Chocolate Mousse Cake

This Chocolate Mousse Cake is a classic! With three layers of moist chocolate cake and two layers of smooth and creamy chocolate mousse, all covered in chocolate whipped cream!
Chocolate Mousse Cake - a moist chocolate cake with silky smooth chocolate mousse!

Chocolate Mousse Cake recipe

So today we are celebrating a Virtual Baby Shower for Jocelyn, of Grandbaby Cakes. You may have seen similar posts before for other friends, but basically a virtual baby shower is a way for us bloggers to virtually celebrate from afar.

I’m particularly excited to celebrate my friend Jocelyn today. I met Jocelyn for the first time several years ago and not long after that we realized we had something in common (besides the obvious blog thing and love of dessert) – a struggle with fertility. For both of us, moving forward with treatment was something we waited on and when we both realized we had decided to move forward with IVF earlier this year, it was so exciting to be able to go through it together (read her story here).

If you know Jocelyn, then you know her personality is one that will take over a room. She is SUPER positive and that didn’t change one bit while going through IVF. She believed every second of the process that it would work – for both of us. She was a huge encourager for me in the process and I loved that we were able to support each other through it. Plus, since she was several weeks ahead of me in the process, I was able to ask her questions about what was coming and we celebrated all the milestones together.

I could not be more excited to celebrate her and her sweet little girl coming this January! This is one baby that it going to be loved like crazy and I can’t wait to see Jocelyn be her mom!

Best Chocolate Mousse CakeChocolate Mousse Cake slice

So let’s talk a little bit about this cake, shall we? The cake layers themselves are wonderfully moist and delicious! Not to mention it’s one of the easiest cakes to put together and get into the oven. I’m a big fan!

Once the cakes are baked and cooled, it’s time for the chocolate mousse. I wanted this to be a true chocolate mousse cake, so I went with a traditional cooked chocolate mousse. Smooth, silky and delicious!

To start, you’ll combine the egg yolks, sugar and heavy whipping cream in the top of a double boiler (or in a metal bowl over a pot of boil water, which is what I do). The main goal here is to slowly and gently cook the eggs without scrambling them. You want them to reach 160°F so they are safe to eat. I like to use an instant read thermometer to test the temperature of the mixture, but you could also try eyeballing it and looking for things to thicken and grow in volume. Once the egg mixture is ready, it’s combined with the melted chocolate chips, cooled to room temperature, then gently combined with whipped cream.

To build the cake, you’ll want to use something that will allow you to layer the cakes and mousse without it all falling apart before the mousse can firm up. I like to use a clear cake collar. It’s super simple to wrap around the bottom layer of the cake, tape in place and then layer everything. Once the cake and mousse have been refrigerated, you just peel the collar back and everything is nice and even.

If you aren’t into using cake collars, you can use an 8 inch pan and a mock collar. I would suggest an 8×3 inch pan, so that the tall sides help add stability while you build the cake. A springform one would be even better. You’ll then create a mock collar within the pan using parchment paper. It ultimately creates the same effect as using a clear cake collar, it’s just a little more work to put it together.

One the cake is all layered in your method of choice, refrigerate it until the mousse is nice and firm. Remove the cake from it’s collar and then frost with a light chocolate whipped cream! It perfectly compliments the moist chocolate cake and silky smooth mousse by not being too sweet or heavy. The final combination is a heavenly classic chocolate mousse cake that is to die for!

So help us all celebrate Jocelyn today and be sure to check out the recipes from the other bloggers sharing today, found below!

decorated Chocolate Mousse CakeMoist Chocolate Mousse Cake

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes from Show Me The Yummy
Twix Cupcakes from Crazy for Crust
Chocolate Hot Fudge Mini Layer Cakes from Averie Cookies
Mini Pink Velvet Cake with Raspberry Cream Cheese from Especially Southern Dishes
Butternut Squash Cake with Coconut Frosting from Taste of Yummy
Toffee Caramel Cupcakes from Beyond Frosting
Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownie Cupcakes from Wine & Glue
Mini Amaretto Cherry Cheesecakes from Lemon Tree Dwelling
Candied Pecan and Caramel Mini Cakes from Brown Sugar Food Blog

Read transcript
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Chocolate Mousse Cake on plate

Chocolate Mousse Cake

  • Author: Life, Love and Sugar
  • Prep Time: 5-6 hours (including chill time)
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 5-6 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 Slices 1x
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


Chocolate Mousse Cake with three layers of moist chocolate cake and two layers of smooth & creamy chocolate mousse – all covered in chocolate whipped cream!




