this.
I’m sharing this recipe because of Valentine’s Day coming up. I mean look at it – it’s dessert for two, chocolate, and has pink frosting. It checks all of the boxes for the holiday.
I used to let Valentine’s Day bother me; I mean, what single person hasn’t been reminded of their loneliness on February 14? But over the years I’ve embraced it.
Learning to love myself and be more confident has helped me greatly with being single over the years.
I’m still single at 30, but it doesn’t bother me (as much) anymore. Sure, I still have my nights where I’m reminded how lonely I am and burst into tears, but who doesn’t?
That’s why every year for Valentine’s Day, I make a point to treat myself. And what better way to say “I love you, self” than with a small 6 inch Chocolate Cake For Two from scratch?
And of course if you’re celebrating love with someone else, nothing says “thank you for loving me” like this small chocolate cake recipe from scratch.
For four years, I lived in a small country town hours away from any major city with no family or friends.
I literally had cows next door because I rented an apartment on a farm. You had to drive to the neighbor’s house because they were spread out (unless you really wanted the exercise that day).
I worked in an office as the only in-house videographer. Sure I was part of a department, but pretty much I was working on videos alone.
All of my coworkers were older and had families. If they weren’t married, they had kids.
For the first two years or so, I was the only female in my department.
When we had our annual meeting with all of the department employees from around the world in one room, I was probably only 1 of 2 females out of 100 men (give or take).
As you can imagine, I had a really difficult time fitting in. Single, 23, no kids, female at a dominant male company.
Not to mention there was nothing happening on the weekends where as I always find something to do in Pittsburgh.
I spent a lot of time in my thoughts. Why was I single? Why didn’t I have any friends? How in the world can I begin to connect with my coworkers?
I’m an introvert; making friends is tough as it is, let alone with people I have zero in common with. I spent several years in a funk, feeling sorry for myself.
Then one day, something snapped. I wish I could tell you what caused it, but I woke up and decided to stop feeling bad about myself. Just like that.
It’s as lame as someone saying “Oh I’m successful because I got lucky.” I really don’t have a true solution for you other than I had enough.
I spent a lot more time blogging. A lot more time baking. A lot more time learning how to photograph food and be better at what I was doing.
It’s what launched me into this career to bring you recipes to make at home.
This simple chocolate cake recipe is based off of my Devil’s Food Layer Cake recipe, which I made four times.
First time I made too much batter. Second time I used too much leavening. Third time still too much leavening. Fourth time’s a charm, right?
How To Make A Rich Chocolate Cake For Two
Nothing is sadder than dry chocolate cake, so this recipe is super moist and intense.
Coffee is my secret ingredient for making cake richer and chocolately than your average cake. You can’t actually taste the coffee, so even if you don’t drink it, promise you’ll still love this cake.
Of course if you absolutely refuse to use coffee, you can substitute hot water. It won’t be as chocolatey, but it’ll still be moist and delicious.
Buying A 6 Inch Round Cake Pan
In order to make this small chocolate cake recipe, you need to buy a 6 inch round cake pan. Easy enough, right?
A 6 x 2 inch round cake pan holds about 2 cups of batter. You can buy one online from Amazon (affiliate link) or from your local craft store in the cake decorating aisle.
Don’t have a 6 inch cake pan? I also turned this recipe into small batch chocolate cupcakes.
How long do you bake a 6 inch cake?
You bake a 6 inch chocolate cake at 350F for about 25-30 minutes.
It’s important your oven temperature is accurate. Just because your dial says it’s 350F degrees doesn’t mean it actually is 350F.
Case in point: My old gas oven heats 25F hotter than what the dial says. That means if I set it to 350F, it actually heats up to 375F.
Baking my small cake at 375F means it’ll bake faster, so I have a high chance of overbaking or even burning it, resulting in a dry not so fluffy cake.
On the flip side, if your oven heats up to 325F, that means your cake will bake slower, which affects the rise from the baking powder plus takes much longer to finish baking.
I highly recommend investing in an oven thermometer. It’s inexpensive and will help prevent you from ruining your cake and wasting ingredients.
If your temperature is way off, you can sometimes calibrate your oven to be more accurate. Check with your oven’s manual to see how to do this.
To tell if your cake is done, insert a toothpick in the center. If it comes out clean, the cake is ready. A few crumbs are ok, but you definitely don’t want wet batter.
Servings In A 6 Inch Cake
Serving sizes are subjective, especially if you only want a small bite of cake. Generally 6 inch cakes can be sliced into 4-6 slices, making it about 4-6 servings per 6 inch cake.
However, if you slice the cake small enough, you can push for 8 slices, equaling 8 servings.
Ultimately serving size is up to you depending on how small you cut your 6 inch cake.
How To Decorate A Small Chocolate Cake
As you can see from the photos, there’s more than one way to decorate chocolate cake for two.
You can dress it up for Valentine’s Day with Small Batch Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting. Or you can go simple with chocolate ganache.
More Small 6 Inch Cake Recipes
Looking for more small cake flavors? I wrote a Small 6 Inch Cake Recipes For Two guide. Some of my favorites are:
Equipment You Will Need
- 1 ounce semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup (2 ounces or 4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup buttermilk or whole milk with 1 teaspoon lemon juice added, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons hot coffee or water
- Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting (get recipe here)
Chocolate Ganache (if making)
- 1 ounce semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease one 6-inch round cake pan then line the bottom with parchment paper.
- Add about an inch of water to a pan and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and place a heatproof bowl over top. Add the chopped chocolate and melt until smooth. Remove from the heat and cool for 10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, sift together the flour and cocoa then stir in the baking soda, espresso powder, and salt.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until light and creamy, about 1-2 minutes.
- Beat in the egg and vanilla then beat in the melted chocolate.
- Mix together the buttermilk and coffee.
- Add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk mixture, adding the flour in 3 additions and the milk in 2 additions (begin and end with dry ingredients).
- Transfer the batter to the pan. Bake 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with a few crumbs (no wet batter). Cool for about 15 minutes, run a knife along the edge of the pan to loosen, and invert onto a cooling rack. Cool right-side-up.
- Top with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting.
- If making chocolate ganache: Add chocolate to a heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until hot but not boiling. Pour it over the chocolate and wait 1 minute. Stir together until completely smooth. Immediately spread over the cooled cake. Let the chocolate firm up before serving.
Don't have a 6 inch pan? Check out my recipe for Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes!
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