Pin It!

Easy Chocolate Poke Cake

This post may contain affiliate sales links. Please see my full disclosure policy for details

This Easy Chocolate Poke Cake is a chocolate cake made from scratch, then soaked with chocolate pudding and topped with homemade whipped cream! You’ll love the moist chocolate cake. It’s a light and fluffy cake that’s irresistible once you add the pudding! 


A close up shot of a slice of dark chocolate cake with whipped cream and hot fudge on top

Chocolate Poke Cake

You can never have too many poke cake recipes in your pocket- and that’s in part due to the endless flavor combinations! I should know, I have dozens of poke cake recipes!

Up until recently, a lot of my poke cake recipes were made with cake mix, but I’ve been adding more and more cake recipes from scratch and updating older poke cake recipes with options to make them from scratch.

Two slices of chocolate cakes on white plates drizzled with hot fudge

What is a Poke Cake?

A poke cake is cake made traditionally in a 9×13 inch pan and once it’s baked, you take the end of a wooden spoon and poke holes all over the top of the cake.

Then, you pour your liquid filling over top of the hole. The most commonly used fillings are either pudding or sweetened condensed milk.

If you’ve been looking for a poke cake recipe you can’t live without, look no further. Not only is this chocolate poke cake amazing, but I also have an entire collection of poke cakes! You can browse my post popular poke cake recipes here.

I recently made my favorite chocolate cake recipe and realized I hadn’t made a poke cake with it yet. I decided immediately it was time to remedy that situation!

This light and fluffy, homemade chocolate cake is soaked in chocolate pudding and topped with a homemade whipped cream.

A gold fork digging into a slice of chocolate poke cake garnished with whipped cream

How to Make This Chocolate Poke Cake

  • Mix the wet ingredients: The oil is mixed with eggs and sugar and beaten until well combined. Then you add the sour cream, I use light sour cream which helps adds to the moisture and texture of this cake.
  • Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. 
  • Alternate adding the coffee and the dry ingredients, half at a time. 
  • Substitute for sour cream: I get a lot of questions about substitutes for the sour cream. I would recommend substituting with nonfat Greek yogurt if you do not have sour cream. I do not recommend omitting it completely.
  • Substitute for coffee: The coffee definitely helps bring out the chocolate flavor in this cake. If you do not want to use coffee, then I suggest using water.
  • Bake at 350°F for 26-28 minutes. 
  • Once cooled Poke holes all over the top of your cake using a wooden spoon or dowel 
  • Prepare the pudding mix. Before the pudding mix has set, immediately pour the liquid pudding mix over the cake and then allow the pudding to set in the fridge until its firm (about 10 minutes or less).
  • Make a batch of whipped cream. Even though I love using homemade whipped cream, you could certainly simply it with Cool Whip! 
  • Top it with hot fudge, sprinkles, chocolate shavings, whatever you want!

There are plenty of options you could do to customize this cake such as changing the flavor of pudding or the topping.

A gold fork with a big bite of chocolate cake on it


Serving Ideas

There are several ways you can garnish this Easy Chocolate Poke Cake. You can serve it with fruit, chocolate shavings, crushed cookies, hot fudge sauce, sprinkles or anything in your pantry really. It’s up to you- and I just love seeing your creativity!

How to Store a Poke Cake

This cake needs to be stored in the refrigerator. It’s a great recipe to make in advance. Be sure your cake is completely cooled prior to adding the frosting which will help prevent moisture buildup. 

If your baking pan does not come with a lid, then cover this with plastic wrap or aluminum foil as tightly as possible and then keep refrigerated. 

A slice of homemade chocolate cake with lots of bites taken, revealing the moist texture on the inside

Follow Beyond Frosting:

Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram 

If you love no-bake recipes, be sure to check out my cookbook, No-Bake Treats!


A close up shot of a slice of dark chocolate cake with whipped cream and hot fudge on top

Easy Chocolate Poke Cake

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 26 minutes
  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 15 slices


This Easy Chocolate Poke Cake is a mouthwatering chocolate cake made from scratch, then soaked with chocolate pudding and a homemade whipped cream on top! 


