Miniature Black Forest Cake

Miniature Black Forest Cake

This has been my signature dessert for many years but of course, in it’s larger incarnation, so it would serve a crowd for dinner.  My original recipe uses real flour and real sugar.  I’ve revamped the  recipe to make it Atkins friendly now, which was quite an undertaking.  First trial wasn’t so good actually.    I’d be lying if I said this final version is as good as the original sugar-flour version. But this is a close facsimile in appearance and flavor in my and my husband’s opinion.  It may yet undergo further “fine-tuning”.

This dessert is surprisingly light, so don’t be fooled by it’s rich appearance.  It is always well-received when I serve this to guests.   This is not a terribly sweet dessert, neither the original cake nor my low-carb version.  So you may want to do some tasting for sweetness along the way in case this isn’t sweet enough for you.

There are four layers of cake and three different filling layers so it really takes a bit of effort to put together from start to finish. But none of the steps are particularly difficult nor do they require unusual ingredients.  It just takes some time and time for the flavors and Kirsch to mellow.  As you blow your daily sweetener limit on this, and it’s a bit carb pricey, I usually only do this dessert for VERY special occasions. 🙂  This dessert is not suitable until you reach Maintenance/Goal weight due to the higher carbs.

We don’t entertain as much as we used to and just for the two of us, I don’t like to make my full-size Black Forest Cake .  But on Valentine’s Day and my husband’s birthday, and sometimes for our Wedding Anniversary, I will do this very special somewhat carb-pricey cake as it is his very favorite dessert.   This recipe is not suitable until the legumes rung of OWL as I use my favorite black bean chocolate cake recipe by Lauren over at the Healthy Indulgences blog  . Lauren’s cake is actually better than the original cake modified  🙂 One of the best low-carb chocolate cakes I’ve come across to date.

For this mini Black Forest cake, I make up one whole recipe of the cake, which makes 3 small round 5″ cakes.  I use two for this recipe and reserving the third cake for some other dessert use (or freeze it).

I have carefully calculated only 2/3 of the nutritional values on cake for the serving nutritional information below.   Of course, you can attempt to cut this into 5 or 6 servings and lower the carb count, but I forewarn you cutting this cake into smaller pieces is extremely difficult given its height.  You could also substitute Eden Black Soy Beans pureed and lower the carb count considerably, but the flavor and texture of the cake will change a bit.

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STEP I –  Cherry Filling:The day before needed, mix the following cherry filling ingredients in small saucepan except for the xanthan gum.  Cook over medium heat stirring, adding xanthan gum in several light dustings, stirring well after each addition of xanthan gum.  This is to avoid lumps in the thickener.  I go for medium thick on this filling.  Refrigerate overnight.  If you got it too thick, not to worry.  That’ll never be noticed in this cake.  Stir it up to loosen the sauce before applying to cake.


1/2 can red sour cherries in natural juice, drained, saving liquid
1/4 c. of the reserved cherry liquid
liquid sweetener to = 1/4 c. sugar (I used 1½ tsp. Fiberfit)
1/4 tsp. xanthan gum
1 T.  Kirschwasser liqueur (cherry brandy)
few drops red food coloring
1/4 tsp. almond extract

STEP II – Chocolate Mousse: The day before cake is being served, prepare the chocolate mousse.


1 T. cocoa

½ pkg. (1 tsp.) unflavored gelatin

1 egg, beaten

1 c. total heavy cream

4 tsp. total granular Splenda (or 4 tsp. sugar equivalent of other sweetener)

½ tsp. vanilla extract

1 T. Kirschwasser

Combine the cocoa with gelatin, the beaten egg and ½ c. of the heavy cream in a saucepan.  Heat to boiling over medium heat and then remove from heat.  Add 2 tsp. granular Splenda and Kirschwasser and stir well.  In a separate bowl, whip the other ½ c. heavy cream until very thick and add remaining 2 tsp. of Splenda and the vanilla. Spoon a little of the whipped cream into the cooling chocolate mixture and stir to temper the chocolate a bit.  Now pour the chocolate mixture into the rest of the whipped cream and fold the two mixtures into each other until smooth.   Taste for sweetness and add liquid Splenda to your taste.  Chill the mousse overnight or for a couple hours for flavors to mellow.  Remove from fridge a bit ahead of applying to cake in case it is too stiff.

