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Hazelnut Cake

Fans of nutty desserts won't want to miss this sweet, buttery Hazelnut Cake. - Bake or Break

Quinn’s birthday cake this year is a familiar theme: chocolate and hazelnut. That’s been the common factor of his birthday dessert for the last couple of years. I’m certainly not complaining because that is one of my favorite flavor combinations.

This year’s dessert comes from Perfect Cakes by one of my favorite cookbook authors, Nick Malgieri. If you’re not familiar with him, go immediately and check out some of his books.

Fans of nutty desserts won't want to miss this sweet, buttery Hazelnut Cake. - Bake or Break

Nick calls this cake Capriccio Alle Nocciole, but Hazelnut Cake works just fine for me. He describes it as a “buttery Swiss hazelnut cake.” With two sticks of butter and six ounces of hazelnuts in the recipe, that is certainly an apt description. There is some chocolate in this cake, but it is really all about the hazelnuts.

As much as I like hazelnuts, though, I felt that this cake was best served warm with a little chocolate syrup. Then again, I am a sucker for all things chocolate, so that shouldn’t come as a shock.

Hazelnut Cake is a delicious, buttery cake filed with lots of hazelnuts and a bit of chocolate. - Bake or Break

Quinn picked another winner this year with this cake. He certainly has had luck sticking with one of his preferred flavor combinations. Check back this time next year. I will probably be telling you about another chocolate and hazelnut dessert.

Hazelnut Cake

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Fans of nutty desserts won't want to miss this sweet, buttery Hazelnut Cake. - Bake or Break


  • 1 & 1/2 cup ground unblanched hazelnuts, divided into 1/2 cup and 1 cup
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely grated
  • 1 cup milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Butter a 12-cup Bundt or tube pan. Coat with 1/2 cup ground hazelnuts.
  2. Beat butter and 6 tablespoons of sugar on medium speed of a heavy-duty mixer. Mix until soft and light, about 5 minutes. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating after each addition.
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, ground hazelnuts, and chocolate. Add half of the flour mixture to the egg yolk mixture. Mix on low speed just until blended. Beat in the milk. Beat in the remaining flour mixture.
  4. Beat egg whites on medium speed with a mixer’s whisk attachment. Mix until white and opaque and just beginning to hold a shape. Increase speed to medium-high and add remaining 6 tablespoons sugar in a stream. Continue mixing until soft peaks form.
  5. Stir one-third of egg whites into batter. Then, fold in remaining egg whites.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a pick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. Cool in pan on wire rack for 5 minutes. Then, remove cake from pan and cool completely on rack.


Recipe adapted from Perfect Cakes.

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    51 Comments on “Hazelnut Cake”

  1. Mon Dieu! This looks amazing. Like Nutella in cake form. I must bake this very soon.

  2. Ooooo, that looks wonderful and I have that book!!! Yay, I must try it. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Aaah. I gave up Nutella two months ago, and have been very good at resisting anything that might spark a craving. But I think I’m going to have to make an exception for this cake.

    Looks beautiful. Always great to see a post from you!

  4. This cake looks like a serious winner! There is nothing better than the chocolate/hazelnut combo. Quinn definitely knows what he is doing, choosing this recipe.

  5. Chocolate and hazelnut is a favorite combo of mine as well. What a delicious cake this is!

  6. Wow this looks incredible!

  7. I clipped this one…can’t wait to try it.

  8. Como siempre, increibles los pasteles que nos traes. Ya se echaba de menos una receta. Un saludo

  9. I’ve never been a fan of Hazelnut before, but this looks too yummy to pass up!

  10. I always await Quinn’s birthday cakes, since the combination is a favorite of mine, as well as the boyfriend’s!! I earned a lot of brownie points through these cakes 🙂

  11. this looks and sounds amazing! My 2 oldest sons LOVE this combo…
    thanks for the recipe 🙂

  12. I need to use hazelnut more often in baking! This sounds amazing.

  13. Do you think ground almonds (aka “almond meal”) could be subbed for the ground hazelnuts?

  14. T. Martin, I think that almonds would work. If you try it, let me know how you like it.

  15. Great recipe. I can’t wait to try it. Thank you very much for sharing!!!

  16. I am so impressed with this cake! Even though hazelnuts and chocolate are the best combo ever, I have not seen many cakes like this! Your photo is also very beautiful.

  17. Cake is my favorite.I like all kinds of tastes.But I cannot make cake.

  18. What a great combination. Looks so delish!

  19. Wow, this looks awesome together. Yum!

  20. Lovely, and reading the comments am tempted to try this with ground almonds.

  21. Mmmm drool, I cant believe how tasty this looks 🙂 its making me hungry hehe.

  22. Cool! I love it!

    This is perfect for desserts on “Mother’s Day”.

