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Chocolate Spice Cake with Caramel Icing

Total Time

Prep: 30 min. Bake: 30 min. + cooling


12 servings

I found this recipe back in the late '80s and knew it was a special cake. The caramel icing can be a little tricky because you have to work quickly, but it's so worth it! —Mariann James, Ferguson, Missouri
Chocolate Spice Cake with Caramel Icing Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1-1/3 cups 2% milk
  • ICING:
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 6 tablespoons butter, cubed
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Caramel popcorn with peanuts, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line bottoms of 2 well-greased 9-in. round baking pans with parchment; grease paper. In a microwave, melt chocolate; stir until smooth. Cool slightly.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in chocolate. In another bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, allspice and cloves; add to creamed mixture alternately with milk, 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 small saucepan, combine brown sugar, cream and butter. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Cook and stir 3 minutes. Remove from heat; gradually beat in confectioners' sugar and vanilla.
  5. Place one cake layer on a serving plate; pour half of the warm icing over the cake. Top with remaining cake layer. Pour remaining icing over top of cake. If desired, top with caramel popcorn.

Nutrition Facts

1 slice: 589 calories, 24g fat (15g saturated fat), 110mg cholesterol, 347mg sodium, 92g carbohydrate (70g sugars, 2g fiber), 6g protein.

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  • robbrd
    Oct 12, 2020

    No comment left

  • matteliz
    Oct 7, 2014

    To Die For! As mentioned in other reviews, it would be good to let the caramel frosting cool somewhat before pouring over the cake. You'd still get some drizzle effect but it wouldn't pool on the plate quite as much (as mine did). The caramel corn is a great addition. In the spirit of the accompanying write-up in the magazine, we enjoyed this cake while listening to a St. Louis Cardinals playoff game!

  • Cklee1403
    Sep 25, 2014

    This cake was great moist and the icing was incredible . The only change I made was instead of round cake pans I used a 9 x13 pan. When the cake cooled I poked holes in it then poured the warm icing over it . It turned out perfect

  • mniceberg
    Nov 16, 2013

    This is a keeper for me. I actually thought the cake to be tasty but a little dry. Maybe I overbaked it. The icing however was the easiest homemade caramel I've ever made and it was delicious! I will use this recipe for icing on other cakes I love, as well.

  • LindaS_WI
    Oct 22, 2013

    Delicious cake and the icing is a little tricky. It can't be too hot or too cool. It should just start to thicken before you pour it over the cake, otherwise it's too hot and runny and will slide right off the cake.

  • CSRaber
    Sep 23, 2013

    I liked the cake but not the frosting. I would make it again but create a different topping.

  • jmeyers
    Sep 4, 2013

    No comment left

  • dlyn9smith
    Sep 2, 2013

    The cake was very moist, and I like the mild chocolate flavor, but there was way too much clove. The next time I make this cake I will use about 1/2 of the amount of ground clove. The other problem I had was the icing. I followed the recipe, but when I put the hot icing on the cake it just ran off the cake and all over the counter. I made the mistake of putting the rest of the icing in the refrigerator to cool. That made it grainy. I will make the icing again, and let it cool on the counter, until it is spreadable.

  • rllewis7
    Aug 26, 2013

    My icing turned out too runny, so I poked holes in the cake layers and drizzled it on top, letting it soak into the cake itself. Then, I frosted the cake with chocolate icing. It turned out very moist and the chocolate, spices, and caramel flavor combination was a big hit with my family.