New recipes and updates

Get new recipes
in your inbox

Cuisine Fiend

Find a recipe by ingredient

Chocolate genoise with raspberry buttercream

Updated: Tue, 30 January, 2024

The perfect celebration cake: chocolate flavoured genoise sponge, lighter than air, filled with simple and divine raspberry buttercream and frosted with whipped chocolate ganache.

chocolate genoise with raspberry buttercream

Birthday? Anniversary? We need a cake!

I love making celebration cakes. It’s all about creating a new recipe from tried and tested elements. First I decide on the base cake (it better be sponge! or the ultimate sponge aka genoise!), plain vanilla or chocolate flavoured.

Then I compose the fillings and icings. Buttercreams, ganaches, mascarpone or cream cheese-based frostings, plus the pristine and unbeatable (excuse the pun) whipped cream filling.

Chocolate features often as that’s what my nearest and dearest love. When it’s my birthday cake, I will invariably include fresh fruit because my birthday is in summer.

chocolate and raspberry genoise sponge cake

Chocolate and raspberry, made in heaven

But fruit, especially raspberries, goes well with chocolate too and it breaks the excessive chocolatey sweetness with a hint of a tang.

I can wholeheartedly recommend the combination, featured in this chocolate genoise, for a birthday or a celebration cake. It can be prepared in stages and well in advance, thus making it not too onerously prolonged a task.

The raspberry buttercream can be made a day before, stored in the fridge then brought to room temperature for easy spreading.

The chocolate ganache has to chill before it’s whipped, hence not just convenient but fitting the schedule to make it ahead. Alternatively the genoise can be baked a day in advance and kept in the fridge wrapped in foil or plastic, it will slice all the better if chilled.

My recipe for the genoise is courtesy of The Delectable Hodgepodge. The rest, and the combination – my own.

genoise cake with raspberry cream and chocolate frosting

How to make chocolate genoise

Genoise is the delightful French sponge (even though the name is derived from Italian city of Genoa), light as air, fluffy and weightless but surprisingly workable. It can be sliced into layers, trimmed and shaped after baking. Once you get the hang of it (it involves dropping your cake from a height!), it’s practically failproof.

It’s not quick or simple, but completely worth the effort. If you start with the eggs at room temperature (and you can store eggs outside the fridge anyway), the first step will not take long.

It involves whisking the eggs over a double boiler: the bowl with eggs perched over barely simmering pan of water. Add the sugar little by little, whisking constantly, until the egg mix warms up to about body temperature and you have used up the sugar.

Now it’s time to resort to a mixer at high speed. I expect you can whip the batter by hand but I’m not brave enough to have ever tried. The egg mix needs to be beaten to about five times the original volume, turn very pale and thick, leaving ribbon trails when the beaters are lifted, so a bit of a challenge.

Next the flour with cocoa goes in, best sifted in to prevent clumping, and it should be very delicately folded in with a spatula.

The small amount of butter that you’ve melted and kept warm should now go in: first stirred into a small amount of batter, then folded into the bulk of it.

genoise batter

Drop the cake!

The tin for genoise should be thoroughly buttered and floured, and once the batter is in, give it a sharp rap against the worktop to shift any large air bubbles.

After a half-hour bake, when the sponge surface doesn’t spring back up when pressed with a finger, the best part: drop it! On the floor or the worktop, onto a folded tea towel, from the height of about twenty centimetres.

This, counterintuitively, will stop it from collapsing. Then place the tin upside down on a wooden board and leave for five minutes. And finally, turn it out onto a wire rack, top side up.

genoise sponge

When it’s completely cold, cut it in two layers using a cake wire or a very sharp knife.

The genoise base can be baked a day in advance and kept at room temperature.

genoise layers

How to make the raspberry buttercream

This is the easiest, simplest and arguably the nicest buttercream. Butter beaten until fluffy and pale, fresh raspberry puree added by a spoonful, together with icing sugar by a couple of spoonfuls.

Don’t be too generous with the puree lest it curdles the buttercream; also, you want to reserve some to spread over cake layers. At the end whisk in the double cream which will make it fluffier.

celebration cake with raspberry filling and chocolate frosting

How to make chocolate frosting

This again is simple and gorgeous: chocolate ganache, cooled right down, then whipped to a mousse consistency. You can, if you wish, use milk chocolate instead of dark, in which case omit the sugar.

I make ganache by boiling the cream and pouring it over chopped up chocolate. But I know some people do it in reverse, or warm up both ingredients together in a double boiler. Mine is easier I think – and you can boil the cream in the microwave, saving washing up a pan.

When the ganache is cold, whisk it until airy, lighter in colour and thicker in texture; take care not to overwhip.

chocolate genoise

Assembling the cake

The genoise base should be sliced, the buttercream and chocolate frosting both at room temperature, even if they’d been made ahead and stored in the fridge.

Place the bottom layer on a cake platter and spread some reserved raspberry puree over it, to combat crumbs. Now pile the raspberry buttercream on and spread with a palette knife, unless you adore piping.

buttercream filling

Top it with the other cake layer, up whichever side is smoother. And the chocolate frosting by all accounts can be just slathered all over, rustic or nonchalant style, instead of piping rosettes around and on top. But that’s entirely up to you.

genoise sponge cake

More genoise recipes

Dome cake made from the lightest sponge, filled with layers of dark chocolate, raspberry mousse and vanilla buttercream, glazed with white chocolate ganache. The ultimate in ‘wow’ factor.

Genoise sponge cake with mascarpone and blueberry filling. The celebration gateau that is all about class, simplicity and sophistication. No wonder - genoise is after all the classic sponge recipe of the French patisserie.

