It’s almost Valentine’s Day. To be honest, we chose to ignore this day completely in our house a few years ago. No flowers, gifts, expensive dine-outs or comprehensive dine-ins that has us standing in the kitchen for hours. None of this.

In fact, this year I am running a half marathon at 7am the next day, and need to get up at 4.30am in the morning. For that, I need Valentine’s day to be as unexciting and smooth as possible. Kids need to be in bed by 8pm, I try and be in bed by 10pm. And surely no fancy foods.

However, I take it as an excuse, to serve you some of my ultimate chocolate cake. It’s one of those recipes that have been tweaked and changed numerous times until it reached perfection. The perfect balance between maximum chocolate flavor, the right amount of sweetness and moist texture.

The cake is so good, that it took several attempts to get it photographed as my kids always wait in front of the oven like vultures for the cake to come out, whenever they smelled chocolate scents filling the house. Happy Valentine!


Print Recipe

150g or 1 1/3 cups almond meal
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

50g or 1/3 cup cocoa powder
125ml or 1/3 cup boiling water

2 eggs
150g or 2/3 cup coconut sugar
1/3 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Serves 9
Preheat oven to 180C/375F. Line 8-inch square tin with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, pour the boiling water over cocoa powder and stir until cocoa has dissolved. Set aside to let cool.

In a bowl, mix together almond meal and baking soda. Set aside.

In another bowl, beat eggs and sugar with an electric mixer until creamy. Blend in olive oil and vanilla extract. Add the cooled cocoa mixture to the egg mixture and stir until well combined.
Now add wet mixture to almond meal mixture and stir until combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared tin. Bake for about 35 minutes. Let cool on wire rack before cutting.



  1. Good luck with the half-marathon Anja!

    Thank you for sharing yet another healthy but indulgent recipe.

  2. That’s a great healthy-looking cake. I am sure it was hard to photograph it with hungry mouths around. Good luck with the half marathon.

  3. Do you live in Dubai, Rachel? I buy palm sugar in Choithram or Jaggery from all regular supermarkets.

  4. A very simple recipe that is really delicious. Loved it.

    I couldn’t get coconut sugar so I just used ordinary sugar, and I didn’t have olive oil so used sunflower. Worked perfectly and I’ll definitely be making it again.

  5. Hi Anja, just a mom-of-4 here in Canada who wants you to know this is her favorite food blog! And I just made this chocolate cake for the THIRD time in ONE week! 🙂 (We’ve had a lot of birthdays lately.) It was exactly the type of recipe I was looking for and we all love it (just like everything else I’ve tried from your site). I tried it with coconut oil the first time and then olive oil the second time… in my opinion the coconut was even yummier, so the one in the oven right now is another coconut. Any icing/toppings suggestions?

  6. Thanks, Jenni. We go through two batches per week at times, even without birthdays. I can imagine that this is good with coconut oil too. Will try it next time. The cake is gone so quickly that I haven’t really had a chance to try any toppings. What about whipped coconut cream and fresh berries?

  7. Hi Anja,
    I wanted to let you know that I made this cake twice already. GENIUS chocolate cake! Thanks so much for this fabulous recipe! I made the original version and another one with grape seed oil. Served with fresh fruit salad (mango, orange, pomegranate, raspberries) and plain greek joghurt.
    How did the half marathon go?
    Greetings to Dubai from the Midwest (where there is lots of snow, sleet and ice right now).

  8. Hi Anja,
    I made this recipe twice already. GENIUS chocolate cake! Thanks for this fabulous recipe. Our new favorite. Made one batch original and one with grape seed oil. Served with fresh fruit salad (mango/pomegranate/orange/berries) and topped with plain greek yoghurt.
    How did the half marathon go for you?
    Greetings to Dubai from the Midwest (where there is lots of snow, sleet and ice right now!)

  9. Loved the pics and the cake looks so tempting 🙂 unfortunately coconut sugar isn’t available in Indian markets.

  10. Maria, I use a lot of grated Jaggery. That should work in this cake too.

  11. Dear Anja,
    I’ve only discovered your blog yesterday – the little I’ve manage to explore looks great!
    With respect to the chocolate olive oil cake – we don’t have coconut sugar over here and I understand from your response to one of the comments that plain sugar is a sub. Should I add some coconut as well or will that make the texture too dry?
    This cake is perfect for Passover as it doesn’t require flour and I would like to try it.

  12. Hannah, brown sugar or raw sugar will be good in this. Normal white sugar will do too.

  13. Thank you! I will let you know how it came out.

  14. Dear Anja,
    Do you think that I could replace the almond meal with chestnut flour?

  15. amazing! Thank you! I doubled the recipe and used a 9×13 pan and they came out like brownies. I used part olive oil and part coconut oil. I also replaced the coconut sugar with date paste. It was perfectly moist, dense, had a hint of coconut taste and wasn’t at all too sweet. What a great, healthy alternative for traditional cake!

  16. How many ounces of almonds do I need to make one cup of almond meal?

  17. I think you have to just reduce the baking time. I’ve made muffins out of this before. same ingredients, just keep an eye on them, once they are in the oven.

  18. Looks delicious! I only have one problem with the water: 125 ml is not 1/3 cup. 1/3 cup is 80 ml. What is the correct ammount 125 ml or 80 ml?

  19. I just measured it out again. It’s exactly 100ml.

  20. Hi, I only just found this blog yesterday, and it’s great! The recipes all look so good, and healthy too! I made this cake yesterday, and it turned out really well- moist and rich. I was slightly confused however- the recipe calls for 1/3 cup boiling water, 125 ml. Now I live in Australia, so perhaps my measurements are different than those in Dubai, but my 1/3 cup is only 80ml or so, 125ml being 1/2 cup. Also, the almond meal. 150g is way more than 1 1/3 cups. Was it supposed to be very firmly packed? I ended up 150g= more like 1 1/2-2/3 cups. But even with those minor difficulties, the cake baked perfectly in 30 mins in an 8in round tin, and although a very small and flat cake, it was delicious!

  21. P.S. For some reason I can’t access all the links on the website- ‘Running- how I started’ doesn’t load, or even start to load.

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