STEP III – The Cakes: The day you plan to serve, early in day, bake your cakes. I say early, because this cake needs to be assembled for at least 2-4 hours for the kirsch to soak into the bottom layer of cake.  Preheat oven to 325º.  I use this small silicone pan to bake my cakes which requires no greasing (pictured below).  But 5″ quiche pans would work for this.   Be sure to grease your pans well, and wax-paper the bottoms, too if not using silicone pans.   This batter recipe will make 3 cakes this size, however only two of the cakes are needed to make this dessert.  Save the third cake to frost for snacks or for some other use.

CAKE INGREDIENTS: (Yes, this is Lauren of Healthy Indulgence’s chocolate cake recipe……the best!)

20 oz. black beans, drained and rinsed (I just use one 15 oz. can)

5 large eggs

1 T. water

1 T. vanilla (yes, that much!)

¼ tsp. salt

6 T. unsalted butter, softened

3/4 c. erythritol, powdered

2 pkts. stevia

6 T. unsweetened cocoa powder

½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven to 325º.  Process the erythritol to a powder (if you buy granular like me).  Add the drained, rinsed beans, soft butter, vanilla, eggs and water and process until all is smooth.  Mix dry ingredients in a medium bowl and add to the mixture in the processor.  Pulse a few times to blend batter well.  Of course, this can be done with an electric mixer.  Spoon batter equally (This is really important) into the three pans.  They will be approximately 3/4 full, but don’t worry, mine did not overflow.  Place pans on a cookie sheet if using silicone pans.  If using metal pans, be sure your oven shelf is level and level pans with a skewer or metal coat hangar if need be, as cake batter needs to be level in the pans.  Bake at 325º for about 30 minutes.  Ovens vary so check and if still soft in the center, bake another 10 minutes or so. The cakes are done when dry to the touch and set in the center.  Toothpick will test dry in the center as well.  Remove from oven and completely cool before attempting to remove from the pans.


Whip 1 c. heavy cream and add ½ tsp. vanilla and a few drops of liquid Splenda, or to taste.  Set aside while you cut the cakes.

Gently tip cakes out of pans.  Set one cake onto serving plate.  With a long-bladed serrated knife, with a gentle motion, carefully cut laterally each cake into two thin layers as even as you can get them.  Gently lift top layer off this first cake with BOTH hands slipping fingers toward center of cake to support it and prevent it breaking in half.  (I have a piece of square of sheet metal I slide under the cake to support it while moving to prevent breakage).  Gently set this layer on the counter until needed.

On bottom layer of cake, spread the cherry filling.  Carefully lift and place next thin layer of cake on top.  Now spread the chocolate mousse on top of that layer evenly.  Slice second cake in similar manner as you did the first.  Gently lift and add the third layer of cake on top of the stack.  Spread with a ½ ” of whipped cream.  Place the final layer of cake on top and now ice the entire cake with the remaining whipped cream, spreading evenly on sides and top so no chocolate cake or fillings are visible.   Dust top of cake with shaved chocolate and sling a little also on the sides.  If it falls all over the serving platter, that just makes the presentation prettier in my opinion.  If you have one, place a whole maraschino cherry with stem and a sprig of mint in the center of the cake for visual impact.

Chill well (at least 2 hours) covered with a dome or inverted soup pot.  Cut cake into four quadrants/servings.  Enjoy!

