Crazy Italian Chocolate Cake (egg-free chocolate cake)

5 minutes

40 Minutes





  • 1 1/2 cups standard flour
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark, good-quality baking cocoa (look for ‘dark’ on the label for best results)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tsp pure vanilla essence
  • 1 1/4 cups water (or cooled coffee)


Chocolate Icing

  • 150g chopped dark chocolate (50-60% cocoa solids, use dairy free if needed)
  • 125g butter (or dairy-free olive spread, or 150ml coconut cream)
  • 2 tbsp oil (olive, grape seed or rice bran)


The amazing egg-free chocolate cake that’s also dairy free and takes 5 minutes to make.


Preheat oven to 180°C conventional bake. Grease a 20cm cake tin and dust all over with cocoa (make sure the tin isn’t too big or the cake will be a little flat).

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt into a large mixing bowl. Stir with a whisk to combine evenly. Make a large well in the centre.

Pour the olive oil, vinegar, vanilla and water into the well. Using the whisk, start in the middle and stir the mixture in a circular motion until combined to a smooth batter – don’t worry if there are a few small lumps, these will disappear in the oven.

Bake just below the centre of the oven for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven.

If you’re going to serve this as a cake, let it cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning it out onto a rack. You can then either dust with icing sugar to serve or ice it (see over).

For a delicious pudding, dust with icing sugar and serve straight hot, straight from the tin, with ice cream.

The cake keeps in an airtight container for about 4 days (but if it actually lasts that long, I’ll be surprised).

Chocolate Icing

Place the chopped chocolate and butter (or spread or coconut cream) in a heatproof bowl, then set over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the water touch the bowl). Stir until melted, then remove the bowl from the saucepan and stir in the oil.

Leave to cool at room temperature until it’s thick enough to spread on the cake. If you try and speed it up by putting it in the fridge, keep an eye on it as it will need stirring often.