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Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake

This chocolate sour cream Bundt cake is a chocolate lover’s dream! Rich, moist, and supremely decadent, this is a recipe you’ll make again and again.

Whole chocolate sour cream Bundt cake on cake stand

Moist, Decadent Chocolate Bundt Cake

In the early days of BoB, the vast majority of recipes I shared were ones I found in cookbooks, magazines, online, and from friends and family. Gradually, though, I became a recipe tinkerer. Those of you who bake frequently will know how you start to recognize things you want to change. Swapping out brown sugar for granulated sugar, adding a bit of spice, changing the flavor profile.

These days it’s very rare for me to make a recipe exactly as it’s written. It seems I just can’t resist! But every once in a while, I find a recipe that’s so amazingly perfect that I simply don’t have the heart to alter it.

This chocolate sour cream Bundt cake is one of those recipes.

After reading about how wonderfully moist it is and how absolutely delicious it is, I knew I had to try it. Oh, my. Every good thing I read about it is absolutely true. It’s rich and moist and soft and really just a pleasure to eat. 

Slice of chocolate sour cream Bundt cake on plate, with whole cake in background on stand

Why You’ll Love This Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake

Here’s why this recipe ranks as one of my favorite chocolate Bundt cakes:

  • It’s perfectly moist. The sour cream creates a soft, tender crumb.
  • It’s rich. The fat in the sour cream also adds a lovely richness to the batter—but it’s not so rich that you can’t finish a whole slice!
  • It’s easy. So simple to make, you don’t even need to get out your mixer. Just grab a bowl and a whisk.
Overhead view of ingredients for chocolate sour cream Bundt cake

What You’ll Need

Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions.

For the Cake: 

  • Unsalted butter – I always use unsalted butter in baking. Learn more: Unsalted or Salted Butter: Which is Better for Baking?
  • Water
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – Be sure to use cocoa powder, not hot cocoa mix, which has sugar added.
  • Salt
  • All-purpose flour – Here’s how to measure flour for baking.
  • Granulated sugar
  • Baking soda
  • Eggs – Let these come to room temperature; they’ll hold more air when you beat them, giving your chocolate sour cream Bundt cake a lighter texture.
  • Sour cream – I recommend using full-fat sour cream.
  • Vanilla extract – Use store-bought or homemade vanilla extract.

For the Glaze:

What Is the Difference Between Light Corn Syrup and Dark?

Dark corn syrup has added molasses, which gives it a richer, deeper flavor; in some recipes, that’s a good thing, but in this chocolate sour cream Bundt cake, it would be a distraction. Light corn syrup is clear, a little less sweet, and has a mild vanilla flavor.

Whole chocolate sour cream Bundt cake with dripping glaze

How to Make Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake

This chocolate Bundt cake recipe is so easy, it’s practically effortless. Here’s what you’ll need to do.

Prepare. Preheat your oven to 350°F and generously grease or butter and flour a 10- or 12-cup Bundt pan.

Heat the first four ingredients. Combine the butter, water, cocoa powder, and salt in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat, until the butter has melted and the mixture is combined, stirring frequently.

Mix the dry ingredients. Whisk the flour, sugar, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. 

Finish the batter. Add half of the butter mixture to the bowl with the dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Pour in the remaining butter mixture and whisk again, then whisk in the eggs one at a time, followed by the sour cream and vanilla.

Bake. Pour the batter into the Bundt pan and spread it evenly. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick instead into the center comes out clean.

Cool. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then invert the cake onto a wire rack and let it finish cooling before adding the glaze.

Glaze and Finish:

Combine. Add the chocolate and corn syrup to a medium bowl.

Warm the cream and sugar. Place the cream and sugar in a small saucepan set over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Heat until the sugar dissolves and the cream begins to bubble around the edges.

Glaze the cake. Pour the cream mixture over the chocolate mixture. Let this sit for 5 minutes, then whisk until it’s smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake.

Tips for Success

Read over my baking tips for beginners, then follow these additional tips for a perfect chocolate sour cream Bundt cake.

