Though wedding cakes have traditionally been white confections, there's no rule that says a basic vanilla dessert is your only option. You and your soon-to-be spouse should feel empowered to select a wedding cake that is exactly to your tastes. If cocoa calls to you, there's no reason why you shouldn't serve a chocolate wedding cake at your celebration. With the help of a skilled baker, you can create a chocolate treat that can perfectly fits in your wedding aesthetic. Plus, bakers can incorporate additional fillings to customize the flavor profile to your liking.
“Your wedding should reflect your taste, so go with what you love,” says Moriah Tulier, owner of Wildflower Cakes. “Your guests will be excited to try your favorite cocktail, your favorite dessert, and hear your favorite song come on. Embrace the things that reflect your couple style, food included, and your guests will walk away feeling a closer connection to you as a couple."
Meet the Expert
Moriah Tulier is the owner of Wildflower Cakes, a cake studio based in Denver, Colorado with a focus on custom-designed luxury wedding cakes.
Plus, there are so many incredible ways to make a chocolate wedding cake your own. “Simple and classic with fresh flowers, gilded dramatic gold leaf, hand-painted details, and monograms are all beautiful ways to decorate any wedding cake,” says Tulier. “Determine your wedding style and let that guide you when it comes to the design.”
If you still want a classic look, vanilla buttercream or fondant can completely seal a chocolate cake. “This also provides the perfect blank canvas to design,” Tulier adds. "From there, the sky’s the limit! It’s also fun and unexpected to cut into a white cake only to see a rich chocolate cake underneath.”
If you’re planning a chocolate wedding cake, don’t be afraid to get creative on flavor pairings. According to Tulier, raspberry, hazelnut, matcha, coffee, mint, and lavender are all great options to complement chocolate.
Think a chocolate wedding cake is the perfect fit for your big day? Read on for 26 pretty and delicious designs to inspire you own reception sweet.
Commission a Handpainted Masterpiece
When it comes to wedding cake flavors, the options are as limitless as your imagination. If you want to serve something unique and crowd-pleasing, take note of this three-tiered confection: Beneath a thick layer of chocolate buttercream sits a delicious combination of salted caramel and chocolate cake. And while that flavor pairing alone is certainly enough to please a crowd, the hand-painted floral detailing on the outside is what takes it to an entirely new level.
Go for Semi-Naked With Florals
This semi-naked chocolate cake is ready for a springtime celebration thanks to pretty pastel accents. You'd never know it from the outside, but layers of chocolate cake sit beneath that white icing. As a lovely finishing touch, a peach chocolate drizzle and fresh cherry blossoms make this sweet reception ready.
Keep It Simple
Want to really embrace chocolate with your wedding cake? This sweet pairs two tiers of cake with chocolate textured frosting for a simple look. Topped with a few berries and paired with blooms, it's effortless, yet beautiful.
Serve a Trio of Flavors
At their backyard wedding in Alabama, this couple offered guests slices of a simple single-tier chocolate cake; knowing that some attendees might prefer other flavors, coconut and caramel confections were on offer, too. To keep everything cohesive, the trio of treats were displayed on a beautifully decorated table full of on-palette yellow florals.
Decorate With Edible Flowers
Love the look of a wedding cake decked out in edible flowers? The same design that's commonly used on vanilla treats can also work a chocolate cake. We love the way bright florals pop against chocolate frosting.
Make It Playful
Don't be afraid to decorate your cake with another chocolate-based dessert. Bring a playful element into the mix by covering a chocolate cake in chocolate truffles for an unexpected look.
At first glance, you might not expect this cake topped with pressed wildflowers, honeycomb, and white frosting is full of chocolate ganache. If you love chocolate but prefer a lighter aesthetic, know you can keep the cocoa concealed until you slice into your confection, like one couple did at their Chicago garden wedding.
Go for a Decadent Drip
Planning a moody fall wedding? A rich, decadent drip is the perfect look. Pair plenty of cake layers with a chocolate drip, gold detailing, and fresh figs and berries.