NUTRITIONAL INFO:  Makes 4 adult servings, each contains:

450 calories

28.95 g  fat

24.32 g  carbs, 5.85 g  fiber, 18.47 NET CARBS (You can maybe cut into 5-6 servings for a lower carb count)

17.0 g  protein

549 mg sodium

If interested in cutting into smaller servings to pull down the numbers, the entire cake has 1764 calories, 115.4g fat, 97.2g carbs, 23.4g fiber, 73.8g net carbs, 66.92 g protein and 2196 mg sodium.  So cutting into 5 pieces lowers each serving to 14.76g net carbs; cutting it into 6 pieces lowers each serving to 12.3g net carbs.  I repeat, however, it will be difficult to cut the slices this small without them falling apart on you.  That’s one reason I always do the bigger cake version for company. 🙂

25 thoughts on “Miniature Black Forest Cake

  1. Jamie

    Making this for our Christmas dessert. The time consuming desserts are always the ones my husband ends up rating a 10 so I have high hopes for this one. Thank you and Merry Christmas.

      1. Jamie

        It turned out pretty good even tho he had my big serrated Ginsu knife out in the garage. 😃 He rated it a 9-1/2 which he doesn’t dole out too many of those. So it was a nice finale to our Christmas Day.

        1. I’m so glad it came out to your liking, Jamie. 9½ out of 10 ain’t bad. 🙂 Yes, a good knife, rinsed between slices, is essential for this recipe. 🙂

  2. Nita

    Is there a sugar content difference between Kirschwasser cherry brandy and DeKuyper? There isn’t a label showing sugar on the DeKuyper and the store I was in doesn’t carry Kirschwasser. Just wondering if the sugar is lower in the suggested one.

    1. They are the same thing to my knowledge. Kirschwasser is simply the German word for cherry brandy. You’d have to ask the different companies that make cherry brandy that kind of question. They may have a website with that kind of information though. Worth a Google to see. I have used both several brands in this cake over the years and they taste exactly the same to me. Sorry I’m no help on your question. Not even sure THEY could answer that question. 🙂

    1. Did we get up on the wrong side of the bed today? Of course this is higher carb than any other recipe on my blog. Of course one can’t eat this dessert just whenever. Of course this is a special occasion only type of recipe. But of course, at <19 net carbs per HUGE wedge/slice, it's MUCH lower in carbs than its flour/sugar high carb cousin. I would think most of my readers would be smart and have good judgement with WHAT they eat and HOW OFTEN they eat it. I shouldn't have to spell out all the above for them. Sorry to be so blunt, JJ, but the tone of your comment is simply uncalled for. This IS probably the lowest carb Black Forest Cake you'll ever find, and still be able to respectfully call itself a cake anyone would want to eat. But when you don't like a recipe, is would be ever so much kinder to just move on rather than judge and make snarky remarks about YOUR time, like MY time generating, calculating nutritionals and publishing these recipes free for the taking is worth any less than YOURS?

  3. Mrs. Binkums

    Hello again Buttoni,
    I think I’m going to make this recipe as a cake and really want to make it a double layer cake. Can I use the original recipe and split the batter between 2 cake pans either 9″ or 8″, and how long do I now bake this and also what would the carb count be if I make it 8-10 servings. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. Oh btw, I do want to sub blackbeans for black soybeans to lower the carb count even further, I hope it dosen’t compromise the flavor or texture of the cake….

    1. 1) black beans are much higher in carbs than black SOY beans, so definitely use the black soy beans.
      2) I would NOT use the “miniature” cake recipe baking the cakes in 8-9″ cake pans, There’s not enough batter in this mini version to make cakes that large.
      3) As I said, this is the “miniature” version of my Black Forest Cake. It will only make 4 small servings. It would be impossible to cut those portions any smaller and not have it the layers totally fall apart into a big mess when slicing/serving. Trust me on this.
      4) So if you need 8-10 servings,you’ll need to make the larger “full-size” black Forest Cake recipe instead. That one CAN be baked in 8-9″ cake pans and WILL give you 8-10 servings.

