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Cocoa Frosting Yule Log

Total Time

Prep: 45 min. Bake: 20 min.


14 servings

Here is a holly-trimmed version of the traditional yule log cake that is sure to cause murmurs of appreciation. It is one of my most requested Christmas recipes.—Jane Birch, Edison, New Jersey
Cocoa Frosting Yule Log Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1-1/3 cups finely ground walnuts
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup baking cocoa
  • 10 large eggs, separated, room temperature
  • 1-1/3 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Additional baking cocoa
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons 2% milk
  • Optional: Confectioners' sugar and fresh raspberries


  1. Line 2 greased 15x10x1-in. baking pans with parchment. Grease parchment and set aside. In a bowl, combine the walnuts, flour and cocoa; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high until light and fluffy. Gradually add 2/3 cup sugar, beating until mixture is thick and light yellow, about 10 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Add cocoa mixture; stir until combined.
  3. In another large bowl, beat the egg whites, salt and cream of tartar on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, on high until stiff glossy peaks form and sugar is dissolved. Gently fold a third of the meringue into cocoa mixture until thoroughly incorporated; fold in remaining meringue in 2 additions.
  4. Spread batter into prepared pans. Bake at 350° for 18-20 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool cakes in pans for 5 minutes. Turn each onto a kitchen towel dusted with additional cocoa. Gently peel off parchment. Working quickly, roll up each cake in a towel, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  5. For filling, in a large bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Gradually add confectioners' sugar and vanilla; beat until stiff peaks form. Unroll cakes and spread evenly with cream mixture to within 1/2 in. of edges. Roll up each cake again.
  6. Place 1 cake roll seam side down on a serving plate. Use second cake roll for the branches. Arrange cake roll with a long side parallel to edge of counter. From the top right corner, measure 3 in. toward the center; cut at an angle from that point to the bottom right corner. From the top left corner, measure 3 in. toward the center; cut at an angle from that point to the bottom left corner. Save these end pieces for another use. From the top right corner, measure and mark 3 in. toward the center. From the bottom right corner, measure and mark 3 in. toward the center; cut between the 2 marks. Arrange the 2 cut cake sections along sides of full cake roll for branches.
  7. For frosting, sift confectioners' sugar and cocoa together into a large bowl. In a another large bowl, beat butter and vanilla until blended. Beat in confectioners' sugar mixture alternately with enough milk to reach desired consistency. Frost top and sides of cake with cocoa frosting. Using an offset spatula, make short strokes in frosting to create bark pattern. If desired, dust with confectioners' sugar and garnish with fresh raspberries.

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 594 calories, 35g fat (18g saturated fat), 207mg cholesterol, 336mg sodium, 66g carbohydrate (56g sugars, 2g fiber), 9g protein.

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