Ice Cream Cakes

Ice cream cakes make a popular dessert combination into a single, easy to serve option. Food historians think that this treat evolved from trifles and parfaits popular as far back as the 18th Century and recipes appear in cookbooks as early as the 1870’s. One of them being the Buckeye Cookery Book in 1877. 

Most are composed of layered cakes and molded ice cream, but some are simply layers of different flavors of ice cream and are cakes in shape only. 

Ice Cream Cake

The advent of available year around sources of ice and later home freezers increased popularity. Many large groceries as well as ice cream specialty stores sell ice cream and cake combined or ice cream only cakes for those who prefer not to make their own, but making an ice cream cake is not very difficult. They do need to be made in advance and may need chilling time between each layer and before serving, so be careful not to cut things too close to party time. A cake may be assembled in advance except for the final decorations and stored in the freezer in most cases for convenience. 

You can create one of these crowd favorites by simply lining a pan with foil or waxed paper and adding slightly softened ice cream in layers. Spring form pans also work well for easy removal. Soften ice cream outside of the freezer about 5 minutes at room temperature, spread evenly with a spatula, cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm again, about one to two hours. Keep adding layers and chilling until the desired thickness is reached. Just before serving, add frosting or whipped cream to the top and sides as desired. Additions such as fruits and hot fudge and other toppings can also be added to the ice cream as mix-ins or between layers. 

If using layers of cake or brownies, use a cake type layer on the bottom, and add the first layer of softened ice cream before freezing. Usually, a cake layer goes on top as well. When serving, these ice cream cakes may also need to soften just a bit before cutting so plan your serving times carefully. 

Don’t forget to put leftovers back in the freezer promptly! Re-sealable plastic storage containers are a good choice to prevent icing, but leftover ice cream cakes usually should not be stored for long times. Fortunately, they are so delicious that storage usually isn’t a problem! 

This recipe has only three basic ingredients, using a mix, and less than 30 minutes baking. 

Here's an eleven ingredient recipe for a chocolate version with about 20 minutes baking time.



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