  • 1 3/4 cups (228g) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups (414g) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (85g) natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (240ml) milk
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (240ml) hot water


  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (52g) sugar
  • 1 3/4 cup (420ml) heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 1 1/4 cups (227g) semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup (86g) powdered sugar


  • 2 1/2 cups (600ml) heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 3/4 cup (68g) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (57g) natural unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Sprinkles



1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare three 8 inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper in the bottom.
2. Add the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt to a large mixer bowl and combine. Set aside.
3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.
5. Slowly add the hot water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
6. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
7. Remove cakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
8. When the cakes have cooled, make the chocolate mousse. Combine the egg yolks, sugar and 1/2 cup (120ml) of heavy whipping cream in the top of a double boiler (or in a metal mixing bowl set over a pot of simmering water). Do not let the water boil, or it’ll get too hot. Occasionally lift the bowl to release steam. Cook the egg mixture, whisking constantly. It’ll be ready when it has thickened, lightened a bit in color and has more volume. It should take about 7-10 minutes and reach 160°F (71°C). When done, remove it from the heat and set aside.
9. Place the chocolate chips in a medium bowl and microwave in intervals of 10-15 seconds, stirring well between each, until melted and smooth. You could also use the double boiler again.
10. Add the chocolate to the egg mixture and whisk until smooth. Set the mixture aside to cool to room temperature.
11. In a mixer bowl, whip the remaining 1 1/4 cups (300ml) of heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar until stiff peaks form.
12. Fold about 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture until combined, then fold about 1/4 of the chocolate mixture into the whipped cream. Slowly fold the remaining chocolate mixture into the whipped cream.


13. Level the tops of the chocolate cakes by using a large serrated knife.
14. The cake can be built in an 8×3 inch cake pan (springform would be ideal) or with a clear cake collar. If you are using a cake pan to build the cake, put a cardboard cake circle in the bottom of the pan. If not using a springform pan, you can put some plastic wrap in the bottom of the pan and up the sides and use it to lift the cake out of the pan when it’s done. Line the sides of the cake pan with parchment paper. The parchment paper should stick up above the top edge of the pan, since the cake will probably be a little taller than your pan. Add the first layer of cake into the bottom of the cake pan. If you are using a cake collar, place the bottom cake on a cardboard cake circle or a serving plate and wrap the cake collar around it and secure in place.
15. Add about half of the chocolate mousse and spread into an even layer.
16. Add the second layer of cake on top of the mousse, then add the remaining mousse and spread into an even layer.
17. Top the cake with the final cake layer. Refrigerate the cake until the mousse is firm, 4-5 hours.


18. Make the whipped cream by adding all the ingredients to a large mixer bowl and whipping on high speed until stiff peaks form.
19. Remove the cake from the fridge and either remove it from the pan by removing the springform pan sides, lifting the cake out of the pan with the plastic wrap, or removing the cake collar.
20. Frost the outside of the cake with the chocolate whipped cream and pipe swirls around the outer top edge of the cake.
21. Finish off the cake with some chocolate sprinkles, then refrigerate until ready to serve. Cake is best when well covered in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Keywords: chocolate mousse, chocolate whipped cream, chocolate layer cake, chocolate cake recipe, chocolate desserts, chocolate dessert ideas


Chocolate Mousse Cake - a moist chocolate cake with silky smooth chocolate mousse!

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Recipe rating

  1. sarah

    This cake is delicious, the only problem I have is whenever I make it the cake always ends up falling apart when I take them out the cake tins.

