Moist and fluffy one-bowl Guinness chocolate sheet pan cake with silky brown sugar cream cheese frosting. A crowd pleasing dessert, perfect for St. Patrick’s day or any day of the year!

We’re less than a week away from our next celebration day… St. Patrick’s day! I fun excuse for festive and sometimes boozy food. It’s something we can all look forward to after the year we’ve had. After each special day passes, I’m already thinking about the next, which isn’t necessarily so far off from other years but now it’s special in a different way. The kids are home and we can celebrate together. It feels like these simple days are worth celebrating even more than usual.

This got me thinking about all of the different holidays throughout the year and realized the only month without anything special is August. How did that happen? Instead of a federal, religious or calendar holiday – we’ll have to celebrate all of the food holidays in August. Prepare yourself for peaches, ice cream and chocolate chip cookie days (and so many more!)… just not mixed together. I’m not sure how well those would go together.

What does go together amazingly well is Guinness and chocolate… chocolate cake and cream cheese frosting!

We really don’t need an excuse for a slice of cake, but if you want one… St. Patrick’s day is definitely a good excuse! For me, it’s a fun food holiday. For others, it’s definitely so much more. It’s a perfect time to bake and cook with Guinness. It adds so much flavor to whatever you’re adding it to…. from savory dishes to rich chocolate desserts.

Every year I try to whip up something fun and new for St. Patrick’s Day, whether it be sweet or savory. This year’s special holiday recipe is a rich and perfectly moist Guinness chocolate sheet pan cake with silky brown sugar cream cheese frosting. The cake and frosting pair so well together. It’s truly dreamy. A fun dessert for a few or a crowd! It all depends on how you slice it.

Best of all, this Guinness chocolate cake comes together so easily. A simple one bowl chocolate cake recipe! This can easily be prepped in a stand mixer or done by hand! Use whatever tools you have. Just be sure to add this delicious cake to the top of your baking plans this week. It’s guaranteed to be your new favorite chocolate cake recipe!

Tips tricks and questions answered…

Can I use a different pan?
If you don’t have an 9×13-inch pan, cut the entire recipe in half and use an 8-inch square or round pan instead.

Can I make this into cupcakes?
If you prefer cupcakes, use my Guinness chocolate cupcakes with Baileys brown sugar cream cheese frosting recipe OR Guinness chocolate cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting recipe.

What if I don’t like cream cheese frosting?
If you prefer something lighter or just a little different, try one of the following:

I don’t like Guinness. Can I skip it?
Guinness in baked goods doesn’t taste like beer when drinking. It adds a nice flavor without being over powerful. If you can’t drink Guinness for a dietary reason, make my recipe for chocolate cupcakes with chocolate cream cheese frosting. Any equally fun and tasty treat, perfect for chocolate lovers!

Can I use dark brown sugar instead?
Absolutely! Dark brown sugar adds a bolder flavor and can typically be substituted 1:1 without issue.

Can I make substitutions to the ingredients?
Yes and no. Baking is a science. This recipe works with the exact measurements listed. Altering one or several of those can cause the recipe to fail. If you’re familiar with baking substitutions, go for it! Outside of any alterations I’ve already mentioned, for specific substitution questions, ask in the comments below.

Can I skip the parchment paper?
If you plan on serving the cake from the dish you’re baking it in, you can absolutely skip it. Be sure to still grease your cake pan well. If you plan on serving the cake outside of the baking dish, parchment paper helps to easily remove the cake from the pan. Lift up on the parchment and away from the pan to remove it and transfer to a serving platter or storage container.

How many will this serve?
This cake will easily feed 12 generously and up to 24 smaller portions.

How should this be stored?
Store at room temperature for up to several days in an airtight container. It may also be stored in the refrigerator and eaten chilled or brought to room temperature prior to serving. If you live in a warmer climate, I’d recommend storing in the refrigerator and bringing to room temperature before serving.

Moist and fluffy Guinness chocolate cake with silky brown sugar cream cheese frosting recipe from @bakedbyrachel A crowd pleasing dessert, perfect for St. Patrick's day or any day of the year!
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Guinness Chocolate Cake with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Yield: 15
Moist and fluffy Guinness chocolate cake with silky brown sugar cream cheese frosting. A crowd pleasing dessert, perfect for St. Patrick's day or any day of the year!



  • 2 1/2 C all purpose flour
  • 3/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 C granulated sugar
  • 1/2 C light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 C vegetable oil
  • 1/2 C milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 C Guinness


  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 C light brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 C powdered sugar


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking pan. Line the pan with parchment paper, leaving overhang on the two long sides. Binder clips may be used to hold parchment paper in place, if necessary. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl or stand mixer, add dry ingredients. Whisk or mix on low to combine. Measure wet ingredients. With mixer running on low, slowly begin adding wet ingredients. Stop and scrape bowl as needed between additions. Once all ingredients have been incorporated, increase mixer speed, mixing until no streaks remain and ingredients are combined well. Do not overmix.
  • Transfer batter to prepared pan. Use a small offset spatula to spread batter evenly throughout pan. Hold pan several inches above the counter and gently drop it to release any air bubbles formed while mixing.
  • Bake at 350°F for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  • When cake is room temperature, carefully remove cake by pulling up and outwards on parchment paper. Transfer to a serving tray or storage container.
  • Prepare frosting. In a large bowl or stand mixer, fit with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese until smooth. Mix in butter, followed by vanilla. Add brown sugar, mixing until just combined. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time. Increase speed between additions.
  • Use a small offset spatula to frost cake.
  • Store cake in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for several days or longer. If storing in the refrigerator, bring to room temperature prior to serving.


An original recipe from Baked by Rachel


Calories: 464kcal, Carbohydrates: 68g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 57mg, Sodium: 223mg, Potassium: 152mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 48g, Vitamin A: 441IU, Calcium: 75mg, Iron: 2mg
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most accurate data, use your preferred nutrition calculator with the actual ingredients you used to make this recipe.
Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Snap a picture and tag @bakedbyrachel on Instagram!
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keywords: Cake, Chocolate, Guinness

More St. Patrick’s day recipes to try:

Moist and fluffy Guinness chocolate cake with silky brown sugar cream cheese frosting recipe from @bakedbyrachel A crowd pleasing dessert, perfect for St. Patrick's day or any day of the year!

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