Stout Beer Chocolate Skillet Cake

Hey this is basically just a big beer brownie you're welcome / I'm sorry. We've had a pretty hectic week with lil Matt working twelve hour days to help open the new restaurant he's working on and me balancing a 9-5 and freelance and the blog and social life yada yada. We've been finding room for fun times though! We went to a little Dinner Lab pop-up dinner in a CHURCH on Saturday night. It was a Valentine's Day inspired dinner and we ate lots of yummy stuff like oxtail ragout and mushroom ice cream which was actually shockingly better than I expected.  On Sunday we had that little brunch in bed I posted about, and since then we've just been working a crap ton. 

I made this skillet cake as kind of a pre-St. Patrick's Day treat. It's got beer, get it? Irish? Yeah? Yas. I based it off of my recipe for the pomegranate skillet cake I made a few months ago, and I'm pretty much at a complete loss for which version I like better. The pomegranate one is like bursting with bitter sweet pomegranate flavor, and this one is so dense and yeasty (in a good way) from the beer.  And of course, they are both best when served with a heaping pile of vanilla ice cream. Like a big pile. Like such a big pile that it gets kinda melty before you can finish it and you've got that upsettingly delicious pool of fudgey-brownie-ice-cream-mush that is a little too easy to swallow without chewing. Here it is, folks, my true colors have come shining through. Have a good hump day babes! <3 Recipe below <3 

Stout Beer Chocolate Skillet Cake

prep time 20 minutes // cook time 35 minutes // serves 4 - 6


  • 1 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c high-quality cocoa (I used Divine brand, from Whole Foods)
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 12 oz stout beer
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 10 oz dark chocolate chips or chunks

Stout Reduction Sauce

  • 12 oz stout beer
  • 1.5 c packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 10" cast iron-skillet with coconut oil or butter.  
  2. Whisk together the flour, cocoa, salt, and baking powder.  Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and 1 cup of sugar until fluffy, about two minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as necessary.
  4. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat to combine.  Mix in 12 oz stout beer and beat to combine. The mixture will looked pretty f**ked up and chunky and weird at this point, but don't worry it gets better!
  5. While mixing on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture 1/2 cup at a time until it is all fully incorporated.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spoon or spatula as necessary.
  6. Fold in the chocolate chips or chunks and pour the batter into the prepared skillet.
  7. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes until a fork comes out of the center without any crumbs.
  8. Once the cake is finished and cooling on a wire rack, prepare the stout reduction sauce.*
  9. To prepare the reduction sauce, bring the beer to a simmer in a medium pot or skillet, stirring occasionally, for ten minutes. You don't wan't it to reach a full boil, but rather just maintain a slight simmer. After ten minutes have passed (you should notice about a 1/3 reduction in liquid), add the butter and brown sugar, and let simmer for about 5 to 8 more minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until thick and syrupy. Remove from heat and use immediately. 
  10. To serve, simply scoop out portions onto a plate or bowl, and top with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and the stout reduction.


  1. The stout reduction sauce is best when fresh made, so I'd recommend making it just before serving the cake. After about half an hour it begins to harden as the sugar crystallizes and it becomes kind of hard to work with, though you can pop it in the microwave for thirty seconds or so to loosen it up.
  2. This cake is dense and decadent - which I love - but I would recommend definitely pairing it with some vanilla ice cream or whipped cream to help break it up a bit. Think of it kind of like a brownie sundae!