Nutella Cake

Recipe By Tessa Arias
March 30th, 2017
4.84 from 30 votes
4.84 from 30 votes

This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!

Yield: 12 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook: 45 minutes

This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Like a chocolate hazelnut dream!
Texture: The cake itself is ultra rich, moist, and fudgy while the frosting is thick and creamy.
Ease: I think this is among the easiest homemade cakes, it just takes some time! The good news is both the cake layers and the buttercream can be made in advance.
Pros: Beautiful decadent cake worthy of any special celebration.
Cons: So much butter… but hey. It’s cake!
Would I make this again? I’ve made this recipe three times already!

Happy birthday to me!

Today is my 26th birthday and I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate than by sharing this beautiful and decadent recipe for Nutella cake.

This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!

Since chocolate and Nutella are two of my favorite things in the world, this seemed only fitting.

Actually, when I first developed this recipe I topped it with Ferrero Rocher candies and brought it to my dad’s birthday party. Everyone raved about it, but I knew it needed a few more tweaks to get it just right.

This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!

Then I thought this would be the absolute perfect cake for Easter for anyone like me who’s a total chocoholic. It became a part of an Easter dinner shoot we did last weekend and I just can’t wait to show you those photos! We scored some beautiful edible flowers and they really took this cake to a whole new level, without requiring any special decorating equipment or skills.

I’m just in love with this cake, so I hope you find a reason to make it for your friends and family soon. If you do, be sure to snap a photo and tag me on Instagram with #handletheheat.

This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!

Nutella Cake Recipe Tips

Cake Layers

This chocolate cake recipe isn’t your typical one. It doesn’t involve any beating of room temperature butter and sugar. Instead, we actually boil half of the ingredients together much like you would with a sheet cake. It makes this recipe super simple and practically foolproof. However, you do have to wait for that mixture to cool off so it takes a little extra (hands off) time.

This mixing method, coupled with some of the ingredients (like the brown sugar), create a very rich, moist, and fudgy chocolate cake. The texture reminds me a bit of a brownie. This is perfect for when you need sturdiness to build a tall cake or to use a lot of buttercream!

I love my Fat Daddio’s anodized aluminum cake pans.

Make Ahead:
The cake layers can be made a day ahead of time before you assemble the cake. Cover each entire layer (don’t cut them yet) with foil or plastic wrap and let them sit at a cool room temperature until you’re ready to assemble. Whatever you do, don’t refrigerate unfrosted cake layers. This will dry them out. You can also wrap each layer well in plastic wrap and pop them in freezer bags and freeze for up to 1 month.

The buttercream can also be made, transferred to an airtight container, and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 1 month. If frozen, defrost in the fridge overnight. Let come to room temperature than re-whip for a couple minutes before using.

Leveling & Cutting Cake Layers

To make this recipe the way you see it in these photos, we simply take each cake layer, level off the top, then cut in half for a total of 4 even layers. I’d highly recommend a cake leveler like this one to make easy, quick, and precise work of leveling and cutting your layers. If you don’t have one, a serrated knife will work – it’s just harder to maintain an even cut.

By the way, if you’d rather keep it a 2 layer cake, feel free to do that! You can also frost the sides of the cake if you’d prefer to as well. I would just increase the buttercream recipe by 1 1/2 and follow my cake assembly and decorating instructions from this video post.

Nutella Buttercream

Yes, there is a lot of butter involved in this recipe. It’s cake! But anytime we have more layers that means more buttercream. Yay! A stand mixer makes easy work of powering through this much buttercream, but if you must use a hand mixer just be sure to use a deep mixing bowl. Do not skip sifting the sugar and cocoa, it’s essential for a smooth frosting!

If you have more questions or frustrations with buttercream, there’s a link to a free buttercream guide here or at the bottom of this post.


This cake is ridiculously easy to decorate once you’ve cut your four layers. I simply scooped my buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a large plain decorating tip and piped an even layer of frosting on each piece of cake. Using a plain tip instead of just a spatula creates those clean looking frosting layers. Then we just went to town with edible flowers on top.

