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The Christmas festive Yule log cake, or Bûche de Noël or commonly called a log cake where I lived is the most classic dessert served during Christmas. This cake is made based on an old pagan tradition celebrating the Yule, the ancient celebration of the re-appearance of the Sun and the fertile land’s rebirth. The celebration consisted of a festive feast, some caroling, drinking and dancing. Christians later adopted some aspects of this festival into the celebration of Christmas. Today the Yule log is enjoyed as a Christmas dessert and decorated like a tree log. Its flavours vary from the classic chocolate and might come in other flavours such as strawberry, vanilla, and other fruits.

Yule Log | Bûche De Noël | Christmas Log Cake

This log-shaped chocolate cake might look complex to make but it can actually be put together quite easily. The core of the cake is similar to a swiss roll, the main difference is that the Yule log is decorated to resemble the logs burnt during winter days and on Christmas eve while a typical swiss roll is decorated with cream and fruits.

Yule Log | Bûche De Noël | Christmas Log Cake

Some tips in making the Yule log or or Bûche de Noël

  • Make the whipped cream and chocolate ganache and chill it in the fridge to set it firm before using it to decorate the cake.
  • Use a whipped cream that contains at least 35% fat. The one I used is 35.1%, it doesn’t whipped up into a stable cream but it’s good enough to make the roll cake.
  • I used a 13×13-inch cake pan. The height turns out perfect for rolling. If you can’t find a 13×13-inch cake pan, you can also use other sizes (such as 15.5×10.5-inch) as long as the area square turns out similar.
  • I rolled the cake while it’s still warm but this is optional. It’s also okay to roll it when cooled.
  • In this recipe, I used some leftover rosemary leaves, fresh raspberries, gold leaves I found in my pantry cabinet to decorate the cake. However be creative in how you want to decorate the cake. I am not a fan of using icing sugar thou.
  • Stevia sweetener is used in this recipe. You can definitely substitute it with normal sugar in the same proportions.
ingredients

Ideas on making the perfect Christmas feast

Christmas these days is all about family reunion, gifting to loved ones, caroling, and feasting over turkey and other Christmas classics. Check out these other recipes:

See all Christmas recipes here.

Watch how to make Yule Log | Bûche De Noël on YouTube

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Yule Log | Bûche De Noël | Christmas Log Cake

Yule Log | Bûche De Noël | Christmas Log Cake

The Christmas festive Yule Log cake, or Bûche de Noël is the most classic dessert served during Christmas. This log-shaped chocolate cake might look complex to make but it can actually be put together quite easily.
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Prep Time 1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Western
Servings 6 persons
Calories 257 kcal

Ingredients
  

Chocolate Whipped Cream

  • 300 ml whipping cream cold
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp Stevia sweetener optional
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract optional

Dark Chocolate Ganache

  • 200 g dark chocolate chips
  • 200 ml whipping cream

Vanilla Cake

  • 100 g cake flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • tsp fine salt
  • 6 large eggs room temperature
  • 50 ml vegetable oil
  • 60 ml milk room temperature, I used lactose-free milk
  • 20 g Stevia sweetener for egg yolk batter
  • 85 g Stevia sweetener for egg white meringue, can add up to 120g
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar

Decorations

  • Rosemary leaves
  • Fresh raspberries
  • Gold leaf
  • Icing sugar

Instructions
 

Make the chocolate whipped cream

  • Use a food mixer with whisk attachment. Combine 300ml whipping cream, 3 tbsp cocoa powder, 1 tbsp Stevia sweetener (optional), and 1 tsp vanilla extract (optional) into the mixing bowl. 
    Mix on low speed. Then gradually increase to high speed until soft peaks are formed.
    Chill in the refrigerator to let it firm up for at least 4 hours.
    300 ml whipping cream, 3 tbsp cocoa powder, 1 tbsp Stevia sweetener, 1 tsp vanilla extract
    whipped cream

Make the chocolate ganache

  • Warm 200ml whipping cream until the side of the pot bubbles slightly. Do not let it boil.
    200 ml whipping cream, 200 g dark chocolate chips
    simmer cream and milk
  • Add the warm whipping cream to 200g dark chocolate chips. 
    Let it sit for 3 minutes. 
    chocolate ganache
  • Whisk well to mix well. 
    coconut bundt cake
  • Transfer the dark chocolate ganache into a piping bag.
    Chill in fridge to let it set for at least 4 hours.
    chocolate cream

