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Chocolate Nutella Cake

Total Time: 1 hr 30 mins

This one layer Chocolate Nutella Cake is decadent, beautifully decorated, and so simple to make. It is a chocolate and Nutella cake topped with a Nutella buttercream, and covered with roasted hazelnuts. Indulgence at its finest!

Craving more Nutella recipes? Try my Nutella Milkshake and Ferrero Rocher Brownies!

Chocolate Nutella Cake slice on a plate ready to eat.

Nutella lovers unite! This cake is indulgent, moist, fluffy, and packed with chocolate hazelnut flavor.

Why You’ll LOVE This Chocolate Nutella Cake

  • ONE LAYER- This means no intimidating stacking, crumb coating, or complicated steps. It is just as beautiful but a tad more approachable.
  • NUTELLA FLAVOR EVERYWHERE- You will find no short supply of nutella flavor in this one. It is in the chocolate cake AND in the frosting.
  • THE BEST TEXTURE- It is a delicious balance between a moist crumb cake, creamy and smooth buttercream, with crunchy toasted hazelnuts.

Watch Me Make It (under 1 minute tutorial):

Chocolate Nutella Cake Ingredients

This recipe has 3 main parts: a moist chocolate and Nutella cake, smooth and creamy Nutella buttercream (not so sweet/ reduced sugar recipe), and roasted hazelnuts. Below is everything you will need and a few suggestions for substitution.

For the Chocolate Nutella Cake:

  • Flour: This recipe uses all-purpose flour. I have also used Gluten Free 1:1 flour and have noticed little difference in the taste, texture, and baking time.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: Use any brand preferred. This is what gives our cake a super chocolatey flavor without adding more sugar or Nutella.
  • Baking Powder: An essential leavening agent for adding body and texture to the cake.
  • Baking Soda: Again, an essential leavening agent.
  • Salt: This helps to boost the chocolate and hazelnut flavors.
  • Unsalted Butter: Make sure it is softened to room temperature or your batter will not come together properly. If you use salted butter omit the salt above.
  • Nutella Hazelnut Spread: I have used Nutella brand as well as off brand hazelnut spread for this recipe and have seen no difference in taste or texture.
  • Egg: Brought to room temperature.
  • Vanilla Extract: This adds extra flavor and helps give the chocolate a boost.
  • Buttermilk: Brought to room temperature. If you need to make your own buttermilk you can (Take 1 cup of whole milk, remove 1 tablespoon and replace it with either white vinegar or lemon juice. Allow to sit and sour for 10 minutes prior to using).

For the Nutella Buttercream:

  • Unsalted Butter: Make sure it is softened to room temperature or your buttercream will not whip together very well. If you use salted butter omit the salt below.
  • Nutella Hazelnut Spread: see note above.
  • Vanilla Extract: see note above.
  • Salt: see note above.
  • Powdered Sugar (Confectioner’s Sugar): Do not mistake this for other types of sugar. This one adds sweetness without being grainy like other sugars.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: Use any brand preferred. This gives the buttercream a chocolatey flavor and stability without adding more powdered sugar.
  • Heavy Whipping Cream: This makes the buttercream super creamy. It is also what helps you choose your desired consistency.

Extras for Decorating:

  • Hazelnuts: Always toast your nuts. LOL. Technically you can use raw hazelnuts but slightly toasted hazelnuts taste better. Feel free to leave them whole, halved, or chopped depending on how you want to decorate the cake.
Ingredients in Chocolate Nutella Cake all measured and ready to mix up.

How to Make Chocolate Nutella Cake

You will find this one layer cake recipe so simple to make. Here is a quick overview of what to expect, the recipe card below will have more details.

Making the Chocolate Nutella Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven and prep your pan. Use a parchment circle in the bottom and grease the bottom and sides. Then lightly dust the interior of the pan with additional unsweetened cocoa powder.
  2. Mix up the batter. Simply whisk together the dry ingredients and set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar, add the Nutella hazelnut spread, egg, and vanilla. Alternate incorporating the dry ingredients and buttermilk until you have a combined batter. Spread it into your prepared pan.
  3. Bake until a toothpick test comes out clean. Immediately run a thin knife around the perimeter of the cake to detach it from the sides.
  4. Allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before turning out and allowing it to cool completely.

Whipping Together The Nutella Buttercream:

  1. Beat the butter until smooth and lightened in color.
  2. Add Nutella hazelnut spread, vanilla, and salt.
  3. Incorporate the unsweetened cocoa powder.
  4. Add the powdered sugar in two seperate additions.
  5. Slowly pour in the heavy whipping cream until it has been completely incorporated into the buttercream.
  6. Add any additional heavy whipping cream until the buttercream is to desired consistency. I like my buttercream to be lighter for cakes so I tend to use more cream than if I was making this for cupcakes.

