Barefoot Contessa Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake

Barefoot Contessa Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake Recipe

For years Barefoot Contessa has been making a wonderful orange pound cake that is moist and flavorful. When my friend Anna Pump at Loaves and Fishes added chocolate to her orange cake, I thought it was such a good idea that I borrowed it and added chocolate chunks to ours. The combination of tart, citrusy orange with sweet chocolate has been a big hit.–Ina Garten

Special Equipment: 10-inch Bundt pan

Barefoot Contessa Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 35 M
  • 1 H, 30 M
  • Makes one 10-inch Bundt cake


  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup grated orange zest (4 large oranges)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk (either low-fat or full-fat), at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups good semisweet chocolate chunks
  • For the syrup
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • For the ganache
  • 8 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan.
  • 2. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, then the orange zest.
  • 3. Sift together 3 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, combine the orange juice, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately in thirds to the creamed butter, beginning and ending with the flour. Toss the chocolate chunks with 2 tablespoons flour and add to the batter. Pour into the pan, smooth the top, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  • 4. Meanwhile, make the syrup. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, cook the sugar with the orange juice until the sugar dissolves. Remove the cake from the pan, set it on a rack over a tray, and spoon the orange syrup over the cake. Allow the cake to cool completely.
  • 5. For the ganache, melt the chocolate, heavy cream, and coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally. Drizzle over the top of the cake.
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:

Hey, there. Just a reminder that all our content is copyright protected. Like a photo? Please don't use it without our written permission. Like a recipe? Kindly contact the publisher listed above for permission before you post it (that's what we did) and rewrite it in your own words. That's the law, kids. And don't forget to link back to this page, where you found it. Thanks!

Recipe Testers Reviews

Ayanna Fews

May 25, 2003

I have not made many recipes with an orange and chocolate combination, but I’ve tried other Ina Garten recipes that were good, and this one didn’t disappoint. This cake is easy to prepare, very moist, and the orange flavor produced by the zest and the addition of the orange sugar glaze was just right. Although the cake is good alone, the addition of the ganache makes for a nice presentation and a really decadent dessert. The recipe calls for “good” semisweet chocolate chips. I used Nestle’s semisweet chips and think it turned out well, but I am sure “good” chocolate would be even better. I think these would make some cute cupcakes as well, perhaps I’ll try that next time.


  1. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of orange chocolate, but I made this for my sister-in-law, because she does, and quickly fell in love! This cake is AMAZING!! It’s super moist and just plain wonderful. At times the ganache can be a little too much, but, all in all, the cake is fantastic. I have made this cake several times since and have yet to find anyone who did not love it.

    1. I too love this recipe Ben. Should we let the world know or keep it between us? The Contessa knows her baking.

  2. I agree! This is a great cake. I made it without the ganache and it still tasted wonderful. Simple cakes are really best. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Cake was dry, and even with tossing the chocolate chips in flour they still sank to bottom. Stuck to pan and syrup didn’t soak in much.

    1. Hi Mapson, we are so sorry that you had a disappointing result especially as so many people loved this cake. Tell me, did you use the paddle attachment and cream the butter and sugar for the full 5 minutes?

  4. Hello, I want to try this cake tonight…..can I replace the orange juice and zest with marmalade??? please let me know. thank you.

  5. Hi, I came across the cake when looking for an orange-chocolate combo. Looks delicious, can’t wait to try it this week. I just wanted to check regarding the cake pan used here. When you say a 10 inch bundt pan, how deep should the pan be? I have one which is about 5-6 inches deep. Will that be fine or is it better in a shallow bundt, where the cake will rise right to the top? Thanks, Shilpa

  6. This cake is heavenly. I have been a great fan of Ina Garten and her rich, amazing recipes. They take time and effort but worth every second of it. Always a winner and a crowd pleaser. You can never go wrong with Ina Garten’s recipes and if you’re not getting the desired results, chances are you’re not following the recipes as is.

  7. This cake is amazing. The only problem I have is that the chocolate chips sink in the bottom even though they are coated in flour…. any tips please?

    1. miq323, Ina instructs to toss the chips with flour before adding. Did you do that? If that didn’t work, lightly wet the chips with COLD water, then toss them in flour.

  8. I made the cake this past week. I loved the flavor and the overall appearance, but my cake seemed dense. Some bakers recommend cake flour in place of regular flour. Also, how long should I beat the batter after adding the eggs one at a time. I also had to bake the cake for at least an hour but will check the size of my Bundt pan. I would love to make the cake again.

    1. Julia, the cake is dense–like a pound cake. You can use cake flour, it will make for a lighter cake, but I like the denseness. The size of your pan will definitely affect baking time, as will your oven, if it’s not calibrated. I’d suggest buying two or three cheap oven thermometers and hanging them from different places on the the rack you’re baking the cake. That will tell you if it’s running cold. AS fas as the eggs, bet them until incorporated. That’s all you need.

Have something to say?

Then tell us. Have a picture you'd like to add to your comment? Send it along. Covet one of those spiffy pictures of yourself to go along with your comment? Get a free Gravatar. And as always, please take a gander at our comment policy before posting.

Rate this recipe!

Have you tried this recipe?
Let us know what you think.