Ice Cream Cake

August 13, 2022

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Homemade Ice Cream Cake! It’s layered with a super easy, made from scratch chocolate cake, rich fudge sauce, your choice of luscious ice cream, and it’s finished with final layer of fluffy sweetened whipped cream.

Ice cream cake with chocolate cake, fudge sauce, cookies and cream ice cream and whipped cream topping.

The BEST Ice Cream Cake!

This is truly one of the ultimate celebrations cakes! You get four layers of distinctive decadence in each slice of cake.

And with it’s combination of homemade layers and store-bought layers it’s simple enough yet perfectly impressive enough. The cake and whipped cream are made fresh while the ice cream and fudge sauce are store-bought to save time.

I don’t really care to admit how many slices I was able to polish off within a weeks time. Let’s just say this cake is dangerously delicious!

The chocolate cake is perfectly fudgy (something between brownie and cake texture) and you wouldn’t believe how easy the batter is to make. It was inspired by my Easy Chocolate Cake but I adjusted it for a slightly smaller size and swapped buttermilk for sour cream so it didn’t freeze icy.

I recommend making the cake a day in advance so it has plenty of time to firm up completely in the freezer before serving.

Spoil yourself this weekend with this chocolate ice cream cake, no need to wait for a birthday to make something this tempting!

Ice Cream Cake with Neapolitan layers.

Ice Cream Cake Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 cup (129g) unbleached all-purpose flour (spoon and level to measure)
  • 7/8 cup (175g) granulated sugar, plus 3 Tbsp
  • 1/3 cup (30g) Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup (170g) sour cream
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil or canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract, plus 1 tsp
  • 1 (10 oz) jar thick fudge sauce
  • 48 oz. strawberry ice cream or cookies and cream ice cream
  • 2 cups heavy cream

Ingredients needed to make ice cream cake shown.

How to Make and Ice Cream Cake

Scroll down for full recipe directions with print option.

  1. Line a springform pan with foil and grease, preheat oven. You can also wrap a wet cake strip around the pan if you want a perfectly level cake.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients for the cake. Add wet ingredients then mix.
  3. Pour into prepared pan and bake until set. Let cool completely.
  4. Spread fudge sauce over and freeze.
  5. Spoon then spread press slightly softened ice cream over top and freeze.
  6. Remove cake from pan.
  7. Make sweetened whipped cream and spread over cake.
  8. Garnish with sprinkles or chopped chocolate and freeze until firm.
  9. Cut into slices and serve quickly so it doesn’t melt.

Collage of six images showing how to make cake batter for ice cream cake.

Layering an ice cream cake in a springform pan.

Types of Ice Cream to Use

My favorite flavors of ice cream to use here are cookies and cream or strawberry. But other great choices would be mint chocolate chip, cookie dough, chocolate, caramel, peanut butter, cherry, coffee, cheesecake, pistachio or vanilla bean.

Then another variation here is to spread the whipped cream over the top and sides of the cake, or for a thicker layer (that’s more equal in size to the other layers) only spread it over the top.

Whole ice cream cake with one slice removed. Layered with chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla.Storage Tips

  • Keep ice cream cake must be stored in the freezer. It will not last very long at room temperature the ice cream melts quickly!
  • This ice cream cake will be best served within 2 weeks of preparing.

Close up photo of ice cream cake.

More Tempting Cake Recipes to Try

16 Quick & Easy 30 Minute Recipes! (plus weekly recipe updates)

Ice cream cake with chocolate cake, fudge sauce, cookies and cream ice cream and whipped cream topping.
5 from 3 votes

Ice Cream Cake

It's layered with a super easy, made from scratch chocolate cake, rich fudge sauce, your choice of luscious ice cream, and it's finished with final layer of fluffy sweetened whipped cream.
Servings: 12
Prep1 hour
Freeze6 hours
Ready in: 7 hours


For the chocolate cake

Fudge and ice cream

  • 1 (10 oz) jar thick fudge sauce* (1 cup)
  • 48 oz. strawberry ice cream or cookies and cream ice cream

