The Only Rocky Road Cake Recipe You’ll Ever Need

Chocolate lover’s unite! This dark chocolate cake with rocky road filling and chocolate buttercream is the most delicious Rocky Road Cake that’s perfect for any occasion!

Chocolate cake on a blue cake stand with plates next to it.

Rocky Road Cake Recipe – Updated

I’m thrilled to relaunch my Rocky Road Cake Recipe today! I actually made this cake on a whim a YEARS ago. Ryan and I were down in Provo for a BYU basketball game, and per usual, we stopped by Rockwell Ice Cream on our way home. I got my go-to combination of Rockwell Road and S’mores ice cream flavor. I haven’t always been a rocky road fan, but Rockwell uses homemade marshmallow cream, and candy bar style toffee and peanuts in their version of this classic combo – and it’s heaven!

chocolate buttercream design on a cake.

I loved the idea of the toffee mixed in with the chocolate, peanuts and marshmallows so much that I used it in my cake creation of this amazing ice cream flavor.

The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe

My cake layers in this creation are my favorite dark chocolate cake. It’s so easy to make and fool-proof! Just make sure you’re always using fresh baking powder and baking soda, and you don’t over mix your batter. It’s a truly a rich, moist dark chocolate that won’t sink!

Slice of cake on a plate.

Rocky Road Filling

The filling for this cake is a simple ganache, filled with toffee bits, salted peanuts and marshmallows. It’s simple but so delicious.

If you make the filling ahead of time, it will harden just a bit. To make it spreadable, just microwave it for about 20 seconds.

The inside of a cake.

The Most Delicious Chocolate Buttercream

Truly the only chocolate buttercream recipe you’ll ever need! It’s silky smooth and has the best chocolate flavor thanks to good quality, dark chocolate. If you have any questions about making this buttercream, I’ve answered them all HERE. This blog post is one worth saving.

Chocolate cake on a blue cake stand with plates next to it.

Rocky Road Cake

Rich, dark chocolate cake layers, filled with chocolate ganache, marshmallows, peanuts and toffee bits, covered with a silky chocolate buttercream.
5 from 1 vote
Course Dessert
Cuisine Cake

Ingredients
  

For the Cake

  • 2 cups (240 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups (350 g) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cups (88.5 g) good quality dark cocoa powder, I use Extra Brute Cacao Barry
  • 2 teaspoons (8 g) baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon (3 g) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (6 g) kosher salt
  • 1 cup (240 g) buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (109 g) vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon (4.2 g) pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (236.6 g) hot water (or hot coffee)

For the Filling

  • 1 1/2 cups (225 g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup (173.25 g) heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cup (75 g) mini marshmallows
  • 3/4 cup (112.5 g) chopped peanuts
  • 3/4 cup (112.5 g) toffee bits

For the Buttercream

  • 2 cups (452 g) unsalted butter, slightly cold
  • 10 oz. good quality chocolate of your choice, I use dark or semi, melted and cooled
  • 5 cups (625 g) powdered sugar, measured and then sifted
  • 2 teaspoons (8.4 g) pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup (57.7 g) heavy cream
  • *This buttercream recipe makes enough to fill and cover your cake. If you want to add additional piping you’ll want to make an extra ¼ batch.

Instructions
 

For the Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Spray three 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray. Line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper, then spray the parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In a medium size mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, water (or coffee) and vanilla. Whisk until combined.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula.
  • Evenly divide the batter into each of the three pans (about 15 to 16 ounces of batter in each 8-inch pan). Bake for 23 to 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs on it.
  • Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely. (I like to spray my cooling racks with nonstick spray to ensure non of the cake sticks to the racks).
  • If needed, level your cake layers to ensure a completely even surface for frosting and stacking. After leveling you can wrap each cake layer in plastic wrap and freeze until ready to use.

For the Filling

  • Heat the cream in a microwave safe bowl for about one to two minutes. Pour the heated cream over the chocolate chips in a medium sized bowl. Let sit for about five minutes.
  • Stir the chocolate and cream until nice and smooth. Add the marshmallows, peanuts and toffee bits and stir until combined.
  • Let the filling cool before using.
    If you make the filling ahead of time, you will want to heat it up slightly to make it spreadable again.

For the Buttercream

  • In a microwave safe bowl, heat the chocolate chips and heavy cream for about 40 to 60 seconds. Stir until smooth. Let cool slightly.
  • In a bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed for about two minutes.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the chocolate ganache and stir until smooth. Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix until combined.
  • Add the vanilla and salt. Turn the mixer to medium-high and beat the buttercream for another 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy. 
  • Before frosting your cake, use a wooden spoon to hand mix the frosting to push out air bubbles.

Assembly

  • Place the first cake layer on a cake board or cake plate, top side up.
  • Pipe a rim of frosting around the edge of cake layer before adding the filling. This creates a nice barrier so the filling stays in place.
  • Spread half of the filling within the frosting barrier. 
  • Place the second cake layer on top and repeat steps 2 and 3.
  • Place your final cake layer, top side down, on top of the filling. Spread a thin layer of buttercream around the entire cake. This is the crumb coat and will help lock crumbs into place. Freeze for about 10 minutes to set the crumb coat.
  • Continue to frost the cake with the remainder of the chocolate buttercream, saving about a half cup of buttercream to do the design show above.
Keyword chocolate buttercream, Chocolate Cake, Rocky Road, Rocky Road Cake
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Courtney Rich

I’m a self-taught baker, obsessed with cake.

I long ago ditched box mixes in pursuit of melt-in-your-mouth, to-die-for flavor combinations, fillings and textures. I believe cake must be decadent, life-changing and worthy of celebration! And I believe anyone should be able to bake that kind of cake – and I’m here to teach you just that!

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  1. 5 stars
    Just made this for my husband’s birthday. He requests a chocolate cake almost every year, and with him being a rocky road fan, I knew I wanted to try this. We all LOVED it! I loved the easy ganache filling, though I admit I didn’t put the toffee bits in (I didn’t have any, and my husband said he didn’t need the extra sugar). I will have to try it with the toffee another time. There were a good amount of marshmallows and peanuts. Also, I only used 1 1/2 cups of butter in the frosting but probably a little more whipping cream. Wonderful creation! Thank you!