If this is your first time trying a wet cake recipe, get ready to be blown away.
Imagine sinking your teeth into a decadent and fudgy chocolate cake that's so moist it practically melts in your mouth.
But wait, it gets even better! Our cake is soaked in a sweet and creamy Baileys mixture that takes the chocolate flavor to a whole new level. And as if that wasn't enough, we top it all off with a smooth and luscious chocolate buttercream!
Trust us, one bite of this cake and you'll be in chocolate heaven!
I'm a total chocoholic when it comes to baking! From my homemade peanut butter cup brownies to my delicious salted caramel chocolate cake, I just can't get enough of that rich, decadent flavor. And don't even get me started on my crushed oreo chocolate chip cookies!
So when I was coming up with this recipe I knew I wanted it to be the chocolatiest (if thats even a word?) recipe I have ever made. And it is!
Table of Contents
What is a wet cake?
A wet cake is a type of cake that has a moist and dense texture, often achieved by using ingredients like butter, oil, or sour cream.
Unlike traditional cakes that have a lighter, fluffier texture, wet cakes are more decadent and have a fudgy or gooey consistency that almost melts in your mouth.
To achieve this texture, wet cakes are typically soaked in a syrup or cream after baking, which adds extra moisture and creates the moistest cake possible.
Wet cakes are often chocolate-based, but can also come in a variety of flavors such as vanilla, lemon, or caramel.
Top Reasons to Make a Chocolate Wet Cake
- It stays moist longer than a regular chocolate cake. Since the wet cake recipe is soaked in coffee liqueur, you won't have to worry about a dry cake!
- Extra moist equals extra flavor! The coffee liqueur enhances the natural flavor of the cocoa powder in the chocolate wet cake.
- Perfect for any occasion! Whether its a bridal shower, birthday party, or just a girl's night in, using coffee liqueur turns a plain old chocolate cake into a delicious adult treat!
Ingredients Needed to Make This Easy Wet Cake Recipe
- Oil: this makes for a super moist chocolate cake, but if you do not have any on hand, you can replace it with equal parts melted butter.
- Baking powder: this is the most important dry ingredient because it will make your cake rise.
- Sugar: gives your cake the perfect sweet flavor and texture.
- Buttermilk: during the fermentation process, buttermilk becomes acidic. This provides a tangy flavor that helps balance the heavy decadent chocolate flavors. The acid also interacts with the baking powder to help give the cake more rise and the result is a moist and airy cake.
- Coffee: it's no secret that coffee enhances the natural flavors of cocoa powder but it also brings out the coffee flavor in the coffee liqueur! The boiling hot temperature also introduces air bubbles into the cake batter, making for a tender and fluffy cake!
- Coffee liqueur: this is what makes this wet cake recipe super special. It is part of your wet filling, so it will soak your cake, keeping your cake creamy and moist! If you cannot consume alcohol then I recommend replacing this with equal parts milk!
- Cocoa powder: this adds a hint of bitterness which helps cut through the richness of this decadent chocolate wet cake.
- Sour cream: this adds moisture to your cake. If you do not have any on hand, just add equal parts additional buttermilk.
- Sweetened condensed milk: this gives your wet filling the perfect creamy consistency and sweet flavor!
- Butter: this is the main part of your homemade chocolate buttercream frosting!
Variations and Substitutions
- Use a boxed cake mix for the base of your wet cake. If you are in a rush and do not have the time to make a homemade cake from scratch, save yourself some time by buying a boxed chocolate cake mix and using that as the base for this recipe. I would follow the instructions on the box on how to make the cake and then just make the filling and buttercream from scratch!
- Not in the mood for chocolate? Try making a white cake recipe! Buy a good vanilla cake mix and add a little bit of vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract to intensify the vanilla flavor. Then you can still use the filling recipe and chocolate butter cream recipe, or even make a vanilla buttercream! The options are endless!
Step by Step Instructions
STEP ONE: In a large bowl, add your oil, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, sour cream, and coffee liqueur. Mix until combined.
STEP TWO: Then add your dry ingredients which is your flour, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder. Mix until evenly combined.
STEP THREE: Then in a small bowl, combine your hot water and coffee and then add it to your batter and mix until combined.
STEP FOUR: Line a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with parchment paper (leave some paper hanging over the edge for easy release). You can use round cake pans as well but remember that will change the baking time. Then pour your batter into your prepared dish. Bake your cake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until the center comes out dry. Let cool!
