Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Recipes: Irish Car Bomb Cake (full version)

By: Sam Parks (March 2012)

Since starting this blog last year, my most popular post by far has been the "easy-ish Irish Car Bomb Cake."  So for this year's celebration I decided to ditch the store-bought cake mix in favor of a new recipe.  And while this updated recipe isn't quite as easy as the earlier edition, the extra work is well worth the effort.  Now I will caution any intrepid bakers out there that this recipe is not for the faint of the heart.  You will dirty every dish in the kitchen and spend considerable time decorating.  But when you tell your guests that this cake is made with beer and Irish cream liqueur they will have to try a slice.

Ok, I know it sounds crazy, but this cake actually tastes like an Irish Car Bomb (the drink not the actual thing...those are generally more painful than they are tasty).  Who would have thought that pouring beer into a cake could be so good.  Enjoy!

Irish Car Bomb Cake
 RECIPE: Irish Car Bomb Cake


For the cake:
-2 cups white sugar
-2 cups cake flour
-3/4 cup dark chocolate cocoa
-1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
-1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
-1 tsp. kosher salt
-3 eggs (at room temperature)
-1 cup whole milk (at room temperature)
-1/2 cup vegetable oil
-2 tsp. vanilla extract
-1 cup boiling stout beer (I used Guinness Foreign Extra)

For the chocolate ganache:
-8 oz. dark chocolate chips
-6 oz. whole milk
-2 oz. Baileys Irish Cream
-2 Tbs. white corn syrup

For the Baileys Irish cream cheese frosting:
-2 (8 oz.) bricks cream cheese at room temperature
-1 stick butter at room temperature
-2 lbs. powdered sugar
-5 Tbs. Baileys Irish Cream


 For the cake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly grease the inside of two, 8 inch metal cake pans (I use a spray-on no stick cooking spray for convenience).  Place a custom cut sheet of parchment paper inside each of the pans, right on top of the greased surface.  To cut the parchment paper, place a cake pan over the parchment paper, and trace the outline using a sharp utility knife.  Repeat for the second pan.
How to custom cut parchment paper for cake pans
 Then spray the entire pan with an additional layer of grease, so that the parchment paper is covered.

Sprinkle a liberal amount of cocoa into the inside of each pan, and shake vigorously until the entire inside of the pan is covered with a thin layer of cocoa.  This will significantly improve the odds of the cake separating easily from the pan after baking.

Mix the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer.

The dry ingredients
 Add the oil.  Mix until combined.  Add the eggs.  Mix until combined.  Add the milk.  Mix until combined.

Carefully add the salt to the beer.  Be cautious that adding the salt to the beer changes the surface tension and can cause a substantial amount of foaming.  Bring the beer to a rapid boil on the stove top.  Watch for signs of rapid over boiling, as heating beer can cause it expand.

When the beer is boiling, add it immediately to the rest of the batter.  Add the vanilla, and stir to combine.

Pour an even amount of batter into each pan.  Bake in the center of the over for 30-33 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake come out free of batter.

The baked cakes, resting on a wire rack
Cool the cakes on a wire baking rack for 10-15 minutes.  Remove from the pans.  To remove from the pans, quickly run a knife on the outside edge of the pan, trying not cut the cake.  Place a large plate upside down, on top of the cake.  Invert the cake pan and the plate, so that the cake pan is upside down and the plate is right side up.  The cake should easily fall out of the pan.

Allow the cake to cool to room temperature before proceeding.

When the cakes have cooled, cut off the domed portion of the cake top so that the top is level.  I find that long serrated knife (a.k.a a bread knife) works the best for this task.  Simply position the knife directly under the domed portion and carefully slice off the top.  Repeat with the second cake.

The cake with the top removed
Place a somewhat liberal amount of the Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows these instructions) in the center of one of the cakes.  Spread the frosting out from the center until it mostly covers the top of one of the cakes.

Cake with the frosting filling
Place the second cake squarely on top of the frosting layer, so the whole thing resembles a large Oreo cookie.

Next cover the assembled cakes with the chocolate ganache (recipe follows these instructions).  Don't worry too much about making this layer perfect, we're going to cover it with MORE frosting, mu-ha-ha-ha...

Cakes covered with the chocolate ganache
After the ganache has set, it should be fairly hard, decorate the cake with the remainder of the Baileys Irish cream cheese frosting.  Decorate with any additional items you see fit (since this posting is already fairly long, I'll cover decorating tips in a later posting)

Enjoy (I certainly did, see below)!

For the Baileys Irish cream cheese frosting:
Cream the the room temperature cream cheese and butter, until well combined.  Working in one-cup intervals add the powdered sugar, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Add the Baileys Irish Cream and stir to combine.

For the chocolate ganache:
Place the chocolate chips and corn syrup into a glass bowl.  Heat the milk and Baileys to a mild simmer.  Pour the milks over the chocolate and syrup.  Allow the mixture to rest for 1 minute.  Using a whisk, stir the mixture until it smooth and the chocolate has melted.  Allow to rest for approximately 20 minutes, until it is smooth but still spreadable.  If the mixture becomes too hard, simply place it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds.   

 Eat good food.  Drink good beer.  And above all, stay classy!


  1. Great recipe! I am definitely going to try this.

    1. Let me how it turns out! Always looking for ways to improve the recipe.

  2. This one is really looking one of delicious cake. As I have found the perfect way to make this larger cake. It's exceptionally looking one of epic featured source for me. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks Scrapbooking! Did you try the lager cake idea? If you did, how did it turn out?

  3. I'd like to point out that in the instructions you never point out when to mix in the cocoa powder or vanilla... It was easy enough to figure out but you might want to add that in.

    Thanks for the recipe!

  4. Thanks Anon! I didn't even notice that one. I hope you enjoyed it.

  5. Thanks Anon! I didn't even notice that one. I hope you enjoyed it.

  6. Nice Recipes This is really yummy. There is nothing to argue about.

  7. Irish Car Bomb Cake is looking Cool and Tasty !!


Thanks for your comments!