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How to make a Black Forest trifle

Celebrate in style with a dessert combination that is sure to please – a classic, layered trifle with all the rich, fruity flavours of a Black Forest gateau. This party pud will feed a crowd and is easy to make when you follow these simple steps for rich chocolate custard, brownie and cherry layers. Don’t forget to grab the ingredients list at the bottom of the page for your next shop.

  1. Make the custard

    Put 6 egg yolks, 50g caster sugar and 50g plain flour in a large bowl and whisk until smooth. Pour 450ml whole milk into a large pan and put over a medium-low heat. Heat until just steaming, then remove from the heat and carefully pour over the egg yolk mixture, whisking continuously until fully combined. Pour everything back into the pan and reduce the heat to low. Cook gently for about 10 mins until the custard thickens and holds its shape on the back of a spoon.

    Short on time? For an easy alternative using Tesco fresh custard, see tips below.

    Make the custard
  2. Flavour the custard

    Remove the pan from the heat. Finely chop 100g dark chocolate and add to the hot custard, stirring until melted and smooth. Cover the top of the custard with a disc of nonstick baking paper to stop a skin from forming and set aside to cool completely.

    Flavour the custard
  3. Prepare the cherries

    Drain a 425g tin black cherries in light syrup, reserving 4 tbsp of the syrup. Halve and stone the cherries and put in a bowl. Halve and stone 350g fresh cherries and mix into the bowl with the tinned cherries (if fresh cherries are unavailable, you can use extra tinned cherries or frozen cherries instead. If frozen, defrost according to pack instructions before using). Mix the reserved syrup with 4 tbsp Kirsch, or other cherry liqueur in a small bowl and set aside.

    Prepare the cherries
  4. Whip the cream

    Put 300ml double cream and 300ml 50% less fat crème fraîche into a large bowl and whip to soft peaks. Remove the baking paper cover from the chocolate custard and stir a large spoonful of the whipped cream into the custard to loosen the texture.

    Whip the cream
  5. Prepare the brownies

    Take 2 packs of 20 brownie bites and roughly cut each brownie in half. Scatter about half of the brownie pieces over the base of large glass trifle or serving dish. Drizzle half of the syrup and Kirsch mixture evenly over the brownies.

    Prepare the brownies
  6. Layer up

    Cover the brownies with half of the mixed cherries, then spread over half of the chocolate custard and half of the whipped cream. Repeat with a second layer of the remaining brownies, syrup, cherries, custard and finishing with the cream.

    Layer up
  7. Decorate and serve

    Grate (or shave with a veg peeler or wide flat knife) 50g dark chocolate over the top, then decorate with 12 whole fresh cherries. Cover the top loosely with clingfilm and chill for at least 1 hr, or for up to 3 days, before serving.


  8. Tips

    Lumpy custard? Don’t panic, this can happen if the eggs get too hot when the milk is added. Simply strain the custard through a fine sieve before adding the chocolate and cooling.

    Alternatively, for a quick and easy option, grab a 500g tub Finest Cornish custard and gently heat through until just hot, but not bubbling. Remove from the heat and stir through the chopped chocolate as in step 2. Allow to cool completely, then layer up in the trifle as above.

  9. Ingredients

    We’ve made a handy shopping list so you can get everything you need to make this spectacular trifle. Don’t forget to screenshot before you go shopping!

    6 egg yolks
    50g caster sugar
    50g plain flour
    450ml whole milk
    150g dark chocolate
    425g tin black cherries in light syrup
    400g fresh cherries
    4 tbsp Kirsch or cherry liqueur
    300ml double cream
    300ml 50% less fat crème fraîche
    2 packs 20 brownie bites

    Each serving contains

    • Energy

    • Fat

      34g 48%
    • Saturates

      20g 100%
    • Sugars

      37g 41%
    • Salt

      0.2g 4%

    of the reference intake
    Carbohydrate 47.3g Protein 7.5g Fibre 0.9g