Blood Cocoa Sponge Cake

The original recipe was found on this post by Nordic Food Lab, among a couple other brilliant blood-based dishes, be sure to check them out. For a while, this was my go to site for whenever I had extra blood left in the fridge and needed to do some cooking.

After experimenting with this recipe quite a bit, I propose here my own take on it. Make sure to check the Notes and Tips at the end of the post, because this cake is surprisingly difficult to get right.

This particular cake ended up a bit dense and lacking the “sponge”. Avoid making the same mistake by checking the tips at the end of the post.

If you’d rather settle for a fast, foolproof option, try out our sweet blood pancakes.

Ingredients (Makes one 10cm cake, serves 8)

  • 230 g pig’s blood
  • 100 g granulated sugar (I prefer to use a little less, around 70g)
  • 25 g wheat flour (Works great with integral spelt)
  • 25 g corn starch
  • 25 g raw cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence


  1. Preheat oven at 180°C (356°F).
  2. Grease and flour spring form.
  3. Sieve flour, starch and cocoa twice to obtain a homogeneous mixture.
  4. Add the ginger and nutmeg.
  5. Sieve the blood to remove any clots.
  6. Whip the blood, adding a the sugar progressively like you would with egg whites, until stiff. Add the vanilla essence (or vanilla sugar if using)
  7. Sift the flour and cocoa powder on top of the blood/sugar mixture, a little at a time, and fold it gently with a wooden spoon. Don’t pour it all at once or it will sink to the bottom of the bowl.
  8. Fill in spring form and bake at 180°C for 25 minutes.
  9. When the cake is ready, turn off the oven and leave it inside for another ten minutes (put a wooden spoon in the oven door to keep it slightly open).

You can serve it as is, it’s already pretty sweet. Or with a little lingonberry or strawberry jam (as pictured).

Notes and Tips:

Preferably use cake flour, if not available, It can be made at home using corn starch (check this tutorial by Joy the Baker). I personally like to use full grain flours instead, sacrificing a little bit of airiness for added flavor and nutrition.

(Blood and sugar mixture, using powdered pig’s blood. Fresh blood will give a much richer, flavorful cake and is always preferable. However, it might take a little longer to whisk to soft peaks.)

Do not tap the cake pan before putting it in the oven, it would remove some of the air bubbles inside the batter.

Avoid opening the oven while the cake is cooking. Otherwise, it will deflate.

Oil and flour your cake form very well. This cake has a tendency to stick. A lot. Baking paper can also be a good option to ensure your cake will not stick to the pan and keep a beautiful shape.

When the cake is ready, it should makes a crackling sound when touching its surface. The inside should be moist and airy.

(Since “blood” does not figure in the available ingredient list, the nutritional value is an approximation, I however tried to adjust it so that it would give a good idea.)

Sources :

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