Hot Fudge Cake

Hot Fudge Cake is a homemade version of a restaurant dish I had growing up. Layers of cake, ice cream, and hot fudge sauce make for a decadent dessert!

Hot Fudge Cake

How many of you out there are familiar with Big Boy restaurants? In Cincinnati, and even Columbus, we had Frisch’s Big Boy, and every so often, I get a craving for their Fish & Chips platter. Cod fillets, fries, a dinner roll, and my other side was usually applesauce.

There was one within walking distance of the townhouse we used to live in, and especially in high school, we’d eat there maybe once a week? Sometimes more frequently if we went there for weekend breakfast.

And whenever I got dessert, it was always the same thing–Hot Fudge Cake. Two chocolate cake layers separated by a layer of vanilla ice cream, drenched in hot fudge, and topped with whipped cream and a cherry.

I’d almost always have to split the dessert with someone, because though I made a valiant effort, I couldn’t finish it by myself. It was always too rich, or I’d’ve cleaned my plate and should’ve had something smaller for dessert. But I’d always get the Hot Fudge Cake.

Hot Fudge Cake

So when I was coming up with ideas for Choctoberfest posts, after making hot fudge sauce, I thought I’d try and recreate my favorite childhood dessert. It became a larger-than-expected pain-in-the-arse, but it was well worth the effort.

And I’m sure I could’ve taken some shortcuts, but my stubborn streak often likes to do things the hard way. I made the sauce first, since that was the easiest component. Then I made the cake. I guess I did take one shortcut, and used store-bought ice cream.

Hot Fudge Cake

It became a multi-day process, though it didn’t really need to be. The end result was delicious, though!

Hot Fudge Cake

Hot Fudge Cake


For the Cake:

  • 2 1/4 C flour
  • 1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 C (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 C sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 C cold water
  • Whipped cream, for serving
  • Maraschino cherries, for serving


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone baking sheet. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar, and beat on medium speed until light (about 2-3 minutes). Add the vanilla.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
On low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and water, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix just until combined.
Spread the batter in the prepared pan, and bake 18-22 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Place a clean piece of parchment paper on top of the cake, and a clean sheet pan on top of that. Flip the cake onto the clean sheet pan, and allow to cool completely.
While the cake cools, spread the ice cream onto a baking sheet lined with plastic wrap. Spread into a rectangle 6x8 inches and approximately 1-inch thick. Cover with additional plastic wrap, and freeze for at least 1 hour.
Using a 4-inch round cookie cutter, cut 8 rounds from the cooled cake, and 4 rounds from the ice cream. Layer the ice cream in between the cake slices. Top each with Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce, whipped cream, and maraschino cherries.

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8 Replies to “Hot Fudge Cake”

  1. This cake is excellent as is the hot fudge in the accompanying recipe, I just made them both tonight so that I could make a hot fudge cake which is THE BEST dessert ever! :)

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