While some couples serve s’mores by a campfire at their wedding, others include the flavors in their cake. This four-tier buttercream creation from a mountain wedding was filled with chocolate cake, dark chocolate mousse, graham cracker cake, and marshmallows for a delicious s’mores-inspired mix.
Press Pretty Petals
A beautiful chocolate cake provides the perfect light brown background to pair with white and sunny yellow hues. With pressed dried florals, this charming cake is ready to sit on display at a spring or summer wedding.
Add a Caramel Drip
Chocolate pairs well with so many other flavors, and this cake definitely proves it. Embrace the look of a tall, semi-naked chocolate cake, but add a luscious caramel drip and fresh fruit to the mix for a pop of color.
Consider White Chocolate
Want to add an extra dose of sweetness to your wedding cake? Consider using white chocolate. If you want to see how this flavor can be infused into a wedding cake design, take a look at this multi-tiered white and gold creation, which has a layer of white chocolate cake and raspberry filling.
Top With Plenty of Blooms
This pretty white cake adorned with roses is a timeless option for couples who love chocolate. Layers of chocolate cake, fresh fruit filling, and buttercream combine to create this delicious post-nuptial treat.
Go Nearly Naked
We love the way this cake exudes a refined rustic look with a chocolate cake and semi-naked vanilla frosting. With pretty blooms on top, it's beautifully romantic.
Pair With Citrus
Chocolate and lemon are a unique pairing you might want to consider for your wedding cake. Take inspiration from this colorful design, which has layers of each flavor covered in bright orange and yellow buttercream.
Serve Your Favorite Flavor
If you have a big sweet tooth, consider filling your wedding cake with a favorite chocolate treat. At this New York wedding, the groom picked out a chocolate cake with Oreo filling. To keep with the wedding’s organic aesthetic, the confection was adorned with edible gold leaf and white roses.
Make a Tall Statement
If you're going to go for chocolate, you might as well go all in. More than 20 layers of chocolate cake made up this incredibly tall statement dessert at a Mexico wedding.
Balance Moody With Romantic
A chocolate wedding cake can still be incredibly romantic, and this cake proves it. Paired with a chocolate drip for contrast, and topped with beautiful blooms, it's the perfect balance of moody and charming.
Select Something Dark and Dramatic
If you're already going out-of-the-box with chocolate, don't be afraid to lean into the dark hue of the sweet. Deepen the color and consider using black frosting as a unique contrast with light and airy blooms.
Make It Mini
Don't want to go all out with a big chocolate cake? Make it mini to add a bit of flavor into the mix. This single-tiered chocolate cake may be small, but the leafy branch and blooms on top add plenty of personality.
Combine Chocolate and Vanilla
It goes without saying that chocolate and vanilla are the perfect pairing, so why not embrace it with your cake? This decadent delight combined naked layers of chocolate cake with one bright white frosted tier for a unique juxtaposition.
Mimic a Dessert
This beautiful naked cake, decked out in berries and blooms, looks almost too good to eat. While its beauty is striking, the flavor is just as good. Inspired by a classic Lamington treat, the cake was assembled with sponge cake, an outer layer of chocolate, and decked in coconut.
Let Your Florals Make a Statement
A large anthurium stands out in the design of this delicious three-tier wedding cake at a fall New York wedding. Inside, the confection alternates between layers of chocolate and buttercream.
Serve Multiple Flavors
This design is simply beaming with rustic romance. With a chocolate tier paired with a vanilla layer on top, it's the perfect way to offer a choice of cake flavor for your guests.
Use Seasonal Blooms
Two brides chose a simple single-tier chocolate cake with raspberry filling to end the reception dinner of their Colorado elopement. Seasonal florals on top added the perfect touch and helped the sweet fit in with their autumnal palette.
Decorate With Sugar Flowers
A couple served a simple chocolate cake with no filling at their Dominican Republic wedding, but they made sure the exterior of the design was truly show-stopping. Marbleized frosting and soft sugar flowers adorned this multi-tiered treat.