Amaretto-Pecan Chocolate Pound Cake

amaretto pecan chocolate pound cake

Happy National Cake Day! With all of the pre-Thanksgiving holiday prep, I almost forgot. [Note to whomever decides when these holidays are scheduled: pick another month with less competition for a home cook’s attention, why don’tcha!]

I am not one to make a recipe twice – unless it’s absolutely exceptional. I believe there’s always room for improvement and unless you take the risk to experiment you’ll never know how good something can be. So I took my Chocolate Rum Pound Cake recipe from four years ago and changed up the alcoholic content a bit. I almost changed up the nuts by swapping out almonds, but I didn’t have any on hand in the pantry. Ah, nuts!

This recipe is great for a quick dessert option. But if you want to turn it into a special holiday breakfast treat, simply swap the amaretto for orange juice and dust the final cake with confectioners’ sugar.

Amaretto-Pecan Chocolate Pound Cake


2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, divided
1/4 cup boiling water
1 1/4 cups butter, softened
2 2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup finely chopped pecans
1/4 cup amaretto


Preheat oven to 325F degrees. Grease and flour 12-cup fluted baking pan. Stir 1/3 cup cocoa and water in small bowl until smooth. Set aside. Beat butter, sugar and vanilla in large bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add reserved cocoa mixture and beat well.

Stir together flour, remaining 1/3 cup cocoa, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add to butter mixture, alternately with buttermilk. Beat until well blended. Stir in pecans and amaretto. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 1 hour and 5 minutes (or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean).

Cool for 10 minutes and remove from pan onto wire rack. Let cool completely.