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Dessert Recipes

This Black Forest Cake Recipe Is a Show-Stopping Chocolate Cherry Delight

We combine dark cherries and fudgy cake to create this mix-easy masterpiece

If you want decadence, you clicked on the right recipe. Black Forest cake, also known as Schwarzwalder Kirschtorte in German, is a classic German dessert. It originated in the Black Forest region of southwestern Germany. The treat features layers of dark chocolate cake, tart cherries and whipped cream. Additionally, bakers add a kirschwasser cherry liqueur for an extra boozy kick. Our Black Forest cake recipe offers a simplified yet elegant version. We use store-bought devil’s food cake mix, frozen dark cherries and cherry extract. If you want to go even fancier on the decoration, pipe your whipped cream in rosettes on top. Then, cover the sides with chocolate shavings.

With this Black Forest cake recipe, ensure your cake layers are moist (we have a secret for moist chocolate cake). Remember to also use high-quality tart cherries for the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity. And if you love chocolate, you’ll love this recipe for Chocolate Lava Cake.


12 servings

Total Time

Prep Time

Cook Time


  • 1 (15.25 oz.) pkg. devil’s food cake mix
  • 3 eggs
  • ⅓ cup oil
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ tsp. cherry extract
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup frozen dark sweet cherries, thawed, halved, patted dry
  • Grated chocolate
  • Chocolate curls


• Heat oven to 350°F. Coat 2 (8") round cake pans with cooking spray. Line bottom of pans with parchment paper. Prepare cake mix according to package directions with eggs, 1 cup water and oil. Divide batter evenly between pans. Bake until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, about 25 min.

• Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 min. Transfer from pans to racks; let cool completely.

• In a small pot, combine granulated sugar and ¼ cup water; over medium-high heat, bring to a boil. Cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved, about 3 min. Remove from heat; let cool. Stir in ½ tsp. cherry extract.

• Using a fork, poke holes in top of cake layers. Slowly spoon sugar mixture over layers until absorbed. Let stand 10 min.

• On medium-high speed, beat heavy cream until slightly thickened. On low speed, gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until combined, about 1 min.; on medium-high speed, beat just until stiff peaks form, about 2 min. Beat in remaining ¼ tsp. cherry extract until combined.

• Place one cake layer on serving plate. Spread with ⅓ of whipped cream; top with ¾ cup dark cherries. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining whipped cream on top and side of cake; top with remaining ¼ cup cherries.

• Generously sprinkle top and side of the cake with grated chocolate. Press chocolate curls all along the bottom edge of the cake and sprinkle the top of the cake with additional chocolate curls. Chill at least 3 hrs. before serving or overnight.

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