double chocolate cake balls recipe

My husband loves to make his dad’s triple layer chocolate cake. However, he will only share the cake with others if it comes out perfect, and if you’ve ever made a layer cake (I honestly have not), sometimes it doesn’t come out perfect.

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I tried to convince my husband to bring this to my family’s Christmas anyway, because they would have eaten it, but he wanted to throw it in the trash. I literally had to stop him at the last second, he had the garbage can lid open and was thisclose to dumping the cake.. I’m pretty sure I yelled what are you doing?!?!?!?!  Even if we didn’t bring the cake to share, at least let me experiment with it by trying cake balls.

Since he had already done half the work (making the cake and the cream filling), it was pretty easy for me to turn them into cake balls.

I broke apart the cake & filling, and mixed it up in my KitchenAid, a little at a time.

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Rolled them into balls, and put them in the freezer for a few hours.

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Made the chocolate frosting almost as directed, and frosted the cake balls.

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Easy peasy. These are now in my freezer waiting for NYE.

So, if you want to make cake balls (or make the triple layer cake), here you go:

Chocolate Cake Balls OR Triple Layer Chocolate Cake 

Ingredients: 

For the cake:

  • 1 cup of unsifted, unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 cups of boiling water
  • 2 3/4 cups of sifted all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 cup of butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the cream filling:

  • 1 pint of heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 1/4 cup of granulated sugar or unsifted confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the chocolate frosting:

  • 6 ounces of semisweet chocolate chip pieces
  • 1/2 cup of light cream (half & half – 1/4 cup of heavy cream and 1/4 cup of milk)
  • 1 cup of butter
  • 2 1/2 cups of unsifted confectioners sugar

Directions: 

Make the cake

  1. In a medium bowl, combine cocoa with boiling water, mix with a wire whisk until smooth, cool completely
  2. Sift flour with baking soda, salt and baking powder
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  4. Grease well and lightly flour three 9 x 1 x 1/2 inch layer cake pans (if you’re skipping to cake balls, you can just use one or two large pans that fit all the cake batter)
  5. In a large bowl or mixer, beat the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla at a high speed, for about 5 minutes of until light, scraping the bowl occasionally
  6. At a low speed, alternate beating in the flour mixture and cocoa mixture (do not overbeat)
  7. Divide the total mixture into the pans evenly, smoothing the tops
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes. The cake should either spring back when gently pressed or should have slight residue when tested with a knife or toothpick.
  9. Let cake cool for 10 minutes, then loosen sides and remove with spatula, let cool further on racks.

Cream filling

  1. Whip cream with sugar and vanilla, refrigerate

Assemble as a layer cake (skip for cake balls)

  1. On a plate, place a layer of cake topside down, spread on half the cream
  2. Place the second layer down and then spread the rest of the cream
  3. Place the third layer down
  4. Frost with the chocolate frosting (instructions below)

OR, assemble as cake balls (skip for layer cake)

  1. Break off a chunk of cake and a dallop of the cream filling into a stand mixer, mix until it’s uniformly crumbly. Transfer into a large bowl.
  2. Repeat until you have used all of the cake and cream filling.
  3. Grab a very small handful of the cake/filling mixutre and roll into a ball between your hands. Place in tupperware.
  4. Repeat until you have used up all of the cake/filling mixture.
  5. Place in freezer for at least an hour.
  6. Remove from freezer and set out in shallow pans lined with parchment paper, leaving a little bit of space between each ball.

Chocolate frosting

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine chocolate pieces, cream and butter, stir over medium heat until smooth
  2. Remove from heat and pour into a large bowl. Whisk in 2 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar.
  3. CAKE BALLS: Using a spoon, dollop the frosting over each cake ball. Let sit out at room temperature for awhile to let the frosting harden a bit, then transfer to freezer.
  4. TRIPLE LAYER CAKE: Set bowl of frosting over a large bowl of ice and beat the frosting until it takes shape. Then spackle the frosting onto the cake. Refrigerate cake for at least an hour before serving.

I wrote this post awhile ago (sometime between Christmas and New Years) and apparently never scheduled it, oopsie.

Have you ever made cake balls? Any tips? 

What do you do with failed recipes? Eat it anyway? Toss it? Salvage it into something else?