S’mores inspired layer cake has everything you love about the classic treat and then some! Chocolate cake filled with graham cracker cream cheese frosting and decadent chocolate ganache is a must for your summer celebrations!
- For the Cake:
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup coffee
- For the Frosting:
- 16 ounces (2 blocks) cream cheese
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 6-7 cups powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 cup cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1-2 teaspoons bourbon (can be replaced with heavy cream)
- For the Ganache:
- 8 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate chopped
- 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon light corn syrup
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 2 sheets graham crackers for garnish
- Piping bag and star tip
- 3 large marshmallows broiled
- For the chocolate cake:Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two Farberware 9-inch cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper rounds. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Add vegetable oil, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla, and mix on medium speed for about 2 to 3 minutes, until well combined. Stir in coffee.
- Divide the batter evenly between prepared cake pans and bake for approximately 30 - 35 minutes, until cakes start to pull away from the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Transfer cakes to a cooling rack for about 10-15 minutes, and then remove cakes and allow to cool completely. Once cakes are completely cool, wrap each of them in plastic wrap and freeze until ready to assemble.
- For the graham cracker frosting: In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and cream cheese on medium speed until smooth.
- Start adding powdered sugar, adding 1/2 cup at a time, just until frosting is smooth. Add graham cracker crumbs and mix until well combined.
- Add salt, cinnamon, vanilla, and bourbon, mixing just until combined. Do not over beat the frosting or it will become too soft. If that happens, chill the frosting for about 15-20 minutes.
- For the chocolate ganache: Place chocolate in a small bowl and set aside. In a Farberware Dishwasher Safe Nonstick 1-Quart Saucepan, bring heavy cream up to a scald over medium heat. Pour over chocolate and stir until smooth. Stir in light corn syrup, and set ganache aside, stirring occasionally. The ganache should be warm, but not hot for assembly.
- Assembly: Cut each 9-inch cake in half, creating 4 cake layers total. Place first cake layer on either a plate, cake stand, or cake board. Spread 1 cup of frosting on top and spread evenly. Place second cake layer on top and repeat with 1 cup of frosting. Repeat with remaining cake layers.
- Frost cake with remaining cream cheese frosting (reserving about 1 cup for garnish) and press graham cracker crumbs all around the sides and about halfway up the cake, pressing gently to adhere. Refrigerate at least 30 -45 minutes so the frosting has adequate time to chill and set up before pouring the ganache on top.
- Pour warm ganache (reserving about 1/4 cup for garnish) over the center of the cake and let it spread out to the edges on its own. Gently push a little off the edges with a spatula or back of a spoon if needed so it drips down the sides of the cake. Refrigerate cake so the ganache can set up.
- To decorate, fit a piping bag with large star tip and fill with remaining cream cheese frosting. Pipe rosettes around the edge of the cake and place a graham cracker piece between each rosette (this will also act a great marker for cutting cake slices).
- Using a spoon, place a very small dab of remaining, warm ganache (microwave for 15 seconds if needed) on top of each rosette and dust with some remaining graham cracker crumbs. Place 3 broiled marshmallows in the center of the cake and refrigerate.
Freezing cakes makes it much easier to cut them.
Cream cheese frosting can be made a day or two ahead of assembly and kept refrigerated in an air tight container.
The amount of powdered sugar used to make the frosting will vary based on personal preference and how stiff you’d like the frosting. Generally, I find 6.5 cups to be just right.
I suggest making the ganache after frosting the cake, while it’s chilling in the fridge. This helps to ensure the ganache will be the right temperature for covering.