Chocolate Caramel Cake

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Chocolate Caramel Cake is a delicious poke cake recipe that is ultra moist and delicious & fully loaded with caramel!

A decadent cake soaks up caramel for a moist and rich dessert that everyone goes crazy for!

Caramel Chocolate Poke Cake on a plate

You know how you have those few recipes you’re known for.  The recipes and dishes that people always expect you to bring to events…  *this* Chocolate Caramel Cake (along with my famous Carrot Cake) is the cake I’m known for.  I am ALWAYS asked to bring this poke cake and it always gets rave reviews!

It has been known in our family as Divorce Cake for years… the first time I made it, my husband loved it so much that he ate the WHOLE cake!  He then told me if I made it again he’d have to leave me… and “Divorce Cake” was born!  Our friends have called it divorce cake for as long as I can remember and even though I always make it…  he’s still here (I think he stays for the cake).

What is a Poke Cake?

If you’ve never had a poke cake before, this will rock your world! A poke cake is exactly what it sounds like.. a fluffy cake poked all over and usually topped with a sauce like caramel or chocolate.  I have a killer Chocolate Poke Cake From Scratch that I top with a homemade pudding mixture.  Any kind of cake works and I even make a colorful Red White and Blue Poke Cake for the holidays but I do think this Caramel Chocolate Cake is my fave!

Caramel Chocolate Poke Cake in a clear dish

The caramel chocolate cake starts with a cake baked to tender perfection and while still warm, like a typical poke cake, I poke holes all over the top.  The cake is then topped with caramel sauce and sweetened condensed milk which will seep into the holes and make it insanely moist.

I make this cake using a from-scratch cake mix but you can also use a boxed cake mix to save time if you’d like!

The whole cake is then cooled and topped with whipped topping (or freshly whipped cream) and drizzled with more caramel and chocolate.  I love to add shavings of chocolate and even Heath Bits to decorate it.

Caramel Chocolate Poke Cake on a white plate

One thing I love about this cake is that it’s better if it sits overnight.  That means it’s easy to make ahead of time and perfect for potlucks, parties, and dinners.

closeup of chocolate poke cake with a caramel and chocolate topping
5 from 27 votes
Review Recipe

Caramel Chocolate Poke Cake

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 16 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Chocolate Poke Cake loaded with caramel is the perfect cake for any gathering! A delicious from scratch cake soaks up caramel for a moist and rich dessert that everyone goes crazy for!


  • 1 9 x13 chocolate cake either boxed or homemade recipe below
  • 1 can sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 cup Caramel Ice Cream Topping or homemade
  • 8 ounces whipped topping or 2-3 cups whipped cream
  • chocolate sauce & chopped chocolate for garnish


  • 1 ¾ cups flour
  • 1 ¾ cups sugar
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup brewed coffee cooled
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

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  • Cake (if using a box mix, follow the directions for a 9×13 pan)


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease & flour a 9×13 inch pan.
  • Combine milk & lemon juice and set aside. (The mixture will thicken slightly)
  • Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda & baking powder in a large bowl.
  • Add eggs, coffee, soured milk, oil and vanilla. Beat medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into prepared pans. (Your batter may seem runny at this point but it will bake up beautifully.)
  • Bake 30 to 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Be sure to check the cake at 30 minutes so it doesn’t over cook.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and cool 15 minutes.


  • Poke holes all over the entire cake using the end of a wooden spoon. Pour the sweetened condensed milk and ¾ of the caramel sauce over the cake allowing it to seep into the holes.
  • Cover and refrigerate overnight (minimum 4 hours, longer is better)
  • Top with whipped topping, remaining caramel sauce, chocolate sauce and chopped chocolate.

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information does not include toppings.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 272, Carbohydrates: 46g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 27mg, Sodium: 203mg, Potassium: 161mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 23g, Vitamin A: 123IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 55mg, Iron: 1mg

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword Chocolate Caramel Cake
Course Dessert
Cuisine American

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closeup of chocolate poke cake with a caramel and chocolate topping
About the author


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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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Recipe Rating


    1. I’ve never tried making it as a layered cake but I think it’ll work. I’d use round cakes, and make sure they have a flat top before poking and adding the sauce. Let us know how it turns out if you try it Susan!

  1. I’m almost done making the cake recipe, and I notice there’s no salt!! This can’t be right, with baking soda and baking powder. Right?