Perfect swiss roll cake


A nod to the classic childhood favorite, this chocolate cake roll combines light chocolate sponge cake with sweet vanilla whipped cream and chocolate ganache. Rich và totally irresistible, this dessert is for chocolate lovers everywhere. Follow this carefully explained step-by-step recipe and video tutorial for success.

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It’s no secret that childhood classics are some of the best foods. Who else enjoyed gushers, push-up pops, fruit-by-the-foot, dunkaroos, those cracker “sticks” & spreadable cheese (lol those were so good), juice boxes, bagel bites, và dinosaur chicken fingers?

Just lớn name a few…!

I’m constantly inspired khổng lồ recreate these favorites. We’re talking brown sugar cinnamon pop tarts, animal cracker cookies, and, of course, oatmeal creme pies! và don’t forget homemade cream-filled chocolate cupcakes, just lượt thích the packaged ones that were always a treat khổng lồ find in your lunchbox. Today we’re adding another nostalgic favorite: chocolate cake roll aka ho hos, swiss roll cakes, and yodels.


This cake roll required more testing than usual because I was SO torn between using butter vs oil, cocoa powder vs melted chocolate, as well as the perfect amount of flour. I’m not kidding… I must have made at least 8 or 9 different chocolate cake rolls. (I lost count after #3!) Despite all the mediocre cakes filling up my brain (and freezer), the recipe testing process was incredibly enlightening. I learned that it’s a VERY thin line between rubbery chocolate sponge cake và good chocolate sponge cake. A line so thin that tightrope walkers would be nervous. Luckily I made all the mistakes so you don’t have to.

This *successful* chocolate cake roll is:

Light with a rich chocolate flavorMoist và sweetTopped with dark chocolate ganache

Ok, let’s see it some together in a clip tutorial.

Video Tutorial: Chocolate Cake Roll

You can also make mini chocolate cake rolls which are closer in size to the Hostess or Little Debbie snacks we love. Regardless of the brand, a homemade mini or giant version is just as tasty as you remember. But as a bonus, it’s completely fresh from your own kitchen.


Chocolate Cake Roll Recipe Ingredients

A little of this, a little of that. These basic ingredients wear very important hats in this Swiss roll cake recipe. Unless where noted, avoid making substitutions.

Separated Eggs:Eggs are the workhorse of this recipe, mostly providing structure và moisture. You need 4 separated eggs. Both the yolks and whites are used.White Sugar:Use granulated sugar lớn sweeten the cake roll. Note that the clip below shows brown sugar as well, but we updated the recipe to use all white sugar as we find the cake isn’t as prone to cracking this way.Salt & Vanilla Extract: Add flavor.Baking Powder: For lift.Butter: As I tested this recipe, one of my main avoidances was a dry sponge cake. Creamed butter wasn’t ideal because when mixed with cocoa powder, the cake tasted awfully dry và bland. Melted butter was much better. I toyed with the amount, but was ultimately pleased with 4 Tablespoons. (3 Tablespoons of oil works too, see recipe note.)Strong Coffee or Espresso Powder:A bit of strong coffee deepens chocolate flavor; coffee is actually a common ingredient in many chocolate desserts! This cake roll does not taste lượt thích coffee at all– trust me, my husband who detests coffee would have noticed. & there’s so little that I wouldn’t be concerned serving to lớn kids.All-Purpose Flour: I played around with many different amounts of flour, as well as testing out cake flour. Cake flour was too light, 2/3 cup of all-purpose flour was too much, 1/3 cup was too little, so 50% cup it is!

How to Make Chocolate Cake Roll

You can watch each step in the video clip tutorial above. You need a few bowls, a sifter/sieve, và a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment.

