Double Vanilla Ice Cream Cake
Each year, about a month before my Chief Culinary Consultant’s birthday, I ask what he would like for his cake/birthday dessert. In years past, the chocolate peanut butter torte has made repeat appearances and is a fan favorite around these parts, but this year he surprised me by asking for an ice cream cake. I had to ask for a lot of specific details because he and I have vastly different tastes when it comes to ice cream cakes. I prefer my ice cream cakes to be all ice cream, no cake, thankyouverymuch (a la Dairy Queen), while he prefers actual layers of cake with ice cream.
Not too long after we first began dating, he mentioned this type of ice cream cake to me, and I haphazardly made one for him. It consisted of a box cake mix, store-bought ice cream, and if memory serves, I layered it somehow in a loaf pan? Oof. Clearly, I had left myself significant room for improvement.
I have struggled for pretty much ever to find a yellow cake recipe that I love. Earlier in the month, I made my father-in-law a birthday cake trying out yet another recipe that everyone agreed was less than stellar. On to the next (Ghost Hunters, anyone?). For this ice cream cake, I shifted gears to the next yellow cake recipe on my list of ones to test, and I was extremely happy with the result. It was moist and flavorful, fluffy, not dense or dry. For this ice cream cake, it was perfect; I’ll still need to test it in an unfrozen state with regular frosting to see how it holds up :)
You can certainly use store-bought vanilla ice cream for this cake, but homemade really puts it over the top.
I can’t express enough how much I absolutely adore homemade ice cream.
Aside from the yellow cake/vanilla ice cream cake request, I asked my Chief Culinary Consultant if he wanted a frosting of any kind. He immediately mentioned the chocolate fudge topping from the frozen brownie sundae that I made last year, which was one of his favorite recipes of 2013.
A few notes about assembling this cake:
- You’ll want to plan ahead, as the cake should be assembled the day before you plan to serve it.
- If you are using homemade ice cream, you should make the custard base two days before you plan to serve it. Then, churn it the following day as you are assembling the cake, per the directions below.
- Having a cake pan with 3-inch sides is incredibly helpful for the assembly, as this is a tall cake. I have Parrish Magic Line pans with removable bottoms in both 8×3-inch and 9×3-inch sizes. If all you have are pans with shorter sides, then be sure to assemble the parchment collar with extra-high sides.
Aside from being unique and delicious, this ice cream cake is truly the birthday gift that keeps on giving. We’ve been sneaking slices of leftover cake from the freezer for over two weeks now, and there’s still a tiny bit left.
That’s what birthdays are all about, right? Celebrating for as long as possible with something delicious!
One year ago: Meyer Lemon Loaf Cake
Two years ago: Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies and Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
Three years ago: Malted Vanilla Milkshake
Four years ago: Peanut Butter-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Five years ago: Triple Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
Double Vanilla Ice Cream Cake
For the Cake:
- 2½ cups (312.5 g) cake flour
- 1¼ teaspoons (1.25 teaspoons) baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon (0.75 teaspoon) salt
- 1¾ cups (350 g) granulated sugar, divided
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk, at room temperature
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 6 egg yolks, at room temperature
- 3 egg whites, at room temperature
For the Ice Cream:
- 1 quart (0.95 l) of your favorite vanilla ice cream
For the Fudge Frosting:
- 2 cups (240 g) powdered sugar
- 1 cup (256 ml) evaporated milk
- ⅔ cup (120 g) semisweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Make the Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 9-inch cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Grease the parchment, then dust the pans with flour, tapping out any excess; set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and 1½ cups of the sugar. In a 4-cup liquid measuring cup or medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, buttermilk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, and egg yolks.
- Place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beat the egg whites at medium-high speed until foamy, about 30 seconds. With the mixer running, gradually add the remaining ¼ cup of sugar; continue to beat until stiff peaks form, about 30 more seconds. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Add the flour mixture to the now-empty mixing bowl fitted with the whisk attachment. With the mixer running on low speed, gradually pour in the butter mixture and mix until almost incorporated (a few streaks of dry flour should remain), about 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat on medium-low speed until smooth and fully incorporated, 10 to 15 more seconds.
- Using a rubber spatula, stir one-third of the egg whites into the batter to lighten it. Then, add the remaining egg whites and gently fold them into the batter until no white streaks remain. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans. Lightly tape the pans against the counter 2 or 3 times to pop any air bubbles.
