This old-fashioned chocolate sour cream pound cake is a moist, decadent, fudgy and irresistible cake with velvety chocolate ganache that will grace any occasion. This pound cake will give you a chocolate coma!
- Why This Recipe Works?
- What is a Pound Cake?
- Role of Sour Cream in a Pound Cake?
- What is Sour Cream?
- Greasing the Pan
- Dutch Cocoa Powder VS Regular Cocoa Powder
- Ingredients Required
- Step-by-Step Instructions
- Expert Tips
- Frequently Asked Questions
- How to Store
- More Recipes You'll Like
Why This Recipe Works?
Who doesn’t like a pound cake? I am always ready to bake one because of its perfect tender crumb and heavenly taste.
Pound cakes pair perfectly with a cup of tea or coffee. You can enjoy them in the breakfast or for a matter of fact with any meal or eat it as is (even better). Nothing can go wrong about them.
I love the old, traditional and tried-and-true recipes being made and served for centuries and passed on to us from the older generations. This chocolate sour cream pound cake is an old classic recipe as well.
What I like about this cake? This cake is so easy to put together, requires a few ingredients (readily available in the pantry) and it has a bursting chocolate flavor that will just melt in the mouth.
In the past I have shared some of my favorite chocolate recipes for which I always get compliments. The chocolate lovers absolutely adore the Dark Chocolate Bundt Cake, Coca Cola Cake, Chocolate Chip Muffins, Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake and my Easy Chocolate Brownies (always a hit).
What is a Pound Cake?
Pound cakes originated back in the 1700’s by the British. The original recipe was simple with one pound of flour, eggs, butter and sugar, hence getting the name ‘pound cake’.
While the original recipe back from centuries was heavy with 1 pound of ingredients each, these days the pound cakes are much lighter with aplenty of variations such as Cream Cheese Pound Cake and Old Fashioned Sour Cream Pound Cake.
Role of Sour Cream in a Pound Cake?
The sour cream adds moisture to the cake without thinning the batter which results in a fresh, tender and a very fine crumb. It also adds a tangy flavor to the bakes.
What is Sour Cream?
The sour cream is made by thickening the cream using the lactic acid bacteria. And that’s how we get the thick (and sour-ish) Sour Cream.
Fat: The sour cream has higher fat content as compared to other dairy products such as milk and buttermilk. One cup of buttermilk and whole milk has 8 grams of fat, whereas one cup of sour cream has the hefty 45 grams of fats. These fats help with the moist crumb.
Acid: Another noticeable point is the acidity of the sour cream which impacts the chemical reactions during baking. The acid content of the sour cream helps with the tenderizing of the gluten strands in the cake, resulting in a fine and tender crumb.
Due to this chemical reaction, most of the recipes using sour cream will add baking soda (as I did in this recipe). It is because the acid in the sour cream reacts with the baking soda and helps with a good rise of the bake.
While this cake is rich, tender and complete and one can enjoy it as-is (that's how I like it) but here a few options that will further compliment this cake.
Berries: Serve the cake with any berries of your choice. Pair it with strawberries, blackberries and/or blueberries.
Dollop of Whipped Cream: Serve this chocolate cake with a dollop of whipped cream.
Ice-Cream: Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream or any other ice-cream of your choice.
Greasing the Pan
Spray the Pan: Generously grease the Bundt pan with a baking spray (with flour in it) to get the cake to slide down easily from the pan without a hassle.
If you grease the pan with baking spray beforehand (like we traditionally do before preparing the batter) the oil will collect in the bottom of the pan and you might have issues in getting the cake out without damage.
Butter & Flour Method: Grease the pan with oil or butter using a pastry brush and then generously coat cocoa powder on the oil/butter coating. White flour can leave white patches on the dark chocolate cake, do not use it.
Dutch Cocoa Powder VS Regular Cocoa Powder
I prefer to use the Dutch Process Cocoa Powder for this cake.
The Dutch-process powder (also known as the alkalized cocoa) is processed with alkali and has a neutral pH, which means it is not alkaline like regular cocoa powder.
Color-wise Dutch cocoa has a noticeably darker hue whereas the tone for natural cocoa powder is noticeably milder. The dark hue gives a dark color to the chocolate cake that cannot be achieved with the regular cocoa powder.
Another important difference is that the Dutch-process cocoa powder does not react with leavening agents like baking soda (which is alkaline and releases carbon dioxide) or baking powder because the Dutch-process cocoa powder is not alkaline in nature.
In short, if you want a rich, dense and an intense chocolate flavor, use Dutch-process cocoa powder.
All-purpose flour - I have not tried this recipe with any other flour.
Cocoa powder - Use high quality Cocoa powder for this cake.
Baking soda - Make sure your baking soda is fresh.
Salt - Enhances the flavor of other ingredients in the cake.
Butter - Give flavor and helps with rising of the cake.
Granulated sugar - Sweetens the cake.
Eggs - Use at room temperature.
Sour Cream - Use at room temperature. The fat content helps to keep the cake moist.
