Fudge Icing Poke Cake – Life Above the Cafe

Fudge Icing Poke Cake

A family favorite for generations to come!
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Fudge Icing Poke Cake

Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Jan 10, 2021




15 mins.

30 mins.

12 plus

This is a recipe that I grew up eating at my granny’s house. She always had a dessert ready and waiting. I’m not one to reach for a chocolate dessert first, but anytime that she made this Fudge Icing Poke Cake, I always had a big slice.

I love the simplicity of this recipe since it starts out with a base of a yellow boxed cake (use any brand and one that is made with oil or butter). I feel that boxed cake mixes are convenient, they taste delicious when topped with homemade frosting, or icing (if that’s what you grew up calling it), and they usually turn out correctly every time.

This Fudge Icing forms a thin crust that crackles and shines. I know of other recipes like a Texas Sheet Cake or these Lunch Lady Brownies, that have a thicker icing that won’t be as thin and flow as easily. If you are looking for a thicker icing check out the brownie recipe I linked above.

I always refrigerate any leftovers of this cake the day that I make it. If it is left on the counter the moisture from the cake will cause the icing to become damp. It will still taste good, but I like for the icing to remain as close to it’s day one texture as possible. For me, this cake is best on day one and it’s one of my signature desserts for potlucks or gatherings where I know that there will be a crowd and there won’t be leftovers.

I hope that you’ll try this recipe today and leave a comment below. Also, for daily updates, follow @lifeabovethecafe on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest using the social media icons found on this page.


  • 1 yellow cake mix
  • ingredients on box for cake (oil or butter, eggs, water)
  • 2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. of salt
  • 4 heaping Tablespoons full of Hershey’s Cocoa Powder
  • 5 ounce can of Evaporated Milk
  • 1 stick of butter


The suggested prep/cooking times are for the cake and the fudge icing.  Make a 9 x 13 sheet cake according to the directions on the box.  Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool completely for about 30 minutes.  Once cooled, poke holes across the surface using a spoon handle (see photo below) and then brush the crumbs off to the sides if desired.  Once the holes have been made, make the Fudge Icing.

In a large nonstick pot mix together the sugar, salt, and cocoa powder with a whisk.  Mix the dry ingredients until no large lumps remain.  Add the small can of evaporated milk and stir everything together.  Cook the mixture over medium heat until it comes up to a rolling boil.  Once the mixture starts boiling set the timer for exactly 2 minutes and continue boiling it and stirring constantly with the whisk.

At the 2 minute mark, turn off the heat and add the stick of butter, stirring as the butter melts.  I stir vigorously for one extra minute after the butter melts to help to cool the chocolate icing.  Carefully pour the hot icing over the entire surface of the cake.  Allow the cake to cool for about an hour before serving, so that the icing hardens and shines.  Refrigerate leftovers once cooled.

Additional Photos:

Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Fudge Icing Poke Cake
Fudge Icing Poke Cake

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