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Christmas Yule Log Chocolate Cake Recipe

Easy Christmas Yule Log Cake

Buche de Noel is the traditional French word for the Christmas Yule Log Cake. This cake is a dessert I have made for our family for the last 30 years. This beautifully decorated cake is one of the first Christmas recipes I found in a box of my mother’s old recipe boxes.  It is a delicious, rich, chocolate cake with a ganache chocolate frosting, filled with whip cream, that is asked for each and every year.

Christmas Yule Log Chocolate Cake Recipe on white platter with green trim

It is very easy to make and very versatile depending on how much time you have to bake, and what ingredients you have on hand. Before we had children I made the cake from scratch following the recipe exactly.  As I started to have babies and little time, I started using a Duncan Hines box cake mix. Now as the kids are older I am back to making the cake from scratch.

The Tradition of a Yule Log

The first baked Yule logs were baked in the 19th century as a Christmas dessert.  The cake is a mini replica of the Old World Europen traditions from the 1100’s of burning a real log at Christmas for the 12 days of Christmas. I am all for a warm cozy fire in the fireplace, but a rich chocolate, whip cream filled cake is where I am all in.

You can not go wrong with this cake no matter how many years you make it. And it is so much easier than it looks. Believe me, you can make this cake.  The secret is that no matter how the rolling and unrolling goes, the frosting covers up all mistakes.  I have had the cake totally fall apart when I unrolled it and no one notices once the whipped cream is inside and the frosting and powdered sugar is on top.  And take my word no one and I mean no one complains with a mouth full of this cake.

Christmas Yule Log Chocolate Cake Recipe with a pine spring on white wood table top down view

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Supplies Needed:


Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe greased and floured pan
Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe, cake batter in pan
Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe powdered sugar on clean towle
Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe starting to roll cake in towel
Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe cake in towel cooling on cooling rack.
Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe whipped cream for cake filling
Christmas Yule Log Chocolate Cake Recipe with a pine spring on white wood table top down view
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Christmas Yule Log Cake Recipe

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Jelly Rolled Chocolate Cake with Butter Cream Frosting and Whipped Cream Filling


Units Scale


  • 1 cup sifted Cake Floor
  • 1/4 cup Coco Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 cup Regular Sugar
  • 1/3 cup Water
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • Confectioners Powdered Sugar for towel & top of the cake.

Whipped Cream Filling

  • 1 cup of Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup of Powdered Sugar

Chocolate Butter Frosting

  • 1/2 stick of Butter
  • 2 squares Unsweetened Chocolate
  • 2 cups of sifted Powdered Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Milk
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla



  1. Take your jelly roll pan or cookie sheet that has sides and grease with butter, and then add flour and coat the butter with flour, shaking off in the sink any loose flour left. This lets the cake release from the pan.
  2. Sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder & salt.
  3. In a larger separate bowl beat the eggs until thick and creamy. Beat in granulated sugar 1 tablespoon at a time beat until thick. Then stir in the water and vanilla. Fold in the flour mixture. Spread the batter in the prepared pan, spread out so that it is even.
  4. Bake at 375° for 12 to 15 minutes. Test with a toothpick.
  5. While cake cooks, take a clean thin kitchen dish towel and sift over the whole towel powdered sugar.
  6. When you take the cake out of the oven, run a knife along the edges.
  7. Have a towel ready and invert the cake in the pan onto the towel. Start at the longest end and roll the cake into the towel.
  8. Place the cake int he towel on a cooling rack and cool completely.

Whipped Cream

  1. In your electric mixer bowl, put the whipping cream and the whisk attachment.
  2. Start slowly on low adding the vanilla and the powdered sugar, beat until soft peaks. (Do not over beat or you will make sweet butter)
  3. Put in the refrigerator.

Butter Frosting

  1. Put water in a saucepan on the stove top on low heat.
  2. Put on top of the saucepan a heat-resistant glass or metal pan on top to make a double boiler.
  3. Put the butter and the unsweetened chocolate in the melt. Cool slightly.
  4. In your Kitchen Aid mixer bowl, add 2 cups of powdered sugar, milk and vanilla.
  5. Put mixer on low and slowly add the chocolate mixture.
  6. Mix until the frosting is smooth and easy to spread but not runny.
  7. You may need to add more milk or sugar depending on your location and ingredients.

Make the Cake

  1. Have the whipped cream and the frosting ready.
  2. Have a helper ready.
  3. On a large tray or cutting board slowly unroll the cake taking the towel away.
  4. Keeping the cake in a rolled shape fill the inside with the Whipped Cream, roll back up.
  5. Place the cream-filled cake on your serving tray.
  6. You can cut off an end and make it a tight knot and place on the top of the cake.
  7. Now spread the entire cake knot and ends with frosting.
  8. When frosted take a fork and drag it across the frosting to make the cake look like bark.
  9. Add any decoration to have the cake look like a log in the forest.
  10. Take your powdered sugar in the sifter and coat the entire cake and the serving tray with powdered sugar to look like snow.


  • When I make this cake I always have two new bags of Powdered Sugar so I have enough.
  • If the cake falls apart or breaks just fill and use the frosting like glue.
  • **** Use one deviled food cake mix and follow the instruction on the box. Then put the batter in the prepared pan and follow the rest of the directions above.


  • Serving Size: 12
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  1. Sounds absolutely yummy! And it looks fantastic! Great job! I saved it to Pinterest to make!

      1. Susan,
        Love the detailed instructions for a picture perfect Yule Log. Thanks for bringing it to Fiesta Friday!Happy 2018!

  2. My sister’s birthday is on Christmas Eve, and we always have a Buche de Noel as her birthday cake. My daughter aand I actually talked about making one together in the coming year, so I’ll definitely need to keep this recipe. Thanks so much for sharing at the #happynowlinkup!

    1. It is a lot quicker and more easy if you us the box mix. I made one with my daughter yesterday, fun when you have a helper.

  3. Every year I say I’m going to make a yule log and then I don’t! This looks like a simple recipe and super pretty. Pinning to try and thanks for linking up to the Friday Frenzy!

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