Edible flowers are such a fun, beautiful, and easy way to decorate any cake for spring. This look made it perfect for Easter, or even a birthday party. You can find edible flowers during the spring season at your local farmer’s market or some speciality, gourmet, or bakery supply stores.

You could also decorate with seasonal chocolates, like Easter eggs or Valentine’s Day hearts! Ferrero Rocher candy are another fun decoration on top, they even make Easter eggs!


This cake can be held in a cake carrier or lidded cake stand for up to 8 hours at a cool room temperature. After that, it should be refrigerated. Though I doubt it will last very long! If you plan on serving this at an outdoor party or gathering where it will side outside for a few hours, refrigerate it until it’s chilled beforehand. That way it’ll slowly come up in temperature and hopefully be perfect by the time you want to serve it. No melting cakes here!

More Cake Recipes:

Photos by Constance Higley.

4.84 from 30 votes

How to make
Nutella Cake

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
This decadent Nutella Cake features four layers of moist and tender Nutella chocolate cake with a generous helping of luscious Nutella buttercream. Decorated with edible flowers, this cake is perfect for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, or any other special occasion!


For the cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups (500 grams) light brown sugar
  • 8 ounces (227 grams) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup (33 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup (137 grams) Nutella
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 3 cups (381 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt

For the buttercream:

  • 16 ounces (454 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 cups (500 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup (100 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 cup (275 grams) Nutella
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • Edible flowers, for decorating


Make the cake:

  1. In a large saucepan, stir together the sugar, chocolate, butter, cocoa powder, Nutella, espresso powder, baking soda, and 2 cups (500ml) water. Heat oven medium for 3 minutes and stir until the sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high, bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Pour mixture into a large heatproof mixing bowl and set aside to cool for about 20 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously grease and line two 8-inch cake pans with parchment rounds.
  3. Once cool, stir in the eggs one at a time. Gently stir in the flour and salt. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake for 40 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes then flip the cakes out onto cooling racks to finish cooling.

Make the buttercream:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the cocoa powder, Nutella, and salt and beat on medium for 1 minute, or until smooth.

Assemble the cake:

  1. Use a large serrated knife or cake leveler to level the top of each cake, then to cut each cake layer in half. Place 1 cake layer on a cake platter or turntable. Spread with a fourth of the buttercream and top with another cake layer. Repeat with all four cake layers. Spread the remaining frosting evenly over the top of the cake. Decorate with edible flowers, seasonal candy, Ferrero Rocher, or whatever your heart desires.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    Liz S. — March 30, 2017 at 4:42 am

    Wishing you a very happy birthday!!! This chocolate-nutella cake is definitely a perfect treat for the special occasion.

  2. #
    Jenny from — March 30, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Hi Tessa,
    This is definitely a cake to celebrate with! I also love chocolate and Nutella! Thanks for sharing.

    May you have a gigantic helping of it today and may you enjoy it without feeling guilty. I am sure it is worth every single calorie!

  3. #
    Christel R — April 1, 2017 at 8:42 am

    Tessa, a inbelated happy birthday to you. I will try to surprise my daughter with the Nutella cake on her birthday which also will be Easter. It sounds and looks delicious. Thank you also for all your other terrific recipes.

  4. #
    J — April 1, 2017 at 9:38 am

    Happy Birthday to you! This cake looks yummy and with Nutella and chocolate u can’t go wrong. Lol. Now I’m thinking of all the different possibilities u can make with this cake recipe. Thanks!

    • #
      Andrea — July 19, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      Amazing! – I didn’t have baking chocolate so subbed a cup of semi sweet chocolate chips and it was delicious!

  5. #
    angy — April 1, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    Happy birthday to you, and thanks for your recipes, best wishes for you!!.

