This Chocolate Peanut Butter Poke Cake starts with a box cake mix, but it is transformed into chocolatey, peanut buttery perfection.
I’m not afraid to admit that I think chocolate and peanut butter are one of the most iconic flavor pairings – not to mention one of my personal favorites. And I’m proud to say that the apple hasn’t fallen far from the tree when it comes to that particular love. Jack is just about as passionate about the flavor combo as I am. In fact, he’s requested a chocolate peanut butter birthday cake for two years running now. And I’m happy to oblige.
But I’m not always up for turning out a homemade 4 layer chocolate cake with peanut butter filling and chocolate buttercream frosting. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind on special occasions like birthdays, but certainly not on a random Tuesday. So I created this Chocolate Peanut Butter Poke Cake.
I’ve professed my love for sheet cakes before. They’re perfect for when you want a delicious cake, but don’t want to fool with the hassle of a layer cake. And no one ever complains about turning a sheet cake into a poke cake by filling it with a delicious creamy filling, right? So this is the best of both worlds.
Seriously, if you love Reese’s peanut butter cups, you’re going to flip over this.
The frosting, made with creamy peanut butter and whipped topping, is peanut butter perfection. And it’s topped with mini Reese’s cups! Y’all are just going to love this one!
What is a poke cake?
A poke cake is like the fun-loving cousin in the cake family. It’s a delightful twist on traditional cakes, where you literally “poke” holes in a freshly baked cake and then let scrumptious fillings seep into those holes. It’s as if the cake and the filling are playing a little game of hide and seek!
Imagine this: you’ve got a soft, fluffy cake, just out of the oven, smelling heavenly. While it’s still warm, you take the round end of a wooden spoon, skewer, or even a fork and poke holes all over it. These aren’t just any holes; they’re like little tunnels of opportunity for whatever deliciousness you choose to pour over the cake.
And here’s where the magic happens. You can drizzle all sorts of yummy things into those holes – sweetened condensed milk, pudding, fruit purees, or even a bit of liqueur for an adult twist. The cake eagerly soaks up these flavors, making every bite a delightful surprise.
Once the cake has absorbed all that goodness, it’s usually topped off with a layer of whipped cream or frosting, adding yet another layer of yum. And for the grand finale, you can sprinkle toppings like chocolate shavings, fruit pieces, or nuts, turning the cake into a true celebration of flavors and textures.
Poke cakes are not only delicious but also incredibly fun to make, especially if you love getting a bit interactive with your baking. They’re perfect for when you want to add a bit of pizzazz to your dessert table and have everyone ooh-ing and aah-ing at the delightful surprises in each slice. So, grab your spoon and get ready to poke your way to a fantastic dessert!
Chocolate Peanut Butter Poke Cake
For the cake:
- 1 (15.25-ounce) box milk chocolate cake mix
- + ingredients to make the cake as directed on box
For the chocolate peanut butter sauce:
- 1 (3.9-ounce) box instant chocolate pudding mix
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
For the peanut butter frosting:
- 1 (16-ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 (8-ounce) package Reese’s Minis miniature peanut butter cups
- Prepare the cake according to the package directions. Allow to cool 25 to 30 minutes in the pan.
- Use the stick end of a wooden spoon to poke holes in the cake. In a medium bowl, whisk together the pudding mix, milk, and 1/2 cup of peanut butter to make the chocolate sauce. Allow the mixture to thicken for about 10 minutes, then pour over the cake and into the holes. *The mixture will not thicken completely to pudding consistency.
- In a large bowl, whisk the 1 cup of peanut butter into the thawed whipped topping. Spread the frosting over the cake. Sprinkle the peanut butter cups evenly over the frosting. Cover and keep refrigerated.
* If nutritional values are provided, they are an estimate and will vary depending on the brands used. The values do not include optional ingredients or when ingredients are added to taste. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, I recommend grabbing your favorite brands and plugging those ingredients into an online nutritional calculator.