Chocolate Ice Cream Cone Cake

Anybody else get almost as excited about your ice cream cone as you do the ice cream inside? I love sugar cones and waffle cones 🙂 Not long ago I used the tops of several dozen sugar cones to make little ‘witch hats’ for cupcakes…which left me with half a gallon zip-lock bag full of crumbled sugar cone pieces. Well…no sense letting these go to waste!

I mean, really now. There *had* to be something done with them!  

I’d had a chocolate cake layer go a bit south on me not long before I thought up this cake idea…I kinda broke it. :/ Hate when that happens. Broken cakes still make great cake pops though, so I had some cake pop mix in my fridge. 😉  I basically pulled out a few whole sugar cones, dug out my cookie scoop, threw some chocolate chips into the mix and off we went! 

Recipe below!

Vanilla cake: 

Note - this is a slightly-simplified layer cake recipe from ChelSweets.com - I highly recommend checking out her site if you haven't before; everything she does is amazing!! 

3 1/4 c.  all purpose flour
3 c.  granulated sugar
2 1/2 t. baking powder
1 cup butter (or 2 sticks) room temperature
2 t. vanilla extract
1 c egg whites (about 7 eggs, or you can use egg whites from a carton to avoid wasting the yolks) 
1 1/2 cups buttermilk, room temperature
1/8 cup (28 grams) vegetable oil

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line four 7 inch pans (for taller layers) or 8 inch round pans with parchment rounds, and grease with non-stick cooking spray.

Mix together all dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt) in a stand mixer with a paddle until fully combined.

Mix chunks of room-temperature butter slowly into the dry mix, on a low speed. Continue to mix until no large chunks of butter remain, and the mixture becomes crumbly.

Pour in egg whites, and mix on low until just incorporated.  Mix in the buttermilk in two installments, on a low speed. Add in vanilla and oil, and mix at a low speed until fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula, then beat on medium speed for about 30 seconds.

Divide batter evenly between the prepared cake pans (I find a kitchen scale helpful for this part). This guarantees your layers will bake to be the same height. Sprinkle the cinnamon/sugar mixture over the tops of the pans, and gently swirl it in using an offset spatula.

Bake for 35-37 minutes if using 8 inch pans, or 37-38 minutes for 7 inch cake pans (or until a skewer comes out clean). Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then run an offset spatula around perimeter of the pan to separate the cake from the pan. Place cake layers into the freezer for 45 minutes, to accelerate the cooling process.

Once the layers have fully cooled, the caramelized bits can be trimmed from the sides / top of the cake using a serrated knife if desired. Be sure the layers are completely cooled or chilled before trimming. If you try to trim the layers while they’re still warm, they will crumble apart.

 Cake pop:
1 chocolate boxed cake mix
½ c butter, melted
3 eggs
1 c water or milk
1 ½ t vanilla extract
¼ c frosting (recipe below)
Bake and cool cake – doesn’t really matter which pan size you use; you’re going to crumble the cake when you’re done anyway 😉 Once the cake is cool, mash the cake with a fork and mix in enough frosting to get your cake to stick together – I used about ¼ cup, but you may need more or less depending on how your cake bakes up. Once your mix is moldable into ‘ice cream scoops,’ you’re ready!

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting:
8 oz (one package) cream cheese, softened
16 Tablespoons (two sticks) butter, softened
6-7 c powdered sugar
2-4 Tablespoons milk
1 T clear vanilla extract
1/4 t. salt

Beat together softened cream cheese and butter; slowly add in powdered sugar alternating with milk until frosting reaches desired consistency. Add vanilla and salt and beat until well combined.

Additional Supplies/Equipment:
- 1 8- or 9-inch cardboard cake circle
- 6-7 sugar or waffle cones – save three and crumble the rest
- 1 c chocolate chips
- 1 8- or 9-inch cardboard cake circle
- Cake leveler, cake turntable, offset spatula, and bench scraper - not all 100% necessary but incredibly helpful! 

Once your cakes are cool, level them (if needed/desired). This can be done with a cake leveler or a large serrated knife and a ruler. Place a smear of frosting on your cake circle (to keep the cake from sliding while you decorate it) and center your first cake layer in the center of the circle. Spread the layer with frosting, and spread of pipe chocolate filling over the top of the first layer. Sprinkle a layer of chopped Milano cookies over the filling, and add your next cake layer on top. Repeat the process with your remaining cake layers. 

Now you're ready to crumb-coat . If you're unfamiliar with crumb-coating, it's just what it sounds like - a thin layer of frosting over the entire outside of the cake to keep crumbs out of your final layer 😉
Once your crumb coat has set (this takes about 5-10 minutes in the fridge), add your final layer of frosting and smooth. I like to use an offset spatula and bench scraper for this part.

Once your cake is covered with frosting to your satisfaction, place it into the fridge or freezer to set the frosting and to make sure your ganache drip sets when you put it on. 😉

Chocolate ganache drip:
12 oz (2 cups) semisweet chocolate chips
12 oz (1 ½ cups) heavy whipping cream
Meanwhile, make your ganache. Place chocolate chips in a heat-proof bowl. Place whipping cream in a small saucepan and bring almost to a boil over medium/low heat. Pour over chocolate chips and let rest for 2 minutes, then stir until smooth and silky.

Okaaaay......the drip!
I used a semisweet chocolate ganache for this drip - I found a squeeze bottle worked the best for this ganache since it’s fairly runny until it sets, but I’ve used a piping bag for similar drips before. Drizzle the ganache around the top edge of the cake, letting small amounts run over the edge in varying amounts to create the ‘drip’ effect down the side of the cake.

Scoop about 1/4 c of cake pop mix into each cone, pressing a bit of it down into the center of the cone to balance the weight. Arrange your ‘ice cream cones’ on top of your cake, and decorate the rest of the cake to your desire – I used frosting swirls, sprinkles of broken cone pieces, and several chocolate chips around the upper edge of the cake and around parts of the cake base.

....and SCENE! Step back, admire your work....and enjoy! 😉 

Make this recipe? Let me know  how it went!

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