- Bake until the cake layers begin to pull away from the sides of the pans and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20 to 22 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then loosen the cakes from the sides of the pans with a small knife, then invert onto greased wire racks. Peel off the parchment, turn right-side-up and cool completely, about 1½ hours.
- Assemble the Ice Cream Cake: Spray a 9x3-inch round cake pan (or springform/cheesecake pan) with nonstick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pan with a round of parchment. Then cut two strips of parchment that are 3 inches wide by 14 inches long. Line the sides of the pan with the parchment strips, overlapping them slightly. Spray a bit of nonstick spray where the ends overlap to help them adhere.
- If the cooled cake has a domed top, trim off the domed portion with a long serrated knife to achieve a level surface. Place one of the cake layers in the bottom of the prepared cake pan for the base of your ice cream cake. (There will likely be some space between the sides of the pan and the cake, so try centering the cake as best you can.)
- If you are using homemade ice cream, churn the ice cream base according to your machine's instructions and transfer it directly from the machine into the cake pan. If your ice cream has been stored in the freezer (or if you're using store-bought), allow it to soften in the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes, until it's slightly softened and spreadable. Use an offset spatula to nudge the ice cream all the way to the sides of the pan, filling any gaps or holes, including any space between the cake and the pan. Rap the filled cake pan sharply on the counter a few times to encourage any air bubbles to rise to the surface and smooth the top.
- Place the second cake layer over the ice cream, centering it on top. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and put the assembled cake in the freezer and freeze overnight.
- Make the Fudge Frosting: Combine the powdered sugar, evaporated milk, chocolate chips and butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 8 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Allow to cool for 30 minutes.
- When ready, pour the chocolate topping evenly over the top cake layer, spreading with an offset spatula if necessary. Return to the freezer for at least 2 hours, or until firm.
- To Serve: At least 1 hour (and no more than 12 hours) before serving, unmold the cake. To release the cake from the pan, invert the cake onto a plate or cardboard round the same size and wrap a hot kitchen towel around the cake pan, keeping it there for 30 seconds, or until the cake loosens, and slide the pan off. Remove the parchment (and bottom of pan if using a springform). Top with a serving plate and turn the cake right side up. Return to the freezer for at least 10 minutes.
- Remove the cake from the freezer 5 minutes before serving to soften it slightly. A hot, dry knife will yield the cleanest cuts. Dip your knife in a glass of hot water, wipe it clean with a towel, and cut a slice. Repeat between every slice.
Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!
I make my own ice cream cakes with a vanilla pound cake base. The whole tube cake goes on the bottom, and I add a layer of peanut butter (1 c pb, 1/4 c. powdered sugar) before adding the ice cream layer. I do ice it with buttercream. Quite a feat, as the frozen surface of the ice cream often repels the fat/sugar-dense icing.
The fudge addition sounds like a good idea!
I know this like 5 years ago BUT I am wanting to make this cake for charity I am doing for a homeless youth. This will require that it be transported, and also probably will go back into the freezer before they receive it from their case worker. I don’t want it to not be good, so I’m just wondering what your take on the situation might be ? I have plans to transport it with dry ice and a cooler and it will go right into a freezer until delivery to the youth. THANks !
yummy!!..the cake looks delicious,cant wait to bake mine…
Hey! This looks amazing! I was just wondering if the fudge frosting is firm enough to use on the sides of the cake or would it just slide off?
Hi Kristen, I do think the fudge frosting would slip down the sides of the cake.
Thanks for letting me know!
Have finished making the cake and am working on the frosting. The instructions say to bring to a boil over med – high heat and then cook for 8 min…Should the frosting be cooked on medium – high heat the entire 8 minutes? Thanks for your help.
Hi Bonnie, Yes, medium-high the entire 8 minutes.
Hi , i have a question that wont cake be also frozen ,means what is the texture of cake in the layers of icecream- soft , semi hard or hard?
Yes, the cake will be frozen, as well. It is a firm texture, but not hard.
hmmm I’m about making mine, can’t wait!!
Hi there, first I’d like to sey how much I LOVE your recipes! Thanks to you I got into baking :)
I have a question about this amazing cake recipe, in the cake ingredients you said 2 and a half cups of cake flour, can I use regular flour or safe raising flour?
