Sunday Dinner

Pin It

Mashed Potatoes

Mile High German Chocolate Cake

I know that German Chocolate Cake really isn't German, but I was intent on having fun with this menu.  I had a hankering for braised red meat and something chocolate for dessert, so that is how this dinner menu came to be.

I had a favorite German Chocolate Cake from Gourmet that was rich and decadent, then I found David Lebovitz's version, and then last year my mother introduced me to a Cook's Country recipe that she swore by.   With too many recipes for one cake, I decided to blend the three.  I like the not overly sweet, yet tender cake from Cook's Country.  Their filling is nice too, but I needed it to be sweeter.  David Lebovitz makes a simple syrup flavored with rum to moisten his cake--nice, but I use Godiva Chocolate Liqueur instead.  I also liked the chocolate glaze from Gourmet, but I found that it is too rich for this cake so I use David's silky icing recipe but with dark chocolate.  Phew!

This German Chocolate Cake is tender and moist, with a perfect chocolate flavor that balances well with that sticky sweet filling of toasted coconut and pecans.

You'll have to excuse me from more writing.  I have a dinner to prepare and a slice of cake to enjoy--yum!

Mile High German Chocolate Cake
serves 12-16

For the cake
6 oz milk chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons Dutch-processed Cocoa powder
2/3 cup boiling water
2 2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
6 tablespoons (3 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
6 extra large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream (regular or reduced fat, not fat free), at room temperature

For the filling
12 oz can fat-free evaporated milk
5 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup pecans, finely chopped
7 0z sweetened flaked coconut

For the syrup
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon Godiva Chocolate Liqueur

For the icing
8 oz dark chocolate
2 tablespoons corn syrup
3 tablespoons (1 1/2 oz ) unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream

For the cake
Adjust the rack to lower-middle position and heat to 350ºF.  Line two 9" cake pans with parchment paper and spray with non-stick baking spray.  

In a medium bowl, whisk together the chocolate, cocoa, and boiling water until smooth; set aside to cool.  In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars until light in color, about 1-2 minutes.  Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula.  Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.  Add the cooled chocolate mixture and the vanilla and mix until incorporated.  Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with sour cream.  Mix just until combined.

Evenly pour the batter into the prepared pans.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool cakes in the pan for 10 minutes.  Invert them on a wire rack to cool completely.  (Cooled cakes can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature for 2 days.

For the filling
Preheat the oven to 325ºF.  Spread pecans and coconut on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until the nuts are toasted and the coconut is light golden brown.  Set aside to cool.

Whisk the milk, cornstarch, butter, brown sugar, and salt in a saucepan over medium-high heat until bubbling, about 3 minutes.  Continue to cook until mixture is thickened, about 1 minute.  Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.  Stir in the pecans and coconut and set aside to cool to room temperature.

For the syrup
Heat the water and sugar in a small sauce pan until the sugar is melted.  Remove from the heat and add the chocolate liqueur.  Set aside to cool.

For the icing
Place the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter in a medium bowl.  Heat the heavy cream to a boil and pour over the chocolate. Let sit for one minute, then stir until smooth and completely melted.  Set aside to cool completely.  Mixture will thicken as it cools.

To assemble
Slice the cake layers in half horizontally.  Place one cake layer on a serving platter.  Brush with some of the syrup.  Spread 1/4 of the filling on the cake.  Place another cake layer on top and repeat with the syrup filling and cake layers.  Spread the sides of the cake with the cooled icing and pipe rosettes of icing  around the edges of the cake.  Enjoy!

Source: Cake and filling adapted from Cook's Country, syrup and icing from David Lebovtiz


  1. What a spectacular cake! It is beautiful. I can't wait to try it.

  2. Hi Nicole, what a beautiful blog you have. I like the clean look. Very well done. I am in the process of redoing mine. It will still take a while.
    Yes, the first time I heard about German chocolate cake was in the US. We don't grow coconuts in Germany. I have also never tried one, but your cake looks unbelievably good and I would try a piece right now.
    Greetings from Colorado.

  3. Kirsten-
    Coconuts in Germany--that made me laugh. German "baking" Chocolate was developed in the mid 1800's by and an Englishman named Sam German. I believe the first German Chocolate Cake was documented 100 years later. I appreciate for the kind comments about my blog. It is a real labor of love. Thank you for stopping by.

  4. Hello,
    Nice article for anyone who need plan for wedding. I like it very much. Thank you for writing such type article. I will arrange a wedding ceremony very soon and this site helped me.

  5. I'll take a slice of that cake too! Definitely looks like a keeper recipe to me!

  6. These look sinfully good. The photography of course is beautiful but this recipe encompasses all things good. Well done.

  7. Beautiful cake!! And the fact that you already knew German cake wasn't German scores you another point! I hate pointing that out to people (often when they are planning their German-themed menu) and sounding like a big kill-joy, know it all! ;)

  8. What a great menu! Though I've never been a fan of chocolate or coconut, I feel like if I tried this cake I might change my mind;)

  9. I found your site from dessertstalking.com. This cake looks divine and too pretty to eat! I have yet to tackle cakes but I may have to try this one (or maybe another one of the goodies you've featured). - Rachel

  10. That cake is absolutely gorgeous! We'd love if you could enter it into the Recipe4Living 5th Birthday Contest! You could win a huge gift basket full of Scharffen Berger gourmet chocolate!

  11. Goodness, this looks amazing!!
    Thanks for sharing,
    Jess :D

  12. I made this cake on Valentine's Day for a chocoholic. It turned out beautiful and delicious - thank you!

  13. Keba-
    I am so pleased you enjoyed it. Thank you for letting me know:)

  14. I made this german chocolate cake today for a co-worker's birthday. Everyone at work /raved/ about it! I received two marriage proposals for bringing it in. It was that good. :) Rich, complex flavor, moist, thick, and fudgey frosting... perfect!

    Thank you so much for the recipe...

    The only issue I had was with the icing. I was really in a hurry to get out the door so I think I may have iced it too soon?? The icing seemed cooled but it was still very runny. I ended up losing half the frosting to parchment paper because it pooled off the cake. I put the cake into our fridge at work and amazingly it turned into this beautiful, thick fudge icing...

    Q: Was I supposed to refridgerate the icing before applying to the cake?

    1. So pleased you and your co-workers enjoyed the cake☺. As far as the icing, it does not need to be refrigerated, but it does need to cool completely before frosting. As the icing cools, it will thicken and will easily frost the cake. Glad the end result was still good!

    2. Nicole,

      I just wanted to let you know that I have made this cake two additional times now! One of my co-workers requested that I make a smaller version for her /mother/ for Mother's Day! (Yes, it's that good!) And I also made it for my family over spring break. It was a huge hit. My Dad said it was the best cake he's ever had. And my sister, who swears on her life that she hates coconut, begrudgingly admitted to liking the cake.

      I let the icing completely cool in both cases and it turned out perfect. It was very easy to frost and was not runny.

      Thanks again! I'm making your carrot cake recipe now so I'll leave a review of that later. :)

    3. Always a good sign when you convert a picky palate☺.


Thanks for visiting my blog! I love hearing from family, friends, and bloggers, so please leave a comment. Happy cooking!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...