|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 16 to 20|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 19g||24%|
|Saturated Fat 12g||59%|
|Total Carbohydrate 16g||6%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||3%|
|Total Sugars 14g|
|Vitamin C 0mg||2%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
This cake has all of the flair and prestige of traditional eclairs, but without all the work, making it the perfect dessert for holiday gatherings, birthday parties, or picnics. The beauty of this recipe lies in the simplicity. We utilize graham crackers and instant pudding to give you all the nostalgic vibes without the fuss.
This cake requires at least 10 hours chilling time, which can work to your advantage if you're planning family meals or potlucks. Make this cake the night before and then just grab it and go when you're ready to serve the next day. While you may be tempted to dig in right away after assembling, don't skip the chilling time required. There is no way around this step. The cake needs time to set in the fridge overnight so you get perfect slices. Slicing without chilling will result in a soupy mess. Additionally, the pudding and cream layers between the graham crackers soften overnight, creating a delicious texture.
“This is an impressive recipe without too much work! I loved the flavor of this cake, but you do need patience in order for it to properly set and be able to slice it. Beware, this cake is not for a warm weather day—definitely keep in the fridge until ready to serve!” —Tracy Wilk
Gather the ingredients.
Whisk the pudding mix, vanilla bean, and milk in a large bowl until incorporated and smooth (the mixture should be thick). Refrigerate until ready to use.
Stir together the water and gelatin in a small bowl. Allow to sit for 5 minutes to thicken.
Meanwhile, using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat 2 1/4 cups of the heavy cream on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes.
Microwave the gelatin mixture until the edges begin to bubble slightly, about 15 seconds. Add the mixture to the cream, then beat again until stiff peaks form, about 1 more minute.
Transfer the whipped cream to the chilled pudding mixture. Beat on low until just combined (careful not to over mix).
To make the ganache, place the remaining 1 cup heavy cream, chocolate chips, and corn syrup in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between each, until smooth and shiny, about 1 to 2 minutes. Alternatively, put the ingredients in a small saucepan on low heat. Stir continually until smooth and shiny.
Allow the mixture to cool in the refrigerator while you assemble the cake.
Cover the bottom of a 9-x 13-inch baking dish in a single layer with 1/3 of the graham crackers. Top with half of the pudding mixture, spreading into an even layer with a silicone spatula.
Top with another 1/3 of the graham crackers. Spread the remaining pudding mixture over the crackers with a silicone spatula. Top with a final 1/3 of graham crackers.
Pour the ganache over the graham crackers, spreading in an even layer with a spoon. You can create a smooth or swoosh design, as desired. Allow the cake to chill in the refrigerator, covered, for at least 10 hours.
Slice and serve immediately, right after removing from the refrigerator.
To cut clean slices, freeze the cake for 15 to 20 minutes. Run a sharp knife under hot water, wipe it with a clean towel, and cut a slice. Repeat between every slice.
For an even simpler assembly, use thawed whipped topping and canned chocolate frosting.
- Simply mix 4 cups of the whipped topping into the pudding mixture.
- Instead of making the ganache, microwave the canned chocolate frosting for 20 seconds, then stir well and pour over top, spreading into an even layer.
How to Store
- Store this cake in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 7 days.
- To freeze, place the whole cake in the freezer for 1 hour. Remove and cut into slices or halves. Wrap in plastic, then place in a freezer bag. Store for up to 3 months and defrost in the fridge overnight before serving.
How far in advance can you make the the cake?
This cake will hold in the fridge for up to 7 days if covered tightly with plastic wrap. If you plan to serve and eat all in one sitting, you could make it as far as 6 days in advance. It's best served within 3 days.