    Can I add raisins on this cake recipe? or something like toppings?

  23. Jenny, I’m not a raisin fan, so I don’t have a lot of experience baking with them. Toppings are definitely good though. Just the chocolate sauce I used on it was fabulous.

  24. this looks delicious!! i love anything with hazelnut mmmm!

  25. Love and not a big fan of hazelnut. By the way, I have made the Max Brenner fudge brownies numerous times and they have always gone over with a GIANT BANG!

    I gave you a blog award on my site along with a link. Hope to send some new traffic your way!

  26. This looks delicious! I will definitely be trying it soon!

  27. Literally drooling on my keyboard!


  28. Pingback: Happy Hazelnut Cake Day! | Bromography

  29. Oh yummy! I love hazelnut cake! Thanks for sharing this! Awesome pictures too!

  30. I never thought of pairing salt and chocolate until I tasted the salted caramel hot chocolate at Starbucks. Salted brownies may be next on my list to try. Thanks for posting this!

  31. Oops, I clicked on the wrong recipe to comment on. This looks good too!

  32. Pingback: Chocolate Hazelnut Cake « Breakfast Monkey

  33. One of my favorite cakes mmmmmmmm

  34. Happy Birthday to Quinn.. love the cake

  35. Thank you so much for posting this! I’ve made this twice already- last year for a fundraiser (they sold out!), this year for entertaining. Both times I made cupcakes instead of the cake, and topped them with chocolate ganache, and a hazelnut for the finish. The only minor problem for me was the sugar (I’m leaving out my troubles with making perfect ganache). I believe one cup is more than 12 tablespoons. I think I caught it last year in time, but not this time around. It tasted slightly under-sweetened, so I countered it with extra thick ganache on top. We still loved the result, and they tasted even better the next day. (My dear neighbor claimed it was the best cupcake she ever tasted)
    PS: I’ve made the “Zimtsterne” that you posted, too, (with great success) and think yours are extra gorgeous.

  36. Wait!! I just went to make the recipe and noticed that the ingredients list calls for 1 cup of sugar, but the instructions call for 12 TBSP total, 6 with the butter/yolks, and 6 with the whites. 1 cup = 16 TBSP. Which is it?? :-O

  37. Im making whoopie pies this weekend and i wanted to try a hazelnut cake with nutella frosting, will this hazelnut cake work for whoopie pies or will it be too dense?

  38. Pingback: This week on pinterest | allure allure

  39. I wanted to make this cake using 2 9inch cake pans and have nutella in the center and choc genache on top. will this work ?

  40. Hi, Val. I’ve never tried making this cake in round layers. I feel like it will work, but you’ll likely need to decrease the baking time. You may also want to refrigerate the finished cake for a bit to let it set.

  41. Hallo!
    Yesterday I looked for a nuts cake in order to fulfill my husband’ s craving. Then I found your beautiful cake. I made it yesterday and turned out to be by far the best cake I ever baked!
    Dense, rich, nutty, some glimpses of bitter chocolate here and there: a piece of heaven!

  42. A good friend’s birthday is coming up and she loves hazelnut + chocolate combination so I’ve been browsing your archives and found this beauty. I don’t own a Bundt form though, do you know if this would translate to springform? Would I need to adjust the baking time? Thanks for letting me know 🙂

    • Hi, Nadine. I’ve not tried this as anything but a Bundt cake. If you’re going to go another route, I’d recommend making a couple of layers or halving the recipe and making one layer. You might want to look at this recipe as an alternative: Hazelnut Cake with Mocha Frosting. Happy birthday to your friend!

      • Thanks for your reply 🙂 I actually browsed many of your other hazelnut options but this one won out because it seemed to pack a real nutty punch with a great crumb… I ended up using a springform pan, splitting it into two layers and then filling and topping it with ganache. Rave reviews all around 🙂 May try it with almonds next time. Thanks so much!

  43. please have people ONLY comment if they have actually made and tried the cake, People reading testimonials want to know how it tastes… we already know it looks yummy from the pictures. 98% of the comments keep repeating that it “looks” or “sounds” delicious… that is not helpful…. how does it taste is the question.

  44. Just tried this – very good texture and density! The beaten egg whites give a lightness to a hearty cake. It had a nice bit of crispness on the outside, and was moist inside. (I did add zest of an orange to the recipe, which may have added a bit to moisture). I am afraid i toasted the hazelnuts a bit too long before grinding, My 8-year old and 12-year old boys loved it anyway. will try it again sometime with less roasting. (actually i was a little un-clear on what preparation of the hazelnuts was intended in the recipe – although it specified “unblanched”, i was not really sure whether any toasting was suppposed to happen…

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