Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake

You might not think stout would be good in a cake but combine it with grapefruit, orange, and cocoa and you get a moist, dense cake that’s not too sweet. The Grand Marnier cream cheese frosting adds just the right amount of sugar to make Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake a perfect dessert.

A round dark chocolate cake topped with a pale orange cream cheese frosting and candied citrus. The cake sits on a round white plateand a dainty floral table cloth. The background is teal green

When I think of St. Patrick’s Day, I think of shamrocks, Irish songs, Irish stew, potatoes, cabbage and, of course, green beer. I’m not much of a beer fan. In fact, I don’t like beer at all and I especially don’t like dark beers. But I was intrigued when my friend Julianne over at Beyond Frosting made a Chocolate Stout Cake that looked out of this world.

Flavorings are also difficult to find here in Cambodia but hard liquor is abundant and some liquors make excellent flavorings.  I’ve made my own vanilla but there was no chance of finding orange extract here. I substituted Grand Marnier for vanilla to give my Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake a bit more citrus punch.

Lastly, I reduced the sugar in the frosting and added a teaspoon of Grand Marnier to that as well. You can use orange extract instead of Grand Marnier.

A slice of citrus chocolate stout cake on a plate with pink flours. The moist, dark chocolate contrasts with the pale orange cream cheese frosting on top.

Then came the beer. I didn’t see Guinness on my first trip to the grocery store but surprisingly I found a local stout called Black Panther. It was $0.70 per can so the price was right. I looked it up on Rate my Beer and their experts gave

Black Panther has pretty mediocre scores for a stout. Since I had no intention of drinking it, I figured it was OK for cooking. Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake might come out even better with a good stout but I wouldn’t know a good stout from a bad one anyway.

A dark chocolate cake topped with pale orange cream cheese frosting and candied citrus peel sits on a white plate. Two slices have been taken from the front. The plate sits on a dainty floral table cloth and the background is a dark teal.

My springform pan is just under 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. The recipe calls for a 9 inch springform pan.  I  worried that the batter would overflow the smaller pan. So I put most of the batter in my large springform pan and put the rest in a 4 inch springform pan – big mistake.

I could have put all of the batter in my 8 inch pan and it would have been fine. The 4 inch pan over flowed and made a mess. It did give me a chance to taste-test the cake before the large one was done but I need to clean my oven today.

Yield: 1 cake

Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake

Citrus Chocolate Stout Cake

Dense, moist dark chocolate cake with hints of citrus and stout topped with decadent citrus cream cheese frosting.



  • 1 cup Guinness stout
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 ¼ cups sugar
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • Grated rind of 1 grapefruit

Grand Marnier Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon Grand Marnier



  1. Butter a 9-inch spring form pan and line with parchment paper. In a large saucepan, combine stout and butter. Place over medium-low heat until butter melts, then remove from heat. Add cocoa and sugar, and whisk to blend.
  2. In a small bowl, combine sour cream, eggs and Grand Marnier; mix well. Add to stout mixture. Add flour and baking soda, and whisk again until smooth. Pour into buttered spring form pan, and bake at 350° F 45 minutes to one hour. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place pan on a wire rack and cool completely in pan.
  3. Remove cake from pan and place on a platter or cake stand. Ice top of cake only. Garnish with candied grapefruit peel.

Grand Marnier Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Put cream cheese in a bowl and sift confectioners' sugar on top. Blend until smooth. Add heavy cream and Grand Marnier, and mix until smooth and spreadable.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 450Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 75mgSodium: 357mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 2gSugar: 49gProtein: 6g

Nutrition information is provided as a guide only. Please consult a dietician for specific dietary needs.

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