Whip egg whites & white sugar into stiff peaks: Whipping the egg whites & sugar into stiff peaks takes at least 5 minutes, so don’t get discouraged if you think it’s taking too long. Keep beating!Beat egg yolks, sugar, và vanilla together: Beat these wet ingredients together until pale and creamy, which is usually around 2 full minutes.Add wet ingredients: Pour the egg yolk mixture over the sifted dry ingredients, then add the melted butter và coffee. Beat it all together.Fold in egg whites: Using a rubber spatula, fold in the egg whites. Bởi this slowly & gently as you don’t want to lớn deflate the batter.Invert the warm cake:No time for cooling! Immediately invert the warm cake onto parchment paper or a clean thin kitchen towel dusted with cocoa powder.Cool in rolled up shape: Gently roll the cake up with the parchment/towel. Let it cool in the rolled up shape so when it’s time to lớn roll it up with the whipped cream filling, it’s already “familiar” with the rolled up shape. (And won’t resist or crack!)Assemble:Add whipped cream, roll back up, then vị trí cao nhất with ganache.

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Best pan to lớn use: 12×17 inch half sheet pan. A larger pan yields a much thinner cake, while a smaller pan creates a cake that’s too thick. Either sizes would be difficult & almost impossible to lớn roll out, so make sure you use the correct size. (Note that my pumpkin roll calls for a smaller pan và is thicker.)



How khổng lồ Assemble Swiss Roll Cake

The cake cools in the rolled up shape. It can cool at room temperature or in the refrigerator. I usually cool cake rolls in the refrigerator for about 2-3 hours. Once completely cool, unroll the chocolate cake & fill with homemade whipped cream. You only need 3 ingredients: heavy cream, sugar, & vanilla extract. Since the chocolate ganache is pretty dark, I use a bit more sugar và vanilla extract compared to my usual whipped cream recipe. You can use confectioners’ sugar or granulated sugar in the whipped cream– see my recipe note. You can even add some store-bought marshmallow creme (“fluff”) for marshmallow flavor.

The whipped cream is billowy and soft with deliciously sweet vanilla flavor– a lovely & light contrast to the deep chocolate cake.

Roll the cake back up (without parchment this time), then set it aside as you prepare the chocolate ganache.

And for the mini size: If you’re making the mini size, cut the cake into 4 equal pieces. Roll each up, then slice in half to yield 8 mini cake rolls.

Chocolate Ganache Topping

The only thing easer than homemade whipped cream is homemade chocolate ganache. Simply combine warm cream with finely chopped chocolate, then set the two together until completely smooth. I lượt thích to địa chỉ a teaspoon of corn syrup for an extra glossy finish, but that’s totally optional.

I have two chocolate ganache success tips for you:

Use real chocolate such as Baker’s or Ghirardelli baking bars found in the baking aisle. Avoid chocolate chips.Chop up the chocolate into super fine pieces. The smaller the pieces, the quicker the ganache comes together & smoother it tastes.

Drape it all over the chocolate cake roll. Chill the cake roll so the chocolate ganache sets, which makes slicing a bit neater. (Though there’s still plenty of lick-your-finger moments!)

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Prep Time: 1 hourCook Time: 10 minutesTotal Time: 3 hours, 40 minutesYield: 10–12 slices 1xCategory: DessertMethod: BakingCuisine: American
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Rich & totally irresistible, this chocolate cake roll is for chocolate lovers everywhere. Follow this carefully explained step-by-step recipe và the video tutorial above for success.

