Meet your weekend plans. Or, if we’re being honest, your plans for the rest of the summer. Because this will be ALL you want to make and eat from now until Labor Day! This giant Bailey’s Chocolate Ice Cream Cake is what your most indulgent summer dreams are made of.
Let’s dig in.
What’s up with this giant Bailey’s Ice Cream Cake?
It’s a cross between a giant ice cream sandwich and an ice cream cake. This isn’t your store-bought ice cream cake with the little crunchy crumbly layers surrounding the ice cream (although I know we all love those!). This is more like an ice cream sandwich because it’s two giant slabs of Bailey’s chocolate brownie surrounding a rich, creamy layer of Bailey’s ice cream. So basically, it’s an enormous ice cream sandwich – naming this recipe was no easy feat! I settled on Bailey’s Chocolate Ice Cream Cake because “Giant Bailey’s Chocolate Ice Cream Sandwich Cake” was just too much.
And naturally, I had to finish this off with just a touch of melted chocolate chocolate because HELLO why not. This cake is a chocolate lover’s dream! But it’s actually balanced out nicely because of the vanilla-based ice cream. It’s a little over the top but not too over the top. Ya know?
Can we get on board with this cross between an ice cream cake and an ice cream sandwich? Yes, we absolutely can – and will. I’m going to walk you through this step-by-step in the recipe and I have photos to help. I’ve even got instructions farther down on how to transport this cake if you need to do so for an event!
So – I’m thinking this would be the perfect 4th of July dessert. Lemme tell you why.
- Ice cream-anything is perfect for summer holidays
- This cake can feed a crowd
- Is there anything more impressive than easy-to-make 3-ingredient homemade ice cream?
- Because Bailey’s is the best
- Because chocolate is also the best
- It’s an impressive recipe that is actually fairly easy to make – I know you can pull this off!
We were able to make it from Madison to Milwaukee (a hour-and-a-half drive) for Father’s Day, on a 90-plus degree day WITHOUT this cake melting. It can be done! Read on for my tips on making and transporting this cake!
Perfect cake-to-party timeline and transportation:
- Make the ice cream – it takes about 10 minutes to whip it up. Allow at least 10 hours for it to freeze. So, you can make it in the morning, the day before you want to serve it, or you can make it a few days ahead.
- The brownies can be made the same day as the ice cream, or the next day (if making the ice cream more than one day ahead). Let cool at room temp and then sandwich them with the frozen ice cream layer. Freeze the whole thing for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
- If transporting the cake – use a cooler filled with ice. Put your ice (store-bought bags of ice, ziploc bags filled with ice from your freezer, ice packs – or a combination of these will work!) in the cooler about 20 minutes before leaving to start cooling it. Layer ice below and on top of the cake.
- I recommend placing a pan that’s the same size as the pan holding the cake upside down over the top – the edges will line up and the top pan won’t squish the cake, but it will keep it safe from any melting ice in the cooler. Wrap the two pans together with plastic wrap & foil and slide into a plastic grocery bag for insulation and extra protection!
- Transfer to a freezer as soon as you arrive at your destination! See recipe notes below for more tips on storing/serving the cake.
I challenge you to make this cake this weekend or for 4th of July! You could even get extra festive and drizzle it with melted red, white and blue candy melts! Stick a few lit sparklers into it too! Just kidding, don’t do that! ? If you’re not into Bailey’s – you can leave it out of the brownies, or the ice cream, or both! You’ll still have a delicious chocolate ice cream cake with creamy vanilla ice cream, and it will certainly get devoured in no time.
Happy baking! I’m here to help with any questions about this recipe (or any other recipe)! You guys got this.
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Bailey's Chocolate Ice Cream Cake
- FOR THE ICE CREAM
- 1/2 cup Bailey's Irish Cream
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 1/2 cup heavy cream keep this cold
- FOR THE BROWNIE LAYERS
- 14 tbsp butter
- 7 ounces good quality dark chocolate
- 1/3 cup Bailey's Irish Cream
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup + 4 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil and extra chocolate, melted, for topping the finished cake
- A note before beginning: You can make this recipe in 8x8 pans or 9x9 pans - but it's important to pick one size and stick with it so that all the layers are even.