IMPORTANT: Remove cake from pan before the next steps!
STEP FIVE: In a small bowl, add your condensed milk and coffee liqueur. Mix until combined.
STEP SIX: Using the bottom end of a spoon, poke several holes into your cake. Then pour your milk mixture over the cake, letting the milk soak into the holes. Let sit for about 10 minutes.
STEP SEVEN: In the bowl of an electric mixer, add your butter. Using the whisk attachment, whip on medium speed.
STEP EIGHT: Next add your powdered sugar, cocoa powder, milk and coffee liqueur. Whisk on medium until combined and smooth. Using a spatula, apply your frosting to the top of your cake. Serve and enjoy!
How to get a moist and fluffy cake everytime
- Use butter milk. It really is an amazing ingredient that helps create air pockets and bubbles in your cake that help hold onto water and keep the cake moist.
- Don't overcook your cake. Water can quickly turn to steam and steam means that you are losing moisture from your cake. Make sure to check your cake frequently while it's in the oven to avoid overcooking.
- Poke your cake with some holes before you pour over your wet mixture! I recommend using the bottom end of a spatula or wooden spoon. Honestly anything that is similar to a dowel. But if you can't find anything, simply use your finger! I just recommend washing your hands or using a glove, especially if you plan to serve this cake to others.
- Remove your cake from the pan and place on the plate that you plan to serve it from, BEFORE you pour over your wet mixture. Otherwise transfer will be almost impossible.
What is a wet cake?
A wet cake is a cake soaked in a cream or milk based product. It keeps the cake super moist! A great example is a Tres Leches Cake.
Can I replace or leave out the coffee liqueur?
Of course! The Bailey's will not be baked off so if you cannot consume alcohol, you should leave this out. You can replace this with equal parts milk!
Why do I have to poke holes in it?
I like to do this because these holes act as a well for the wet filling to sit in and helps the cake soak up that cream evenly!
Can I make each component separately and assemble it the day of?
Of course! If you are not going to be serving this cake the same day you make it, I suggest refrigerating the cake, buttercream and filling in separate containers. Make sure to let the components get to room temperature before you assemble the cake.
How long does wet cake last?
If you have leftovers, feel free to keep them in the fridge for 3 days, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap.
The best part about this recipe is that each component can be made separately.If you are not going to be serving this cake the same day you make it, I suggest refrigerating the cake, buttercream and filling in separate containers. Make sure to let the components get to room temperature before you assemble the cake.
Storage and Freezing
If you have leftovers, feel free to keep them in the fridge for 3 days or up to 3 months in the freezer, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap.
Lastly, if you try out this Baileys Chocolate Wet Cake Recipe, be sure to leave a comment/rating on how it turned out. I love hearing from you guys and will try my best to reply to every comment! And don’t forget to tag me on Instagram!
Extra Moist Chocolate Wet Cake
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 2 cup flour
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 2 cup sugar
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 tablespoon instant coffee
- 3 tablespoon Baileys Irish Cream
- 14 oz sweetened condensed milk (1 can)
- ¼ cup Baileys Irish Cream
- ½ cup salted butter (softened)
- ¼ cup coco powder
- 5 cups powdered sugar
- ⅓ cup milk
- 1 tablespoon Baileys Irish Cream
- In a large bowl add your oil, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, sour cream, and Baileys. Mix until combined.
- Then add your flour, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder. Mix until evenly combined.
- Then in a small bowl combine your hot water and coffee and then add it to your batter and mix until combined.
- Line a 9x 13 inch baking dish with parchment paper (leave some paper hanging over the edge for easy release). Then pour your batter into your prepared dish. Bake your cake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until the center comes out dry. Let completely cool!
- IMPORTANT: Remove cake from pan before the next steps!
Irish Cream Filling
- In a small bowl, add your condensed milk and Baileys. Mix until combined.
- Using the bottom end of a spoon, poke several holes into your cake. Then pour your milk mixture over the cake, letting the milk soak into the holes.
- Let sit for 10 minutes or so.
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add your butter and whip on medium speed first.
- Next add your powdered sugar, cocoa powder, milk, and Baileys. Whisk on medium until combined and smooth.
- Using a spatula, apply your frosting to your cake. Serve and enjoy!