Whipped cream topping


  • For the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9-inch springform pan (that's at least 3-inches high) with heavy duty 18-inch wide aluminum foil (be sure not to tear foil, or you'll need to start over with a new sheet). Spray bottom of foil with non-stick cooking spray and lightly spray the sides.
  • In a large mixing bowl whisk together flour, 7/8 cup sugar, the cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
  • Add sour cream, vegetable oil, egg, and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Using a wooden spoon or a spatula stir until well combined.
  • Pour mixture into prepared pan and spread even. For a perfectly level cake you can wrap a wet cake strip around the pan before baking. This is optional but helpful.
  • Bake in preheated oven until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes.
  • Cool completely on a wire rack, about 2 hours.
  • For the fudge sauce: Spread the fudge sauce evenly over the cake layer. Freeze 1 hour. During the last 30 minutes remove the ice cream from the freezer and set in the fridge to soften.
  • For the ice cream: Scoop slightly softened ice cream out and dollop across the cake over the fudge layer. Gently press down to level and spread even, while filling in any spaces. Freeze 2 hours until firm.
  • Remove the cake from the freezer, while tilting the pan quickly run warm water around the outside ring of the pan (don't get cake wet!), then loosen the springform pans ring. Transfer to a platter with ice cream layer upright (while removing the foil) and return to freezer.
  • For the whipped topping: In a large mixing bowl combine the heavy cream, 3 Tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla.
  • Using an electric hand mixer set on medium-low speed whip mixture until it starts to thicken slightly, then increase to high speed and whip until very stiff peaks form.
  • Spread mixture over cake. You can spread over just the top, or the top and the sides. You can also pipe swirls of whipped cream around the top edge of the cake if desired and add sprinkles or finely chopped chocolate for decoration.
  • Freeze until it's starting to firm up, about 1 hour, then wrap with foil to prevent freezer burn and freeze 1 hour longer, or until firm. Cake can be frozen for 2 weeks.
  • Cut into slices and serve quickly after slicing.


  • *Be sure to use a thick fudge sauce otherwise a runny fudge sauce will be a mess and will just soak into the cake and make it soggy.
  • Other delicious flavors of ice cream to use here include mint chocolate chip, cookie dough, chocolate, caramel (not salted or it's too soft), peanut butter, cherry, coffee, cheesecake, pistachio or vanilla bean.


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  • Patricia

    Finally, I found an ice cream cake that the cake stays soft enough to cut. I have made for cakes so far. Everyone has loved them. Thanks so much Jaclyn.
    I’ve made chocolate chip, strawberry, peanut butter/chocolate, and coffee.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Hi Patricia – I’m so happy to know you’ve been enjoying this ice cream cake recipe! I don’t yet have a vanilla version but if I were to make one I think an oil/sour cream based vanilla cake may be best for softness to slice.

  • Yvonne

    Since Trader Joe’s hot fudge sauce is no longer available, what other brand would you recommend?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      That has been my favorite! I was so disappointed last time I went and they told me they no longer carry it.
      King Arthur carries one that looks similar here. It’s pricey though I think something like Mrs Richardsons would work.

  • Pamela

    This recipe was delicious! I made it for my daughter’s birthday and she loved it! I couldn’t find fudge so I used melted chocolate and it was a nice crunch added to the cake! Thank you for making this recipe.

    GOD bless!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Pamela – I’m glad the melted chocolate worked as well, thanks for the input on that! I’m happy to hear your daughter loved it!

  • Michelle

    I cheated but it still turned out great! Sliced store bought mini brownies in thirds and layered them on the bottom in place of the cake. I also used canned whipped cream instead of making home made. Cookies and cream ice cream was delicious. What a hit! Will definitely make again!!

  • Veronika

    Ok I love coldstone, so I would love to try this with some Ben and Jerry’s sometime for all those mix-ins! Would you ever use chocolate ganache as a topping in lieu of whipped cream? And could you do a thick ganache instead of the fudge layer on the cake part?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      A ganache may freeze a little too hard, I haven’t tried yet though so I couldn’t say for sure but I’d recommend sticking with the thick fudge sauce and whipped cream for best results. Enjoy!