4 large eggs, separated2/3 cup (135g) granulated sugar, divided1 Tablespoon (15ml) strong brewed coffee *or* 1 teaspoon espresso powder1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter, melted (see note)1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract3 Tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder, plus 2 Tablespoons (10g) for rolling*1 teaspoon baking powder1/4 teaspoon saltVanilla Whipped Cream1 cup (240ml) cold heavy cream or heavy whipping cream3 Tablespoons (38g) granulated sugar or confectioners’ sugar1 teaspoon pure vanilla extractoptional: 2 Tablespoons marshmallow creme (“Fluff”)Chocolate Topping1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping creamone 4 ounce bar (113g) semi-sweet chocolate, finely choppedoptional for glossy shine: 1 teaspoon light corn syrup
Make the cake: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat the egg whites & 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar together in a medium bowl on high speed for 5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Phối aside. In another bowl, beat the egg yolks, remaining sugar, and vanilla extract together until pale & creamy, about 2 minutes.Spread batter evenly into prepared pan. It will be a very thin layer. Shimmy the pan on the counter khổng lồ smooth out the top. Bake for 10 minutes or until the top of the cake gently springs back when touched with your finger. Vị NOT over-bake.Bring cake lớn room temperature if it was in the refrigerator. The cake is prone lớn cracking if unrolled while cold.Make the whipped cream: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, sugar, & vanilla extract on medium-high tốc độ until medium lớn stiff peaks form, about 2-3 minutes. Then beat in the marshmallow creme, if using.Slowly & gently unroll the cake. Spread whipped cream evenly on top, leaving about a một nửa inch border around the cake. Gently roll the cake back up, without the parchment/towel this time. Place on a wire rack phối on a baking sheet (to catch the extra ganache). Mix aside on the counter or in the refrigerator as you prepare the ganache.Make the ganache topping: Place chopped chocolate and corn syrup, if using, in a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it begins to gently simmer. (Do not let it come to a rapid boil– that’s too hot.) Pour over chocolate, then let it sit for 2-3 minutes to gently soften the chocolate. Slowly stir until completely combined and chocolate has melted.Pour ganache all over cake roll. Feel không lấy phí to spoon up any dripped ganache & spoon over the cake again. Refrigerate for at least 30-60 minutes before slicing và serving.Cover leftover cake & store in the refrigerator for up lớn 3 days.
Make Ahead và Freezing Instructions: You can prepare the cake through step 5 và chill the rolled up cake in the refrigerator for up to lớn 1 day before continuing with step 6. Prepared cake roll, with filling, freezes well for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before topping with ganache và serving. For best taste và texture, I don’t recommend freezing with the ganache topping.Mini Chocolate Cake Rolls: Follow the recipe exactly as written. After spreading the whipped cream on đứng top of the cake in step 8, cut the cake into 4 (approx 6 inch X 8.5 inch) rectangles as shown in the photo above. Starting with the narrow end, roll each mini roll up. Slice in half to lớn make 8 mini cake rolls. Continue with the recipe. Vị trí cao nhất with sprinkles if desired.Brewed Coffee or Espresso Powder: A bit of coffee deepens chocolate flavor in desserts. This cake roll does not taste lượt thích coffee at all. You can use either liquid brewed coffee or espresso powder. I tested with both & was pleased with both.Butter or Oil: I usually use melted butter, but have found that 3 Tablespoons (45ml) of vegetable oil produces a lovely moist cake that isn’t as prone khổng lồ cracking.Sugar in Whipped Cream: Some bakers swear by granulated sugar in whipped cream; others swear by confectioners’ sugar. If you’re only working with a couple Tablespoons of sugar, it doesn’t really make a difference. Use either.Optional Marshmallow Creme: For a little marshmallow flavor, beat marshmallow creme into the whipped cream. This is totally optional. Taste testers didn’t really notice a difference!

Keywords: roll cake, whipped cream, ganache

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Reader Questions & Reviews

November 28, 2020 at
Hi Sally,

I made this recipe yesterday và it was so good. I got a new kitchenaid mixer and the egg whites whipped up so fast I may have over whipped them but everything turned out fine. The cake cracked a little when I was trying lớn roll back up with the filling but it still turned out okay. My family loved it. Also, I was wondering if there was a way to make this cake vanilla?


I’m going lớn turn this into a Yule Log with chocolate-Amaretto filling. Instead of coffee, would a teaspoon of Kahlua work? Making sure the moisture màn chơi isn’t affected. If that’s a bad idea, I’ll put the Kahlua in the filling instead.