~Boston Cream Poke Cake!

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Holy Cow, how crazy good is anything ‘Boston Cream’?  I mean, Creamy Custard & Chocolate Ganache..really?!!  That right there is a combination of awesome and more awesome!  The only thing that could possibly make it any better, is this dumbed down recipe I’ve created for people like me, who wouldn’t know how to make a ‘Pastry Cream’ from scratch, if their life depended on it..lol!

In fact, the only ‘Ganache’ I’ve ever made (and by made I mean purchased), came out of a jar labeled “Fudge Sauce”!  So figuring out how to duplicate this classic was a happy day for me! :)

One decadent bite, and you’ll never believe that this is a ‘shortcut’ recipe, and neither will anyone else..so shhh!  As far as anyone knows, you’ve been in the kitchen all day mixing your Pastry Cream and juggling a double boiler for your Ganache!  In fact, might as well get the husband to do the dishes..because you’ll be “exhausted!”  HAHA!  ;)

What you’ll need:

1 Box of Yellow Cake Mix

2 Boxes of JELLO Vanilla Pudding..You could get by with just one, I had leftover Pudding!

A square 9×9 baking dish

For the ‘Ganache’:

1 1/2 Cups Sugar

3 tbsp. Cornstarch

4 1/2 tbsp. Cocoa

1 1/2 Cups Boiling Water

1 tsp. Vanilla

1 tbsp. Butter

A Microwave..yep!  :)

Directions:

Mix the cake batter as directed on the box

Bake it until it’s done..set aside to cool!

Make the ‘Ganache’:

Combine the sugar, cornstarch, cocoa and boiling water in a large microwave (yep Microwave) safe bowl, mixing well to combine.  Microwave on high for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.  The mixture will thicken and rise..it will become almost pudding like!

Once the mixture has thickened, remove it from the microwave, stir in the vanilla & butter.  Allow it to cool for a minute or two before applying it to the cake.  Stir the mixture before applying to the cake!

Make the ‘Pastry Cream’:

Follow the directions on your Pudding box..and remember, one box is plenty..I had leftovers!

Time to get to pokin’!

Poke the cake all over and spoon the thick Vanilla Pudding over the top, getting it deep into those pokes!

Put it into the fridge for about 10 minutes to chillax!

Now cascade that beautiful Ganache all over the Custard filled cake!

This ganache stays kind of wet, so it self-drizzles onto each slice..BONUS!  :)

Serve up a creamy, chocolaty slice!

Now have a delicious and decadent bite!  ~Enjoy!  :)

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91 Comments

  1. Could you use instant pudding instead of the cooked? Just wondering , would make it faster to the finish line,lol

    Reply
    • YES!! Any Pudding will do, heck even Pudding Cups will work..LOL! :)

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  2. Unsalted butter or regular butter?!

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    • Unsalted! :)

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  3. I was so excited when I saw this on Zpinterest. But then I found it’s made with a bunch of stuff that is garbage and not good! Food is supposed to nourish your body, not poison it!

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    • I’m so sorry you were disappointed, but if you don’t mind me asking, what exactly did you think was going to be in a Boston Cream Poke Cake? :)

      Reply
      • I know, right??! I’m actually making this right now, and boy, I can’t wait to fill myself up with ‘garbage’… ;)

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      • Amy,
        I LOVED your response!!!! I mean come on dude!!!

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      • Susan – ITS A CAKE – if you want vegies go to the garden… Amy you are way too sweet lady!! Just made the cake with my two grandchildren and we all three love it – ITS WONDERFUL…..

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        • LOL! :)

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        • I don’t think it’s about veggies since this is a cake recipe. o.O But, I think the original comment is right. Store-bought cake mix, store-bought pudding, etc is nothing anyone should put into their bodies and call it good for you.

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      • WELL, for those of us who make the occasional trip to Dairy Queen, or eat birthday cake, or grab a bag of Gummi Bears, thanks, Amy, for a quick fix. If I ever want Jenny Craig, I already know where to find her.