Victorian Savoy cake, or biscuit de Savoie, is the lightest butterless sponge cake. Fuller taste than angel food, more forgiving than genoise and far more sophisticated than Victoria sponge.

More celebration cake recipes

Silver Palate chocolate cake, a decadent and super moist cake with dark chocolate frosting. NY Times Cooking recipe adapted from The Silver Palate Cookbook.

Hungarian flourless hazelnut torte with hazelnut buttercream, a topping of apricot jam and chocolate shavings. A riff on the famous Esterhazy cake, this one is much easier but just as delicious.

Matcha (green tea) sponge cake with lemon and bay leaf scented whipped cream frosting. It’s a beautiful dessert, beautifully simple to make (but nobody will believe you how easy it is).

chocolate sponge cake layered with raspberry and chocolate

Chocolate genoise with raspberry buttercream

Servings: 12Time: 4 hours
Rating: (2 reviews)


  • For the chocolate genoise:
  • 70g plain flour
  • 20g cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 90g caster sugar
  • 30g butter, melted and kept warm
  • For the raspberry buttercream:
  • 100g raspberries, fresh or frozen
  • 100g butter, softened
  • 185g icing sugar
  • 2 tsp double cream
  • For the chocolate frosting:
  • 100g good quality dark chocolate, 70% cocoa
  • 300ml double cream
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar


1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4. Prepare a round 20cm cake tin by buttering and flouring it thoroughly. Place a disk of parchment at the bottom.

2. Mix the flour and cocoa powder and sift it 2 or 3 times into a bowl.

3. Prepare a pan with hot water large enough to contain the bowl you will be making the batter in.

4. Break the eggs and the egg yolk into the bowl placed in the hot water and whisk or beat at low speed with a hand-held mixer, until the eggs become foamy. Add the sugar, little by little. Keep on beating or whisking until the eggs warm up to body temperature and the sugar is used up.

5. Remove the bowl out of the water and beat in a standing mixer with a balloon attachment, or continue with hand-held at high speed for about 5 minutes, then at medium speed for another 5 minutes. The egg mix should inflate to about five times their original volume, turn pale and form ribbons when the mixer paddle is removed. 

6. Sift the flour and cocoa mix over the eggs from high above in two or three goes folding it in very gently each time before sifting in more. Make sure the mix does not deflate. When combined, scoop a heaped spoonful of the batter and mix with the warm butter, then fold it gently back in.

7. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and twist it sharply to remove large air bubbles. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the sponge crackles slightly when pressed with a finger and leaves a small indentation.

8. Take the tin out and drop from 20cm height onto a couple of folded tea towels, two or three times. It stops the sponge from collapsing and sinking. Turn the tin upside down onto a wooden board and leave for 5 minutes. Turn it the right side up and cool completely on a cake rack.

9. Prepare the raspberry puree: if using frozen raspberries, thaw them completely in a sieve placed over a bowl. Discard the liquid that dripped into the bowl, then pass the raspberries through a sieve with a bottom of a large spoon until only the seeds remain on the sieve. Scrape the bottom of the sieve several times whilst doing it.

10. To make the buttercream, beat the butter until pale and fluffy. Still beating, add the raspberry puree by a spoonful and the icing sugar by a couple of spoonfuls. Reserve a little puree to spread on the cake halves. At the end add the cream and whisk in.

11. Prepare the chocolate frosting: break the chocolate into small pieces into a bowl and add the icing sugar. In a small pan bring the double cream to the boil and pour it boiling over the chocolate. Leave to stand for a minute then stir until smooth. Leave to cool completely, then chill in the fridge for at least half an hour.

12. Whisk the chilled ganache until it thickens, lightens in colour and achieves mousse consistency. Don’t over-whip.

13. Assemble the cake: slice the genoise horizontally using a cake wire, a very sharp knife or a cotton thread (make a shallow incision with a sharp knife along the edge, halfway through its height. Take a length of cotton thread and wrap around the cake, fitting it into the incision. Twist the thread as if you wanted to strangle the cake until it cuts through).

14. Place the two halves on a board, cut sides up. Spread the reserved raspberry puree on both halves, pipe or spread the raspberry buttercream over the bottom half, slide the top layer onto the filling and press gently all around with your hand, until the filling peeks around the edges.

15. To frost the cake you can simply slather the chocolate frosting over the top and the sides with a palette knife. Alternatively decant the frosting into a piping bag with a star shaped nozzle and pipe little rosettes all over the cake including the sides. Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Originally published: Sun, 12 April, 2015

NEW recipe finder

Ingredients lying around and no idea what to cook with them? Then use my NEW Recipe Finder for inspiration!

Recipe Finder

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published

Characters left 800
Recipe rating
Email address*
Web site name
Be notified by email when a comment is posted

* required

Your comments

Anna @ CuisineFiend
Hi Cath - so glad to hear it!
3 years ago
Cath Arkless-Pointon
awesome recipe ?? thanks for the detailed instructions - bombproof?????????xxx
3 years ago
Anna @ CuisineFiend
Hi Hema - thank you!
4 years ago
Thanks For Sharing this Amazing Recipe. My Family Loved It. I will be sharing this Recipe with my Friends. Hope They will like it.
4 years ago

Cuisine Fiend's

most recent

About me

Hello! I'm Anna Gaze, the Cuisine Fiend. Welcome to my recipe collection.

I have lots of recipes for you to choose from: healthy or indulgent, easy or more challenging, quick or involved - but always tasty.


Sign up to receive the weekly recipes updates

Follow Fiend