This recipe for Chocolate Christmas Smash Cake brings the dessert to a whole new level! It’s a fun family centerpiece that kids will just love! Smash it open to reveal hidden treats – it will be the biggest hit of your festive entertaining! Serve my Christmas oreo cookies for the perfect kids holiday sweet treat.
But that’s not all – beneath the fun topping is a moist, delicious chocolate cake that’s so easy to make, it will become your go-to recipe!
I wish I could say I came up with this amazing idea all by myself, but I’d be lying. I saw a similar cake being sold in a local supermarket and just knew I had to come up with a homemade version!
I know it looks like a lot of work, but it really isn’t as bad as it seems. My chocolate cake recipe is super simple to make. You literally just throw the ingredients into a food processor (or mixer) and wiz it together. I also chose simple decorations for the icing because the topping is a bit more involved. All I did was run a fork down the side to make ridges. I made my own chocolate shavings, but you can buy them store-bought to save time. I recommend using dark chocolate as it’s not too sweet. You want the cake to look fantastic, but you also want it to taste good too. Using milk chocolate will make it way too sweet.
I knew my biggest challenge for this cake would be how to make the hollow chocolate topping. I looked into several options and decided rather than buy a silicone mold I may not use again, the chocolate balloon bowls would be the way to go. You can watch a video here on how it’s done. Just take it from me – make sure you allow the balloon to cool enough before starting or your kitchen will end up looking like this…
And you will end up like this (notice my tank top got the bulk of the mess)…
It took me an hour and a half to clean up the mess. The photo of my kitchen doesn’t do it justice. It looked like a life-size chocolate Santa was murdered in my kitchen – spatter everywhere! I’ll tell you what, if I was cleaning up the crime scene, I’d go to jail for sure because I’m pretty sure I’ll be finding bits of chocolate around the room for a year! 🙂
Now back to making the balloon bowl – I started with looking for a heatproof bowl that was a good size for the cake by placing it on top of the cake pan I was using. Then I blew up the balloon to fit into the bowl with enough room to move it around.
Then I melted the chocolate on a double boiler using the bowl. I dipped the balloon and then to make it even thicker, I placed the balloon into a measuring cup, slowly poured more chocolate onto it and spread it using the back of a spoon until I got the thickness and shape I was looking for. I put mine in the fridge to chill while I cleaned up my chocolate mess and made the cake.
Like I said before, making the cake was a cinch. I just threw all the ingredients into the food processor and whizzed it up to make the batter.
While the cakes cooled, I melted a quarter cup of white chocolate chips, removed the chocolate covered balloon from the fridge and once it was cooled enough (you don’t want to melt the chocolate already on the balloon) I slowly poured it onto the chocolate and added a fake holly decoration I had on hand. Then I placed it back in the fridge to set. Once it’s set, take it out of the fridge and allow it to return to room temperature before attempting to remove the balloon.
Carefully remove the balloon from the topper. Once everything is ready to assemble, ice the cake simply and then run a fork down the sides to create the ridges (wiping the fork clean after every pass). Cover the top of the cake and bottom edge with chocolate shavings and some Christmas sprinkles. Once you’re ready to place the topping, fill it with the chocolate of your choice (nothing too heavy – I used malted milk balls) and carefully place on top of the cake.
Let the kids bash it open and enjoy!
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For the topper:
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ¼ cup white chocolate chips
- Holly for decoration
- chocolate candy of choice
For the cake:
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- 1½ sticks salted butter softened
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt optional
- ⅔ cups sweetened condensed milk
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar
For the frosting:
- ¾ cup butter softened
- 8 oz cream cheese softened
- 6 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 cups powdered sugar sifted
- Chocolate shavings for decoration
- Christmas sprinkles for decoration
For the topper:
- Please see the post for full instructions on creating the topper.
For the cake:
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease two 8 inch cake pans
- Place all of the ingredients into a food processor (or mixer).
- Blitz until combined into a thick batter (be careful not to over mix or the cake will turn out tough)
- Divide evenly between the prepared pans and bake 25-35 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
For the frosting:
- Melt the butter and chocolate in a small pan on over a low heat stirring gently until melted. Once completely melted, remove from the heat and let cool.
- In a large bowl, beat the chocolate mixture with the softened cream cheese.
Add the cocoa, vanilla extract and 1 cup of the powdered sugar adding another cup of the sugar until smooth and desired consistency.
- Place one of the cooled cakes on a cake plate and spread the top with 1/2 cup of the frosting.
- Place the second layer onto the first layer and cover with the remaining frosting and smooth.
- run a fork down the sides to create the ridges (wiping the fork clean after every pass).
- Cover the top of the cake and bottom edge with chocolate shavings and some Christmas sprinkles.
- Once you’re ready to place the topping, fill it with the chocolate of your choice (nothing too heavy – I used malted milk balls) and carefully place on top of the cake.
- Smash and enjoy!