Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Recipe: Cookies and Cream Cake

UPDATE June 2011:  A poster alerted me to the fact that while my ingredients didn't include baking soda, my instructions did.  Oops!  Thanks Fourmadcats for pointing that out; the post is corrected now!

This weekend I posted about an airplane cake that was a cookies and cream cake and I promised to share this delightful recipe. I searched all over until I found a suitable recipe that didn't involve a cake mix, because that's how I bake.

The person who posted the inspiration recipe claims it is a butter cake, but while this does have butter in it, I disagree. I think it's more along the lines of a WASC (white almond sour cream) cake since the amount of butter is so small. Her mixing instructions were also kinda whack; she had you dump everything in a bowl and then whip it for about 2-3 minutes straight. Anyone who is a fan of Alton Brown will understand that this violates one of the cardinal rules of baking: NEVER overmix flour. Mayhaps she assumed you would automatically understand the natural order of things with a cake, but I'd be willing to bet that plenty of folks had terrible cakes following those instructions to the letter. (I would like to point out that a mix cake has all sorts of additives and preservatives in them to keep the cake texture fluffy and fail-safe, so beating THOSE for 2-3 minutes is completely appropriate!)

Also the cake did not rise terribly well, so I removed the baking soda from the recipe entirely and made the leavening agent all baking powder. I just don't think there was enough acidity in the sour cream to make the baking soda work effectively. Baking powder, to my understanding, simply requires "wet" to work.

So without further ado, here is the recipe, slightly altered and restructured for clearer instructions.

Cookies and Cream Cake
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1/2 cup fat free sour cream or Greek yogurt
1/4 cup skim milk
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup cake flour
7 Oreo cookies, roughly chopped

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Prep a 9" round pan with parchment and spray; set aside.
2. In small bowl, combine flour and baking powder and whisk together and set aside. Combine the milk and sour cream together in a measuring cup together; whisk together briefly and set aside.
3. In large bowl, use a hand mixer to mix together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add in the egg and continue to mix until creamy.
4. Alternating between dry and wet, add in flour mixture first, then milk mixture, then flour, until all ingredients are combined.
5. Fold in the chopped cookies and pour the batter into prepared pan.
6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the cake is golden brown and springs back when touched in the center. Cool on wire rack.
7. Frost with cream cheese icing and crumbled Oreo cookies.

This recipe makes one 8-9" cake. Suggested frosting is cream cheese frosting!

Some food for thought...
  • I think this recipe works best with a hand mixer. Yes, that seems like more work, but trust me on this one, it's really not. I whipped it up in a stand mixer for my mom's birthday and it came out tough and chewy because it's easy to overbeat flour in a stand mixer. And like I said, it's really not that difficult to whip this with a hand mixer, even in bulk amounts.
  • The original recipe called for full fat sour cream; to reduce the fat, I used fat free sour cream or even fat free Greek yogurt. I drink 2% milk, therefore that's what I use in everything, but you could use 1% if you wanted. Reduced fat Oreo cookies are also available to further reduce the fat. Cutting more fat helps to cut the calories some and by my calculations, you actually drop this down to about 200 calories per serving by using lower fat ingredients, even with frosting (assuming you are using reduced fat or low fat cream cheese, natch). Lastly, I chopped my cookies by hand, I'd be willing to bet that the number of cookies could be reduced by chopping them finer or using a food processor, but I like the larger chunks.
  • A tip on efficiency that I picked up from baking dog biscuits: when you're measuring a thick, messy semi-liquid ingredient like yogurt, sour cream, or peanut butter, displacement works wonders! If you were baking one batch of the above recipe, you'd pour in 1/4 cup of milk, and then scoop in enough sour cream until the milk reached 3/4 cup in your measuring cup.
  • Don't worry about the small amount of sugar; the cookies makes up for it! Also, this cake has a fluffy mouth feel but it comes together very well. It created very few crumbs when I was carving it for the airplane cake which was very nice indeed. However, I would not recommend using this cake for sculpting unless you use buttercream instead of cream cheese frosting.

Happy Caking!


  1. Hi, Have just found you blog & love it! Just a little confused by your cookies & cream recipe. In you instructions you have:"In small bowl, combine flour, baking powder and baking soda" but in you ingredients list there is no baking soda?

  2. Thanks Fourmadcats! You're totally right, I forgot to remove that line since I nixed the baking soda from the recipe. I corrected the post above and it should be right as rain.


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