*This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more details!*
A four-layer spiced chocolate Christmas drip cake with american buttercream frosting, chocolate drip and more! The best festive showstopper.
I am fully and utterly obsessed with making drip cakes as we all know, and this one is no exception… I am in love! I know it may look a little over the top with some of the decorations, but I am here to bring my random creations to life!
One thing that I have been requested to do many times is a Christmas themed drip cake – and I went with it. All of the decoration is obviously optional, as it’s how I wanted to do it! This recipe is here to give you a guide – you can have fun with it!
For this recipe, I took some inspiration from my gingerbread drip cake, but made it chocolate-themed too! I didn’t want to use a full gingerbread sponge-like in my gingerbread loaf cake as it’s quite sticky and heavy – so instead used similar spices, in a normal sponge!
I liked the idea of a chocolate victoria sponge recipe with ground ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg – the flavours to give the warmth and more of a festive feel, and ohhhh my days it worked so well! Absolutely heavenly!
These spices are optional of course – if you want a plain chocolate sponge you can leave them out, or even add in another flavour with 1 tsp vanilla extract, orange extract, or even peppermint extract! It is entirely up to you. I’ve even tried this with a little coffee extract and it was lovely!
The frosting is an american buttercream frosting – as it is just so easy and perfect for a bake like this Christmas drip cake! I wanted something to fill the cake, crumb coat the cake, and then cover and decorate with! So a decently sized batch of buttercream is the way to go.
I used a white buttercream as a base – and you can achieve a white coloured buttercream a few ways… as I always get questions about this. You can try beating your room temperature block unsalted butter for at least 5 minutes on a medium-high speed in a mixer so it naturally lightens in colour as you beat it, then after adding the icing sugar you beat again for another 5 minutes.
You can also try the purple method – you can add a TINY amount of purple food colouring to your buttercream and beat it in very well – I stress a tiny amount as too much and the frosting will turn grey! The purple and natural undertones of the butter create a whiter colour!
You can also use this white food colouring – it’s quite liquid compared to others I have used, but much better and worth the purchase! Obviously, whitening the buttercream is optional, however – it just makes it a little snowy!
I decided to press some really cute Christmas sprinkles into the base of the cake as I wanted to go over the top as I mentioned at the beginning of this blog post – but you can use other sprinkles, chocolate curls, or leave it plain! I really just was going for the showstopper element.
My favourite drip is the same as the one on my Mini Egg Drip Cake, and it uses a mix of dark chocolate, milk chocolate and double cream – milk chocolate ganache can often be too thin, and dark chocolate can be too thick. The marriage of both chocolates is perfect! You just want to make sure the dark chocolate is 70% or darker in cocoa content.
If you want to make a coloured drip, I would recommend following the drip recipe from my rainbow cake as its bright pink – you can use whatever colour you prefer though as always! A red would be cute, or even green!
I find it best to use a small piping bag with the end snipped off to be able to drip the drips – you can use squeezy bottles, or even just pour it on top and guide the chocolate over the edge – but it’s up to you!
For the topping, I use some chocolate curls to sprinkle over my ganache once I had made the drip and used the leftover buttercream frosting to make some mini buttercream trees on top, and a lovely little decoration. I used this green food colouring to make a deep colour.
The final touch was some chocolate stars and a few more Christmas-like sprinkles for a bit of decoration. As over the top and showstopper as you can get – but an absolute favourite bake of mine. I hope you love it! Jane x
Christmas Drip Cake!
- 500 g unsalted butter/stork
- 500 g dark brown soft sugar
- 9 Medium eggs
- 425 g self raising flour
- 75 g cocoa powder
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 500 g unsalted butter (room temp) (not stork)
- 1000 g Icing sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 75 g dark chocolate
- 75 g milk chocolate
- 150 ml double cream
- spare buttercream
- chocolate stars
- chocolate curls
For the Cake
- Preheat your oven to 170C/150 Fan, and line two 8"/20cm cake tins with baking parchment.
- In a stand mixer, or a large bowl, beat together the unsalted butter and dark brown soft sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs, self raising flour, cocoa powder, ground ginger, ground cinnamon and nutmeg and beat again until combined well.
- Split the mixture between the two tins.
- Bake the cakes in the oven for 50-60 minutes, or until baked through - check with a skewer to make sure they're done!
- Leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 10 minutes, and then take out and leave to cool fully on a wire rack!
For the Buttercream
- Beat the unsalted butter on its own for minute or two, to soften it and loosen it.
- Add in the icing sugar and beat well until smooth and fluffy.
- If you want, add in some white food colouring or whiten your buttercream now - I used 1 tsp white food colouring (read notes above)
- If required, add 1-2tbsp boiling water to smooth the buttercream slightly if its very very thick.
For the Decoration
- Split the two cakes into four layers in total.
- Put the first cake onto a cake board or plate. Add a little buttercream and spread. Repeat with the second and third sponges. Add the final sponge on top.
- Using a small amount of buttercream, spread and smooth around the cake sides and top for a crumb coat and add to the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
- Once set, add more buttercream onto the tops and sides of the cake, and smooth around covering the cake completely in buttercream.
- I add the buttercream on using a small angled spatula, and smoothed around the edge with the large metal scraper! You need to make sure there is more buttercream on the sides of the cake than you need, as some will be removed as you smooth it over.
- Carefully press sprinkles into the bottom edges of the cake with the palm of your hands - this is messy, but worth it.
- Once finished, put the cake in the fridge again for at least 30 minutes.
- Add the dark chocolate, milk chocolate and double cream to a bowl, and microwave until smooth.
- Using a small piping bag or a teaspoon, drip the ganache down the sides of the cake. The more you push over the edge, the further the drip will fall.
- Sprinkle on some chocolate curls if you like. Set the cake in the fridge again for 30 minutes!
- Colour the leftover buttercream to green, and using a 2d closed star piping, decorate the top of the cake.
- Sprinkle on some sprinkles if you like, and add on a chocolate star.
- This cake lasts for 3-4 days at room temperature!
- For this Cake I used (affiliate links):
- I used two of these 8" Cake Tins
- These piping bags for the buttercream
- These piping bags for the drip
- This cake turntable to make decoration easier
- I used this large metal scraper
- I used this small angled spatula
- I used this piping tip for the buttercream
- I used this milk chocolate for the drip
- I used this dark chocolate for the drip
- I used these sprinkles
- I used the milk chocolate stars from this packet for the decoration
- You can use half of the recipe to make a two-layer cake - half the sponge recipe, and half the buttercream!
Find my other recipes on my Recipes Page!
© Jane’s Patisserie. All images & content are copyright protected. Do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words and credit me, or link back to this post for the recipe.