Caramel Popcorn Chocolate Cake

chocolate cake with salted caramel popcorn

This chocolate cake, complete with dark chocolate ganache is served drizzled in caramel sauce and salted caramel popcorn. A true feast for the senses.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 35 minutes

Servings: 16 people


Heat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C.

Base line 3 x 20cm loose-bottomed cake tins.

In a stand mixer, or using a hand-held mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light.

Beat in the eggs one at a time, then mix in the flour, cocoa and baking powder.

Fold in the milk to make a light batter. 

Divide the batter between the prepared cakes tins and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until risen and springy to the touch.

Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the ganache filling.

Melt together the cream and chocolate in a saucepan and heat gently, stir and set aside to thicken.

For the caramel popcorn, melt the sugar in a saucepan.

Once you start to see pools of melted sugar, gently swirl the pan to encourage the rest of the sugar to melt.

Using a wooden spoon, stir together and heat until all the sugar crystals have dissolved and the colour looks like runny honey.

Take off the heat, stir in 2 tbsp water then put the pan back onto the heat to melt any clumps that have formed.

Stir in the popcorn and pour onto a lined baking tray to cool.

Make the icing by beating together the butter and icing sugar until creamy.

Then mix in the cocoa powder and mascarpone.

On a cake stand, or plate, layer the cake up with the chocolate ganache, leaving the top plain.

Cover completely with the mascarpone icing, and use a palate knife to give a smooth finish.

Drizzle over the tinned thick caramel sauce and arrange the caramel popcorn on top.


250g butter
250g light brown soft sugar
4 eggs
175g self-raising flour
75g cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp milk
3-4 tbsp thick caramel sauce 


For the Chocolate Ganache Filling


1 x 150ml tub double cream
100g dark or milk chocolate, chopped
100g caster sugar
15g salty popcorn


For the Mascarpone Icing


75g butter, at room temperature
100g icing sugar
50g cocoa powder
2 x 250g tubs light mascarpone