Irish Chocolate Cake with Baileys Buttercream Frosting is both decadent and addictive with layers of moist chocolate cake adorned with Baileys buttercream frosting and chocolate shards. Perfect for family meals, or holidays like St Patrick’s Day and Easter.

Irish Chocolate Cake using Irish butter covered with a Baileys frosting and chocolate shards

Not a traditional Gaelic recipe from times of yore, you understand, so what makes this cake Irish? The butter – real Irish butter and lots of it! This is a ‘pull on your comfy yoga pants and don’t try your jeans for at least week’ sort of cake! This is a ‘I’ve been good this week and I deserve a slice’ cake. You get the picture.

A slice of cake on a white plate

This Irish Chocolate Cake is just how you want a chocolate cake to be… nice and chocolatey with real melted chocolate in the batter so it actually tastes like chocolate. The first one I made (don’t ask) didn’t have enough chocolate taste so it was back to the cake drawing board.

Originally, the frosting was going to be a plain buttercream and then I thought, what could I do to make it more Irish that also complements the chocolate? Baileys Irish cream, of course! So I added a few tablespoons to the frosting and I’m so glad I did. As I was frosting the cake, the luscious smell of the Baileys kept wafting up to my nose and wow is it good!

Make it kid friendly

An alternative to adding Bailey’s to the frosting for kids, I have been seeing a non-alcoholic Bailey’s creamer. Check your stores. You can also substitute vanilla extract.

Homemade chocolate shards lay on top of a chocolate cake

The dark chocolate topping is really easy to achieve. Melted chocolate is spread onto parchment paper. The paper is then rolled up and refrigerated. When the chocolate is set, the paper is unrolled and the chocolate is broken into shard shavings This is a method I used on my Christmas yule log.

St Patrick’s Day is just 1 week away and I’ve already brought you Irish beef and Guinness stew and colcannon so this cake completes the menu. I hope you enjoy one or all of these dishes.

If you’ve make this cake or any other recipe, leave me a comment. I love to hear from my readers.

Yield: 12 slices

Irish Chocolate Cake with Baileys Buttercream Frosting

A buttercream frosted chocolate cake topped with chocolate shards on a cake stand

This Irish chocolate cake with Baileys buttercream frosting is both decadent and addictive with layers of moist chocolate cake adorned with Baileys buttercream frosting.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes


For the cake

  • 2 cups (300 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (90 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 ounces (113 grams) semi-sweet chocolate
  • 8 ounces (227 grams) unsalted Irish butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup (236 ml) whole milk

For the buttercream

  • 12 ounces (340 grams) unsalted Irish butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups (360 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup (78 ml) Bailey's Irish cream
  • For the chocolate bark
  • 8 ounces (160 grams) semi-sweet chocolate, 60%


For the cake

  1. Position oven rack to center of oven and preheat to 350°F/177°C. Line the bottom of 2, 8 inch (20 cm) round cake tins with parchment paper and grease the sides.
  2. To a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa, set aside.
  3. To a large bowl beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs to the butter and sugar one-at-a-time while beating then add the milk. If the mix looks curdled, you haven't ruined it. It just means the butter and sugar were not creamed enough. It will smooth out when you fold in the flour.
  4. Add the chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high in 30 second increments, stirring in between until melted. Set aside to cool for a minute or so, don't add hot chocolate to the butter.
  5. Fold in the melted chocolate to the butter, then fold in the flour mix and fold until well mixed and you don't see anymore white flour.
  6. Divide the batter evenly between the 2 cake pans and bake for 25-30 minutes (depending how your oven is calibrated) until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the center.
  7. Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  8. Turn the cakes onto a wire cooling rack and remove the parchment paper. Allow to cool completely.

For the buttercream

  1. Add the butter and sugar to a large bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in the Bailey's until well mixed.
  2. Using a spatula, spread half of the frosting onto the top of one of the cakes. Place the other layer on top and spread the top and sides with the remaining frosting.
  3. For the chocolate bark
  4. Take a large piece of parchment paper and spread a thin, even layer of melted chocolate. Roll the paper tightly and refrigerate for 1 hour. Unroll the paper and the chocolate will break into bark pieces. Place in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to decorate the cake.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size

1 slice

Amount Per Serving Calories 331Total Fat 24gSaturated Fat 14gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 8gCholesterol 116mgSodium 620mgCarbohydrates 24gFiber 1gSugar 6gProtein 6g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.

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