Hot Water - It gives moisture to the cake and helps to fluffier and and soft cake.
Chocolate Chips (semi-sweet or dark) - Use high-quality chocolate chips.
Heavy whipping cream - Use fresh heavy whipping cream for this ganache.
Step 1: Preheat oven to 325F.
Step 2: Take a medium-sized bowl. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
Step 3: Take a large bowl and beat together butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add in eggs and mix until well-incorporated.
Step 4: Now add dry ingredients and sour cream until combined well.
Step 5: Add the hot water to the batter and mix with electronic mixer at high speed for about a minute until it is incorporated well.
Step 6: Spray a 10-inch Bundt cake with baking spray and pour the batter in the Bundt Pan.
Step 7: Bake the cake for about 1 – 1 hour 10 minutes at 325 F. Every oven is different and mine takes about 1 hour. Check by inserting a toothpick to the center of the cake and if it comes out clean, the cake is ready.
Step 8: Take out the cake and allow it to cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Release it and let it sit on the wire rack.
Step 9: Make the chocolate ganache. Heat the heavy cream in a saucepan just until it starts to simmer and there are small bubbles on the surface. Do not boil the heavy cream. Take another bowl and add chocolate morsels in the bowl. Pour over the heavy cream on it and mix until combined well. Let the ganache cool down for 10 minutes and then pour it over the cake.
Sift the Cocoa Powder: Make sure to sift the cocoa powder. It usually have lumps and we want a smooth batter and for that we have to sift the cocoa powder.
Dutch Process Cocoa Powder: Ensure to use the Dutch Process Cocoa Powder for this cake to give it an enrich color and flavor.
Let the Cake Cool Down: Once out of the oven the cake needs to be cooled. Make sure to let the cake cool in the pan for about 30 minute before pouring the ganache over it.
Be Careful with Hot Water: While mixing the boiling water in the last step, be careful as you do not want to cook the eggs in the batter.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, if you do not have sour cream, replace it with the same amount of yogurt.
It can be tricky at times to release the cake properly from the deep Bundt cake pans. To avoid this situation, I use baking spray on the Bundt cake pans right before I am ready to put the cake in the oven. Do not grease the cake beforehand or the spray will collect in the bottom of the pan.
We bake this cake at 325 F. Pound cakes are heavier with a dense crumb and therefore require more time in the oven to cook properly. This cake will take anywhere from 70 – 90 minutes to bake at 325 F.
I always find this cake tastes better the next day of baking. Somehow, the ingredients fuse better overnight. My two cents are to make this cake ahead of time to fully enjoy it.
How to Store
On the Counter: This cake will stay fresh in an airtight container for 2-3 days. Do not put ganache if you want to serve it a day or two later. It is better to make fresh ganache.
In the Fridge: The cake will keep fresh for up to a week in an air-tight container.
In the Freezer: This cake is easy to freeze for up to 3 months. Make sure to freeze only the cake and make fresh ganache when you want to serve it. To freeze, cut the cake into pieces and wrap each piece in plastic wrap, further add a layer of foil. Freeze the individual pieces before stashing them together in an airtight jar, plastic bag or a zip-loc bag.
Note: Freezing the individual pieces before putting them in a plastic bag will help the pieces to stay from sticking together.
More Recipes You'll Like
- Dark Chocolate Bundt Cake
- Caramel Pecan Upside Down Cake
- Coca-Cola Cake
- Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake
- Old-Fashioned Sour Cream Pound Cake
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Chocolate Sour Cream Pound Cake
- 1 10'' Bundt Cake
- 1 Electric Mixer
Chocolate Sour Cream Pound Cake
- 3 cup all-purpose flour (360 grams)
- ½ cup dutch process cocoa powder (50 grams)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda (4 grams)
- ½ teaspoon salt (3.5 grams)
- 1 ½ cup butter (340 grams) room temperature
- 3 cup granulated sugar (600 grams)
- 5 eggs room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream (240 grams)
- ¾ cup water (236 grams/ml) boiling
- 1 ⅓ cup chocolate chips (225 grams)
- 1 cup heavy cream (240 grams)
- Preheat oven to 325F.
- Take a medium-sized bowl. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- Take a large bowl and beat together butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add in eggs and mix until well-incorporated.
- Now add dry ingredients and sour cream until combined well.
- Add the boiling water to the batter and mix with electronic mixer at high speed for about a minute until it is well-incorporated.
- Spray a 10-inch Bundt cake with baking spray right and pour the batter in the Bundt pan.
- Bake the cake for about 1 – 1 hour 10 minutes at 325F. Every oven is different and mine takes about 1 hour. Check by inserting a tooth-pick to the center of the cake and if it comes out clean, the cake is ready.
- Take out the cake and allow it to cool in the pan for30 minutes.
- Take a heavy sauce pan and heat the heavy cream just until it starts to simmer and there are small bubbles on the surface. DO NOT BOIL the heavy cream.
- Take another bowl and add chocolate morsels in the bowl. Pour over the heavy cream on it and mix until combined well. Let the ganache cool down for 10 minutes and then pour it over the cake.