    1. Kirsten

      Hi Sarah,
      I put baking paper between my spring form pan sides and the bottom. They taking it out doesn’t involve trying to cut it off (learnt to do this from another recipe and don’t want to go back to trying to cut the cake off). Hope this help!

  2. Ally

    I have made this recipe a ton and it is so good!

    I was wondering if I could use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose? Would there be a large difference in texture?

  3. Lizy

    I always make this cake but I would love to make it as a sheet cake to make the number 9 for my sons bday. Do you know if this is possible? How long can I bake it for?

  4. Emma

    If I wanted to make the mousse a day before the cake, could I refrigerate it and still put it on the cake, or would it be too stiff? Could I re-mix it to make it more spreadable?

    1. Lindsay

      I would not recommend it. Once it sets, it can be hard to stir it up again without it deflating. It may also not really firm back up again.

  5. Yashika

    I would like to enquire if the cocoa in the whipped cream frosting can be replaced with chocolate (a ganache frosting).
    If so how would I do this and what would the quantities be to frost the cake?
    Would appreciate your assistance.

  6. Mel

    By far the best cake I have ever baked. I took my time and followed the recipe exactly the only thing I swapped was hot water for hot coffee. Thank you for this recipe!

  7. Angelica Leal

    I didnt use the came recipe, but I did makenthe mousse and whipped cream. It was delicious and will make again.

  8. Donna

    I made this cake this weekend and it was phenomenal. I have never had good luck making a from scratch chocolate cake. It either comes out too dry or not as tasty as I wanted. This cake was perfect. It had a fantastic flavor and texture. It was so moist. Bravo to the recipe creator. I didn’t have the cake collar so I taped some heavy duty foil around the entire cake. Also, I only had two 8″ pans so I had only a two layer cake. I used about 75% of the mousse filling. It set up well so I didn’t have any tilting. I put the rest aside for those who wanted to blob more on top of their piece. Delish.

  9. Kaaya

    Hi if I were to make this in a rectangle pan the mousse would just flow out because the cake collar would not fit so should I refrigerate the mousse to make it more stable to spread? Btw loved this recipe tried it before once and was delicious

    1. Lindsay

      You could certainly try that. You just have to be careful that the mousse doesn’t set completely, because stirring it back up might cause it to deflate a bit.

  10. Batul Shajapurwala

    I would love to try out this recipe. However, I was hoping to make this in a 10 inch pan instead. So same 3 layers but 10 inch pan. How do i adjust the recipe to make that?

  11. Jessie

    Hi, I was wondering if I could make this in a rectangle pan, and make them bite sized, like petit fours, and would that change the baking time? 

    1. Lindsay

      Once you have refrigerated the chocolate mousse until it’s firm (which is about 4-5 hours), you don’t have to refrigerate it any longer really. But you do want to store it in the fridge.

  12. Alejandro Brinker

    Hi Lindsay. I almost forgot to write to you about this cake. I made this recipe twice in one day 2 years ago for my birthday, and I shared the cakes with my teachers and the students during the after school program. They literally couldn’t stop gushing about the cakes after they ate them. And of course I had some too. The recipe was a success. Really delicious and so chocolaty, the mousse was my favorite part of the cake. Thank you for sharing this recipe. 

  13. peggy

    hi lindsay. I just wanted to thank you for this amazing recipe. I’m 19 and I’m mostly interested in making no-bake desserts such as cheese cakes and this was my first time actually baking something. let me just tell you that I heard so many great compliments about both the look and the taste of the cake. I can’t wait to try your other recipes.

  14. Natalie

    Do you think it would affect the texture of the chocolate mousse if I added a black cherry layer on top of the cake but under the mousse? The request was Black Forest but he loves chocolate mousse so I thought this recipe would be perfect. 

    1. Lindsay

      I would think it’d be ok. It’d probably be best if it’s a cherry layer that’s thick enough that it won’t try to slide out from between the cake and mousse layers.

  15. Varna

    Hey there. I really want to make this cake for my cousins bday next weak. I was wondering how tall your cake was at the end? And do you know how tall this cake can be without squishing all the filling out?