- Make the ice cream: Line an 8x8 or 9x9 inch baking dish with plastic wrap (use two pieces - one in each direction) and set aside. In a small bowl, combine the Bailey's, vanilla, and sweetened condensed milk. Whisk together. In a large mixing bowl, add the COLD heavy cream. Beat with an electric mixer on medium-high speed constantly, until stiff peaks form. This takes 2-4 minutes. (To check the peaks - turn the mixer off, and lift it straight up out of the heavy cream. If peaks form and stand on their own, it's done! See photo.) Gently scoop 1 loosely measured cup of the whipped heavy cream out and add it to the bowl with the sweetened condensed milk mixture. Gently fold together. Then, add the contents of this bowl to the large bowl and gently fold together with the rest of the whipped heavy cream. (Here's a quick video on folding, if you're not familiar with it!)Pour this mixture into the prepared pan, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze for at least 10 hours.
- Make the brownies: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 8x8 or 9x9 pans with nonstick spray and then line with parchment paper, leaving the edges hanging over a bit so you can lift the brownies out later. Roughly chop the dark chocolate and cut the butter into large chunks. Add to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Stir in the Bailey's and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs with an electric mixer until they're beaten (hah). Add the vanilla and sugar and mix. By now, the melted chocolate mixture shouldn't be hot to the touch - pour it into the bowl with the sugar/eggs and mix until just combined. Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder and mix until combined, scraping sides of the bowl often. Evenly divide the batter between the two prepared pans (a kitchen scale helps here but you can also eyeball it!) and bake for 15-20 minutes. I recommend placing the pans next to each other on one rack in the oven, rather than placing one on a rack above or below the other. This will help them to bake evenly. Insert a toothpick into the center of the brownies too check if done - the toothpick might have some moist crumbs on it but it shouldn't have wet batter on it. Let the brownies cool in the pans at room temp until completely cooled (a few hours).
- Assemble: Read through this once before beginning. Grab a roll of plastic wrap and get the two pans of brownies ready. Remove the pan with the ice cream layer from the freezer. Gently lift out the ice cream layer, keeping it in the bottom layer of plastic wrap. Set it on top of one of the brownie layers and gently peel away the plastic wrap from underneath, while lifting the ice cream layer out of the way. If the ice cream feels really sturdy, you can also lift the ice cream slab without the plastic wrap and just place it on top of one of the brownie layers. Next, gently lift the second brownie layer out of its pan, using the parchment paper, and set it on the counter. Be careful not to crack the brownies. Gently pick up the brownie layer with your hands and place on top of the ice cream layer, or place the brownies with the parchment paper on top of the ice cream and gently slide the parchment paper out from under the brownies. If it does crack some - don't worry! It will harden back up in the freezer and no one will be able to tell (we'll be flipping the top layer upside down later so it wont' show). Cover the whole thing tightly with plastic wrap and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Serving the cake: When ready to serve, get a large cookie sheet out. Melt the chocolate with 1 tbsp of vegetable oil, if desired, for decorating. Just prep this now and set aside for later. Remove the cake from the freezer and remove plastic wrap. Place the cooke sheet (baking side down) over the pan with the cake and quickly flip the whole thing so that the cake pan is upside down on top of the cookie sheet. Gently but firmly tap the bottom of the cake pan with the back end of a butter knife to help loosen the cake. We also tried running the corners of the the cake pan under hot water to loosen the cake and it worked well - just make sure to keep the cake wrapped up tightly in the plastic wrap and try to avoid getting any water directly on the cake. Don't flip the cake upside down while you're running it under the water - just tilt it up slightly so the water can hit the corners, rotating to hit each one. After doing this for a few minutes, follow the steps above to flip it out of the pan. Once the cake is out of the pan, peel off the last of the plastic wrap and drizzle the melted chocolate over the cake. Cut and serve immediately - running a large knife under very hot water will help immensely! Store leftovers in the freezer, covered tightly with plastic wrap for up to a week.
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