Kellerkuchen (Cellar Cake)

"Kellerkuchen is a reminiscence of childhood. As a child I loved this "layered-cocoa-butter cookie-cake". My aunt Ulla has rediscovered this recipe and adapted it a little bit. I still love this easy to make and inexpensive sweet treat."
photo by Thorsten photo by Thorsten
photo by Thorsten
photo by tunasushi photo by tunasushi
photo by tunasushi photo by tunasushi
photo by Thorsten photo by Thorsten
Ready In:
4hrs 20mins
24 slices


  • 2 eggs
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 12 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1 14 tablespoons vanilla sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum
  • 12 - 34 lb butter cookie, rectangular (I use Bahlsen Leibniz)
  • 12 lb vegetable shortening, solid (see note)


  • Note: cooking time is time in the fridge.
  • Cover a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with transparent foil.
  • Melt vegetable shortening, but do not let it get too hot.
  • Mix eggs, sugar, dutch cocoa, milk, vanilla sugar, instant coffee and rum until you have a homogenous mixture.
  • Slowly add the melted vegetable shortening to this mixture. Stir the cocoa mixture until homogenous.
  • Start filling the form with a thin layer of cocoa mixture.
  • Place a layer of butter cookies on the cocoa mixture and cover it with another thin layer of cocoa. Repeat these steps, ending with a layer of butter cookies.
  • Put into the fridge until firm or overnight. You can keep the Kellerkuchen in the fridge for up to one week.
  • Remove from fridge immediately before use, turn out of form onto a serving platter, remove foil and cut into thin slices. Place cake into the fridge between servings.
  • NOTE: A picture of Bahlsen Leibniz can be found at
  • NOTE: Baking for Kids. You can omit the rum and instant coffee.
  • NOTE: The name of the cake is traced back to the fact, that it was not unusual to place the cake in the cellar (especially during the cold time of the year). Please be aware, that raw eggs are used, so keep it in the fridge. The cake is terribly filling.
  • NOTE: the vegeatble shortening I use for this cake is solid at room tempearture. I often use the brand "Palmin" for this cake. It is made of 100% coconut oil.

Questions & Replies

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  1. lindseyv
    Tasty treat! I made it with just one egg, a different fat (Bisquin) and powdered sugar (150g) instead of regular. I recommend lining your pan with plastic wrap first to aid in the construction and especially in the clean-up! :)
  2. evelynathens
    I made this yesterday, but made 2 little loaf pans, leaving out the rum and coffee in one (for the kids), but including them in the other (for DH and myself). No rum on hand for that bit, but I used Grand Marnier which was very nice. Also used Petit Beurre biscuits which are very similar (if not identical) to the ones Thorsten mentions). I made 5 very thin layers of chocolate and cookie (using up 1 1/2 sleeves of cookies) and allowed the loaves to set overnight before cutting into them. My bottom layer of chocolate in the loaf pan (which became my top layer when I overturned it onto a platter) was not as set as the in-between layers, but we liked it as it was gooey and rich. A delectable treat. Rich and very satisfying. The coffee/liqueur version is definitely more adult.
  3. Jessica K
    this tasted really good, really liked it. only problem was my chocolate never set up, i had it in the fridge for 2 days and still gooey, so it was more like sauced cookies, but that was good too!! probably was something i did, i have the same problems when i make fudge!!
  4. tunasushi
    This cake is lovely...its almost not like a cake, but a firmer chocolate moose with crunchy bits of biscuits in it...I too used Bahlsen Leibniz butter biscuits...I omitted the coffee and rum, cos I was afraid it might be a tad too bitter. Lovely lovely lovely!!! - Tunasushi (ZWT for Team 5)
  5. K's
    I tried this recipe with homemade butter cookies recipe# 37986. It was a bit on the bitter side but only due to my fault. I omitted the rum, and used regular sugar instead of vanilla. Next time I'll make vanilla sugar before I make this cake. Otherwise, it was very good. Thanks Thorsten :)


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