Hello friends! Today we are making a Walnut Chocolate Cake. Chocolate cake layers, filled with Walnut Fudge, covered in Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting, topped with a luscious ganache drip.
This post is sponsored by Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk.
I made this Walnut Chocolate Cake to celebrate National Chocolate Cake Day. A proper cake for this wonderful celebration.
The chocolate cake layers are moist and have an intense flavor, enhanced by the addition of coffee to the batter.
However, if you wish to bake this cake without the coffee, feel free to do so, you can use just hot water instead. I’ve done that myself many times when I didn’t have coffee, or simply didn’t feel like making any. Check out further instructions about this in the recipe below.
The Walnut Fudge used to fill the Walnut Chocolate Cake is basically one of my favorite things in the world! It’s super easy to make, and you can make it pretty much any flavors you would like.
It’s made of condensed milk, a tad of butter, and any flavorings you’d like to add. You’ll notice I use a lot of variations of this fudge recipe in my desserts, and that’s because I simply love it! And everyone who tries it loves it too!
Here are some other recipes where I use this Condensed Milk Fudge in different flavors:
- Raspberry Coconut Cake
- Macadamia Coconut Cupcakes
- Key Lime Brigadeiros
- Key Lime Pie Cake
- Chocolate Strawberry Cupcakes
- Chocolate Strawberry Cake
- Brigadeiro Cupcakes
- Almond Cupcakes
And my favorite brand of condensed milk is Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk. It’s by far the most superior brand out there in the market! Trust me, I’ve tried them all!
I am Brazilian, and if there’s an ingredient us Brazilians like to add to our desserts, that ingredient is condensed milk.
We put it on everything! So I know my way around a can of condensed milk, which is why I use this ingredient in so many of my recipes.
And, like I’ve said, I have used this fudge variation in many other flavors and recipes, but recently, I found out about another way to use condensed milk in desserts that is absolutely incredible!
I am talking about this delicious Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting used to frost the Walnut Chocolate Cake!
You guys!!! It’s like magic!
To make this Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting, you will only need 4 ingredients:
- Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Unsalted Butter
- Cocoa Powder
And the process is super easy!
Start by creaming the butter until fluffy, for about 5 minutes at medium-high speed. Make sure the butter isn’t too soft, but not cold, it should be at room temperature precisely.
Once the butter is fluffy, add the sifted cocoa powder in.
Then, add the Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk.
Cream the mixture again until incorporated.
And finally, add some melted and cooled chocolate to the frosting, and cream again until fluffy and smooth.
This Sweet Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting is seriously one of the best frostings to ever come out of my kitchen!
So light, fluffy, and the texture is incredible, smooth and beautiful! I could never run out of compliments to talk about this frosting.
Once the Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting is ready, you can start assembling the cake.
Also make sure the Walnut Fudge is exactly at room temperature before filling the cake. If you want to make it ahead of time, you can leave it on the counter, covered, for up to 1 day.
Don’t refrigerate the fudge before filling the cake.
Pipe a ring of frosting around the edges of the cake, and then fill it with about 1/3 cup of Walnut Fudge. Repeat with all layers.
After assembling the cake, you can spread a thin layer of frosting around the cake, and place it in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
This step is called crumb coating, and it helps to seal the cake crumbs in the cake, so they don’t show in the final layer of frosting.
Also, as you’ve noticed, I poured a ganache drip over the Walnut Chocolate Cake. I have a few tips for you on how to obtain the perfect ganache drip for your cake.
- Make sure the cake is cold. After frosting the cake, place it in the fridge and let it chill for about 2 hours.
- The ganache can’t be cold, but it can’t be too warm either.
- You can test the ganache’s consistency by dripping a single drop down the side of the cake, or a bowl, and watch how it drips. If it drips down slowly but effortlessly within a few seconds, it means it’s ready.
- Place the ganache in a piping bag and snip the end of, or place it in a squeeze bottle. You can also use a spoon, but I find the spoon to be the most inconsistent way to do the drip.
- After making the ganache drip in the cake, make sure to place the cake back in the fridge until the ganache sets before decorating the top with the frosting swirls and more walnuts.
And speaking about condensed milk desserts, here are some more condensed milk desserts you can check out:
- No-Bake Flan
- Chocolate Flan
- Dulce de Leche Layer Cake
- Chocolate Tres Leches
- Flan Cake
- Dulce de Leche Bars
And I have many others on my blog, specially involving dulce de leche, which can be made out of a can of condensed milk!
Thank you for reading my blog! I hope you loved this Walnut Chocolate Cake, if only I could slip you a little slice through the screen so you’d know what you are in for! Have a beautiful day!
Walnut Chocolate Cake
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 183 grams, 5.4 oz
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 39 grams, 1.38 oz
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature 113 grams, 4 oz
- 1 cups sugar 200 grams, 7 oz
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup milk 157 ml
- 2/3 cup hot brewed coffee read notes* 157 ml
Walnut Fudge Filling
- 1-14 oz 396 grams can of Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 2/3 cup ground walnuts
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting
- 2/3 cup chopped dark chocolate 113 grams, 4 oz
- 2 cups unsalted butter 453 grams, 16 oz
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1-14 oz 396 grams can of Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 2/3 cup chopped chocolate 113 grams, 4 oz
- 1/3 cup heavy cream 78 ml
- This recipe makes for 4-6” round cakes, or 2-8” round cakes.
