Summer Treat: Butterfinger Cake

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There’s just something about summer. We do things like swim instead of take naps, do puzzles instead of work, and have dessert … sometimes twice. I find that during the summer I gravitate to lighter dinner fare like grilled meats, fresh farmer’s market veggies, and fruit salad. So why shouldn’t we eat dessert!?

I first made this cake when I tested all the recipes for No Other Gods, and I go back to it when I need a simple and exceptionally tasty dessert for us or for a crowd. (No Other Gods is on my cookbook shelf right along with Betty Crocker! It’s supplied the awesome recipes for Black Beans and Brown Rice, Grandma’s Mac and Cheese, and Mom’s Sauce, too.)

I used extra creamy COOL WHIP whipped topping for this, which I had never seen in the store before. It was just the extra touch of special the cake needed for a Wednesday-night treat. We took some to our neighbors and all had a slice after an hour of bike-riding and running for the kids and some nice catch-up time for mamas.

Ain’t summer grand?

This is a poke cake, which means after it cooks, you poke holes and pour stuff on top of it. This creates an exceptionally moist cake. The COOL WHIP balances well with the rich dark chocolate cake. You can use any chocolate or devil’s food cake you want as your base.

Butterfinger Cake

Yield: one 9x13 pan

Butterfinger Cake

Devil's Food Cake adapted from A Pastry Affair


  • 3 eggs
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1 c. dark cocoa powder (regular is fine, too)
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 2 1/2 c. cake flour or flour with some cornstarch whisked in
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 c. oil (I used expeller-pressed coconut, which is not flavored)
  • 1 c. buttermilk (or a scant cup soured with vinegar or lemon juice)
  • 3/4 c. brewed coffee
  • Toppings
  • 7 oz. sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 T creamy peanut butter
  • 1 8-oz tub COOL WHIP, thawed
  • 2 full-size Butterfinger bars, chopped (divided)


Crack your three eggs into a large mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer if you are going to use it. Let sit while you prepare the wet and dry ingredients.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together cocoa powder, baking powder, flour, and salt. Make sure there are no lumps from the cocoa.

In a large mixing cup or small bowl, combine buttermilk, oil, and coffee. Stir well.

Add sugar to eggs and beat for 1-2 minutes, until creamy. Alternately add dry and wet ingredients, starting and ending with dry. Beat until just combined.

Pour into a greased 9×13 pan and bake at 325F for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

During the last 5 minutes of baking time, combine condensed milk and peanut butter in a small saucepan or skillet and melt together. Keep over lowest heat until cake is done.

When cake is done, immediately poke holes all over top with a fork or skewer.

Pour condensed milk/peanut butter mixture over the top of the cake. Spread around with a spatula, easing any that pools on the sides back into the middle.

Sprinkle one chopped Butterfinger over the top of the cake. Let cool completely.

When completely cool, spread COOL WHIP over the top of the whole cake. Sprinkle with remaining chopped Butterfinger. Refrigerate until serving.

Do you have a special dessert you’d like to share? Enter COOL WHIP’s Fan Dessert of the Month Contest for a chance to win $500! Simply make a COOL WHIP dessert, take a photo, and upload it here. Enter now!


What’s your favorite special summertime dessert?

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9 thoughts on “Summer Treat: Butterfinger Cake

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