Chocolate Cake with Toasted Marshmallow Filling & Malted Chocolate Frosting


 This cake will definitely go into the failure column, and I’m going to have to bake another one to redeem myself. Doesn’t that make you want to read on about the recipe? (haha) My cousin was in town for Easter weekend and my son went to visit his dad for Spring Break, so I thought it would be nice to have a ladies baking weekend. My cousin was excited since she’s not really a baker. I found this recipe earlier in the week and thought it might be fun to try. It was, until we started baking.

As always I didn’t use the entire recipe that I found. I already have a chocolate cake recipe that I love (although it still has kinks that need to be worked out), but other than that, I followed the rest. We started our day with brunch at DGS Delicatessen (if you’re in the DC area, do yourself a favor and go there. Now.), and since there was a Whole Foods nearby, we popped in for ingredients. I took a gamble and lost on finding malt, but I did find marshmallows and marshmallow creme. Ok, what I really found was a bag of very natural looking marshmallows (no judging) and marshmallow creme made with rice milk (no judging). I won’t lie, I was very skeptical. Please don’t get me wrong. I love using natural ingredients, but I’m a child of the 70s and still crave that processed flavor. My new goal in life is to be able to recreate it, naturally.

The cake batter was no biggie. Again, I used my 6inch pans and made cupcakes with the left over batter (someday, I won’t be too lazy to scale the recipe down). The biggest problem I have with this recipe is that no matter how many times I bake this cake, it never rises in the center. At least 80% of the time it cooks all the way through, but it has this terrible dip. I usually just cut it off to even out the layers. I’m going to work on the recipe to see what the problem is. My initial guess is that there’s too much liquid between the coffee and buttermilk. I’m going to add it to my ever growing list of things to do.


The toasted marshmallow filling was a different story. I toasted the marshmallows in the broiler, but instead of lightly toasting them, I toasted them as if I was at a campfire (read super dark and almost burned), so when it began to cool, it became very, very hard and crusty. Needless to say, it did not make friends with the rice milk marshmallow creme that was softer and oozier than I’m used to. It was also, a yellowish color, but it tasted pretty good. When I put it all together in the mixer, I’m pretty sure the mixer looked at me and laughed. The result looked like an oozy, creamy mess with cookie chunks in it (wish I took a pic).


Oh well, at least I have a chance for redemption with the frosting. I was fine with the frosting until I saw that it called for 2 sticks of butter and only 4 cups of powdered sugar! That’s more like a butter cream and not frosting. Like a side of angioplasty butter cream. The fun begins with me now trying to find a balance of butter, sugar and Ovaltine. I ended up using 1 stick of butter and about 3 cups of sugar, and used the other ingredients as recommended.

Over all the cake was ok. It tasted good, but the marshmallow filling was a wild ride. I would definitely make this cake again.

Six-Layer Chocolate Cake with Toasted Marshmallow Filling & Malted Chocolate Frosting

  • Servings: 12 to 16
  • Print

This recipe was adapted from the Brown Eyed Baker.


For the Cake:

  • 3 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
  • 1 ½ cups hot brewed coffee
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ cups well-shaken buttermilk
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla

For the Toasted Marshmallow Filling:

  • 16 large marshmallows
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 (7½-ounce) jar Marshmallow Fluff

For the Malted Chocolate Frosting:

  • 2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • ¾ cup Ovaltine Classic
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 8 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate, melted and cooled
  • ½ cup heavy cream


Make cake layers:

Preheat oven to 300°F. and grease pans. Line bottoms with rounds of wax paper and grease paper.

Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot coffee. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

Into a large bowl sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add sugar mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined well. Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Cool layers completely in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove wax paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.

Make the toasted marshmallow filling:

Place the marshmallows on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Place on the lowest rack of oven, and broil marshmallows until nice and brown on top, keeping an eye on them the entire time so they don’t burn. Remove pan from oven and gently turn the marshmallows over, and broil until the other side is golden brown.

Beat the butter and powdered sugar on low speed until blended together, about 1 minute. Add the vanilla extract and increase the speed to medium-high; beat for 3 minutes. Stop the mixer, add the Marshmallow Fluff and toasted marshmallows, and mix on the lowest speed for about 1 minute, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.

Make the malted chocolate frosting:

Beat the butter and powdered sugar on low speed until blended together, about 1 minute. Add the Ovaltine, vanilla and salt, and continue to beat on low until well combined, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the heavy cream and beat on medium-high speed for another minute.

Assemble the Cake: Slice each cake layer in half horizontally so you have six cake layers. Place your first layer face-up on a cake plate and cover with one-third of the Toasted Marshmallow Frosting. Place another cake layer face-up and cover with about ¾ to 1 cup of Malted Chocolate Frosting. Repeat, alternating marshmallow and chocolate filling layers, until you come to your cake final layer, which you will place face-down. Frost the entire outside of cake with the remaining Malted Chocolate Frosting.

Cake is best served the same day it is made, but leftovers can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator, well-wrapped, for up to 3 days.


You can substitute marshmallow creme for the marshmallow fluff.

For the cleanest cake slices, refrigerate the cake for about 30 minutes before cutting. Use a sharp knife dipped in hot water (and wiped dry) between each cut.  (clearly, I didn’t do that)