Taking a break from all of the healthy gestational diabetes and low carb stuff to share a super sweet cake recipe! After all, baking is my passion and I love to share that with you guys! Even if I can’t indulge right now. 🙂 Heck, I plan to keep eating healthy once baby girl is here, but there is nothing wrong with indulging every now and then!
Do you ever just crave something? Not like a pregnancy craving, just a specific taste? Well one day last summer I started craving some chocolate covered cherry goodness. It just so happens that my husband loves chocolate covered cherries, and Father’s Day was rolling around, so I set out to create a cake for him that fully embodied the flavors without using store-bought chocolate covered cherries.
I have to say, it did not disappoint!
For the cake itself, as a home baker, I really hate to share my secret cake recipes. BUT you are in luck because I was being lazy this day, so here’s what I did!
If you want a bangin’ chocolate cake without all of the fuss of a scratch made cake: go buy a Betty Crocker mix. I’m serious! Buy the mix, add an extra egg, and sub milk for the water. You will get a moist, dense cake that will work perfectly for this recipe!
It is such a delicious combination of flavors! I opted for just a 6″ cake and it was plenty for us! With four layers of chocolate, and 4 layers of cherry, it was perfectly balanced out.
I also decided as his gift, to buy a new ice cream maker! I grew up with happy memories of making home made ice cream on the porch in the summer, and I wanted that for my babies. We grabbed this awesome Hamilton Beach one and whipped up a creamy vanilla to compliment the cake. It was absolutely perfect and a great day of memories with our girl!
Okay now that I have made you drool, on to the recipe!
Chocolate Covered Cherry Cake with Cherry Buttercream Frosting
For the Cake:
- Betty Crocker Chocolate Cake Mix
- One extra egg (beyond what your box calls for)
- Milk in place of the water called for in the instructions (2% works, but whole is better!)
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter
- 1 bag confectioners sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 10 oz jar of Maraschino Cherries
- 1 stick of butter
- 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1/3 cup evaporated milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 8 oz chocolate chips (I opted for milk, but you can use whatever kind you want!).
- 8 oz heavy whipping cream.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix all ingredients according to the cake mix box, making sure to sub milk for the water and add your extra egg!
- Grease four 6″ cake pans with my Magical Cake Release paste. (If you only have two, just bake the layers two at a time. If you don’t have 6″ pans, just do two 8″ pans and split the batter in half).
- Fill each pan with a quarter of the batter and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. I find that when I do four 6″ pans, my cakes tend to cook much faster. Make sure you watch them!
- Flip out onto a rack and allow to cool.
- Once cool, level the tops with a bread knife and set aside.
- Melt your butter in the microwave and then add to the bowl of your stand mixer.
- Carefully mix in your cocoa powder and vanilla.
- Add the powdered sugar and evaporated milk alternately, until you get your icing to a good consistency. You want it thick enough to help support your layers, but not so thick that you can’t spread it.
- Set aside.
- Wash the bowl and whisk attachment for your mixer.
- While that is drying, remove enough of the cherries from the jar to garnish the top of your cake. (for a 6″ cake, 10 was perfect!)
- Remove the stems from the remaining cherries, if necessary, and set them aside. Make sure you keep all of the juice that is in the jar!
- Add the butter to the bowl and whip it until light and fluffy.
- Next, add your vanilla, and any cherries that were not pulled for garnish. Your mixer should chop them up into small pieces, but if any large pieces remain you will want to cut them down some.
- Once that is all incorporated, add approximately 1 cup of your powdered sugar and mix well, scraping the sides as needed.
- Add the juice from the cherry jar. Go ahead- dump the whole thing in there! It will explode the cherry flavor!
- Your icing will be very thin after this. Continue adding powdered sugar a cup at a time, mixing well in between each addition. Once you get your icing to a good spreading consistency, stop! You may use the whole bag, you may not.
- Place your first layer of cake on your cake plate.
- Using a piping bag if possible, (or you can cut a corner off of a ZipLock bag!), pipe a ring of your chocolate icing around the outside of the top of the cake.
- Fill inside of your ring with cherry buttercream.
- Place the next layer on top, and repeat until you have placed all layers, but do not ice the top yet!
- Next, you will want to spread your cherry buttercream on top, but not down the sides.
- Frost the sides of your cake with the chocolate frosting. I use one of these scrapers and a cake turn table to get my sides smooth, but you can do your best with a spatula if need be!
- Now we pause and go make the ganache if you are doing so! If not, skip this part!
- Place your cake in the fridge while you do this. A cold cake helps slow the drips and keeps it from running off of the cake. You may even want to chill for 10-15 minutes before you make the ganache!
- Add both your chocolate and heavy cream to a microwave safe bowl.
- Microwave it for 1 minute, and then let it stand in the microwave for 1 minute.
- Remove the bowl and let it sit an additional minute on the counter and then whisk it for 30 seconds. It should be smooth and well incorporated.
- Using a spoon, apply small amounts of your ganache (literally a drip at a time) to the top edges of your cake, gently pushing it over the side so that it drips down. Don’t worry about how it looks on the top, we will be covering that! Just make your drips as pretty as possible.
- Now for the very last step! Decorate the edges of the top of your cake (however you want!) with your chocolate icing. I personally used a Wilton 1M Cupcake tip to pipe some icing and then pressed a cherry into each. I also opted to add chocolate sprinkles around the bottom, but have fun with it!
- Wow everyone you know with your gorgeous masterpiece!