Hi Anna, I would not recommend self-rising flour. You can use all-purpose flour and cornstarch to mimic cake flour, see the substitution here: https://www.browneyedbaker.com/substitutions/
Thank you! It is really helpful :) can’t wait to try the recipe
I just made this cake but can’t get it out of the pan! The towel isn’t working. Any suggestions??
Hi Kyle, I would try it again, make sure the towel is nice and warm. If that doesn’t work, wrap it really well in plastic wrap and submerge in hot water, but it really should slide off after using a hot towel a couple of times.
Do you think chocolate ice cream would go well?
You are just amazing. I really loved your all the recipes. But this is a cake recipe attracts me most because it is Easy to make and its taste is super delicious. Yesterday I had made this gorgeous cake by my own and Everyone who eats this cake really liked it.
Have made this twice -once as cupcakes, once as a layer cake – and is delicious in its unfrozen state :)
This reminds me of a Boston Cream Pie. It looks amazing!
That cake is just beautiful and I’m sure it tastes fabulous. I bet the homemade ice cream does make a huge difference. I also prefer the mix of cake and ice cream, but I’m afraid if I tried making an ice cream cake it would be a horrible mess! You did an amazing job. Happy birthday to your hubby!
I began making homemade ice cream quite often this past summer after I purchased the cookbook Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. I bought the book after visiting one of her ice cream shops in Columbus, OH. Her base ice cream uses no eggs but is still the creamiest most decadent ice cream you will ever eat. The base instead uses corn starch, corn syrup, and a little bit of cream cheese. I cannot express how amazing the results are. Without buying the book, her recipe for basic vanilla ice cream can be found at http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/vanilla-bean-ice-cream. It is easy to make and so delicious to eat! My favorite recipe from the book so far? Tres Leches Ice Cream!
Perfection! You can’t go wrong with a thick layer of hot fudge on an ice cream cake. Your CCC is a lucky man!
The chocolate fudge topping looks fantastic! I love this!!
Dang, I love ice cream cake! Love these!
can’t wait to try this! <3
Ice cream cake seriously is the gift that keeps giving! My boyfriend wanted one for his birthday that he could have all for himself (aka not share with everyone that came over to celebrate his bday…only a little selfish haha). I sliced the whole cake after serving and froze each piece separately and it made for perfect desserts for a couple weeks after…actually I kinda miss having ice cream cake in the fridge now, maybe it’s time to make another!
I love cake and ice cream together, so I am sure I would love this! Too bad my birthday is in another ten months…hmmm whose birthday is next that I shall force this ice cream cake upon!
Love this cake, especially the homemade vanilla bean ice cream and fudge frosting!
Your cake looks perfect!!! That is like a slice of perfection right there. YUM! I’m so sad that I don’t have an ice cream maker – I think I might need to get one this summer!
I didn’t get my email from you today. Wonder if it’s just me or if anyone else is missing their BEB email?
Btw, your cake looks delicious. I remembered you were posting it today, and when it wasn’t in my email, I came looking for it. Can’t wait to try it.
Same with me! I was worried there was something wrong with my email, but maybe not :) That cake looks awesome!!
Hi Crystal, The email didn’t go out for some reason today, as well as on Saturday. I am actually working to switch email services this week, so hiccups shouldn’t be an issue anymore!
Thanks for the update. It’s not like I don’t know how to get here. Lol! Your email is the first one I look for in the morning.
Oooooohhhh my goodness. This looks amazing.
The photos of this cake are gorgeous! Your food photography is a real talent. Makes you want to reach right in and cut a slice! Just looking at the photos makes you imagine how awesome this cake really is. I will be dreaming of this cake all day…and making it this weekend!
This takes me back to all the Baskin Robbins ice cream cakes of my youth. There was something about those that was delicious. This is even better, I’m sure!
I thought the same thing…Boston Creme Pie.
This cake kind of reminds me of a boston cream pie cake. Your vanilla ice cream looked super delicious with all the flecks of vanilla in there.
Happy bday to your husband! And that is great that you found a solid yellow cake recipe. I admit that it is REALLY hard to find one that measures up to boxed yellow cake. I’ve tried so many and am kind of over trying – til now you say the CI recipe is a good one. Okay I will try it next! Awesome cake, Michelle! pinned
The cake looks delicious. I like the combination of the ice cream and cake too.