The Cookie Cake Recipe of Chef Elana’s Dreams

In this series, our Head Chef Elana Karp shares the recipes for dishes she’s dreamed about.

After a relatively healthy January and February, I’m ready to go all out this month. After weeks of eating well and going to the gym four times a week, it’s time to throw in the towel and indulge in the cake of my dreams. I’m not kidding—it’s literally the cake of my dreams. I woke up salivating over its fluffy layers and creamy frosting just the other night. Since I’m actually not much of a baker though, I enlisted the help of Test Kitchen Manager Michelle Kresch to whip up this swoon-worthy dessert. And let me tell you, with two types of frosting and a special chocolate chip cookie filling, it does not disappoint!


2 cups granulated sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter (1 cup)
4 eggs
4 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups AP flour
3.5 teaspoons baking powder
1.25 cups whole milk

Vanilla Buttercream:
3 pounds unsalted butter (12 sticks)
2 boxes confectioner’s sugar (7 cups)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Cinnamon Sugar Buttercream:
Vanilla Buttercream +
½ cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Chocolate Ganache:
5 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoons unsalted butter
.5 cup heavy cream
Your favorite chocolate chip cookie for garnish

Reserve ½ of buttercream and set aside.


Make Cake:

Whisk together the flour and baking powder in a medium bowl; set aside. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until light in color and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then the milk, then the vanilla until combined.

Make Frosting:

While cakes bake, whisk butter in a large bowl until very fluffy and pale. Whisk in confectioners sugar until fully combined and mixture is a thick buttercream. Whisk in remaining vanilla until a smooth consistency is reached. Reserve ¼ of buttercream and set aside. Stir light brown sugar, cinnamon, and chocolate chips into remaining buttercream. Ice cake.

Make Ganache:

In a medium pot, combine heavy cream and butter over medium-high heat. When small bubbles form on the surface, remove from heat and pour in chocolate chips. Stir to combine and set aside.

Finish Cake:

Pour ganache over cake and garnish with cookie crumbs.


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