Lighter Chocolate cake with chocolate icing

You’d never guess that this rich-tasting, light-textured sponge is lower in fat, calories and sugar thanks to ground almonds and yogurt

  • Prep:30 mins
    Cook:20 mins
    plus cooling
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 269
  • fat 12g
  • saturates 5g
  • carbs 31.3g
  • sugars 20.4g
  • fibre 1.4g
  • protein 8.1g
  • salt 0.6g


  • 25g butter
  • 140g self-raising flour
  • 25g cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • 50g light muscovado sugar
  • 75g golden caster sugar
  • 25g ground almonds
  • 175g natural yogurt
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 25g dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa solids), finely chopped
  • 50g icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted
  • 25g butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp semi-skimmed milk
  • 100g light cream cheese, straight from the fridge
  • 100g Quark cheese
  • 10 sugared almonds (optional)


Melting chocolate

To stop the chocolate from overheating and then seizing, chop it into very small pieces so it melts quicker. Don’t let the bowl it is in touch the water in the pan and once the chocolate has melted, remove the bowl from the pan immediately.



  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line the bases of 2 x 18cm round sandwich cake tins with baking parchment. Melt the butter and set aside to cool. Mix the flour in a large bowl with the cocoa powder, baking powder, both sugars and ground almonds. Stir the yogurt and vanilla into the beaten eggs. Pour this into the dry mixture along with the melted butter and oil. Briefly stir until just mixed, creamy and smooth. Do not overbeat.

  2. Spoon the mixture evenly between the two tins and level the surfaces. Bake for 20 mins until risen and starting to come away from the sides of the tin. Remove from the tins, peel off the parchment and leave the cakes to cool on a wire rack.

  3. Meanwhile, make the icing. Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water. Remove the bowl from the pan and leave the chocolate to cool. Sift the icing sugar and cocoa into a separate bowl. Add the butter and milk, and beat until smooth. Beat in the cream cheese and quark, then stir in the cooled, melted chocolate.

  4. When the cakes are cold, use half the icing to sandwich both cakes together. Spread the rest of the icing on top in fluffy folds, then decorate with sugared almonds, if you like.

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