    Hope you have a wonderful day and stay healthy :))

  16. Puneet

    Hi there
    I am planning to bake this beauty for my wife’s birthday. The sugar you have used is normal sugar or the powdered sugar?? Also I am not sure about semi sweet chocochip, can I use Cadbury dairy milk chocolate instead?

    1. Lindsay

      When I refer to “sugar”, it’s granulated sugar. In the whipped cream, I say “powdered sugar”. I hope that helps! As for the chocolate, I haven’t tried milk chocolate, but it might end up a little softer consistency.

  17. Dawn

    Hi Lindsay. I am excited to try this cake and am going through the steps and ingredients right now to get started and realized I only have 2% milk on hand. Would that be okay, or does it have to be whole milk? Thank you for sharing all your recipes, I have made several and all delicious!

  18. Lucy

    I have a question. can I use three egg yolks for the mousse instead of four? I don’t want an eggy taste…
    Also since I don’t have a thermometer I’m a bit scared of cooking eggs over the double boiler. So is it fine if the eggs aren’t done perfectly?

    1. Lindsay

      I wouldn’t recommend reducing the eggs. They thicken the mousse, so it may not thicken enough if you reduce them. And I’d recommend a thermometer, just so that your eggs are cooked to a safe temperature and thicken enough.

  19. Amy Jackson

    This cake was one of the best I’ve ever had. It’s not to sugary or bitter and has the perfect taste. The texture was perfect too.

  20. Andrea

    I didn’t have a cake collor or the right sized springform pan so I tried making a mock collar out of parchment paper. It didn’t work. The mousse dripped out the bottom and spread all over the outside of the bottom of the cake. My advice is to make sure you have the proper acetate cake collar on hand before making this cake.

  21. Jesal Patel


    Can I use two 9 inch pan instead of 3 8inch pans? I love that your mousse recipe doesn’t require gelatin.

  22. Lirit

    My husband and I made this together for my 40th birthday. Neither of us had ever made anything like this before and it was a lot of work, but it was so worth it. I’m a huge cake and mousse fan and am pretty picky when it comes to good cake. This cake was everything I was looking and hoping for. This was one of the best cakes I’ve ever had. The cake itself was moist, chocolatey, and delicious and the mousse and chocolate whipped cream were absolutely perfect. I was in awe at how great it came out given our lack of experience. Thank you so much for this amazing recipe and detailed instructions!!

  23. Ramona

    This was cake was amazing, made it for a birthday. They loved it so much, said it rivaled Costco’s American cake. I swapped out sugar for no carb sweetener, so only about 300 g carb for whole cake using flour and chocolate chips. Used 9″ pans, so cooked less time, came out perfect and had more cake to go around. Really superb. Thank you for the recipe.

  24. Shana

    Hi not sure if this question has been asked but can this be used for a shaped/carved cake? I just need to angle the sides a bit. But also cover with fondant. Will this recipe work?

  25. Lisa Corbin

    Followed recipe as directed and It came out beautiful & delicious! Will definitely make again, family loved it. Thank you!!

  26. Foodlover

    I love this recipe.. my mom wanted a certain cake and found this recipe. I surprised her for her birthday with this cake. Took me almost 2 days to make due to my medical condition but it was worth it. I made the cake a day ahead, the mousse and frosting the next day. And served it in the evening.. but I do suggest to chill the mousse before layering on the cake.. I made a big mess my collar did not hold. But I was able to fix it. .. served best when chilled. the following day the frosting had a different taste and texture.. to be honest I thought it tasted better the following day. Thank you for this recipe.. will be making it for my son’s birthday but think of making cupcakes this time.

    1. Lindsay

      It’s not really going to be ideal. It’s not going to give you as firm of sides and in my experience when I try to tape it together, the tape comes right off because it’s non-stick. You could try building it inside of a cake pan and use parchment paper has a collar around the edge so that the cake pan holds the sides in and the parchment paper keeps it from sticking to the pan. If you do that, I would suggest putting some clear wrap in the pan first and then a cardboard cake circle and then build the cake on that. Then when it’s done, you can use the clear wrap (which should extend out the sides) to lift the cake out of the pan and the cardboard cake circle should keep it steady.

About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12