Decorating Your One Layer Cake:

You can decorate your cake as much or as little as you would like. Here is how I did mine:

  1. Center your fully cooled cake on a cake plate or serving plate.
  2. Spread an even layer of Nutella Buttercream over the top.
  3. Sprinkle with chopped toasted hazelnuts on the outer circle of the cake.
Decorated Chocolate Nutella Cake with Nutella Buttercream and chopped hazelnuts on top.

Storing Information

One layer cakes are a lot easier to store than multi layered cakes. The best way is in an airtight container, but you can also use plastic wrap. If they are not stored properly they will dry out and go stale quicker than if they were stored properly.

  • at room temperature your cake is best eaten within 3 days
  • in the refrigerator up to 7 days
  • and in the freezer up to 3 months

Freezing and Thawing Information

I absolute love freezing leftover cake and it surprisingly lasts quite a long time (without going stale or tasting funny). There are two ways you can freeze cake, whole or in slices (which is what I prefer). Frozen cake slices thaw quicker which means you can enjoy it quicker.

  1. Freeze the whole cake or cake slices uncovered until solid.
  2. Wrap as tightly as possible in plastic wrap. Then store the cake in an airtight container or the cake slices in a sealed reusable bag. Write the date on a sticky note and place it with the cake or cake slices so you know how old it is.
  3. Store in the freezer until you are ready to enjoy again. Remember, frozen cake will keep up to 3 months.

To thaw a whole or partial frozen cake all you need to do is place it in the refrigerator overnight (unwrapped but still in an airtight container). When you are an hour away from wanting to serve it, set the cake at room temperature to warm up and soften a bit.

To thaw frozen cake slices you will unwrap them and either leave at room temperature for an hour or warm it up in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds.

Cake with 5 pieces cut out. Plates and spoons on the side.

Make Ahead Information

This cake recipe is great for making ahead of time. You can do one of two things: prepare the ingredients and decorate later OR fully decorate the cake ahead of time.

Prepare and refrigerate the cake and buttercream up to two days in advance. You will want to tightly wrap the cooled cake in plastic wrap and store the buttercream in a glass bowl with plastic wrap touching the surface of the buttercream. Bring the buttercream to room temperature before decorating your cake.

For a fully decorated cake, please follow the guidance above in storing information.

Converting the Recipe to Fit YOUR Needs and Pans

This Chocolate Nutella Cake recipe uses an 9 inch cake pan but that IS NOT your only option. Just keep in mind bake times may vary depending on how full the cake pans are and how many are in your oven at one time.

This recipe also makes…

  • 2 layer 6 inch round cake
  • 3 layer 4 inch round cake
  • 13×9 rectangle cake

Double the recipe and you can make…

  • 2 layer 10 inch round cake
  • 3 layer 8 inch round cake
  • 4 layer 6 inch round cake
  • 13×18 sheet cake
Close up of slice of cake. Fluffy frosting, moist cake crumb, and chopped hazelnuts.

4 Tips for the BEST Chocolate Nutella Cake

This recipe is so easy but I do have a few tips for you. Let’s make this the best cake yet!

  1. Use room temperature ingredients ONLY- They will incorporate into the batter better and the cakes will bake more evenly too. Cold ingredients are almost always a bad idea in baking.
  2. Properly prepare your pan- In order to remove the cake with ease you have to prepare the pan with parchment paper, spray it with non-stick spray, coat with unsweetened cocoa powder (shake the excess out), and it is ready to go! To get your parchment paper the right size, tear off a piece big enough to set your cake pan on. Next, trace around your cake pan with a pencil, cut it out with scissors, and place in the bottom of the cake pan (trim as needed).
  3. Correctly measure your flour- Scooping it straight out of the bag is so last year (and terrible for fluffy cakes). All you have to do is fluff it up with a whisk, spoon it into your measuring cups, level it off with a knife. Easy peasy!
  4. Be careful to not overmix the cake batter- You will want to pay close attention once you have added in the last bit of dry ingredients. The flour should be just absorbed and no more. Continuing to mix will build up the gluten in your batter giving you a dense and chewy cake.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

What does Nutella taste like?

Nutella is hazelnut and chocolate flavored. It is a spread that is similar to peanut butter, but on the sweeter side in comparison. It is creamy, delicious, a great balance of flavors, and not overly sweet.

Can I use Dutch-process cocoa powder instead of unsweetened cocoa powder?

Dutch-process cocoa powder does not have the same chemical properties as unsweetened cocoa powder therefore I DO NOT recommend substituting it. This recipe has not been tested with Dutch-process but it would definitely alter the cake.

Whole Chocolate Nutella Cake and half eaten cake slice.

More Cake Recipes You Might Enjoy:


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Enjoy Entirely, Elizabeth
Chocolate Nutella Cake with Nutella Buttercream and chopped hazelnuts. Slice on a plate ready to eat.

