One of my favorite desserts is Black Forest Cake. A moist chocolate cake with cherries, usually it’s layers of the moist chocolate devils food cake with cherries and whipped cream in between. My mom always use to make a chocolate devils food cake with a can of cherry pie filling mixed in before baking, than top it with powdered sugar. Not going to lie I could polish off a whole 9×13 pan of that stuff without thinking twice it was so good! Since it’s summer and ice cream cakes are so much cooler than baked cakes, literally and you don’t have to turn the oven on and heat the house up to make one I decided I would whip up a Black Forest Ice Cream Cake. So you might be thinking how am I going to do that without baking a cake, and by the name how would I do that without making brownies. Well while I could whip up a pan of brownies this cake can easily be whipped up with brownie bars, why would I do that? That is so not me? Well there are many reasons. One is sometimes you just don’t have time. Two well like I said you might not want to heat the house up. Three this is so easy kids can make it, well older kids, and they don’t need to bake anything. Last this is a perfect cake to whip up for a cookout or birthday party for people that might have allergies and you have no clue how to make gluten free, or egg free, or maybe vegan brownies or cake. Perfect right?
Simply pick up a few pints of So Delicious Dairy Free Coconut Milk Ice Cream, a box of brownie bars or brownies that suit the needs of your guests (I picked up Enjoy Life Cocoa Loco Chewy Bars) or you could use chocolate cookies, and frozen cherries. The rest of the items like cocoa powder, maple syrup, and coconut oil you probably already have on hand. You will want to give yourself about 10 hours to make the cake and let it chill, but you can also make a layer and go do something else, make another layer, ect and then place it in the freezer for 6 hours for the final freeze or a couple days ahead of time if you are making it for a party. So the next time you want to pick up one of those ice cream cakes for your next get together but don’t want to leave any of your guests out with dietary restrictions whip up this Black Forest (Chocolate Cherry Brownie) Ice Cream Cake that everyone can enjoy and will really impress your guests with it’s pretty layers.
I created this recipe for a this summer’s Go Dairy Free Recipe Contest sponsored by So Delicious Dairy Free. So Delicious also has their #RaiseAPint Contest where 20 people will win check out the full details by clicking the link. Check out out and hopefully one of you will win! Now onto the recipe.
Black Forest (Chocolate Cherry Brownie) Ice Cream Cake
Makes 8″ cake, serves 12-16 servings
2 pints So Delicious Chocolate Coconut Milk Ice Cream
3 pints So Delicious Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream*
1 5oz package Enjoy Life Cocoa Loco Chewy Bars or 5-6 ounces brownies or chocolate cookies of choice
2/3c cocoa/cacao powder
1/3c maple syrup
1/3c coconut oil, melted
2 1/2c frozen cherries (I use a sweet and tart cherry blend I get at Costco)
sweetener of choice, to taste
Set ice cream out for about 30 minutes until it starts to get soft. This will take less time when it’s warmer out, or if you just ran to the store to pick it up. Also set aside 2/3 cup of maple syrup as it is probably stored in your refrigerator and cold.
Line the bottom of an 8″ spring form, or removable bottom pan, with parchment paper circle. Take a 26″ long sheet of parchment paper and fold it in half width wise so it is a few inches taller than your pan. Create a cylinder inside your pan and tape the outside. This is for the ice cream as it will go slightly above most round spring form pans and will also make it easy to pull your cake out and unwrap. Be sure to make sure you have a level spot cleared in the freezer to place the cake.
Once ice cream has started to soften beat chocolate ice cream with a hand mixer until soften and smooth. This will help it smooth out and incorporate the center of the pint that is still more frozen. Pour and spread mixture into the bottom of your prepared pan. If you just have the ring on top of the parchment paper be careful not to slide it around and hold it down. Gentle tap the bottom of the plate and place pan with plate/flat surface in the freezer. After about 15 minutes the cake should be set to the touch but still soft. If not give it a few more minutes.
Crumble your bars or brownies until little pieces that are all smaller than a marble, you don’t want nothing but crumbs but you don’t want large chunks. If using the Cocoa Loco Bars you can just break and crumble pieces off and this is also a great job for kids. Set the crumbles in a bowl aside. Have an offset spatula ready. In a medium bowl using your hand mixer blend together melted coconut oil and maple syrup. Add cacao powder and blend smooth. Now this is where you will need to be a little quick. Carefully remove your cake from the freezer. Again if it is just setting on top of parchment paper you have to be a little careful. Spoon about 1/4c cup of the chocolate mixture onto the center of the cake and quickly but carefully spread out with your offset spatula. It will harden and the cake may melt but quickly and carefully you should get a thin layer, maybe mixed with some ice cream that is ok. Sprinkle your bar/brownie crumbles evenly over the chocolate layer and carefully press down into the cake so you have a nice pretty even layer. Now pour the remaining chocolate on top in the middle and spread out to the edges. Alternatively you can mix your ganache with brownie pieces, and spread it in a nice layer, this method will work best if you are using crushed cookies instead. You should have a nice even layer of chocolate. Place cake back into the freezer for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes you can start to work on your cherry layer.
In a Vitamix, or food processor, blend 2 cups of cherries with 2 pints of the vanilla ice cream. Rough chop the remaining half cup of cherries and stir in. Depending on cherries and personal taste you may want to add sweetener. Test and adjust with sweetener of choice to taste. Remove cake from freezer and pour cherry layer over top and spread evenly. Place cake back in the freezer to set. Wait at least 30 minutes before removing the last pint of vanilla ice cream from the freezer. Let ice cream soft about 20 minutes, once ice cream has started to soften beat chocolate ice cream with a hand mixer until soften and smooth. Spread evenly over cherry layer using an offset spatula. Return to the freezer and let set for at least 6 hours before serving. If storing it more than 6 hours you will want to pull it out of the freezer and cover it with plastic wrap. When ready to enjoy remove from freezer and let sit for about 10 minutes before using a sharp knife to cut. Garnish with fresh cherries if desired. Enjoy!
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