Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake Recipe

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This Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake combines an unexpected twist of flavors with rich cocoa, tangy mayo, and a hint of coffee. The result is incredibly moist and flavorful.

I’m a big fan of chocolate cake. Whether it’s our easy chocolate cake, our dark chocolate cake, or my German chocolate cake…I love it all.

Slice of chocolate layer cake being lifted with a spatula.
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Why Chocolate-Mayonnaise Cake Works

This isn’t just an ordinary chocolate cake—it’s a rich and robust masterpiece that’ll leave you craving more.

Say goodbye to dry, lackluster desserts and say hello to the an easy recipe from Grandma. Our grandma’s knew just what it took to make a moist cake!

  • Unbelievably moist. Thanks to the magic of mayonnaise—which is mostly egg yolks and oil—this cake stays incredibly moist and spongey.
  • A simple time-saver. There’s no need to fuss over tons of ingredients. The mayo is a substitute to simplify the baking process without compromising taste.
  • Everybody loves it. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a kitchen novice, this recipe guarantees a show-stopping cake. It’s sure to impress anyone who takes a bite.

We’re loving this flavorful Black Forest Cake recipe too!

Ingredient Notes

Ingredients needed to make chocolate mayonnaise cake.
  • Flour – All-purpose flour is perfect for cake recipes. It strikes a balance between providing structure without creating a dense crumb. This way, you’ll achieve a springy, tender texture. Use our guide on how to measure flour so you don’t accidentally add too much or too little.
  • Cocoa Powder – Unsweetened cocoa powder imparts a rich, deep chocolate flavor to the cake without adding extra sweetness. Then, you can control the amount of sugar added.
  • Mayonnaise – Mayonnaise in a cake might sound unusual, but it’s the secret ingredient that will make this chocolate cake to die for. The mayo serves as a substitute for traditional cake ingredients like egg yolks, oil, and water. The result is moist, rich, convenient, and chocolatey cake layers that are oh-so-delicious.
  • Instant Espresso Powder + Hot Water – Coffee is a natural complement to chocolate. Incorporating espresso into the cake batter will intensify the chocolate flavor without overpowering it. Alternatively, you could use brewed coffee instead of instant.

Easy Instructions

Step by step photos showing how to make chocolate mayonnaise cake batter.

Making chocolate mayonnaise cake is so easy. Combine your ingredients!

Then pour into two cake pans. Bake and cool before adding frosting.

Step by step photos showing how to make frosting for chocolate mayonnaise cake.

Make the frosting. Add more or less liquid to get desired consistency.

Assemble cake. Spread frosting between layers and around the outside too!

Slice of chocolate mayonnaise cake with a bite taken out.

Recipe FAQs

How should I store leftover cake?

Store the cake whole or in slices in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days. Otherwise, you can freeze cake slices by wrapping them in plastic wrap and then sliding them into a ziplock freezer bag. Thaw them in the fridge overnight before serving. 

Can I make this cake in advance?

Simply bake the cake layers as instructed, and once they’ve cooled, you can wrap them in a few layers of plastic wrap and freeze them. When you’re ready to assemble, thaw the layers in the fridge overnight, and then whip up the frosting before serving. 

What does mayonnaise do in a cake?

Thanks to the magic of mayonnaise—which is mostly egg yolks and oil—this chocolate mayonnaise cake stays incredibly moist and spongey.

More Chocolate Desserts

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Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

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By: Aimee
This Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake combines an unexpected twist of flavors with rich cocoa, tangy mayo, and a hint of coffee. The result is incredibly moist and flavorful. I guarantee it will please a crowd and satisfy your craving.
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 10 slices


For the Cake Layers

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cups mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 cup hot water

For the Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 ½ cups powdered sugar
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  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 8 (or 9)-inch round cake pans with baking spray. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Add in mayonnaise and beat until the mixture is crumbly. Add in espresso powder and pour in hot water. Beat until the batter is smooth.
  • Pour cake batter evenly into prepared cake pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack in pans for about 15 minutes, then remove cakes from pan to cool completely.
  • For the frosting, beat butter in a large mixing bowl until pale in color (3-4 minutes). Add in cocoa, powdered sugar and beat until thick and smooth. If needed, add a splash of cream or milk.
  • To assemble the cakes, lay one layer of cake onto a cake platter. Spoon about 3/4 cup of frosting over the top. Place second layer of cake over the frosting. Spread the remaining frosting over the sides and top of cake until smooth.


  • Store cake in airtight container or covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  • Freeze cake by placing slices of cake in plastic wrap, then slide slices into ziploc freezer bag. Or, freeze layers of cake before assembling with frosting. Freeze for 3 months. Thaw in refrigerator overnight.
  • Mayonnaise is made with oil and eggs which is why there is no need to add extra to this delicious cake.
  • Experiment with different frosting flavors. Try adding a hint of almond extract or incorporating a solace of liquor like coffee-flavored Kahlúa. Use our sour cream chocolate frosting for a tangy twist.
  • Consider garnishing the cake with shaved chocolate, toasted nuts, or fresh berries to add a pop of color and extra flavor.
  • Instead of making a layered cake, you can use this recipe for baking moist and delicious chocolate mayonnaise cupcakes or a 13×9. You’ll have to adjust the baking time, but once a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, they’re good to go!
  • Be sure to choose a full fat mayonnaise. Dukes and Hellman’s are my favorite brands here.
  • See blog post for more recipe tips and tricks.


Serving: 1slice, Calories: 805kcal, Carbohydrates: 100g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 45g, Saturated Fat: 16g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 16g, Monounsaturated Fat: 11g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 63mg, Sodium: 530mg, Potassium: 157mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 67g, Vitamin A: 589IU, Calcium: 70mg, Iron: 3mg
Course: Cake
Cuisine: American
Did you make this recipe?Mention @shugarysweets or tag #shugarysweets!

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About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

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Posted on February 19, 2024

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