Chocolate Guinness Cake With Irish Cream Sabayon

Chocolate Guinness cake

You didn't think I'd let St. Patrick's Day go by without making some sort of dessert, did you? I didn't think so.

I was all set to make some Irish coffee cupcakes when I got an email newsletter from how2heroes featuring a video and recipe for chocolate Guinness cake with Irish cream sabayon (from Pastry Chef Clare Garland of Ashmont Grill). I made a chocolate stout cake last year, so that wasn't the part that intrigued me. It was the Irish cream sabayon. (And, you know, the fact that the dessert looks like adorable pints of Guinness.)

Sabayon is typically a mixture of egg yolks and sugar cooked over simmering water and lightened with whipped cream. This version also adds in Irish cream for flavor and a little bit of melted chocolate for color reminiscent of the foam topping a pint of Guinness.

I'd never made a sabayon before, so I watched the video to make sure I understood the process. It's not difficult at all, but I recommend watching the video before making this dessert just because it will help you be better prepared for each step.

Sometimes I think baking can seem a little intimidating because you're scrambling to add things at the right time or do certain steps in the midst of other steps. As you'll notice in the video, Clare has all of her ingredients ready ahead of time. I rewrote the steps to this recipe so that if you attempt it, you'll have all your ingredients ready ahead of time too.

Chocolate Guinness cake

Chocolate Guinness Cake With Irish Cream Sabayon (adapted from how2heroes and Clare Garland)

Chocolate Guinness Cake


3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups granulated sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, but in small pieces
2 cups flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup Guinness
3/4 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350.

Spray bottom of a 9-by-3-inch spring form pan with baking spray, line with a parchment circle, and spray the whole inside of the pan.

Mix cocoa and sugar together in a medium bowl.

Sift flour and baking soda together in another bowl.

Melt butter and Guinness in a large pot over medium-high heat.

Whisk in sugar and cocoa, and remove from heat.

In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla (you can do this while the Guinness and butter are heating up), and whisk this mixture into the cocoa and butter mixture.

Whisk in the dry ingredients.

Then pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean.

The cake fell a little, but luckily, it just gets cut up and pushed into glasses.

Transfer to a cooling rack, and let cool completely before removing from pan.



3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 ounce bittersweet chocolate chips
2 ounces milk chocolate chips
6 large egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup Irish cream liqueur (such as Bailey's)


In bowl of stand mixer fitted with whip attachment, lightly whip heavy whipping cream until soft peaks form. Store in fridge until the rest of the sabayon is prepared.

Set up an ice bath. (Fill a large bowl about halfway with ice and water.)

Melt both chocolates together in a small bowl. (Microwave about 15-20 seconds, stir, microwave another 15-20 seconds, and stir until smooth.) Set aside.

Set a pot filled with 1 inch of water on the stove, and bring to a simmer.

In a stainless steel bowl that can sit in the pot without touching the water, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, and salt. Add the Irish cream liqueur and water.

Place the bowl over the simmering water, and whisk until thick and frothy.

See how it thickened up? It clings to the sides of the bowl now.

Remove from heat, and whisk in melted chocolate.

Place the bowl over the ice bath, and whisk occasionally until mixture has cooled, 2 to 3 minutes.

Gently fold in the whipped cream.


Select the glasses you want to serve the dessert in. Find a biscuit cutter or cookie cutter that is about the same size as the opening of the glass. Cut out pieces of cake using the cutter.

Press a piece of cake into the bottom of each glass (clean the glass off), and spoon the sabayon on top.

Chocolate Guinness cake

The finished dessert will look like a pint of Guinness!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!