Photography: Tango | Food Styling: Nataly Simard | Prop Styling: Caroline Simon

This scrumptious creation makes a grand finale for any holiday meal.

  • Prep time 1 hour & 15 minutes
  • Total time 3 hours & 15 minutes
  • Portion size 20 servings
  • Credits : Canadian Living Magazine: December 2021


Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing:
Marshmallow Cream:


Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease three 8-inch round cake pans; line bottoms with parchment paper. Set aside. In bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, coffee granules, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In large bowl, using electric mixer on medium speed, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition; beat in vanilla. Beat in flour mixture, alternating with buttermilk, in 3 additions. Divide batter among prepared pans; smooth tops.

Bake until cake tester inserted in centres of cakes comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool in pans on racks for 15 minutes. Invert onto wire racks; peel off parchment paper. Let cool completely. (Make-ahead: Can be covered and stored at room temperature overnight or wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 month.)

Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing  Meanwhile, in large bowl, using electric mixer with clean beaters, beat together cream cheese, butter and vanilla on medium speed until fluffy. Gradually beat in cocoa powder and icing sugar until smooth and creamy. (If frosting is too thick, add milk, 1 tsp at a time, to desired consistency. If too runny, add icing sugar.) (Make-ahead: Can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days. Let come to room temperature and whisk again before using.)

Using serrated knife, trim tops of cakes to level, if necessary. Arrange strips of waxed paper around edge of serving plate. Spread 1 tbsp of the icing in centre of cake plate; top with 1 cake layer, cut side up. Spread 1 1/4 cups of the icing over cut side; cover with second cake layer, cut side down. Spread 1 1/4 cups of the icing over top. Cover with final cake layer, cut side down; spread with 1 cup of the icing. Using offset palette knife, spread remaining icing over top and side of cake; remove waxed paper strips. Cover and refrigerate.

Marshmallow Cream  In large metal bowl, whisk together egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar until combined. Place bowl over saucepan of simmering water (bowl should not touch water). Cook, whisking constantly, 3 minutes or until sugar has dissolved and mixture is smooth, or until instant-read thermometer reads 160°F. Remove bowl from heat; whisk in vanilla. Using electric mixer with clean beaters, beat on high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form, 3 to 5 minutes. Place mixture in pastry bag fitted with round tip. (Make-ahead: Can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours.)

Pipe dollops of Marshmallow Cream on top of cake right before serving. Sprinkle with cocoa powder, if desired. (Make-ahead: Can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.)




Adding instant coffee to the cake batter enhances the flavour of the chocolate.

Nutritional facts Per serving: about

  • Iron 2.1 ng
  • Fibre 3 g
  • Sodium 325 mg
  • Sugars 51 g
  • Protein 7 g
  • Calories 600
  • Total fat 33 g
  • Cholesterol 115 mg
  • Saturated fat 20 g
  • Total carbohydrate 69 g
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Baking & Desserts

Chocolate Cream Cheese Layer Cake