  6. #
    Nirvana — April 1, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    I don’t think I’ve seen unsweetened chocolate here in South Africa; do you think I could use sweetened chocolate and then just reduce the brown sugar?

  7. #
    Grace — April 1, 2017 at 11:31 pm

    Belated Happy Birthday Tessa! Thanks for letting us have “a piece of your cake too”.Looking forward to more of your recipes. Thanks for sharing them.

  8. #
    Lynda — April 2, 2017 at 6:55 am

    Tessa, Here’s wishing you a very Happy Birthday with many more happy occasions to come.

  9. #
    Bruce — April 2, 2017 at 7:05 am

    I made the cake in a 9×13 pan, and otherwise followed the directions exactly.
    We thought the cake was dry and the icing needed some milk to soften.

    • #
      Tessa — April 5, 2017 at 3:59 pm

      Buttercream often needs a little more powdered sugar or a little more milk to create the consistency right for your climate. The cake was certainly not dry any of the 4 times I tested this recipe. Did you measure your ingredients with a scale?

  10. #
    Beverley Press — April 2, 2017 at 10:27 am

    Happy Birthday and what a great cake to celebrate with , this has to be my new favorite xoxo

  11. #
    Happy Room — April 4, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    This looks TO. DIE. FOR!! Mmmmm!

  12. #
    J.T. — April 24, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    Made this as a triple layer 10 inch round cake and it was great! Everyone loved it, very rich, wasn’t dry at all.

  13. #
    Liz — June 5, 2017 at 6:26 am

    Hi Tessa!

    Can you advise on the use of Fat Daddio cake pans vs other brands for this recipe (or any others)?
    I recently bought Fat Daddio pans and noticed a note on the sticker that they may require a temperature reduction since they heat quickly.

    I know you use these pans! How do you account for this if you are trying a new recipe that is not your own, or do you not find the need for a reduction in the temp with them?

    Thank you so much!! 🙂

  14. #
    ludo king — September 6, 2017 at 9:31 pm

    Wow – what an informative blog site – i need to spend more time here and intend to do so

  15. #
    Katie — January 10, 2018 at 3:26 pm

    Can this recipe be used with ten inch pans instead of eight?

  16. #
    Heather — January 19, 2018 at 9:53 am

    Wonderful cake! I chose to divide the batter into three eight inch pans, and reduced the cooking time to 30 mins due to the thinner cakes, instead of the suggested 40 mins in the recipe. I would recommend taking this approach for anyone else who wants to adjust the pans as I did. The cakes were more than cooked through at 30 mins, (I should have checked them at 25 mins I think), so this is just a helpful warning for anyone else doing this adjustment. Thanks again for the recipe!!

  17. #
    Olive — January 20, 2018 at 10:16 am

    Temperature is WAY too high, which is probably why one commenter said there’s was dry. Personally mine didn’t rise at all despite the fact that I have never had this problem with any other recipe, almost certainly for the same reason.

  18. #
    driving directions — March 15, 2018 at 12:09 am

    Thanks for sharing. I love this dish! I have done, I am regaled, and your beautiful plate makes me want to regale me again

  19. #
    Routerlogin — April 4, 2018 at 4:26 am

    awesome 🙂

  20. #
    Romina — June 22, 2018 at 5:27 am

    Would it be ok to double the ingredients to make the cake bigger and would i need to bake it in the over for longer?

  21. #
    Gmail sign in — July 17, 2018 at 1:45 am

    I don’t think I’ve seen unsweetened chocolate here in South Africa; do you think I could use sweetened chocolate and then just reduce the brown sugar?

  22. #
    Shabna — September 7, 2018 at 6:06 am

    Hi, such an awesome cake. Must try it soon. In buttercream frosting, it is icing sugar or normal sugar powered.

  23. #
    happy wheels — September 12, 2018 at 8:54 pm

    This chocolate cake recipe is great, I’ll save it for the weekend.

  24. #
    natasha — December 11, 2018 at 3:56 am


    I’m going to give a try, I have one doubt, when you say stir in the eggs, is it with a whisk or spoon?