  • Measure accurately. Use a kitchen scale if possible. Otherwise, use the spoon and sweep method for the flour, and take care to measure all ingredients accurately.
  • Thoroughly grease the pan. There are lots of nooks and crannies in a Bundt pan, so you want to make sure you get them all. I prefer to use a baking spray with flour, like Baker’s Joy or Pam for Baking.
  • Use good quality chocolate. Chocolate is the star here, so be sure to use the good stuff.
Removing a slice of chocolate sour cream Bundt cake from cake stand

Variations

Instead of vanilla, you can use 2 or 3 tablespoons of coffee-flavored liqueur, which will add depth and a little extra richness. If you’d like, you can switch out the glaze for something different—try the vanilla bean glaze from my chocolate pound cake or the caramel glaze from my caramel Bundt cake.

Serving Suggestions

Serve chocolate sour cream Bundt cake with a dollop of sweetened whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Fresh strawberries or raspberries make a lovely (and delicious!) garnish, too.

Slice of chocolate sour cream Bundt cake on white plate

How to Store

Wrap the cake in plastic wrap or store leftovers in an airtight container. Refrigerate your chocolate sour cream Bundt cake for 4 to 5 days. I recommend setting it out at room temperature for a bit before serving.

Can This Recipe Be Frozen?

You can freeze this chocolate sour cream Bundt cake for up to 2 months. Wrap it well or transfer it to an airtight container; let it thaw in the refrigerator before serving.

Overhead view of two slices of chocolate sour cream Bundt cake on white plates

More Chocolate Cake Recipes

Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake

Yield 10 to 12 servings
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes

Chocolate sour cream Bundt cake is the most delicious, moist, rich, downright amazing chocolate cake!

Overhead view of glazed chocolate sour cream Bundt cake on cake stand

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (236ml) water
  • 1/3 cup (28g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 & 3/4 cups (350g) granulated sugar
  • 1 & 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup (113g) sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract*

For the glaze:

  • 4 ounces (113g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 & 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup or agave nectar**
  • 1/2 cup (118ml) heavy cream
  • 1 & 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Instructions

To make the cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease or butter and flour a 10- or 12-cup Bundt pan.
  2. Place the butter, water, cocoa powder, and salt in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the butter has melted and the mixture is combined. Set aside.
  3. Whisk together the flour, sugar, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. Add half of the butter mixture and whisk to combine. Add the remaining butter mixture, and whisk until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in the sour cream and vanilla.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake 40 to 45 minutes, or until a pick instead into the center comes out clean.
  5. Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes. Then invert the cake onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the glaze:

  1. Place the chocolate and corn syrup in a medium bowl.
  2. Combine the cream and sugar in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, just until the sugar has dissolved and the cream begins to bubble around the edges.
  3. Pour the cream mixture over the chocolate. Let stand for 5 minutes. Then whisk until smooth. Drizzle over the cooled cake.

Notes

*I know I said I didn't make changes to this recipe, but I do like to use 2 or 3 tablespoons of coffee-flavored liqueur in place of the vanilla.

**I've only made this type of ganache glaze with corn syrup, but the original recipe also suggests agave nectar.

Recipe very slightly adapted from Bi-Rite Market's Eat Good Food.

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    39 Comments on “Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake”

  1. My sister has a similar one that starts with a cake mix. I have changed it out to use my own DIY cake mix but this one looks great. And I have agave nectar (I use it for canning and jam) and I will try it and let you know! This one looks amazing. I loved your comment about how you rarely do a recipe as written. I generally TRY the first time to see what works as written and what I don’t like but I have to admit it is hard to resist any changes the first time. HA I totally get that now. I think once you realize what the parts do you can do that and “make it your own”. And occasionally I think it is a mistake and people like it better with the “error” so…always worth the fun of trying it different and maybe at times unusual ways. Thanks, Jennifer!!

  2. Excellent dear.It is so chocolaty.I love this type of cake.It will be perfect birthday cake for your loved one.

    I personally appreciate your hard work.Keep sharing such type of delicious recipes.

    THANKS

  3. Tried this last night. Really good cake and so simple to make!

  4. I find chocolate cakes to be the toughest to get right. So grateful you’ve done all the hard work for us and found “The One”!

