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Chocolate Olive Oil Cake

Torta di Cioccolato di Olio di Oliva
This super moist chocolate cake made with olive oil and frosted with cinnamon flavored frosting makes a perfect ending to a Valentine Day dinner. Be creative and make it in a heart shaped pan or use cupcake pans.



2 cups unbleached all purpose flour, 1 cup cake flour

2 cups sugar

6 tablespoons baking cocoa

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup extra light olive oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract, or more to taste

2 tablespoons white vinegar

2 cups hot water


One 8-ounce container Mascarpone or cream cheese, at room temperature

3 1/2 to 4 cups confectioners’ sugar

1 or 2 drops cinnamon oil or 1 teaspoon almond extract

Crystalized white sugar for sprinkling on top



Serves 8 or makes about 18 cupcakes

Lightly oil a 9 x 2 inch cake pan and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Mix the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl.

With a hand mixer on low speed beat in the olive oil, vinegar, and vanilla.  Mix the cocoa with the hot water until smooth; add this to the batter and mix again.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until a cake skewer inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean. Do not over bake the cake. It should be firm to the touch, and a cake skewer inserted in the middle of the cake should come out clean.

Place the cake pan on a cooling rack and allow it to come to room temperature before removing the cake from the pan to cool completely. Frost when cool.

Beat the Mascarpone cheese in a bowl until smooth; gradually add in enough of the sugar to make a smooth frosting that is not runny. Stir in the cinnamon oil or the almond extract. Frost the cake and sprinkle the crystal sugar over the top. Or if you are making the cupcakes, frost them and sprinkle the tops with the sugar.

Cut the cake into wedges to serve.

This recipe is featured on show 1201 – Chocolate Cupcakes.


  1. Therese's avatar


    This is an amazingly tasty chocolate cake. I could not believe that a cake without eggs, milk, or sour cream could be so good!
  2. Laura's avatar


    The cake had good flavor and texture. It was delicate in holding its form as a larger cake. I will make smaller cakes from it next time.
  3. Bakemeacake's avatar


    This is the one of the best chocolate cakes I've had. Generally, I don't even eat chocolate cake! I've made this three or four times. It is easy, delicious, and the olive oil helps the cake last longer. I keep it in the fridge and serve it cold--yum!
  4. Stephanie's avatar


    We are getting ready to move, and I was having a major pregnancy craving for chocolate cake,but we didn't have any eggs. A Google search brought me to your recipe. My 3 year old son and I made this recipe as cupcakes after watching your video together, they are in the oven now. He is so excited, he is sitting on my kitchen stool in front of the oven. Thank you so much for bringing this recipe into our kitchen.
  5. Paula B.'s avatar

    Paula B.

    Just made a flourless chocolate cake and it was fantastic, now I am searching for all kinds of chocolate cake. I had heard that olive oil was a great addition to cake baking. Love the frosting recipe also. Think I will make this tomorrow! First visit to Ciao Italia's site but a fan already!
  6. Sunny's avatar


    I'm another pregnant lady with chocolate cake cravings and no eggs in the house. Excited to try the recipe!

    I just wanted to note that if you watch the video, there are some discrepancies from the written recipe, and I think the video version sounds like a better recipe:

    - Flour consists of 1c cake flour and 2c all purpose
    - Cocoa should be mixed with 2c HOT water, not cold
    - Frosting is made with 8oz of mascarpone and 3.5c of confectioner's sugar, not 16oz of light cream cheese (I'd sub out 8oz of regular cream cheese with the same amount of sugar)
  7. MG's avatar


    Wow! I stumbled across this when looking for a cake to make for a gathering where we needed a dairy-free dessert. I could not believe how EASY the cake was. We wound up using almost all regular white flour (vs unbleached) as I didn't have as much unbleached as I thought. We made cupcakes, and I baked them for 21 minutes in a 350 degree convection oven (325, the oven auto-adjusts the temp when doing convection).

    You didn't mention cake pan sizes or cooking times for alternate sizes - that would be really useful information.

    Since the dessert needed to be dairy free, of course I couldn't use your frosting, but I used an egg white / corn syrup frosting that was basically marshmallow fluff (Karo's website has the recipe as do others).

    The end result was a HUGE hit.
  8. Joanne S.'s avatar

    Joanne S.

    As a previous reviewer SUNNY stated, many errors in this recipe, watch video first before proceeding with written recipe. She listed all the discrepancies, but forgot two other errors...the baking soda should be only 3/4 tsp, NOT 2 tsps.! Vanilla extract is not listed in ingredient list, but MaryAnn uses it in the video. It is also written out in the directions. Whoa Nellie. This is really a recipe that is confused! I'd love to try it but am afraid to. I would follow the video version of recipe and NOT the written one.

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