Friday, August 17, 2012

Recipe Round-Up: Chocolate Fudge Raspberry Cake

When one of my co-workers celebrated a birthday this week, I was asked (or maybe I volunteered) to bake a birthday cake.  The Frustrated Baker is nothing if not eager and willing. The birthday boy asked if I could somehow combine chocolate with raspberries and cream cheese frosting.

Um, yes. Yes I can.

As a result, this cake was born. It is a perfectly decadent chocolate cake with dark chocolate ganache and fresh raspberry filling wrapped in chocolate fudge cream cheese frosting.

I know. Ridiculous.

Before we begin, however, I have a confession: I sometimes use a box mix as the base for chocolate cakes. SHOCKER! But I am all about making life easier and if you can do it with a box mix, go for it!

I discovered this shortcut while reading She has unbelievable recipes and her doctored-up box mix is one of them! I love this recipe because it works beautifully in high altitude. And the extra ingredients you add to the mix make this taste better than homemade. Trust me on this, you will love it!

So, let's start!

 Buy a box of Devil's Food cake mix.

Add it to your mixing bowl along with a box of instant chocolate pudding.

Now comes the good stuff: Add sour cream, oil, eggs, warm espresso (or coffee) and vanilla. All of these ingredients combined make for one amazingly moist cake!

Mix it for 2 minutes and divide between two 9" baking pans.

Pop those suckers in the oven and WA LA! Two fabulous cakes just ready to be adorned!

While those are cooling, let's make the cream cheese frosting, shall we? This is one of my most favorite frosting recipes ever. EVER.

Start with cream cheese, butter and whole milk/cream. Mix those together until smooth.

 Next up, add powdered sugar and cocoa (pretend I have a picture of me adding cocoa). Be sure to mix slowly at first and then whip it up for 1 minute.

Finally, add salt and vanilla to take this fudgy goodness over the top! Mix again and your frosting is complete. 

Once your cakes are cooled, grab some fresh raspberries. Make sure they are dried thoroughly so they don't make the cake soggy. Soggy cake is a baking no-no.

Also, grab your ganache. Ganache is just a fancy word for chocolate and cream. To make ganache, simply heat cream over the stove until it simmers. Remove from heat and add your chocolate. Stir until it becomes shiny and all the chocolate is melted.

I could literally stick my head in this bowl.

To assemble, place the bottom cake on a platter or cardboard base. Add a drop of frosting to the base so the cake will not slide around. A flying cake is another baking no-no.

Next, add 2/3 of the ganache and all of the raspberries on the bottom cake until the base is completely covered. (Again, pretend I have a picture of a completely covered cake.)

On the under side of the top cake, spread the remaining ganache. Press the top cake firmly on the raspberries and refrigerate for 10 minutes. This will help set the ganache and raspberries, preventing the top cake from flying off and landing on the floor, causing you to weep.

SIDE NOTE: In the meantime, do 100 squats, 40 lunges and 25 jumping jacks. You may not be able to walk afterward but you will help counterbalance the fact that you licked the beater and have plans for the frosting bowl once you are finished.

Once the ganache is set, pile on the fudgy cream cheese frosting!

Start with a big dollop on top and work your way to the sides.

Keep adding frosting to the top and moving it to the sides until the entire cake is covered. Be generous with your frosting, your co-workers will thank you.

And there you have it! A perfectly decadent chocolate cake with a dark chocolate and raspberry surprise inside!  Refrigerate cake until ready to serve. It is totally up to you if want to share it.

You complete me.

This cake is perfect for birthdays or celebrations. But it is also perfect for as a midnight snack or breakfast. There are few things I love more than cold cake for breakfast! Here are the handy-dandy instructions.

Chocolate Fudge Raspberry Cake

Chocolate Cake:
Recipe adapted from
1 (18.25 ounce) package devil’s food cake mix (see note below)
1 (5.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon instant espresso granules dissolved in 1/2 cup warm water or 1/2 cup warm coffee

Chocolate Fudge Cream Cheese Frosting:
Recipe adapted from Country Living
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
3 tablespoons hole milk or cream
3 cups confectioners' sugar
2/3 cup cocoa
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4oz. heavy whipping cream
6 oz. dark chocolate, chopped

2 pints of fresh raspberries, washed and dried

Cake Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 9" baking pans. In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat together the cake and pudding mixes, sour cream, oil, eggs, vanilla and espresso water mixture. Beat for about two minutes on medium speed until well combined. Divide batter between two 9" baking pans. Bake in preheated oven for 18-22 minutes or until the tops of the cakes spring back when lightly touched. Allow cakes to cool before adding the frosting.

Frosting Directions: In a medium bowl, using a mixer set at medium speed, beat the cream cheese, butter, and milk together until smooth. Add the sugar, cocoa, and salt and continue to beat until blended. Reduce mixer speed to low, add the vanilla, and beat until smooth. Cover and chill until needed.

Ganache Directions: Pour cream into small saucepan and set on low heat. Once the cream simmers, turn off heat and add chocolate. Stir mixture until chocolate is melted and it becomes smooth and shiny. Chill until slightly thicker.

Assembly: Place small drop of frosting on cake server or cardboard plate. Place bottom cake on top. Add 2/3 of the ganache and spread to cover the cake. Add all of the fresh raspberries and cover the cake. Add the remaining ganache to the underside of the top cake layer. Press top cake firmly onto raspberries, smooth out any ganache that seeps out between the layers, and refrigerate for 10 minutes.

Once the ganache is set, scoop a large dollop of frosting on top of the cake. Work the frosting to the sides and smooth. Cover the cake completely, adding more frosting to the top and working towards the sides. Place cake in cake carrier or covered cake plate and refrigerate until serving.



  1. I heard about this cake! It's famous!!! :)

  2. Mmmm. Fudgy cream cheese frosting is my middle name. But you already knew that.

  3. I am going to have to give this one a try... I too use boxed cake mix for many of my recipes! H