Oooh guys am I excited to share today’s recipe for Peppermint Mocha Bundt Cake! Mostly because I’m still dreaming about just how incredibly good this cake smells. I know, that’s kind of a weird thing to say.
The chocolate + coffee + peppermint combination is overpowering and I don’t know how anyone could resist taking a bite once they’ve smelled this cake!
I drove this cake over to to a friends and it made my car smell like absolute chocolate heaven. I had noticed the strong chocolate aroma in the kitchen, but my place has an open floor plan so it wasn’t until I got into the tighter space of my car did my mouth start watering. I would’ve snuck a bite right then and there if it wouldn’t have been so obvious!
I’m happy to report this cake tasted as good as it smelled. In fact, my friend even said that this chocolate cake was “by far the most delicious thing I’ve ever had.” I’d say that’s a pretty stellar review! I hope you’ll make this cake for your family this holiday season!
How to Make A Peppermint Mocha Bundt Cake
How is Bundt Cake different from regular cake?
Bundt cake recipes must be very moist to avoid drying out during the long baking time. Since you have so much batter in one pan, they must have enough chemical leavening (like baking soda or powder) to ensure they don’t end up overly dense. Otherwise, layer cakes and bundt cakes are actually pretty similar! It’s the pan, batter volume, and baking times that are the most different.
Natural vs. Dutch Process Cocoa Powder
I definitely prefer Dutch process in this recipe. It gives this cake a perfect cocoa flavor and deep bold color. I’ve even seen Dutch Process Cocoa Powder at Target and Walmart recently! If you can’t find it, you can also use regular natural unsweetened cocoa powder instead. This recipe can work with both since it uses baking soda + acidic ingredients (brown sugar, coffee, and sour cream). You can learn more about the differences between cocoa powder here.
The Coffee / Espresso
I don’t have an espresso machine that I use regularly so I just combined hot water + instant espresso powder for this recipe. If you’d like, you can just use 3/4 cup hot espresso instead, or very strong hot coffee. Or, if you’d prefer no “mocha” element, just omit the espresso powder altogether.
The glaze is where the peppermint flavor lives in this recipe. We use peppermint extract and crushed candy canes to flavor it. The peppermint flavor remains intense in the glaze since it doesn’t get baked. I found it to be perfect! However, if you want a stronger punch of peppermint you can swap out the vanilla extract for peppermint in the cake batter.
How to get a cake out of a Bundt pan and prevent sticking:
Some pans stick more than others. If you have issues with your cake sticking, try brushing melted shortening all over your pan just before pouring in the batter. I have tons more tips for stopping your bundt cake from sticking here.
Should you let a Bundt Cake cool before flipping it?
Let the cake rest for 5-10 minutes once you remove it from the oven. Then flip the cake onto a cooling rack upside down and let it rest for about 5 minutes before you remove the pan. A little trick here is to use a grid cooling rack, not one that has big gaps. That can cause the cake to settle into the gaps and makes it harder to remove to a platter.
How to glaze a Bundt Cake:
Bundt cakes are nothing without their beautiful luscious glazes. This glaze is a variation on chocolate ganahce and is thick, fudgy, and shiny. To make for a perfect presentation, place the baked cake on a cake stand.
Tear strips of parchment paper and slide them so they are slightly under the cake and covering the stand around the entire circumference. This will prevent the glaze from getting all over the cake stand. Wait until the ganache has cooled enough so that it is very thick. You can pop it in the fridge or freezer to speed this up. Slowly pour the ganache over the cake, letting it drip over the edges on its own. I like to use a glass measuring cup with a spout and just slowly pour the ganache out in circles until the cake looks beautiful.