Kahlua Coffee Poke Cake

Kahlua Coffee Poke Cake from Very Culinary

by Amy Flanigan on May 13, 2013 · 36 comments

(The winner of the OXO Tools giveaway is Diane Schmidt. Congrats, Dianne!) 

This is one of the original recipes I posted here on the blog, back in February of 2009. It was served at my friend Heather’s baby shower and I immediately asked for the recipe. Turned out it was so easy that it became my go to brunch dessert for years. But along came so many other recipes to try, it was forgotten about.

Until yesterday. 

Kahlua Coffee Poke Cake | Very Culinary

Sister Jen hosted her annual Mother’s Day brunch for me, my mom, and her MIL…my only requirement is always to bring dessert and a big appetite. I obliged on both counts. And I pulled this out of the arsenal.

It was just as great as I had remembered. The icing sinks into all the holes and creates a rich, moist, and coffee flavored chocolate cake. Seriously delish.

Honestly, it’s like the original “poke” cake before I knew what a poke cake was!

Kahlua Coffee Poke Cake | Very Culinary

Kahlua Coffee Poke Cake
Serves 16-20
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes

• 1 package dark chocolate cake mix
• 1 (4 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding
• 1 cup vegetable oil
• 4 eggs
• 3/4 cup brewed coffee
• 1/4 cup crème de cocoa
• 1/3 cup Kahlua
• 1 cup powdered sugar
• 1 tablespoons brewed coffee
• 3 tablespoons Kahlua
• 2 tablespoons crème de cocoa

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine all the ingredients for the cake in a medium bowl; whisk together until smooth. Pour into the bundt pan and bake 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool slightly; invert from pan onto a serving plate.

Prepare the icing by combining all the ingredients until smooth.

With a skewer, punch holes throughout the cake and pour the icing over the cake while it is still warm. Cut into slices and serve with strawberries, if desired.

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Leave a Comment

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Monic August 6, 2014 at 5:34 am

Where can I find the cream de cocoa? What is it? I had never seen it. I would like to bake this cake for my boyfriend this weekend.


Amy @Very Culinary August 6, 2014 at 6:11 am

Hi Monic – please scroll down about 7 comments to where I answered Kat. She had the same question. Thanks!


linda April 25, 2014 at 10:28 pm

Can I bake my chocolate cake instead of using package chocolate cake mix?


Amy @Very Culinary April 26, 2014 at 7:28 am

Of course! Just make sure your recipe yields the same amount so all the other ratios stay in tact.


Jackie March 31, 2014 at 11:47 am

This is going to be tried as soon as I can get all the ingredients. It sounds so delicious! YUM


A March 29, 2014 at 9:55 am

The recipe didn’t specify so I got dark creme de cocoa…. Do you think that will work?


Amy @Very Culinary March 29, 2014 at 10:39 am

Yes, that’s what I use :)


Doris Spiller March 17, 2014 at 7:26 am

It look’s so good I would like to fix it this week.But what is kahlua?


Amy @Very Culinary March 17, 2014 at 7:28 am

Hi Doris – Kahlúa is a coffee-flavored rum-based liqueur. Depending on where you live, you can find it at any liquor store and almost all grocery stores in the liquor aisle.


Charlotte from AZ March 3, 2014 at 10:26 pm

This sounds soooooo good and so easy too!
Will definitely be making it real soon!
Thx for sharing!


Patricia January 25, 2014 at 10:55 am

I made this cake for the 1st time last weekend and can’t tell you the reactions I got. The common comment/question was “There’s something in the cake that I can’t figure out. It tastes really good and moist!”. As soon as I said, “Kahlua” people responded, “OOHHHH!!! That’s what it is!”. The recipe’s a keeper – thanks Amy!


Amy @Very Culinary January 25, 2014 at 3:31 pm

Awesome! So happy to hear it! This is always a hit whenever I serve it :)


kat January 18, 2014 at 1:54 pm

what is ” crème de cocoa” ? I am new to baking and do not know what this is?