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      • WOW!! Amy this looks ooey, gooey, yummy, we do wrestling PPV every month & my boys always have their buddies over for it, I try to make a different desert every time so when I came upon your recipe my mouth watered I am making it tomorrow, For Susan, if the recipe isn’t to your liking just pass it by, no nasty comment necessary, if you haven’t figured it out you can make it all by scratch as well, Amy has given a wonderful quick desert idea here which you can easily change it all for home-made, Amy has given the basics to follow for a poke cake, and such a wonderful job she has done with it to, I can’t wait to try it tomorrow, I am sure it will be a hit with all the boys. :) TY

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        • Thank you SO much Holly!!! :)

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    • C’mon Susan ,Garbage ? we all need a little “Garbage” in our lives :) my Mom used to call junk food “Garbage” but I still loved it and so did she once in a while
      I kind of wonder if that’s what you mean by Garbage ?

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    • Susan, you can take any recipe and make it healthy… I am going to try it and modify the recipe to cut not only calories but with a little more health conscious choices. :0) Think positive and Thank you Amy for posting such a yummy cake!!

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      • Exactly, use sugar free pudding instead of regular pudding. Use Splenda sugar, instead of regular sugar, there cuts a bunch of “garbage” out. I am making this right now as I type this

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  4. WOW! Found it on Pinterest and BCP is one of my all-time favs. Being today is my birthday, I think I forsee a cake for me this weekend! Nom, nom, nom. Can’t wait to try it and have others think I’m brilliant. Thanks for sharing! :)

    (And what was “Susan” thinking? LOL)

    Reply
    • LOL!! Well..Happy Birthday to you and I’m honored that this will be part of your celebration! I really hope you love it! :)

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  5. Boston Cream is my tween’s favorite cake! I will be making this today for her. All good things in moderation. Without a guilty pleasure once in awhile…..what is the point?. Keep up the great work and thanks so much for the recipe! ;)

    Reply
  6. So it’s really a 9 x 9 pan & not something bigger for a whole cake mix? It just sounds so small. Can’t wait to try it!

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    • Yes, I tend to like tall cakes, but a larger pan will work too!

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      • I only have an 8×9 pan I hope this works ;)

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  7. I’m going to be sorry I ever found you, my new bFF! I already need to lose 31 pounds…and I’m not sharing this on MY FB page until I’ve taken it to the next potluck at my church! That’s March 9th, so it won’t be long now. Thanks, Amy!

    Reply
  8. Thanks for the fantastic recipe. I had all ingredients in the house so you made a happy day for us here in Walker MN.

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  9. Wanna make it even easier/quicker? Try putting a can of opened (all tin foil removed) chocolate frosting in the microwave long enough to make it liquidy and then pour it over the top. Let it set up in the fridge. It is SUPER yummy, for some reason I think it is yummier than regular frosting, and in way less time than making ganache!

    Reply
    • AWESOME…thank you! :)

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    • Bethany, I tried the chocolate frosting on another recipe similar to this and the frosting was to thick and gummy…think I would prefer the ganache, it appears to be thinner…IMHO…

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      • you could try thinning it out a bit. Maybe with milk?

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  10. Got all the ingredients to make this for Easter Sunday, can’t wait to try it – it looks divine!

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  11. Can’t wait to try this recipe! I love that you whipped up your own chocolate ganache instead of using premade frosting. This looks excellent! Thank you!!

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  12. Would it be ok to use chocolate fudge sauce for the ganache part?

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    • Oh, of course! ;)

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  13. You are my hero!!!! I love your shortcut recipes! Your recipes are great!

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  14. This looks AWESOME!

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  15. Awesome! I now have a new favorite cake! Thank you so much!

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  16. You can always sub out the cake for something like angel food and sugar free pudding, that would make it a LITTLE bit more healthy.. Not much probably though lol. This does look delicious and seems easy enough.

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  17. I am so excited to make this tonight. We are going to a friend’ s house for dinner tomorrow night and she asked me to bring dessert.
    I am wondering if I can use instant vanilla pudding? This would be so much quicker than cooking the regular pudding.
    What are your thoughts?

    Reply
    • Oh yeses…that’s much better. If I had it, that’s what I would’ve used. :)

      Reply
      • i was happy you used cooked pudding with the microwave it’s super fast and no icky texture! yummy!!

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  18. wow! WOW! thank you so very much. i can’t wait to make it.. i will be back to your site. this was my first time here. and am i happy i came.

    Reply
  19. Can you make this the day before with the ganache then refrigerate the cake? Will it still run down the sides on each piece when cutting it the next day? or should I put the ganache on at the last minute?
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • To be safe I’d put it on right before serving, for maximum drizzle. ;)

      Reply
      • ok, thank you!!

