Peanut Butter-Fudge Buckeye Cake

The state tree of Ohio is the buckeye; and if there were an official Ohio state candy the buckeye, a ball of sweet/creamy peanut butter enrobed in chocolate, would be it! We replicate the flavors of the classic buckeye candy in this towering four-layer cake, highly recommended for your next birthday party.

Prep
20 mins
Bake
35 to 38 mins
Total
1 hr 55 mins
Peanut Butter-Fudge Buckeye Cake

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease and flour (or grease, then line with parchment, then grease again) two 8" x 2" round cake pans. Note: These pans need to be at least 2" tall; if you have non-standard, shorter 8" pans, substitute 9" round pans.

  2. To make the cake: Whisk together the dry ingredients. Add the eggs, oil, and vanilla, beating until smooth.

  3. Gradually add the water, beating until smooth.

  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pans.

  5. Bake the cakes for 35 to 38 minutes (a bit less if you use a 9" pan), or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cakes in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn them out of the pans to cool completely on a rack.

  6. To make the filling: Mix the sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla until crumbly. Add the milk and mix until smooth, adding more milk if necessary to make a spreadable filling.

  7. When ready to serve the cake, divide the cooled layers in half horizontally, to make four layers. Place one layer on a serving plate, and spread with filling. Repeat with the next two layers. Top with the final cake layer.

  8. To make the icing: Combine the chocolate chips, cream, and corn syrup in a microwave-safe measuring cup. Microwave until the cream is very hot, and the chips are soft.

  9. Stir until the chips melt, and the mixture is smooth.

  10. Spread the icing atop the cake, letting it drizzle down the sides.

  11. Serve in thin slices; the cake is very rich.

  12. Refrigerate any leftovers for several days or freeze for longer storage.

Tips from our Bakers

  • This recipe was developed to use traditional supermarket-style peanut butter. If you use all-natural peanut butter, grind your own, or use low-fat or low-salt peanut butter, the frosting won't turn out as described.
  • We recommend assembling and finishing this cake (frosting and icing) shortly before serving. The frosting is quite soft and can cause the cake layers to slide around if it sits for too long at room temperature. If you need to assemble the cake ahead of time, it's best to keep it in the refrigerator.
  • This cake can also be baked in four individual layers - whether to use shorter 8” cake pans (less than 2”) or our rectangular celebration pans (as seen in the photo above), or to avoid having to cut layers in half. Simply pour 1/4 of the batter into your lightly greased pans (that’s about 1 1/4 cups of batter, or, if you have a scale, it’s 12 ounces), and bake the cakes for 18 to 20 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pans for 10 to 15 minutes, and repeat the baking process if necessary to complete the four layers. Finish the cake according to the recipe instructions.