I’ve been meaning to do a dessert for a while and Austria is the perfect opportunity. Austrian cuisine is a lot of fun – it’s not just German by another name! Today I’m going to make the world famous, much beloved Sacher Torte.

The original Sacher recipe is a closely guarded secret of the Sacher Hotel, however there are many near-perfect clone recipes out there. Unlike most other recipes on this blog, I’m not going to try to nail an exact copy on this one. For those wanting to skip to a more traditional recipe, I am using Wolfgang Puck’s Sachertorte recipe as my base.


For the cake:

  • 6 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped up into small pieces
  • 6 tablespoons of butter
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 5 egg whites
  • 1 ounce (about 1/10 cup) and 3 ounce (about 2/5 cup) sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sifted flour
  • 1-4 ounces almond paste (the more you use, the harder your mixture will be to manipulate and the heavier the cake will be, I recommend going light if you’re not sure)

For the filling:

  • 1 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 tablespoon of cognac or brandy

Ganache glaze:

  • 6 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • whipped cream to taste at serving

Total prep time for me was 20 minutes (14:10 to 14:30, your time may vary)

You will need a cake pan and two pots/saucepans that can seat inside one another for a double boiler, plus a third saucepan. Here’s what you’re going to do:

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and flour a 9″ wide, 2″ deep (minimum) cake pan.
  • Melt your cake chocolate and butter in the double boiler, stirring constantly – this does NOT take long, less than 5 minutes so be vigilant. Remove from heat but be mindful of your working time, you don’t want this to totally set but you also don’t want it so hot it scrambles your egg
  • Whisk the egg yolks and 1 once sugar until it’s ribbony. Beat in the chocolate, then the almond paste (if you are using a full 4 oz of paste you will need a mixer)
  • Separately, whisk the egg whites and salt to form soft peaks. Slowly whisk in the 3 ounces of sugar and continue to whisk until you have stiff peaks (I used a mixer for this), then fold in the flour
Stiff peak
  • Fold 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the chocolate mixture thoroughly to lighten.
Don’t use a mixer for this, it’ll flatten your egg whites
  • Fold the remaining egg white mixture in gently, you want to maintain airiness but also get it mixed consistently
  • Bake for 35-45 minutes (a knife inserted in the center should come out dry)
  • Cool on a rack, while cooling prepare your filling.
  • Puree the apricot preserve and cognac to a smooth consistency, you may need a little extra cognac if you have a particularly chunky preserve. You want a viscous, not runny filling
You can also make an Incredible Hulk at the same time
  • Carefully cut the cake into three layers, then apply the filling evenly on the bottom and middle layers. Chill for 30-60 minutes
Not going to lie, this part is kind of a pain in the ass
Leave a small edge so your apricot doesn’t leak out
  • After chilling, prepare your glaze by double boilering the glaze chocolate and butter. Remove from heat and separately boil the heavy cream, then stir into the chocolate
  • Cool slightly, you want it starting to thicken but not fully set, then pour over the cake, spreading for consistent coating
  • Chill for 30 minutes, then return to room temp for 15 minutes prior to serving (the cake is best stored at room temp after the initial chill to set). Serve with whipped cream to taste

That’s it! Total time (not including chill rests) for me was about 2 hours, 20 minutes (14:10 to 18:30, minus two hours of chilling and resting)