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  20. I make my ganache by gently heating a cup (or more according to how you want the consistency to be) heavy cream, not to the boiling point, but hot enough to melt chocolate. Then I add a bag of really good chocolate chips. Stir until they are all melted. This does need to be refrigerated once it’s on your cake, or whatever.

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    • You mixing almost-boiling cream and chocolate chips is the classic recipe for ganache.

      Reply
    • love that ganache whipping cream, butter and dark choc chips!!mmmm

      Reply
  21. This looks really good.can’t wait to try this receipe

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  22. This looks really good. i can’t wait to try it.

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  23. I’m going to try this right now ,in fact I just heard my oven beep letting me know it’s hot ,I’m guessing I can /should use a wooden spoon for hole poking ? what size ? I have umpteen different sizes :P

    Reply
    • Any spoon, or even a fork! :)

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  24. Made the cake this morning, very nice and tasty, will make again. A few comments: I didn’t have a 9 x 9 pan, used a 9 1/2-inch pie plate. Thickened pudding wouldn’t go deeply into my poke holes (I used a pencil), probably would if the pudding wasn’t so thick or maybe pour immediately into holes and let it thicken inside cake. I then cut cake into 2 layers and used thickened pudding like frosting in middle of layers, then did the top. Ganache is quick & easy & tasty, would like a bit thicker, maybe 1 more tablespoon cornstarch. May use another ganache recipe. One box of instant (which I used) pudding mix is quite enough. Next time I will use two 8-inch cake pans.

    Reply
  25. try it making it as cupcakes–awesome!!

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  26. Oh Amy !! I made this cake for my Husband tonight and he absolutely LOVED it .I do think I’ll make bigger holes in it next time though I had a lot of pudding on the top in my opinion and the holes seemed too small to me .I didn’t think about it til after.My Son and Family are coming for dinner and guess what we’re having for dessert :D

    Reply
  27. I like the method. It seems easily adaptable too. I’m going to try this: yellow cake with bananas mixed in, vanilla pudding with some mashed bananas, whipped cream, then top it with some crumbled vanilla wafers. Banana cream poke cake. ^.^ Anyway you could use any mix of pudding/cake/topping. Chocolate cake/ butterscotch pudding/ chocolate ganache would be good too.

    Reply
    • This is similar to how I make a coconut cake. Use a yellow cake mix and bake as directed and then while still hot from the oven, poke the holes and pour a can of cream of coconut over the top. You need to stir the cream of coconut because it settles in the can, but it becomes easily pourable with a little stirring. It will melt into the holes (I just use a fork because otherwise the holes become a little too big). Let the cake cool and serve. The cream of coconut will be like a glaze and is really tasty :-)

      Reply
  28. I wish you had just written out the recipe instead of showing every picture, because when I printed it out there were 11 Pages! I can’t wait to make this cake!!

    Reply
    • Each section gives you the option to not print it.

      Reply
  29. If I make the cake in a 9×13 pan, will the ganache recipe be enough or will I need to make say 1-1/2 times the recipe?

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  30. The ganache was way too thin both times I attempted it. It has to be too much water.

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  31. I made this and was not impressed. The pudding didn’t get down into the holes even though I used a large end of a wooden spoon and the ganache was way too runny. After cutting the first piece it all ran into the opening and underneath the cake. Sorry, not trying to be mean. Just wondering if the ganache recipe should be tweaked somehow??

    Reply
    • So sorry..it’s been fool-proof for me, tried and true each and every time. Maybe try again sometime. :)

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  32. What would cream cheese do to the gin ache?

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  33. Oh My Goodness, this looks so cool, it’s crazy! I’m going to try this on Saturday morning. :) I’m from New England and it’s going to be rainy here for the next week. This recipe reminds me of a weekend movie, french vanilla coffee with cream and sugar and lit votive candles.

    I LOVE THIS. Thank you!

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  34. This is SINFUL, but I love Boston Cream Pie, So I am going to make this just for me! I think I can handle an 8×8 pan!

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  35. Hello, I like very much this recipe, but here in Greece I can’t find yellow cake mix and Jello vanilla pudding. Do you have some recipes for these two things. Sincerely, Nana

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  36. Can I use home made vanilla pudding and home made cake in this?

