cookies and cream cake {+ our weekend}

cookies and cream cake

After the week we had last week, I was feeling pretty depleted on Friday.  While Evelyn has learned how to walk, she has apparently forgotten how to nap, and so she and I had a week of lots of crying and stress and frustration.  Needless to say, I was ready for a weekend in which Gerrit would be home and I could pass naptime duties off to him.  That was really all I wanted out of my weekend, but it exceeded those expectations.

We had dinner with Gerrit’s parents and brother (who was home from college for the weekend) on Friday night.  Gerrit went to a late movie Friday night, which gave me some time to chill in bed and read and watch House Hunters, which if I’m being honest is basically my favorite way to spend a Friday night.  Saturday morning we had waffles for breakfast (thanks to batter I halfway prepped the night before…recipe hopefully coming soon once I test it out another time or two).  Then we got a few chores done, I iced this cake, and we went to celebrate my brother’s birthday at my parents’ house and spend an afternoon watching football, which was really the only thing to do on such a dreary day.
cookies and cream cake
Sunday I went to church to teach Sunday School (Gerrit and I have been leading the high school class, which we are loving), and left Gerrit and Evelyn at home to have a lazy morning/give Evelyn some nap consistency.  From the outside looking in it seems like I had the more involved task that morning (since I actually had to get out of the house and put my brain together for something), but there was nothing more relaxing than driving to church by myself, listening to a podcast, and not holding my breath waiting for Evelyn to decide she is upset because I’m not close enough to her (that has been the theme of our week, I think).  Then to add lovely to wonderfulness, Gerrit took Evelyn out of the house for the afternoon leaving me with time to get a few things done in peace.
And then it all ended with another slice of cake.
It was one of those weekends that felt both productive and relaxing at the same time, which are always the best kind.  And they are even better when they involve cake.
cookies and cream cake

cookies and cream cake

Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 50 minutes

Yield: Makes 1 large cake

What I, and everyone else who had this cake, love about it is that it is not too rich. It feels like a cookies and cream without being cloyingly sweet. Part of this is that the chocolate cake layers aren't too rich, but of course use whatever cake recipe you would like. What really makes this a cookies and cream cake is the frosting, which is really quite easy to make.


  • For the cake:
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2/3 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • For the frosting:
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups heavy cream, cold
  • 3 cups crushed oreos


  1. Begin by making the cake. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour three 8 inch cake pans. Or use my favorite method: spray the pans with cooking spray, line the bottoms with parchment paper, and then spray the parchment paper.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy. Add the sugars and beat for another couple minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until incorporated. Then beat in the vanilla. Lower the mixer speed to low, and mix in the melted chocolate.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk alternately, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients (do the dry ingredients in 3 batches and the buttermilk in 2). Beat after each addition just until incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Still mixing on low speed, add in the boiling water.
  5. Toss the chocolate chips with the tablespoon of flour, then use a spatula to stir the chocolate chips in.
  6. Divide the batter evenly among the three cake pans, and if necessary use a spatula to spread the batter out in the pans.
  7. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for about 5 minutes, and then remove them from the pans and place them on wire racks to complete cooling. Once the cakes are completely cooled, wrap them separately in plastic wrap and place them in the freezer for at least an hour. (I like to do my cake layers days ahead of time and let them sit in the freezer for days.)
  8. To make the frosting, in a large bowl combine the cream cheese, salt, and sugar. Cream together using an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Then mix in the vanilla.
  9. In a separate large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream into stiff peaks. Then use a rubber spatula to gently fold the cream into the cream cheese mixture. Then fold in the crushed oreos.
  10. To frost the cake, place one cake layer on the bottom of your cake round or cake plate. Use an offset spatula to spread the top with a layer of frosting. Stack the second layer, then another layer of frosting, then the final layer. (It's best, if you can, to find the most flat layer for the top, and if your layers have risen quite a bit you can use a serrated knife to cut a bit off to make them flatter.) Then spread the top and the sides with frosting. To make the icing smooth, run your spatula under hot water and gently run it over the frosting.
  11. Store the cake in the refrigerator until serving. (It can be kept in the fridge for a couple of days, but is best eaten sooner rather than later.)


cake layers adapted from Baking: From my Home to Yours

2 Responses

  1. Thalia @ butter and brioche October 5, 2015 at 11:14 pm |

    This is my dream cake! Please cut me a slice Xx

  2. Annie March 29, 2016 at 9:06 am |

    I just wanted to say how amazing this frosting recipe was, it’s one of the best frosting recipes I’ve used. Tons of compliments and will definitely make it again. Thanks for sharing!!


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