Make the vanilla cake

  • Pre-heat the oven (convection or conventional top and bottom heating) to 170°C (338°F).
    Line the base of a cake pan with baking or parchment paper. I used a non-stick baking sheet on a 13×13-inch cake pan.
  • Separate egg yolks from egg whites. We will need 6 egg yolks and 5 egg whites.
    6 large eggs
    separate the egg
  • Sift together 100g cake flour, 1 tsp baking powder, and 1/8 tsp fine salt. 
    100 g cake flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/8 tsp fine salt
    sift the flour
  • In a separate mixing bowl, combine 6 egg yolks and 20g Stevia sweetener and mix well.
    Use a handheld whisk or electric mixer to whisk until the egg yolk mixture turns pale in colour and increases in volume and becomes thicker. This takes about 3-5 minutes.
    20 g Stevia sweetener
    egg batter
  • Add 50ml vegetable oil to the egg yolk batter. Use a whisk and mix well.
    Then add 60ml milk and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Use a whisk and mix well. 
    Batter will become smooth and thick.
    50 ml vegetable oil, 60 ml milk, 1 tsp vanilla extract
    egg batter
  • Add the sifted flour mixture in 2 batches. Use a whisk to mix until the batter becomes smooth and thick, with no visible sign of flour.
    mix the cake
  • To make the meringue, use a food mixer with whisk attachment, and a clean and oil-free mixing bowl, add 5 egg whites and sprinkle in 1/4 tsp cream of tartar.
    Whip on high speed until the whites turn frothy. 
    Add 85g Stevia sweetener in gradually while the egg whites are whipping until stiff peaks are formed. This takes about 5-7 minutes. 
    Note: The ideal stiffness is when a stiff peak forms, holding its dropped 'hook' shape on a whisk.
    1/4 tsp cream of tartar, 85 g Stevia sweetener
    meringue
  • Fold the meringue into the egg yolk batter in 3 batches. Each time, use a whisk to fold in gently until well-mixed. Take note not to overmix, otherwise the whipped air bubbles will deflate. The final batter should have no visible signs of the white meringue.
    cake batter
  • Transfer the batter into the lined cake pan.
    Use a spatula to ensure the batter fills the corners and sides, and smooth the surface.
    Tap a few times on the table to eliminate air bubbles.
    cake in pan
  • Bake in pre-heat oven for 15-22 minutes at 170°C (338°F).
    Note: It takes about 15 minutes in a convection oven or about 22 minutes in a conventional oven. To test the doneness of the cake, firstly, insert a chopstick or skewer in the middle of the cake, if it comes out clean, it’s done. Secondly, gently press on the cake, if it bounces back, it’s done.
    bake the cake
  • Once the cake is baked, immediately drop the cake in pan 2-inch from the table. Let the cake sit in the pan for 2 minutes before releasing the cake.
    Use a knife to run around the edge of the cake pan. Gently pull the cake by the sides onto a cooling rack. (See 06:09 in the video below)
    remove the cake
  • Place a clean piece of parchment paper over the cake. Hold the sides of the cake pan and cooling rack, and carefully flip over the cake.
    Gently peel away the lined baking sheet that is now on top of the cake. (See 06:30 in the video below)
    remove the cake
  • Cut 2 shallow slits 1.5 cm apart, on one end of the cake with a sharp knife. (See 06:36 in the video below)
    Note: Do not cut too deep, otherwise the cake will break when rolled.
    cut 2 slits
  • On the other end of the cake, cut the cake at 45-degree angle. (See 06:45 in the video below)
    cut off the end of the cake
  • Place a clean piece of parchment paper over the cake. Roll the cake while it’s still warm, starting from where the slits are.
    Keep it wrapped in the parchment paper until it cools completely.
    Note: Optional to keep the rolled cake in the fridge to cool. If chilled in the fridge for too long, moisture might build up in the paper.
    roll the cake

Decorate the cake

  • Gently unroll the cake.
    Spread the chocolate whipped cream on the cake. At the end where the slits are, the whipped cream should be the thickest, and the thinnest nearer the cut end. Leave a thin border around the cake.
    spread cream on cake
  • Roll the cake starting from where the slits are. Use the parchment paper to lift the cake off the surface as you roll. 
    The edge of the cake should be facing down once the cake is rolled.
    roll the cake
  • Trim off both ends of the rolled cake.
    trim off ends of cake
  • Cut out 1/3 of the rolled cake. Then cut off a diagonal section of the 1/3 cake. Put the rolled cake together to resemble a tree log.
    cut the cake
  • Pipe the dark chocolate ganache all over the rolled cake. Use a spatula to ensure the dark chocolate ganache covers the cake evenly and fully.
    pipe the cream
  • Use a fork to make the tree log marking on the dark chocolate ganache.
    make tree marking
  • Decorate with raspberries, rosemary, gold flakes or icing sugar. Be creative to decorate.
    Chill in fridge until the dark chocolate ganache firms up. The yule log is best served with 3 days.
    Rosemary leaves, Fresh raspberries, Gold leaf, Icing sugar
    Yule Log | Bûche De Noël | Christmas Log Cake

Video

Notes

    • Make the whipped cream and chocolate ganache and chill it in the fridge to set it firm before using it to decorate the cake.
    • Use a whipped cream that contains at least 35% fat. The one I used is 35.1%, it doesn’t whipped up into a stable cream but it’s good enough to make the roll cake.
    • I used a 13×13-inch cake pan. The height turns out perfect for rolling. If you can’t find a 13×13-inch cake pan, you can also use other sizes (such as 15.5×10.5-inch) as long as the area square turns out similar.
    • I rolled the cake while it’s still warm but this is optional. It’s also okay to roll it when cooled.
    • In this recipe, I used some leftover rosemary leaves, fresh raspberries, gold leaves I found in my pantry cabinet to decorate the cake. However be creative in how you want to decorate the cake. I am not a fan of using icing sugar thou.
    • Stevia sweetener is used in this recipe. You can definitely substitute it with normal sugar in the same proportions.

Nutrition

Calories: 257kcal
Keyword baking, christmas, log cake, roll cake, yule log
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