For the cake:

  • 1 ½ cups (285g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (118 ml) vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (118 ml) light sour cream
  • 2 cups (280g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup (55 g) cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon (5g) espresso powder  (optional)
  • 2 ½ teaspoons (9 g) baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon (2 g) baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) salt
  • 1 ¼ cup (296 ml) brewed coffee

For the filling:

  • 1 package instant chocolate pudding (3.4oz)
  • 1 ¾ cup (295ml) milk

For the topping:

  • 1 ½ cup (354ml) heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons (148g) powdered sugar
  • Hot Fudge Sauce (optional)
  • Chocolate Shavings (optional)


  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until the eggs and oil are well incorporated and the batter is lighter in color.
  3. Next mix in the sour cream and beat until well combined.
  4. In a sperate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Then add half the dry ingredients followed by half of the coffee and mix just until the flour starts to incorporate.
  5. Finally add the remaining dry ingredients, mixing on low speed while pouring in the remaining coffee and beating until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  6. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir the batter from the bottom to the top to ensure it’s well mixed.
  7. Pour the batter into a 9×13-inch pan and bake at 350°F for 26-28 minutes. Test the cake for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, you cake is done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
  8. Take a wooden spoon or another round object and poke holes over the top of the cake.
  9. For the filling: In a small mixing bowl, combine the instant chocolate pudding with the milk and whisk together until the powdered mix is dissolved.
  10. Pour the liquid pudding mix over top of the cake, try to fill the holes with the pudding mix.
  11. Refrigerate the cake until the pudding is firm, about 10 minutes or so.
  12. Place the mixing bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to chill
  13. Pour the heavy whipping cream into the chilled bowl and use an electric mixer to beat the heavy cream on medium-high speed until the cream thickens.
  14. Slowly add the powdered sugar and continue beating on high speed until stiff peaks start to form. Spread the whipped cream over the top of the cake. Keep refrigerated. Serve with hot fudge sauce and chocolate shaving or chocolate sprinkles.


  • Make ahead of time: This cake can be prepared 1-2 days in advance and kept refrigerated. The whipped topping is best served fresh if possible
  • Keep stored in the refrigerator
  • Substitute for sour cream: I would recommend substituting with nonfat Greek yogurt
  • Substitute for coffee: If you do not want to use coffee, then I suggest using warm water
Nutrition Information:
1 slice
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Poke Cake, Pudding Cake, Chocolate Poke Cake, Poke Cake Recipe, Chocolate Pudding Poke Cake

You might also like:

15 Irresistible Poke Cake

Poke cakes are the BEST cakes. Be sure to check out this collection of more than 15 Poke Cake Recipes that you MUST MAKE!

Oreo Dirt Poke Cake

Serve yourself a big slice of this Oreo Dirt Cake! The chocolate poke cake is soaked with hot fudge and topped with a chocolate Oreo mousse!

Brownie Batter Poke Cake

Sinful Brownie Batter Poke Cake. This chocolate poke cake is soaked with dark chocolate pudding, and topped a brownie batter mousse and brownie batter glaze. It’s for true chocolate lovers.

Leave a Comment

Recipe rating

8 Responses
  1. Bonnie Vannieuwenhoven

    I made this according to directions and it was fabulous. But I needed to change some things with the next one I made. My husband loves Almond Joy candy bars, so I used a dark chocolate pudding and I toasted coconut and almond slivers. I then sprinkled those over the whipped cream and my husband said it was amazing. Now he always asks for my Almond Joy pudding cake?

  2. LZ

    Hi – looks so good! My kids want to make it this weekend. Could you leave out the coffee? Would you add in any other liquid?

  3. Jessica Pavlik

    I made this for a small party with friends. The cake was loved by everyone. Many ended up having more than one piece! The only difference for me was that I added 2 more tablespoons of confectioner sugar to the whipped cream and a few drops of vanilla. Amazing cake! Thank you.

  4. Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch)

    First of all, this cake is stunning in appearance. So rich and dark looking. And with coffee flavors, I must give this one a try. Pinning.

Subscribe to my newsletter and get my fav tips to take your cakes & cupcakes to the next level.