Chocolate Igloo Cake

Brrr, it’s cold out there. Time to make an igloo!

This igloo cake is purrfect for a special occasion.

Hint: The chocolate cake recipe can also be used for a normal cake, using any cake tin, but you may need to adjust the baking time.

Cooking time:  20 minutes preparing, 1 hour baking, 15 minutes icing


Difficulty Level:

3 wooden spoon +

What you need:


For the cake:

  • 1 cup (120g/ 4oz) self-raising flour
  • ⅓ cup (40g/1.5oz) cocoa powder
  • 1 cup (225g/8oz) caster sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅓ cup butter (75g/2.7oz) softened (Leave in a warm room for a few hours. See the bottom of this recipe for tricks to soften butter quickly!)
  • ½ cup (120ml) milk
  • 2 eggs

To decorate:

  • 3 cups (300g) Icing sugar
  • ½ cup (125g/4.4oz) butter, softened
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Blue food colouring
  • White fondant icing (ready rolled if available)
  • 2 ring doughnuts (mini ones work best)
  • Other decorations, such as blue sugar sparkles and sugar snowflakes (optional)


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Sieve
  • Wooden spoon
  • 1 litre Pyrex (or other oven-proof) bowl
  • Electric whisk
  • Measuring cups or scales
  • Fork or hand whisk
  • Palette knife (or normal knife)

For ease, you can use a freestanding mixer or food processor instead of mixing bowls and spoon if you have one.


For the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), 160°C (320°F) if fan assisted.
  2. Grease your Pyrex bowl with a thin layer of butter or vegetable oil. Hint: An easy way is to use baking paper to spread over the bowl).
  3. Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa into a large mixing bowl.
  4. If using a food processor or freestanding mixer, skip steps 5-7. Instead put all the cake ingredients into the mixer and mix on high for a few minutes until it forms a smooth batter.
  5. Mix sugar and softened butter into the flour mixture using a wooden spoon
  6. Using a fork or hand whisk, lightly beat eggs and milk in a separate bowl.
  7. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon until it forms a smooth batter.
  8. Pour into the greased Pyrex bowl and bake for 50-60 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cake.
  9. Leave the cake to cool in the bowl for 15 minutes before gently releasing it by carefully going round the edge of the bowl with a palette knife (or normal knife) and turning it around onto a serving plate or tray.

For the icing:

  1. Sift most of the icing sugar into a mixing bowl. (Leave some icing sugar to decorate the serving plate or tray.)
  2. Beat the butter and sifted icing sugar together using an electric whisk until it is light and fluffy.
  3. Add the vanilla and a few drops of blue food colouring to the butter mixture and beat again. This is your buttercream icing.
  1. Cover the cake in your buttercream icing. Cover the serving plate/tray around the cake with icing sugar to make a snowy landscape.
  2. Trim one edge off the doughnuts so that they can sit on their sides. Use a little buttercream to attach them side-by-side against the cake. This is the entrance to the igloo.
  3. Cover the entrance to the igloo in your buttercream icing.
  1. Roll your white fondant icing thinly, or open out your ready rolled icing if using. With a knife, cut out triangles and random shapes from the rolled out icing.
  2. Gently press the icing shapes into the buttercream frosting, until the whole igloo is covered with some blue icing peering through in between each piece.
  3. If using, press the sugar sparkles into the buttercream where you want them around the cake and scatter the snowflakes around the cake to serve.


3 tricks to soften butter quickly

  1. Grate the cold butter using the large holes of a cheese grater.
  2. Cut the butter into smaller cubes, they’ll soften more quickly that way
  3. Put the stick of butter between two pieces of wax paper and roll out with a rolling pin