To introduce our new series of reader submitted recipes, “Homemade From Scratch by YOU!”, I decided to begin with something a little (or a LOT) decadent! Darryn’s Chocolate Caramel Cake just sounded like heaven on a plate to me, so I had to give it a try.
It was submitted by our very own Darryn WhyteWulf Stevens of Wilsons Mills, North Carolina – population 2,300 ["SAA-LUTE!! Remember Wilsons Mills backwards is Slim Snoslew"**]
As you can see from the picture he gave me, Darryn is a bit of a ham. I hope you’ll all let him know in the comments how much you love his creation!
- 1 pkg. chocolate cake mix
- ¾ cup butter
- 1 cup chocolate or peanut butter chips
- 1 bag unwrapped caramels (about 20)
- 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
- Chocolate frosting (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- For ease of mixing later, cut cold butter into cubes then bring to room temperature.
- Prep the caramels: Flatten each candy out, chill in single layer until firm. Cut each candy into quarters, then chill in single layer again until ready to use.
- Mix cake mix as directed, except substitute ¾ cup butter for any oil required.
- Pour half into bottom of a greased 9×13 pan.
- Bake for 6-10 minutes or until just about done.
- Layer caramel pieces (this needs to be done one piece at a time, unfortunately) and sprinkle chocolate or peanut butter chips on top of cake in an even layer.
- If using nuts, sprinkle them on now as well.
- Pour remaining cake batter on top and return to oven, baking for another 15-20 minutes or until done.
- CAUTION: Because the center of this cake is a layer of molten caramel and chocolate or peanut butter candies, cake testers or toothpicks may not accurately indicate when the cake is done. Use your best judgment on that.
- Allow cake to cool.
- Frost cake if desired.
- Cut into about 40 pieces to serve. (smaller than “normal” cake slices because this is so rich)
A few added tips from Darryn:
I recommend milk chocolate cake mix, milk chocolate chips and milk chocolate frosting. You could also use a dark chocolate trio, if you prefer the tartness of the Dark Side. I have also been known to use milk chocolate cake & frosting paired w/ dark chocolate chips, to balance the sweet w/ a little tartness.
For prepping the caramels, you could roll them flat between 2 sheets of wax paper or flatten them by hand. When ready to cut them, use either a pizza cutter or kitchen scissors. It seems easier to me to flatten them by hand & use kitchen scissors to cut them.
A few added tips from me:
I used the bottom of a mason jar to flatten my caramels.
Next time I make this, I will try melting my butter rather than bringing it to room temperature. I kept finding bits of butter that hadn’t completely mixed into the batter. And my mom has always substituted melted butter for oil in recipes without any problem, so I’m pretty sure it will work fine.
I cooked this for the max time recommended for each stage (10 minutes for the first half, 20 minutes for the top) but my cake still wasn’t done. It took my oven about 10 additional minutes to be done. I just checked it every few minutes until the top looked done and felt done when touched.
Now it’s your turn to be the star!
Do you have a recipe that you’d love to share? Send it in today!
**Please disregard my shameless plagiarism of HeeHaw. It just felt right. And remember, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Love me some Archie Campbell.