      1. Mrs. Binkums

        Thank you again Buttoni, I have saved the “full size ” recipe….I it wil be the suprise at my turkey-day dinner… you happen to know how much the sub of black soybeans would lower the carb count?..just curious….

        1. Not really. If there are 20 oz. black beans in the entire cake then there would be 2 oz. in each 1/10 serving of the cake. 2 oz. of black beans has 13.4 carbs. 2 oz. of Eden soy black beans has around 3.6. quite a bit of carb savings. But the soy black beans are MUCH denser, dryer and harder. You would have to process them a VERY long time to get them as creamy, smooth. Might even need to increase liquid a bit to compensate for their dryness. I have no idea what your result would be. If it were me, on second thought, I don’t think I’d chance subbing in soy black beans for holiday serving. I’d experiment there when it’s not such a special occasion. There would be nothing more embarrassing than serving a dry cake just to save on carbs. It’s a holiday…….splurge on this one dessert if you want to make the greatest impact on family/guests.

        2. Mrs. Binkums

          And btw I’m going to make just the cake portion and a different icing, what is the carb count just on the layer cake?

  4. Renate

    I have not tried the cake yet,but it looks as if you stayed very much to the original recipe as you could. The main ingredient is the Kirschwasser,which is made in the Black Forest and is a must. I wonder ,how the black beans taste.?

    1. The taste of the regular black beans, which is what I use in this cake batter, cannot be detected at all when the cake is cooked. Though I’ve not personally subbed in the SOY black beans, folks who have tell me they can’t taste a bean taste using those either. Some have used canellini beans in this cake, but I would think that would render a lighter colored cake….again, I’ve not tried canellini beans in it either. Both types of black beans are pretty mild in flavor, if you’ve never eaten them before. The Soy black beans are much lower in carbs, so low carbers like like to use them over the regular black beans in order to lower the per serving carb count on the final product. Black SOY beans are, however, a much firmer, tougher bean, so if you sub them in, be sure to run them through a blender or food processor with the cake’s liquid ingredients to get them as smooth as you can. You don’t want lumpy batter. 🙂

  5. My all time favorite black forest. Every time I see one, I cant help myself but have a slice or two. I do think this recipe version is more authentic than the others I encountered. Thanks for the recipe, this one is on my book.

  6. Jane

    I’ve made chocolate bean cakes with Eden black soybeans right out of the can, whizzed to a farethee-well in my Ninja. Great with a simple cream cheese frosting. Love your site, btw!

    1. buttoni

      Welcome Jane. Glad you enjoy the recipes. And thanks so much for the feedback on using the black soybeans in cake. It sure seems like it would work and with your success, I think I’ll definitely try them in this next time. 🙂

  7. Rae Otlowski

    Hi Peggy,
    Wow! This is amazing! I might even be able to talk my husband into eating low carb with this awesome cake. 🙂
    Thank you for sharing.
    Rae O

  8. If you still want to compare chocolate cakes, let me suggest you try the German Chocolate Zucchini cake at

    I totally love Lauren and her recipes, and I use many of them – but I just don’t do beans. Ever. So when I saw this zucchini cake recipe, I figured it would be another substandard imitation chocolate cake – NOT SO! It is definitely worth trying if you want a lower carb count and no legumes, to say nothing of luscious chocolate and fantastic texture. It’s SO good, my husband has banned it except for special occasions. 🙂

    BTW, the only thing that makes it “German Chocolate” is the frosting, but I have tried several frostings with this wonderful cake and it is excellent.

    1. buttoni

      Thanks for the tip. I may try that as a separate cake. But I’ll be quite honest, I haven’t tried a coconut flour and CO oil cake that didn’t have a hint of coconut flavor and I wouldn’t want that taste in THIS particular recipe.

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