With a title like that there is really nothing else that needs to be said.

In fact I feel sort of badly for writing anything at all knowing that the time you take to read these words is time you are not setting to the task of making this cake. But perhaps there are a few of you who are not already gathering the cocoa, butter and sugar just by the mere mention of “fudge”, “pudding” and “cake”.

It’s for those people that I speak of the union of cake, brownie and hot fudge that this single recipe manages to accomplish so well. For those who have yet to pre-heat the oven I will tell you its black as night appearance that informs you of its richness before a single bite is taken. The agressive scent of cocoa flees the oven just as the cake is done baking and the faint hint of coffee only helps to accentuate the intense chocolate.

What I find most endearing about this recipe is that it manages to cover most bases as far as cravings go. Of course it has chocolate well taken care of but for me even a simple chocolate craving is made complicated by my follow up question of texture. With this recipe you get a bit of crisp bite if you are quick enough to grab a corner piece, a thin layer of soft cake is tucked underneath which then gives way to a warm fudge sauce. All of that served over ice cream makes for one stunner of a sundae.

It’s hard for me to imagine that there is any need for further convincing. So I’ll leave it at that.


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Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

adapted from Grandma and Cook’s Country

This recipe comes from my grandma’s archives. I love passing along recipes from her to my own family. With each dump of an ingredient and stir of the batter I’m reminded that grandma raised six wonderful children and lived to tell about it so surely I’ll survive raising three. Perhaps she, like me, used this cake on those desperate days to help pull through. 

1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ cup cocoa
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup milk
4 Tablespoons butter, melted
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon instant espresso powder
1 cup hot water
½ cup chocolate chips
Pre-heat your oven to 350*
In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, ¼ cup cocoa, salt and ½ cup sugar. Whisk to combine. Stir in the milk, vanilla extract, egg yolk and melted butter. Spread into a buttered 9” square cake pan.

In a small bowl combine the remaining ½ cup brown sugar and ¼ cup cocoa. Whisk to break up clumps. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the cake batter then sprinkle the cocoa powder and sugar mixture on top of that.

Combine the espresso powder with the hot water and pour all over the top but do not stir. Bake 35-40 minutes or until the edges of the cake feel baked but the middle still has a gentle jiggle as the sauce poured on top has now settled to the bottom to create a rich pudding. Brilliant, really.

Let cool in the pan for about 15-20 minutes before serving. Serve alongside whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

75 Responses to “Hot Fudge Pudding Cake”

  1. Marissa | Pinch&Swirl

    What a darling face on your little girl! I love the abandon that kids have when they’re eating something really fantastic. Kids of all ages that is. 🙂 I’m making this for sure…

  2. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe

    If it was possible for me to make this right now, I totally would. But alas, it will have to wait. However, this gem of a recipe is most certainly getting tucked safely away until I have a moment to give it a go. I adore the fact that I typically have all of these ingredients sitting in my fridge and cupboards, meaning it can be thrown together on a whim. I suppose that quality also makes it quite dangerous…

  3. Stephanie S

    Oh my goodness. The cake looks fantastic and the pictures of the messy-faced wee one makes me think that it is perfectly delicious and wishes no one would judge me if I ate that way 😛

  4. Annalisa

    My mom made this for us for years (although minus the melted butter and espresso) and now I make it for my kids (but also very much for me=). And everyone I’ve ever served it to with ice cream is silenced for several minutes. Made me happy today to see someone else enjoying this old-school recipe–and can’t wait to try it with the genius espresso addition!!

  5. EM. Halliburton

    Can I be sort of angry at you for even SAYING THESE WORDS TOGETHER? If you need me I’ll be in the kitchen; you’ll probably find me asleep on the floor underneath an empty pan later.

  6. Julie

    Oh yes! I used to have chocolate pudding cake in my regular rotation, but haven’t made it for years.. time to again. Thank you!

  7. Lorna

    Hi Ashley,

    I voted for you, not because you mentioned it in your blog, but because you so deserve to win 🙂 Hope you and the family are well – and thank you of course for making me smile and writing another great post. Love Lorna XXX

  8. thelittleloaf

    This looks absolutely incredible. Sometimes chocolate can be so hard to photograph but you’ve made it look dark, delicious and utterly irresistible 🙂

  9. Sera

    A quick question re the espresso powder – I don’t think I can get it here, and only make filter coffee at home. Would filter work the same way? I’ve been hearing about the magical properties of espresso powder and am wondering if I should try to find some!!!

  10. Rachel

    This looks insanely decadent and delicious! Dark chocolate is my weakness, especially when its hot and gooey!! This is absolutely going on my “to make” list. I can only imagine this and some home made vanilla bean ice cream, AHH! 😉 My mouth is watering for chocolate goodness and it isn’t even noon! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Hannah

    Ok, I have to give in and bake this right away! I haven’t had hot fudge pudding cake in ages. Love the photos of your daughter indulging, too. Thank you for sharing!

  12. Robin

    Gorgeous! Gorgeous. Wow. Such stunning photography. One of my new favorite blogs. Thank you for the inspiration!

  13. Jennifer M.

    You totally talked me into making this, and I preheated the oven as I read the post. It’s in the oven now… 🙂

  14. Maureen @ Orgasmic Chef

    This is one of those desserts you make when nobody is at home and then as soon as it’s cool enough you sit in front of the tv with a big spoon and eat until you’ve had enough, or it’s all gone. 🙂

    Definitely bookmarked!

  15. Tin


    Would love to try out this recipe but can’t find instant espresso powder where I live — could you recommend a substitute? Or can I just pour the hot water and leave out the espresso?


  16. molly

    i’ve been meaning to make a pudding cake since my neighbor sung one’s praises, years ago. that one was lemon. this one might trump it.

    and my son may soon be sending you a thank you note…

  17. Mikaela Cowles

    Girl – – – see, I feel like that’s all I need to say. I too should have left it at that. “Girl,” in that really deep, sort of rolling r pronunciation you use when someone’s just too good for anything else.