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Inside Out German Chocolate Cake

October 11, 2014


This was my birthday cake this year, it had been on my radar for months.  If you like chocolate and coconut, this is the cake.

My daughter and son-in law came up for that weekend (Sarah and I share the same birthday), my daughter loves chocolate and coconut, as I do, so this was an excellent choice for a birthday cake.

The cake was not perfect, it needed some tweeks, but it was delicious. When my daughter and son-in-law left to go back home, they drove back to get the leftovers.   Definitely worth making again.

Then a few weeks later, I got my chance.  We were invited to a Birthday party, and I asked the couple whether it would be alright if I brought this cake for the celebration.  ‘OH YEAHHHHHHHH !!’

Excellent, I would be able to make the cake again but this time with a few minor adjustments.

I changed the pan size, from 9 inch to 8 inch and for the glaze, I used my tried and true ganache from Martha Stewart.  It made a huge difference and pushed the cake from delicious to decadent!

This recipe has quite a few steps:  cake, filling, glaze.  But none of the steps are very difficult in themselves.  You just need a chunk of time.

Inside Out German Chocolate Cake (adapted slightly from Gourmet March 2000)

cake layers:

1-1/2 cups sugar

1-1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch Process cocoa power (the best quality you can buy)

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup whole milk

6 tablespoons butter, melted

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

3/4 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup boiling water



7 ounces sweetened flaked coconut

4 ounces coarsely chopped pecans (purchase chopped pecans and then chop them more)

14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

1 tablespoon vanilla



12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, the best quality you can buy

1-1/4 cups heavy cream


special equipment:

3 – 8 inch round cake pans


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut out 3, wax paper rounds using the 8 inch round cake pan as your guide.    Spray cake pans with Pam Baking spray, place wax paper round on bottom and spray bottom of pans with Pam Baking spray.   Set aside.

Cut out 1, cardboard round using the 8 inch round cake pan as your guide and set aside.  You can purchase these from Michaels Craft Store.  I have 12 inch rounds and cut them to whatever size I need.  If you happen to have an 8 inch spring-form pan bottom, you can use that instead.  This is really necessary, so don’t skip this step.  If you don’t put the cake on it, you will NEVER get it off the cooling rack.

Whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large bowl.  Whisk together the whole milk, butter, whole egg, yolk, vanilla in another large bowl until just combined.  Beat the egg mixture into the flour mixture with an electric mixer on low speed, then beat on high speed for 1 minute.  Reduce speed to low and beat in water until just combined.  Divide batter among cake pans, about 1-1/2 cups per pan, and bake in oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out  clean.

Cool layers in pans on racks for 15 minutes.  Then run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks.  Carefully remove wax paper and cool layers completely.

Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

Spread coconut in a medium shallow baking pan and pecans in a small shallow baking pan.  Place coconut and pecans in oven, for 12 – 16 minutes.  Stir halfway through and then after 12 minutes, stir every minute for the next 3-4 minutes, until golden brown.  Set aside to cool.

Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees.

Pour condensed milk into a 9 inch glass deep dish pie plate and cover tightly with aluminum foil.  Place dish in a large roasting pan.  Pour water into roasting pan half way up pie plate.  Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes.  After 45 minutes, check to see if you need more water and if you do, pour more in so that it is half way up pie plate.  Bake for another 30 minutes.  The milk should be brown and thick.  Remove from oven and take pie plate out of roasting pan.  Take aluminum foil off and stir in pecans, coconut and vanilla.  Set aside.

Assemble cake by placing  1 cake layer onto cardboard round and set on rack over a rimmed cookie sheet.  Drop half of coconut filing by spoonfuls evenly over layer and gently spread with a spatula to the edge of the cake layer.  Top with another cake layer, spreading the filling in the same way.  Top with remaining cake layer.

Make glaze:  chop the chocolate into small pieces using a large sharp knife and place in a large metal bowl.  Measure heavy cream into a glass measuring cup and microwave on high for 1 minute and 30 seconds.  Pour over chocolate and let sit for 2-3 minutes.  Then whisk mixture together until thoroughly combined and smooth.

Slowly pour glaze over cake, smoothing the glaze over the cake using a large icing spatula.  Do this in stages so that the glaze sets somewhat, making a nice layer over the cake.  Let the cake sit for a half hour or so.

Then, very carefully, using a large metal spatula, transfer cake onto a plate and cover with a very large stock pot and put in refrigerator for at least one hour.   Bring to room temperature before serving.

You can also bake this cake one day in advance.  Just bring to room temperature before serving.

prepping pans with rounds of wax paper and spraying with Pam Baking Spray:




prepping cardboard round for bottom of cake:



Cake mise en place:


awesome cocoa that I used:


and my new gadget from King Arthur Flour, love it! and highly recommend:


cake batter into pans, out of oven and then cooling:




filling ingredients:


sweetened condensed milk in pie plate, covered and into the roasting pan:


in the oven, water 1/2 way up pie plate:


finished baking, brown and thick:


coconut and pecans golden:


coconut, pecans, vanilla added to milk:


filling ready for the cake:


ganache ingredients:


chocolate chopped:


cream poured over chocolate:


ganache ready:

78 (1)

first cake layer on cardboard round ready for filling:


filling onto first layer of cake, then second layer with filling and finishing with third layer :


.22 (4)


applying ganache:

22 (5)

and more ganache:

78 (2)

and then more ganache:

98 (2)

then smoothing it out until you have a finished cake:

22 (1)

let sit for awhile and then transfer to a plate (or in this case a cake caddy bottom because I am taking it to a party, later that evening), cover and place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour:

7u (1)


3 Comments leave one →
  1. Vicki permalink
    October 11, 2014 2:38 pm

    As always, I’m dying to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing, love your blog.


  2. Kate permalink
    October 11, 2014 2:40 pm

    this is a wow cake… believe me.. it was all it is cracked up to be… I still have some in my freezer and it is my guilty pleasure


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