Caramel-Pecan Mocha Layer Cake Recipe
Caramel-Pecan Mocha Layer Cake Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Caramel-Pecan Mocha Layer Cake Recipe

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My version of a prize-winning chocolate cake is irresistible, especially when the rich caramel sauce oozes down the sides. —Judy Castranova, New Bern, North Carolina
Featured In: 28 Best Fall Cakes
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Bake: 30 min. + cooling
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Bake: 30 min. + cooling
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 2 tablespoons instant coffee granules
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup hot caramel or butterscotch-caramel ice cream topping, room temperature, divided
  • 2/3 cup toasted chopped pecans, divided
  • Bittersweet chocolate curls


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line the bottoms of two greased 9-in. round baking pans with parchment paper; grease paper. In a small bowl, dissolve coffee granules in hot water; cool completely.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla, then cooled coffee. In another bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition.
  3. Transfer batter to prepared pans. Bake 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes before removing to wire racks; remove paper. Cool completely.
  4. In a bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla; beat until stiff peaks form.
  5. Place one cake layer on a serving plate. Spread with 1/3 cup caramel topping; sprinkle with 1/3 cup pecans. Spread with half of the whipped cream. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread with the remaining caramel topping and whipped cream. Sprinkle with remaining pecans; top with chocolate curls. Yield: 12 servings.
Editor's Note: To toast nuts, bake in a shallow pan in a 350° oven for 5-10 minutes or cook in a skillet over low heat until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
Originally published as Caramel-Pecan Mocha Layer Cake in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2015, p15

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