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One slice of Smith Island cake on a plate, with a fork. Milk in the top-right corner.

Smith Island Cake Recipe

Smith Island Cakes is the state dessert for Maryland. 8-12 moist layers of yellow cake are sandwiched between delicious layers of fudge frosting. An impressive and decadent dessert!
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Resting Time 1 hr
Total Time 2 hrs 20 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 16
Calories 698 kcal

Ingredients
  

Cake

  • 2 boxes yellow cake mix
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting

  • 9 tablespoon butter, cut into pieces
  • 6 ounce bittersweet chocolate (60% cacoa), broken into squares
  • 2 ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ¼ cups heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions
 

Frosting

  • Place butter, chocolate, sugar, heavy cream, and corn syrup in a medium-sized pan over medium heat. Stir frequently.
  • When the mixture comes to a boil, give it a good stir and then let it boil without stirring for 1 minute.
  • Remove from heat. Stir in the vanilla extract.
  • Set aside, uncovered, and allow to cool for 1-2 hours.

Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9-inch cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. Line with parchment paper circles and spray again.
  • Using a handheld or stand mixer, combine cake mix, milk, butter, and eggs on low speed for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides.
    Increase speed to medium-high and continue beating for 2 minutes.
  • Use a 1-cup measuring scoop to remove slightly less than a cup of cake batter. Pour this small amount of cake batter into a parchment-lined cake pan. Repeat to fill as many cake pans as you have.
    Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
    Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack. (See FAQ notes for tips on cooling and stacking.)
  • Grease pans and place a parchment circle inside. It is okay to reuse the parchment circles, as long as you grease/spray them each time. Repeat the above steps, filling each cake pan with just under a cup of batter, and baking, until all of the cake layers have been baked.
    Cool cakes completely.

Assembling the Cake

  • Place the first layer of cake onto a serving plate or cake stand. Tear off 4 strips of parchment paper, each about 2-inches long (as wide as your roll - do not cut). Tuck a strip of parchment about a half-inch under each side of the cake, so that the paper will catch any frosting that drips down. This will help your serving plate stay clean.
  • Spread ¼ cup of frosting over the top of your first layer. Stack the next cake layer on top of the first, and top with ¼ cup of frosting. Repeat with each layer.
    Pour remaining frosting over the top of the cake and onto sides.
  • Remove parchment strips. Place the cake in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, so that the frosting sets up. If the cake is refrigerated for longer than 2 hours, remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to serving.
  • Cover leftover cake and store at room temperature for 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

The nutritional facts provided are only estimates. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Smith Island Cake Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
 
698
Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
34
g
52
%
Saturated Fat
 
20
g
125
%
Cholesterol
 
158
mg
53
%
Sodium
 
682
mg
30
%
Potassium
 
179
mg
5
%
Carbohydrates
 
93
g
31
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
66
g
73
%
Protein
 
7
g
14
%
Vitamin A
 
998
IU
20
%
Vitamin C
 
1
mg
1
%
Calcium
 
207
mg
21
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Cake, chocolate, fudge
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