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Chocolate Poke Cake Recipe – How to Make it in 12 Simple Steps

A close look at a sliced chocolate poke cake.

The chocolate cake is soft and smooth, the filling is rich and adds a tasty moistness to the cake, and the creamy topping adds the perfect touch to the sweetness of the cake.

Poke cakes sound like something hokey that would be served at a church potluck, but there is nothing unsophisticated about this cake. Although this cake can be whipped up in a short amount of time with a minimum of kitchen experience, everyone will be talking about your chocolate cake when you serve this one.

Chocolate Poke Cake Recipe

April Freeman
There are two kinds of people in this world: chocolate lovers and vanilla lovers. This recipe for Chocolate Poke Cake will make the chocolate lovers stand up and beg for more. This cake is everything a chocolate cake should be–cool, creamy, and oh so very rich.
Prep Time 4 hrs 30 mins
Baking Time 40 mins
Total Time 5 hrs 10 mins
Cuisine American
Servings 12 Servings


  • 9×13-Inch Baking Pan
  • Large bowl
  • Electric Mixer
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Ceramic Bowl
  • Wire whisk


Chocolate Cake Ingredients

  • cups All-Purpose Flour
  • ¾ cup Cocoa
  • 2 cups Granulated Sugar
  • teaspoons Baking Powder
  • teaspoons Baking Soda
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • 2 pcs Eggs
  • 1 cup Brewed Coffee this should be very hot, almost boiling
  • 1 cup Milk
  • ½ cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Chocolate Filling Ingredients

  • 1 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 14 ounces Sweetened Condensed Milk from a can

Cream Topping Ingredients

  • 2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream
  • ½ cup Confectioner's Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • cups Mini Chocolate Chips


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 by 13-inch baking pan and lightly dust it with a bit of flour.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Add the eggs, milk, vanilla, and oil and use an electric mixer to blend it on medium speed. Beat the batter for about 2 minutes. Add the hot coffee and continue to beat the mixture. The batter will be very runny.
    The chocolate batter is mixed with an electric mixer.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula. Bake the cake for about 35 to 40 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into it comes out clean.
  • Let the cake cool for about an hour. Poke the cake all over with the wrong end of a wooden spoon.  Set the cake aside while you prepare the chocolate filling.
  • To create the chocolate filling, put the chocolate chips in a glass or ceramic bowl and set them aside.
  • Pour the can of sweetened condensed milk into a small saucepan and heat it until it is steaming over medium heat. Stir frequently to avoid scorching it.
  • When the sweetened condensed milk is hot, pour it into the bowl of chocolate chips and whisk these together until the chocolate chips are melted and the mixture is smooth. Pour this filling over the cake, filling in the holes and spreading it all over the surface of the cake.
  • Set this aside for about an hour until cool. You can refrigerate the cake to accelerate the cooling. It should be completely cool before you proceed with the rest of the recipe. You can put the cake in the fridge and finish the whipped topping step the next morning if you want.
    The is topped with a mixture of chocolate and milk.
  • To make the creamy topping, beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add the confectioner’s sugar along with the vanilla extract. Continue beating the mixture until stiff peaks form.
    The cream is whipped with an electric mixer.
  • Spread the topping on the cooled cake and sprinkle it with mini chocolate chips.
    The cake is topped with whipped cream.
  • Refrigerate the cake for at least two hours before serving. Store the cake covered in the refrigerator for up to three days.
    This is a slice of Chocolate Poke Cake on a plate.


Poke cakes are a category of cakes that are incredibly moist and delicious. After the cake is baked, you poke the surface of the cake all over with the wrong end of a wooden spoon. This allows you to pour a rich filling all over the cake.
The filling is absorbed into the cake, giving it a moistness that no other cake will have. Then, the cake is topped with creamy icing. These cakes are available in all kinds of flavors, such as orange, strawberry, or coconut.
Poke cakes were created in the 1970s, back when boxed cake mixes, gelatin mixes, and pudding mixes were in their prime. Originally, the manufacturer of Jello mixes invented poke cakes to increase sluggish sales of their gelatin. They published recipes in popular women’s magazines to encourage women to buy more Jello.
Throughout the years, bakers have taken the basic idea of a poke cake and adapted it to create even more delicious variations of this tasty cake.
Our recipe includes a wonderful, homemade chocolate cake as the base. However, if you don’t want to bake a cake from scratch, you can substitute a boxed chocolate cake mix for the homemade cake recipe. Just follow the directions on the box to make the cake, allowing it to cool completely before following the remaining steps to the recipe.
Our recipe for the chocolate cake features a cup of brewed coffee. This coffee adds just a touch of mocha flavor to the chocolate cake, somewhat offsetting the sweetness of the other ingredients. However, if you don’t care for coffee flavor at all, you can simply substitute boiling water for the coffee in the recipe.
Diet food? No, this cake is definitely not diet food, and it’s not even close to anything healthy, but if you want a rich, decadent indulgence, this cake ticks all the boxes.
Keyword Chocolate Poke Cake, Dessert, Recipe

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