This scrumptious trifle combines the intensity of rich chocolate cake and chocolate mousse with the creamy lightness of whipped cream and sweet strawberries. A feast for the eyes and the taste buds.

We had an unexpectedly large crowd for dinner one night recently and this was a hit with everyone from grandparents to the four-year-olds. Who doesn’t love chocolate cake with a few healthy strawberries thrown in? Oh, the mousse and whipped cream might be a bit rich, you say? Just walk a little further tomorrow.



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Strawberry Trifle with Chocolate Mousse

A scrumptiously rich layered dessert of chocolate cake, chocolate mousse, strawberries and whipped cream.



For the chocolate cake

  • 200 g (2 c) sugar
  • 210 g (1 3/4 c) all-purpose flour
  • 62 g (3/4 c) cocoa
  • 1 tsp espresso powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 8 oz (1 c) buttermilk
  • 4 oz (1/2 c) vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 c boiling water
  • 4 c heavy whipping cream, divided into 1/2 c, 1 1/2 c, 2 c portions
  • 227 g (8 oz) semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1 quart fresh strawberries, washed, hulled and cut in half


Make the chocolate mousse

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine 1/2 c of whipping cream and the chocolate. Heat gently over medium-low heat until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove from the heat and stir in another 1 1/2 c of whipping cream and stir until thoroughly combined.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a heatproof bowl; cover and refrigerate until very cold (at least 8 hours).

Make the chocolate cake

  1. Heat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour three 8-inch round baking pans or one quarter-sheet rimmed baking pan. The cake(s) will be about 3/4″ to 1″ high when baked.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa, espresso powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla until combined (1 minute).
  4. Add the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed until well combined (2 minutes).
  5. Carefully stir in the boiling water; the batter will be thin. Pour the batter into the prepared pans.
  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  7. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove the cakes from the pans to wire racks. Cool completely.

Assemble the trifle

  1. Pour the remaining 2 c of whipping cream into the bowl of a stand mixture fitted with the whisk attachment and beat at medium high speed until soft peaks form. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low, and with the beaters going, gradually incorporate two tablespoons of icing sugar. Increase the speed until stiff peaks form. Transfer the whipped cream to another bowl.
  2. Pour the chocolate mixture into the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; beat at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form.
  3. Cut the cake into rounds the same diameter as the trifle dish (or dishes, if you’re using individual parfait glasses). Alternate cake rounds, chocolate mousse, strawberries, whipping cream into as many layers as the dish (dishes) will accommodate. Garnish with chocolate shavings and strawberries.


  • Espresso powder is available at speciality cook shops, and of course, Amazon!
  • Author: Helen Kain


  • Serving Size: 10