Amy @Very Culinary January 18, 2014 at 1:59 pm

Hi Kat – crème de cocoa is a sweet, light colored syrupy drink or chocolate liqueur, which has a flavor of cocoa and vanilla. It can be found in the liqueur section of most grocery stores.


kat January 18, 2014 at 2:03 pm

Amy, what is it called and what do I look for ?Do I look for crème de cocoa ? or is there a name brand to look for?


Amy @Very Culinary January 18, 2014 at 2:07 pm

Yes, it’s actually called crème de cocoa, but there are many different manufacturers. If you Google for it, you can get a visual, here http://bit.ly/1jdOhcn – or ask one of the employees at the store. They should know where to find it.


kat January 18, 2014 at 2:14 pm

Ty Amy

Brandye January 13, 2014 at 7:44 pm

Yum!! Just need some vanilla vodka and you can use the leftover creme de cocoa and kahlua to make mocha martinis.


Linda January 10, 2014 at 4:59 am

I have Kahlua but not the Creme de cocoa. Can you just use Kahlua for both? Looks awesome!


Amy @Very Culinary January 10, 2014 at 7:22 am

Hi Linda – thanks! But, you really need both. The Creme de cocoa is sweet and syrupy/creamy and lends to the overall moistness and flavor of the cake. You could try it without, but I can’t guarantee the results.


Nancy Long January 4, 2014 at 10:19 am

this is similar to one I’ve been making for over 20 years to give as Christmas gifts. Mine calls for sour cream and you don’t poke it. I make it into loafs and make a Kahlua simple syrup to brush them with. People start asking for them long before the holidays.


Amy @Very Culinary January 4, 2014 at 5:54 pm

I bet. Anything with these ingredients is a recipe to be loved. Sounds delicious!


Annabelle September 4, 2013 at 7:01 am

Must Must Must try this. Looks too delicious to eat.
I do see a big crack in the cake though….is that something that one should expect?


Amy @Very Culinary September 4, 2013 at 7:17 am

Oh, HA. I’ve never even noticed that…and nobody has ever mentioned it. Um..I don’t know. I’ve made this several times and I don’t remember it ever cracking, but maybe it does – that piece might have broken when I was plating. I honestly, don’t remember, sorry! You’ll eat it so fast, it won’t matter. Lol.


Erin @ Texanerin Baking July 27, 2013 at 11:53 am

Nooooo! We don’t have cake or pudding mix here! I know you can make it homemade but it doesn’t come out the same. Booo. :(

I’m saving this for when I’m back in the US! I looks AMAZING! I can’t wait. :)


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Wendy May 14, 2013 at 1:39 pm

I can’t get over how moist and rich the cake looks! This certainly raises a cake mix to a whole new level. :)


Heather May 13, 2013 at 10:24 pm

I honestly can say I don’t think I have had that cake since the shower! How sad is that? It looks delish and you have inspired me to make it again (even though Mike and the kids don’t like coffee flavored anything! I’ll make it for me. :) Happy belated Mother’s day!


Dana May 13, 2013 at 8:05 pm

So, if I don’t have Kahlua, or if I want to take this to a church (i.e., booze free) event, what could I use instead? Because I REALLY NEED to make this…


Amy May 13, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Oh boy, Dana, I really don’t know. The Kahlua is part of its yummy factor. I suppose you could just replace it with more coffee or espresso…


Joanne May 13, 2013 at 2:13 pm

I see you and I both went the boozy route for Mother’s Day! (I made tiramisu!) I love the idea of the icing seeping into the cake’s insides.


Stephanie May 13, 2013 at 10:54 am

I’ve never heard of poke cake, and judging by THIS recipe, I have been missing out on some seriously delicious schtuff for the last 27 years….. Must. Make. Now.


Jay May 13, 2013 at 9:07 am

As the BIL…I can attest…It ws SERIOUSLY delicious.


Bev @ Bev Cooks May 13, 2013 at 7:26 am



Kim May 13, 2013 at 6:36 am

Oh golly this looks good. Sinfully good. Kahlua gets me every time. I could take a BIG slice of this with a cup of Kahlua coffee or a White Russian. See…this cake is a temptress!


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