  5. WOW-finally a chocolate bundt cake that is dense and moist and sooooooo chocolatey! YUM!

  6. Wow. I tried to make the cake and it really came out very very nice. It is moist, chocolatey, soft, not too sweet just right. I took out a slice out of the fridge and warmed
    up the slice in the microwave oven just enough and it really tasted yummy and melted in my mouth. I really loved it and my family also loved it. Your recipe was precise. It lasted for more than 14 days and it is still there. Thanks a lot.

  7. Hi Jennifer, I don’t know if you read comments after old posts. Anyway I made this cake and loved it. When I unmolded it, the top part didn’t come out. I sprayed the pan and used butter to grease the pan. I let it cool 15 minutes. I would like to make the cake for a holiday get together. I haven’t had this problem with other cakes. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Hi, Teresa. I’m sorry you had troubles! I’ve not had any similar issues when I’ve made it. I use a cooking spray with flour, like Baker’s Joy or Pam for Baking, and I use it very generously. Keep in mind that the more elaborate the design of your pan, the harder it is to grease thoroughly and unmold cleanly. Be sure you’re cooling the cake in the pan away from any heat. I’ve not tried it, but some people say setting the pan on a towel soaked in very hot water will help loosen it. And if you should still have some parts that don’t come out cleanly, the glaze can cover up a lot of that.

  8. Thanks Jennifer!🌸

  9. This cake is excellent! I’ll never use another boxed chocolate cake again. This is so easy and so much superior! I like to make cakes for people to say “Thank You” for whatever nice thing they’ve done for me. This is my one and only for the chocolate lovers.

  10. Just made this to share at a work meeting & it was a HUGE hit!  The consistency of the cake is awesome-heavy, in the perfect way & ohhh, sooo moist!  I want to try it next with a different glaze next time, just was a bit tooooo dark chocolatey for me & a few others.  I would like to try semi sweet or milk chocolate & maybe even cream cheese.  This is such a super easy cake to make as well.  It is a definite do-over!!  Another great recipe Jennifer!!  Thanks

  11. Looks divine. I wish I was a better baker, I bet mine won’t look this good 🙂

  12. Do you ever use Baker’s Secret to grease and flour your pans? This cake sounds delicious, by the way.

  13. Is the cocoa natural or dutch processed?

  14. This cake is amazing and so easy to make.

  15. Jennifer, can I add a can of cherry pie filling, the way I have in cake mixes?  I don’t want the chocolate on chocolate, so I would use whipped cream.  What do you think?  I love your recipes!

  16. Would this work for mini bundt cakes, it sounds so good.

  17. can you change the cocoa powder to real chocolate and by how much

    • Hi, Jo. I’m not sure what you mean by real chocolate, as cocoa powder is most definitely chocolate. Do you mean solid chocolate, like bars or chips? Solid chocolate has fat added to it, so you’d have to alter the amount of butter. I believe the usual guideline is to reduce the fat by 1 teaspoon for every tablespoon of chocolate you’re substituting. If it’s sweetened chocolate, you’d need to alter the sugar as well depending on how much sugar is in the chocolate.

  18. Hi Jennifer, thank you so much for this recipe. I too have been looking for a chocolate cake recipe for years. this one is wonderful. I did tweak it a little and added 3 tsp of coffee to the water mixture and next time Ill add it to the topping as well. You did good girl! Thank You! I finally have my go to chocolate cake recipe after all these years.

  19. Can an electric mixer be used for mixing the ingredients for the cake or is using s whisk better? Thank you

  20. Wow! What a great recipe for a simply delicious, not-too-sweet, and flavorful cake. Easy to make and with great results. I used a high-quality European chocolate for the ganache (and didn’t add the sugar). I sent some to the neighbors and the little girl said it was “the best chocolate thing ever”! Thank you for the recipe. I will make it again and again! Love your website.

  21. Hello dear,

    I absolutely love your recipes and have tried many of them…but this one is simply awesome…and quick and easy to make! I have a quick question. If i do not have a bundt pan (I had previously borrowed one) can i bake it in the regular 9 inch round pan? Do I need to alter the bake time etc? also thought i position the oven rack in the middle or lower third like you have advised for this cake with the bundt pan? Please let me know. Thanks again and keep at it!!

  22. hi Jennifer, I don’t have a Bundt pan can I use a round pan instead

  23. never mind I have seen another comment on the same, but thanks for the recipe

  24. can I use a spring foam pan?😅

  25. Will this work at high altitudes?

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