  25. #
    Carolyn Gilbert — February 1, 2019 at 5:35 pm

    Can the Nutella layer cake be made in a bundt pan? And then frosted with buttercream frosting? Thank you

    • #
      Tessa — February 3, 2019 at 2:40 pm

      This recipe wasn’t formulated for a bundt pan, I’m not sure if that would turn out well.

  26. #
    Angela — April 25, 2019 at 6:16 am

    This looks amazing!
    how many cups of batter does this yield?

  27. #
    Janice McKinnon — May 9, 2019 at 9:10 pm

    Yikes! Just made this cake. It’s a disaster. What happened? Weighs a ton, greasy, and didn’t rise. Also not very sweet. Is that the way it’s suppose to be? never had a failure and have done A LOT of baking. Your recipes have always served me well.

    • #
      Tessa — May 10, 2019 at 10:22 am

      It definitely sounds like something went wrong here!!

      • #
        Mary — March 25, 2020 at 2:31 pm

        It happened the same to me.
        I left the chocolate mixture cool for more than 20 minutes. It was still warm but I thought it was ok because I left it more time. I whisk the eggs one at a time and then the flour and salt slowly with the whisker but it still had lumps, so I did a little more whisking. Could It be that was the reason to be like that, heavy and not fluffy at all.

  28. #
    Kat — May 24, 2019 at 5:59 am

    This recipe looks delish! I’m going to give it try this weekend. I have a question regarding the powdered sugar… when you say “4 cups (500 grams) powdered sugar, sifted” do you measure 4 cups of powdered sugar and then sift it or do you sift powdered sugar and then measure it ?
    thanks and looking forward to trying this 🙂

  29. # — June 5, 2019 at 10:20 pm

    good chocolate-nutella cake. We loved it. Thansk for sharing the information with us.

  30. # — June 5, 2019 at 10:24 pm

    I loved it, chocolate nutella cake. Thansk for sharing the information with us.

  31. #
    James Coker — June 16, 2019 at 4:52 am

    I made it for church and they loved it. So easy to make. Five stars from me

  32. #
    Kelly M — June 19, 2019 at 12:43 pm

    I made this cake for a co-worker that loves Nutella. The cake was very rich and tasted great, definitely have a glass of milk with it! My only small complaint was that I took notice of the gram quantities listed with the ingredients. I measured the flour and powdered sugar the way I always do and found that they weighed less than the grams indicated. I didn’t use the full weight stated for either but did add a little extra. I believe that was a mistake. The cake turned out dense and the frosting was too thick. If I make this again, I will stick to using the measuring cup method for the flour and powdered sugar in the hopes of making the cake a little lighter and the frosting easier to spread.

  33. #
    Lily peric — June 24, 2019 at 4:50 am

    Thanks Tessa, I made this for a 2nd birthday! It was a real hit, there were lots of chocolate and Nutella lovers there. I added a sprinkle of dark chocolate bits on top of the Nutella buttercream.
    I will tag you in my post, feel free to share.

  34. #
    Shivani — November 1, 2019 at 12:45 am

    How can i make it eggless??

  35. #
    Alisha Marie — November 29, 2019 at 3:38 am

    Thanks for sharing. I love this Cake and the way you present make me uhmmmm!

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  36. #
    temple run 3 — December 1, 2019 at 1:36 am

    And then frosted with buttercream frosting? Thank you

  37. #
    Aaron Paker — January 9, 2020 at 1:02 am

    Sweet cake. I like it. Belated Happy Birthday To you Tessa. Thanks for shharing.

  38. #
    sekilli nick — March 4, 2020 at 12:34 am

    Added a bit !pre water than indicated…probably another 1/4 cup, otherwise made it exactly as written…SO GOOD!!!

  39. #
    Cody — March 5, 2020 at 12:20 am

    I loved it, chocolate nutella cake. Thansk for sharing the information with us.