- Pre-heat oven to 350Fº.
- Butter 4-6″ cake pans and place a parchment paper circle in the bottom of pans. Butter parchment. You can also use spray oil instead. Set aside.
- Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and espresso powder, if using it instead of the coffee. Set aside.
- Cream the butter at medium-high speed for 1 minute.
- Add sugar slowly, cream for another 2 minutes.
- Add eggs to the mixture, one at a time, scraping the bowl in between and making sure the first egg is incorporated before adding the second one.
- Add vanilla extract and mix.
- Slowly add milk, mix to combine.
- Pour dry ingredients over wet mixture.
- Fold with a spatula slowly, until ingredients are just combined.
- If you see big clumps of cocoa powder, you can use the whisk to try to gently smooth the batter out.
- Once batter is incorporated, pour hot coffee in the bowl. Whisk until combined.
- Pour batter evenly onto baking pans.
- Bake in pre-heated oven for 15-20 min. After the 12 minute mark, keep checking regularly, because you don’t want to burn your cakes or over bake them. Remove them from the oven once a toothpick comes our clean once inserted in the cake.
- Once you remove it from the oven, wait 10 minutes, flip cakes onto a cookie cooling rack and let cakes cool.
- Once cool, wrap each layer individually in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. I like to leave my layers in the fridge for quite a bit so they can firm up and make it easier to assemble and decorate the cake. Specially an oil based cake such as this one, which is a super moist and fluffy cake.
Walnut Fudge Filling
- Place the condensed milk, ground walnuts, and butter in a small saucepan.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring non stop. Once it gets to a boil, lower heat to medium-low.
- Don’t take your eyes off the fudge, and don’t stop stirring.
- Cook mixture for about 10 minutes, until it’s thick and you can see the bottom of the pan.
- Remove the fudge to a small bowl. Let it cool completely.
- Don’t place it in the fridge, or it won’t be easy to spread it on the cake. The fudge can stay on the counter, at room temperature for up to 1 day.
Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting
- Start by melting the chocolate in a microwave bowl, at 20 second increments, stirring in between until all chocolate has melted. Set it aside to cool to room temperature.
- Next, make sure the butter is at the appropriate consistency, which should be at room temperature. The butter should have a nice shape, not be too soft, but not cold either. It’s ideal if the butter is from 68 to 72ºF.
- Cream the butter with an electric mixer, at medium-high speed, for 5 minutes.
- Turn the mixer off, sift the cocoa powder on top of the butter, add condensed milk in. Cream with the mixer on medium speed for 1 minute until combined.
- Add melted, cooled, room temperature chocolate to the bowl.
- Cream until incorporated and smooth. Make sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Chop the chocolate finely and place it in a bowl. You can also use chocolate chips instead.
- Heat the heavy cream until it almost comes to a boil.
- Take it off the heat. Pour it over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for 1 minute.
- Use a whisk to gently mix the heavy cream and chocolate until all the chocolate melts, and the mixture is smooth without any chocolate lumps.
- If you still see chocolate lumps in, place the bowl in the microwave for a few seconds.
- Don’t mix the ganache too much, because if you add too much air to it, it will have air bubbles when you pour it over the cake.
- Let the ganache cool down to room temperature. You are looking for the perfect dripping consistency, not too cooled down, but not warm either. You can test this by pouring one drop on the side of a bowl and watching how the drop falls. If it takes forever to roll down the side of the bowl, then your ganache might be too hard. In this case, place it in the microwave for JUST a few seconds, and stir. Test again. Repeat until the drop of ganache is slowly but effortlessly dripping a few inches down and stopping.
To assemble the cake
- Place one cake layer on top of a cake plate.
- Put some frosting in a piping bag, snip the end with scissors.
- Pipe a ring of frosting around the edges of the cake layer.
- Fill the middle of the cake with about 1/3 cup of the Walnut Fudge filling. Spread it nicely to the edges using an offset spatula, or the back of a spoon.
- Place another cake layer on top. Repeat this until you get to the final cake layer.
- Frost the cake with a thin layer of the Condensed Milk Chocolate Frosting.
- Place the cake in the fridge for 30 minutes. This is called crumb coating, and it’s a process that helps seal the crumbs of the cake in so they don’t show in the final frosting layer.
- Remove the cake of the fridge and then frost it with a thick layer of frosting. Place it in the fridge for about 1 hour. You want the cake to be cold before pouring the ganache on the cake.
- Place the ganache in a piping bag and snip a small tip at the end with scissors.
- Pour the ganache around the edges of the top of the cake, letting it drip nicely down the sides. Then pipe some ganache on top of the cake. Use a spatula to spread it and smooth it out. Place the cake back in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, or until the ganache firms up.
- Pipe some frosting on top, and decorate with walnuts, if you wish to do so. I also sprinkled some ground walnuts on top.
- The cake will store nicely in the fridge for up to 5 days, if covered in an air tight container so it doesn’t dry out. But I assure it won’t last that long.
*Always feel free to substitute the hot coffee for hot water. You could also add 1 teaspoon of espresso powder to the dry ingredients if that’s the case, or simply go without and use just the hot water. I have made this cake many times without coffee, using water instead, and it turned out fine. The coffee is simply used to enhance the chocolate flavor and richness, but not completely mandatory.