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  37. I love Boston cream pie so I am definately going to try this also. Thanks for sharing !

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  38. Help!!! My ganache is total liquid!!!! Should I add more cornstarch? I followed the directions exactly so I’m not sure how I screwed this up?

    Reply
    • You didn’t screw it up…you just needed to microwave it a little bit longer..it needs to bubble up like pudding, all microwaves are different so just watch for it to bubble up a lot. Then take it out and gently stir it. :)

      Reply
  39. We don’t have a lot of this stuff, so I just made it from scratch, basic Vanilla sponge, some homemade custard made with a little cream instead of all milk, and topped with melted chocolate with added cream to keep it soft.. Looks the same.. hope it taste as good :)

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  40. SERIOUSLY HATE these recipes, that look heavenly, but take up 20-30 pages if you want to print them off, or an hour of messing around copying and pasting BETWEEN the massive images. Come on people, my god. Can you PLEASE start putting the entire recipe, in easily copied format at the bottom of the crap? OR hey! get a printer friendly button!!!

    Reply
    • The print friendly button is at the bottom on the right…followed by a box at the top of the recipe page which lets you choose to print with no pictures, then each section also lets you delete it as you see fit….before printing. :)

      Reply
  41. Boy oh boy, I’ve been craving “Boston Creme Cake” but don’t want to do all the work from scratch. What a life saver! OH! “Pokes” can be done with a straw. You can make as many pokes as you want close together 3 or 4 and it turns out really scrumptious. Mmmm Mmmmm

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  42. What a wonderful recipe. So tasty and yummy. My daughter and husband loved it. Can’t wait to try it out on a family get-together in a few weeks. Thank you for posting Amy!

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    • Thank you! So glad you enjoyed it! :)

      Reply
  43. I was super excited to try this. I did last night, after going to 3 different stores for yellow cake. The ganache turned out great. Had so much that we used it for the croissants this morning. However, the whole poking thing is lost to me. I tried my fork handle. Nope. The handle of a fonde stick, nope. I then assembled a mini arrmy of circular objects to poke the perfect hole. None of them worked.
    It looked like I massacred my cake. I ended up putting the pudding on top and having it just kinda sit there, not even thinking about those holes.
    Thank gosh I was able to cover it with the most delicious ganash I’ve ever tasted, and fed it to men who think waiting 45 minutes for dessert is a sin, and therefore Hoover every thing down.

    I’m not sure where I messed up, this tasted nothing like the delicious Boston cremes I indulge upon ever so often. Thank you, however, for the delicious ganache.

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  44. Came out fine until I cut it to serve – the ganache slid off – very messy.

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  45. I just made this and it was so easy, and looks so yummy! I cant wait to dig in.

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  46. Do I need to refrigerate the cake or is it ok to leave sitting out.

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  47. If the ganache is messy while cutting you could always just drizzle on top of individual slices eliminating the messiness

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  48. PEOPLE…..PEOPLE
    GANACHE is only hot heavy cream and chocolate chips…..with a splash of vanilla.

    WHAT IS SOOOOO HARD ABOUT THAT?????

    Reply
  49. Im making this tonight for my son’s 8th month birthday… :)

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  50. If I bake it in a bigger pan maybe I could use both boxes of pudding. I love Boston Cream anything.

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  51. Homemade pastry cream is sooooooo much better to use than pudding!!! Just sayin’

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  52. Use the end of a wooden spoon to poke the holes—works great!!!

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  53. making this tonight, for a function, and also shared it on my blog. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

    Reply
  54. nice twist on boston cream pie. i can never get that round cake cut straight in half anyway :D and the ganache always drools over the sides. *messy* this way it will all stay in tact in one pan. great idea, Amy. i always refrigerate this recipe because of the pudding, so if it is chilled, maybe the ganache won’t slide off the edge so easily. this pie? cake is the hubby’s favorite and i will be trying it this way for his birthday.

    Reply
  55. I just made this yesterday for Easter. It was a huge hit! I used a normal yellow cake mix and put it in a 9×13 pan which worked perfectly. I still only used 1 small box of instant vanilla pudding (which I poured on before the pudding was all the way set, and it filled the holes perfectly), and the ganache recipe was perfect for the larger size pan as well. Such an easy recipe that turned out great! Thank you!

    Reply

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