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Clodagh's Guinness Cake

Never has one cake garnered so much excitement from the entire Marilyn staff and crew. "It's literally the best cake I've ever tasted," is a declaration we heard more than once. Seriously. This cake, which Clodagh claims is even more famous than her, is worth all the praise. It's moist, decadent, but not overwhelmingly sweet. It's the perfect cake for literally any occassion. 



  • 2 1/4 sticks plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups Guinness
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons superfine sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 21/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

For the frosting:

  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups cream cheese (not low-fat)
  • Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom of a 5 centimeter round springform pan with parchment paper


  1. Make the cake: Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat until melted.
  2. Stir in the Guinness, then remove from the heat and stir in the cocoa.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract, and buttermilk, and then slowly mix in the Guinness mixture.
  4. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder into a separate large bowl.
  5. Using a handheld electric mixer, slowly mix the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and keep beating until it is all well combined.
  6. Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan and bake in the oven for about 45 minutes. Test to make sure the cake is cooked by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake—if it comes out clean, the cake is cooked. Let cool in the pan, then transfer from the pan onto a wire rack.
  7. While the cake is cooling, make the frosting: Using a handheld electric mixer, blend all the ingredients together until light and fluffy.
  8. Place the cooled cake on a plate and generously spread the frosting on top.

The cake will keep for up to one week in an airtight container.

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