Hand holding a plate with a slice of chocolate cake. Remainder of cake plated on cutting board in kitchen appears in the background.

Fudgy Chocolate Walnut Cake

This full-of-flavor fudgy cake recipe from Natasha Feldman, author of The Dinner Party Project cookbook, will certainly have guests asking for a second slice!

This super chocolatey, decadent and fudgy chocolate walnut cake is gluten-free and easy to make. The secret ingredient is California Prunes, which adds an extra honey/caramel-like layer of sweetness and helps give this cake a fudgy texture while staying super moist – even days after baking!

Overhead view of chocolate bundt cake topped with toasted walnuts and drizzled with chocolate

Secret-ingredient cake is the ultimate party trick!

Having a cake with a secret ingredient is really fun for a party! Ask your party guests to guess what gives this cake a sweet depth of flavor. It’s so funny to see what they think it might be. People are always surprised to hear it’s prunes! It’s not always a top-of-mind ingredient, but this chocolate cake just might change that!

Hand holding a white plate with a slice of chocolate walnut cake and dollap of whipped cream

Delicious Ways to Customize this Chocolate Walnut Cake

This chocolate cake is SO good as is, but here’s a fun way to turn it into a showstopper! Once the cake is cool, pipe in marshmallow fluff before finishing with a chocolate drizzle to give it a Hostess Cupcake nostalgic vibe.

After a few days, when the cake starts to get a little hard, you can cut off a slice, toast it in a pan with some butter and serve it with a scoop of ice cream for a truly decadent pairing to your morning coffee – or a glass of wine!

As a fun bonus tip, bake this recipe in disposable loaf pans for a yummy gift idea. Whether for the holidays, a teacher thank you, or just to brighten someone’s day, who could say no to sweet chocolate?

Overhead view of chocolate bundt cake topped with toasted walnuts and drizzled with chocolate

Fudgy Chocolate Walnut Cake

Natasha Feldman
This super chocolatey, decadent and fudgy chocolate walnut cake is gluten-free and it’s easy to make. The secret ingredient is California Prunes, which adds an extra honey/caramel-like layer of sweetness and helps give this cake a fudgy texture while staying super moist – even days after baking!
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, Chef Created, Holiday, Kid Friendly
Servings 10 servings
Calories 635 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 cup California Prunes
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons instant coffee granules
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (minus 2 tablespoons) gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ½ cup toasted, salted walnuts
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate melted
  • Flaky sea salt for topping

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C)
  • Add prunes, buttermilk, oil and instant coffee to blender. Blend until smooth and pour into a large mixing bowl. Whisk in eggs, sugar and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • Gently fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips and walnuts.
  • Oil pan(s) and pour in batter.
    Bake bundt for 50 minutes or the smaller cake/loaf pans for 35-45 minutes, or until the cake doesn’t wiggle in the middle and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Remove from oven and let cool. Remove from pans and place on serving platter.
  • Pour melted chocolate on top and finish with sea salt.

Nutrition

Serving: 1sliceCalories: 635kcalCarbohydrates: 98gProtein: 12gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0.03gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 479mgPotassium: 526mgFiber: 11gSugar: 54gVitamin A: 271IUVitamin C: 0.2mgCalcium: 154mgIron: 5mg
Keyword baking, cake, chocolate, chocolate cake, gluten free
Tried this recipe? Want to save it for later?Share it on social and tag @CAPrunes or #CAPrunes!
Overhead view of beef tagine served over couscous and topped with pomegranate arils and fresh herbs. Plated on pale yellow plate with serving spoon.

Moroccan-Style Braised Beef with Prunes

Looking for the perfect dinner to serve alongside this Chocolate Walnut Cake for a fun dinner party? These beef short ribs are cooked low and slow with onions, garlic, California Prunes and spices. Serve with couscous (or quinoa) and a few easy sides for a “set it and forget it” dinner party meal that will wow guests.

Natasha Feldman's Slow Roasted Brisket

Slow Roasted Brisket

The key to Natasha Feldman‘s Slow Roasted Brisket recipe is cooking the meat in red wine and lots of tart + sweet dried fruit, including prunes. She also suggests cooking the brisket the day before serving.

You can make her Spicy Sweet Brisket Sandwich with the leftovers too!