Chocolate Nutella Cake

Elizabeth Swoish
The best and most decadent one layer Chocolate Nutella Cake! It is simple to make, beautifully decorated, and a great cake to celebrate with loved ones- Chocolate and Nutella cake topped with Nutella buttercream, and covered with hazelnuts.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
DECORATING TIME 15 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 10 slices
Calories 450 kcal

Equipment

  • 9 inch baking pan round
  • Stand Mixer or Hand Mixer; optional (beater attachments)

Ingredients
 
 

Chocolate Nutella Cake

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter; room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons Nutella hazelnut spread
  • 1 egg; room temperature
  • ½ tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk*; room temperature

Nutella Buttercream

  • 1 ¼ cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ cup unsalted butter; room temperature (1 sticks)
  • ¼ cup Nutella hazelnut spread
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream; cold
  • ½ cup toasted hazelnuts; whole and/or lightly chopped (for decorating)

Instructions
 

How to Make Chocolate Nutella Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 °F and center your oven rack.
  • Prepare an 9 inch cake pan by placing a parchment circle in the bottom of your cake pan. Liberally spray it with non-stick cooking, and dust the interior of the cake pan with additional unsweetened cocoa powder. Discard any excess cocoa powder and set aside.
  • In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, cream together the room temperature unsalted butter and granulated sugar until pale in color and fluffy (about 5 minutes at medium- high speed). Scrape down bowl with a spatula as needed.
  • Add Nutella hazelnut spread and beat on medium speed until incorporated (about 2 minute).
  • Add egg and beat on medium speed until incorporated (about 1 minute).
  • On low speed, alternate adding the dry ingredients and the buttermilk. Between each addition scrape down the bowl. It should go like this: dry ingredients, buttermilk, dry ingredients, buttermilk, dry ingredients, STOP and move onto next step.
  • Pour chocolate Nutella cake batter into the prepared cake pan. Smooth it out into an even layer.
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven and immediately run a thin knife around the cake to detach it from the pan. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes inside the pan.
  • Carefully remove the cake from the cake pan and allow it to cool completely.

How to Make Nutella Buttercream

  • On medium-high speed beat together room temperature unsalted butter for 2 to 3 minutes. It should be light in color and smooth.
  • Add Nutella hazelnut spread, vanilla extract, and salt. Beat on medium speed until fully incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add unsweetened cocoa powder. Beat on low speed until incorporated, 1 minute.
  • Add half the powdered sugar, beat on low speed until it is fully absorbed within the frosting, about 1 minute.
  • Scrape down the bowl before adding the remaining powdered sugar. Beat on low speed until it is fully absorbed in the frosting, about 1 minute.
  • While the buttercream continues to whip together, slowly pour in the heavy whipping cream. Continue to beat on low until it has been incorporated.
    NOTE: If the frosting is too thick, add an additional ½ tablespoon of heavy whipping cream at a time until desired consistency.
  • Using a spatula, fold the Nutella buttercream by hand a few times to smooth it out even more.

Decorating the One Layer Chocolate Nutella Cake

  • Place the completely cooled cake on a serving plate or cake plate.
  • Spread the Nutella Buttercream over the top of the cake until it is in an even layer.
  • Sprinkle the chopped toasted hazelnuts over the outer edge of the cake.
  • Cut into 10 equal pieces and serve.

Video

Notes

Storing Information:

  • at room temperature, in an airtight container, is best eaten within 3 days
  • in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, up to 7 days
  • and in the freezer, wrapped in plastic wrap in an airtight container, up to 3 months (either in individual slices or whole)
 

Thawing Information:

  • To thaw a whole or partial frozen cake: Place it in the refrigerator overnight (unwrapped but still in an airtight container). Then set the cake at room temperature an hour prior to serving.
  • To thaw frozen cake slices: Unwrap them and either leave at room temperature for an hour or warm it up in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds.
 

Make Ahead Information:

  • You can prepare and refrigerate the cake and buttercream up to two days in advance.
  • Tightly wrap the cooled cake in plastic wrap and store the buttercream in a glass bowl with plastic wrap touching the surface of the buttercream. 
 

Converting the Recipe For Other Size Cakes:

This Chocolate Nutella Cake recipe uses an 9 inch cake pan but that IS NOT your only option. 
  • 2 layer 6 inch round cake
  • 3 layer 4 inch round cake
  • 13×9 rectangle cake

Doubling the recipe makes:

  • 2 layer 10 inch round cake
  • 3 layer 8 inch round cake
  • 4 layer 6 inch round cake
  • 13×18 sheet cake
Keyword CHOCOLATE NUTELLA CAKE, NUTELLA CAKE, ONE LAYER CHOCOLATE NUTELLA CAKE, ONE LAYER NUTELLA CAKE, SINGLE LAYER CHOCOLATE NUTELLA CAKE, SINGLE LAYER NUTELLA CAKE

If you make my One Layer Chocolate Nutella Cake, don’t forget to leave this recipe a rating, comment, or like. Tag me on social media using the hashtag #EntirelyElizabeth when sharing your own personal photos making this recipe. I would love to see your version and know your thoughts!

By Elizabeth Swoish on January 14th, 2023

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