[This post is brought to you by Pernod Classic – I’m working with them to create a few recipes this summer with their delicious liqueur! This is the final recipe in a series of three – thank you so much for reading! xoxo]

I have a major confession to make.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

Up until recently, like very very recently, I was NOT a huge caramel lover.

In fact, I didn’t even really… like it.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

Well. That’s a semi-lie, because when I was a kid, I was obsessed with all things caramel. I was a freak over those caramello candy bars and begged my mom to let me get one every time we went to the grocery store. My grandma always got pralines and cream ice cream with caramel ripples, and I couldn’t stop eating it. Anytime I was allowed to have sweets, I wanted caramel everything. In short, I’m pretty sure I overdid it on the caramel at a super early age.­­­­­

By high school, I was over it. And I remained over it, until about two years ago when I began making my own sauce and making it often. The thing is that there is SUCH a difference between true, homemade caramel sauce and a jarred caramel topping that is often part of an ice cream sundae bar. The homemade caramel sauce is out of this world. Like, mind-blowing.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

So! I knew that I had to make a creamy, icing-like version to top this chocolate fudge cake.

Because what ELSE would be so fantastic on top of a soft, fluffy cake in the fall? Nothing. I swear. Nothing. (Okay, maybe peanut butter, but I already did that.)

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

This is the final recipe I’m sharing in partnership with Pernod Classic, the anise liqueur that I have absolutely fallen in love with. I made a Pernod caramel cream and not only did it complement the cake in the best way possible, it was so wildly delicious that we wanted to eat it with a spoon.

Burnt taste buds and all. You know the drill.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

P.S. I’m so impatient that burnt taste buds are the story of my life. Whyyyyyyy.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

Let’s talk about the cake! Look at that CHOCOLATE. Also, how often does one get the most perfect bundt cake? Basically never. I knew it was a possibility because I got this original cake recipe from Joy, but I had just no idea how fantastic this cake would turn out. I made a few minor tweaks but it’s really quite simple. And I didn’t even have to fight it out of the pan!

Also, to be completely honest, I have no clue how we didn’t devour the cake itself before the caramel and fudge even made it on top. For real.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

It’s messy and wonderful and fudgy and cakey and caramely and decadent and indulgent and needs to be on your table.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

Once the cake is cool, we’re drizzling on lots of layers. A layer of Pernod caramel. A layer of dark chocolate ganache. Another layer of caramel!

And a layer of chocolate sprinkles, because I’m eternally seven years old. I’ll never leave sprinkles behind.

chocolate fudge cake with caramel cream icing I howsweeteats.com

Chocolate Fudge Cake with Pernod Caramel Cream

5 from 3 votes
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  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • 3/4 cup Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons espresso powder
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

pernod caramel cream icing

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup Pernod Classic
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • chocolate ganache fudge

chocolate ganache fudge

  • 8 ounces high-quality chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour and 10-inch bundt cake pan
  • Place the coffee, cocoa and espresso powder in a saucepan and heat over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking often, and then set it aside and let it come to room temperature.
  • In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat the sugar, salt, baking soda and eggs together with the whisk attachment until combined. Add in the buttermilk and oil and beat for another 1 to 2 minutes, scraping the sides or the bottom if needed.
  • Add the flour and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Beat in the cooled coffee cocoa mixture and beat for another 3 minutes. Pour the batter into the bundt pan. Bake for 60 minutes, or until the cake is set and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Remove and let cool completely. Once cool, turn the cake out onto a plate or cutting board and drizzle the caramel on top. I like to do a layer of caramel, then a layer of the chocolate ganache, then a layer of the caramel again. Enjoy!

pernod caramel cream icing

  • Add all ingredients except the powdered sugar to a saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring often, until the mixture bubbles and thickens, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove and let cool. Once cool, whisk in the powdered sugar. Drizzle the caramel cream over the cake!

chocolate ganache fudge

  • Place the chocolate in a large bowl. Heat the heavy cream in a saucepan over medium heat until it is hot but not boiling – just until bubbles form on the sides of the pan. Remove it from the heat and pour it over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for 1 to 2 minutes, then stir continuously until a ganache forms – this may take a full 5 minutes but keep stirring! Allow the ganache to cool for a few minutes before pouring it over the cake or serving extra with a spoon.


[cake slightly adapted from joy the baker]


Polyunsaturated Fat: 0g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0g, Trans Fat: 0g, Potassium: 0mg, Vitamin A: 0IU, Vitamin C: 0mg, Calcium: 0mg, Iron: 0mg

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’bout to make this cake everyone’s breakfast.