  40. #
    Margarete Kuvalis — March 30, 2020 at 4:09 am

    Tessa, thank you!

  41. #
    Shannon — April 12, 2020 at 7:49 pm

    I hope this isn’t a silly question, but if I only have enough Nutella for one or the other, which would you suggest, and should I swap something in for it in the other one??
    Thank you!!

  42. #
    Valerie Zbozinek — April 16, 2020 at 4:53 pm

    I made this cake and reduced the sugar by 1/2 cup and it was amazing. My husband and toddler loved it! Thank you for the great recipe!

  43. #
    LUCIANO — April 18, 2020 at 8:27 am

    Hi – thanks fro this recipe! It looks Amazing and I am no chef but I am going to do this for my daughter who is Nutella fanatic and she turns 12 on Sunday, and is so sad that she can’t celebrate due to Coronavirus shelter in place. I think this will make her day! I have a question – on the instructions here you “in a large saucepan stir, etc etc” you say “Heat Oven” to medium, stir, then High. Do you mean on the stove-top? Or really is this done inside the oven? Thank you! Luciano

  44. #
    Caitlyn O’Dea — April 24, 2020 at 5:29 am

    Hi Tessa. I tried to make this cake for my sister’s birthday as she’s also a nutella fiend but I tried with gluten free flour instead, but it unfortunately does not work, at all! Luckily I had the foresight to place the cake tins on a normal oven tray, because they absolutely exploded! I have more ‘cake’ in the oven tray than inside the cake tins. I can imagine it is an amazing cake but unfortunately not with the GF flour I’ve tried today 🙁
    Any tips?

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  46. #
    wings io — June 17, 2020 at 1:52 am

    1/4 cup, otherwise made it exactly as written…SO GOOD!!!

  47. #
    Mshell Ward — July 25, 2020 at 2:01 pm

    Very easy to make – surprisingly not too Nutella flavoured. Very well received by kids and adults alike.

  48. #
    Sara OConnor — July 30, 2020 at 7:29 pm

    I would have given it a five but it need a few tweeks. I made this twice now and the second time was much better. I followed the recipe exact the first time and the cake was in the dry side and the frosting was too thick I couldn’t spread it or pipe it! The second time I made this I left out a cup of flour and a 1/2 cup of brown sugar. When it came to the frosting I left out two cups of confectioners sugar and added a bit more nutella, it was so creamy. The second cake was so much better texture wise. I also think if I made it again I would leave out some cocoa as it definetly gives you a jolt( I di not use the espresso powder).

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  50. #
    Beena — October 13, 2020 at 6:14 am

    What if I want to make this cake in gluten free flour then how much quantity do I have to take and what should I add or subtract in the original recipe

  51. #
    mywifiext local — November 26, 2020 at 1:19 am

    thsnkyou for the precious advice

  52. #
    Hannah — November 28, 2020 at 1:43 pm

    this will be the first and last time you catch me boiling my cake

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  54. #
    Nicoletta Mythillou — February 3, 2021 at 2:37 am

    Can i use it under fondant and for stacking cakes?

    • #
      Tessa — February 3, 2021 at 2:52 pm

      I haven’t tried that, but I think it should work out! Enjoy!

  55. #
    Nicoletta Mythillou — February 17, 2021 at 2:47 am

    Could itbe done under fondant and for 2 tiers? Thank you

    • #
      Tessa — February 17, 2021 at 1:38 pm

      I haven’t tried that, but I believe it should work!

  56. #
    ABQ True — April 16, 2021 at 6:07 pm

    Made this today, eating it now! Had never made a cake before by boiling any ingredients, but it cooked up beautifully tall and moist! The frosting is beyond creamy into ethereal. Thank you!

    • #
      Tessa — April 20, 2021 at 9:43 am

      Wonderful! I’m so happy you loved this cake!

  57. #
    bessiereed — June 3, 2021 at 12:45 am

    You cake looks very nice and i am sure its taste too. Thanks for sharing.

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