If you love Caramel Macchiato coffee drinks, then this deliciously decadent Cuppa Joe Cake is a must try! A coffee-infused caramel poke cake, topped with rich mocha frosting — it’s truly a treat for anyone who loves coffee!
“Cuppa Joe” Chocolate Caramel Poke Cake
I don’t consider my day truly started until I’ve had my first cup of coffee.
I’ve also been known to have cake for breakfast on occasion (there’s even a sign in my kitchen that says “eat cake for breakfast!”)
Why not put them together?!
I know, I know. Coffee cake has totally been done before. Probably a million ways too!
But this isn’t just any coffee cake!
This Cuppa Joe Cake tastes more like a decadent drink you’d get from the Starbucks drive through! Caramel, chocolate, and coffee combine to create the ultimate coffee lovers treat!
What you need to make Cuppa Joe Cake
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For the Cake:
- Instant coffee granules — You can use either regular of decaf, depending on preference.
- Butter — Softened; be sure to use unsalted butter, as there is already salt added to the recipe.
- Brown sugar — Packed
- Vanilla extract
- All-purpose flour — For a gluten free version, swap out regular flour with your favorite gluten free all-purpose flour.
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Ground nutmeg
- Caramel ice cream topping — Or your own favorite caramel sauce recipe
For the Frosting:
- Baking cocoa — Unsweetened cocoa powder
- Instant coffee granules
- Boiling water
- Butter — Softened; unsalted
- Powdered sugar
- Semisweet chocolate chips — You could also try milk chocolate or dark chocolate chips, depending on the type of flavor you like.
Kitchen Supplies Used:
- Electric mixer or stand mixer (we bought our KitchenAid Professional stand mixer refurbished and saved a lot of money! It’s worked like a charm for 7 years now)
- 8″ x 12″ oblong baking dish (or 9×13)
- Wooden spoon
How to Make Chocolate Caramel Poke Cake
Heat buttermilk for 30-45 seconds, or just until warmed. Stir in coffee granules until dissolved.
Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Next add the eggs and vanilla until everything is well incorporated.
In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the dry cake ingredients. Slowly add dry ingredients to the cake batter, alternating with your buttermilk/coffee mixture.
When batter is ready, pour into a prepared 13″ x 9″ baking pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Let cake cool enough to handle, then poke holes throughout the cake using the bottom of a wooden spoon handle. Pour 1/2 cup of the caramel directly into the holes.
Take the rest of the caramel topping and spread evenly across the top of the cake and allow to cool completely.
To Make the Frosting:
Bring 1/4 cup water to boil, then stir in cocoa powder and coffee granules until dissolved. Allow to cool to room temperature.
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and confectioners’ sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in melted chocolate and cocoa mixture until well combined.
Spread frosting evenly on top of the cake.
How Strong is the Coffee Flavor?
While you can taste the coffee, it’s balanced nicely with the chocolate and caramel flavors. Imagine a sweet dessert coffee like a Caramel Macchiato and you’ve got the idea.
Die-hard coffee drinkers and casual coffee fans alike will love this cake!
Does the Cake Contain Caffeine?
This depends on the type of instant coffee you use. Since caffeine does not “cook off” like alcohol, if you use regular coffee, the cake will indeed have some level of caffeine.
If you want to make a family-friendly cake that even kids can enjoy, use decaf coffee. All the flavor, none of the caffeine!
More of our most popular poke cake recipes:
- Gingerbread Poke Cake
- Key Lime Poke Cake
- Red White and Blue Jello Poke Cake
- Pumpkin Pie Kit Kat Poke Cake
- Caramel Pumpkin Poke Cake
- Bananas Foster Poke Cake
Cuppa Joe Cake Recipe (Printable Copy)
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Cuppa Joe Cake
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 4 teaspoons instant coffee granules
- 1/2 cup butter softened
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup caramel ice cream topping divided
- 1 Tablespoon baking cocoa
- 2 teaspoon instant coffee granules
- 1/4 cup boiling water
- 1/2 cup butter softened
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips melted
- Heat buttermilk for 30-45 seconds, or just until warmed. Stir in coffee granules until dissolved.
- Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after you add each one.
- Add vanilla and mix.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. Slowly add dry ingredients to the stand mixer, alternating with buttermilk/coffee mixture.
- Mix until everything is well combined.
- Pour batter into a greased 13" x 9" baking pan and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Place pan on a wire cooling rack for 5 minutes.
- Using the end of a wooden spoon handle, poke holes in cake, about 1 to 1 1/2" apart. Pour 1/2 cup of your caramel topping directly into the holes in the cake.
- Take the rest of the caramel topping and spread evenly across the top of the cake and allow to cool completely.
- Bring 1/4 cup water to boil, then stir in cocoa powder and coffee granules until dissolved. Allow to cool to room temperature.
- In a mixing bowl, cream butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in melted chocolate and cocoa mixture until well combined.
- Spread frosting evenly on top of the cake.
- Serve and enjoy!
Be Sure to Pin our Cuppa Joe Poke Cake on Pinterest: