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Icebox Cake

Icebox Cake with Homemade Chocolate Wafers and Caramel Cream

The homemade chocolate wafers in this icebox cake make a big difference. They are intensely chocolate and less sweet, which gives the cake so much more personality. When you slice into the icebox cake you reveal the beautiful stripes of caramel and chocolate. You can simply spread the top with the caramel whipped cream, or pipe a fancier design.
Course: Dessert


*Homemade Chocolate Wafer Cookies

  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter softened
  • 3/4 cup (160g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125g) dark brown sugar well packed
  • 1 tsp vanilla homemade vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (130g) all-purpose flour
  • **3/4 cup (68g) cocoa powder Dutch processed
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup milk

Caramel Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup (160g) sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tsp corn syrup
  • 4 cups heavy whipping cream

Coffee Whipped Cream

  • 1/2 cup coffee beans broken slightly in a mortar and pestle
  • 2 tbsp sugar more if you want it sweeter
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream


Caramel Whipped Cream

  • In a large saucepan put the sugar in a mound in the center of the pan, be sure it doesn’t hit the sides. Gently add the water and corn syrup, making sure the sugar doesn’t splash up on the sides of the pan. If any of the sugar is not dissolved, very gently stir, but make sure none of the sugar hits the sides of the pan. Cook over high heat, without stirring.
  • When the sugar starts to color on the edges, gently stir the sugar. Until it is quite dark, it will smoke a bit. I like my caramel very dark, with an almost bitter edge. Once the caramel is dark in color, reduce the heat and add half the cream. The caramel will sputter and seize up, which is normal. Gently whisk the caramel until the caramelized sugar dissolves. Add the remaining cream and stir.
  • Strain the caramel cream into a shallow container. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least an hour. It can be made a day ahead.

Chocolate Wafer Cookies

  • Cream together the butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until light, about 2 minutes.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix just to combine. Add the milk and mix just to combined.
  • Form the dough into two 2-inch-thick logs. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment.
  • Slice the log of cookie dough into 1/8-inch-thick coins. Arrange on the cookie sheets with about 1½ inches between the cookies. Bake for 8 minutes and then rotate the trays back to front and switch from top to bottom racks. Bake for another 2 minutes or until they are dry looking and firm. Because the cookies are so dark, you can’t go by color on these. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Line an 8x4-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, set aside.
  • Using a hand or stand mixer, whip the chilled caramel cream until very soft, slouchy, peaks. Be sure not to whip the cream in a plastic bowl or it may not whip properly. Reserve the remaining 1/3 of the cream for topping the cake. Whip cream on a lower speed for a longer time. If you whip the cream on medium speed, instead of high, you will have a smaller air bubble and the cream will have more stability. This will also prevent some over whipping.
  • Coat the bottom of the prepared pan with about a ¼-inch-thick layer of the cream. Line the outside of the pan with the cookies. Spread a layer of the cream on each cookie and layer them together in the pan. You should end up with about 3 rows of cookies and cream. This may vary slightly depending on how large your cookies are. Cover the top with more of the cream, so the cookies are completely covered. Refrigerate the cake for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  • Invert the icebox cake onto a serving platter.

Coffee Whipped Cream

  • Heat the cream to simmer, add the broken coffee beans, allow to steep for 15-30 minutes (depending on how strong you like it), strain and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Whip when ready to decorate the icebox cake. Decorate the icebox cake as you wish.


*or skip this step and buy pre-made wafer cookies. Just be sure to buy 2 boxes since some are bound to be broken.
**use a very dark cocoa or your cookies will not come out the classic color. You can even do a portion of black cocoa, but only a couple of tablespoons in place of the regular, or it is too bitter.
***In my icebox cake instagram video I added a bit of coffee to the mix and did the outer layer of cream with coffee beans.