Chocolate Malt Layer Cake

I made this cake to celebrate. Layer cakes are all about celebrating. This specific cake was to celebrate that it’s been 2 full years since Little Mister had his open heart surgery. Last year I made a funfetti cake with marshmallow frosting. In a couple months he will need to go back to Children’s Hospital for his first check up since the surgery.

I’m sure everything is totally fine, but there is that little piece, that little nagging piece of me that is worried. More like petrified something will be wrong again. But for now lets celebrate! Worry about the worry stuff when it’s time to worry. lol.

This cake in itself was a reason to celebrate. I got the recipe from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking.  I have never had a fail from this series of books.

The layers are made with malted milk powder and the frosting is made with milk and dark chocolate. It is literally like a giant malt ball, but so, so much better. Weird thing is, I don’t really like malt balls. Is that normal?

This cake worked out wonderfully. The layers baked up nice and fluffy and almost completely flat. I did use Wilton Bake-Even Cake Strips.  If you bake layer cakes, even once and a while these little strips are great! The frosting is not a basic buttercream, it’s like a ganache crossed with a buttercream, without icing sugar. It was not sweet and by itself I wasn’t over the moon about it. I slathered it on the cake, it was a bit runny and put it in the fridge to set up. The malted layers with the chocolate frosting is incredible.

Best cake ever….. just look at those layers.

Chocolate Malt Layer Cake – make one, three layer 8 inch cake

Malt Cake

2 1/4 c cake flour
3/4 c all purpose flour
1 tbs baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 c malted milk powder – I used Carnation but you can sub in Ovaltine
1 c butter – room temp
2 c granulated sugar
1 tbs pure vanilla
2 c ice cold water
4 large egg whites – at room temp

Milk Chocolate Frosting

8 oz dark chocolate chopped
8 oz milk chocolate chopped
1 1/2 c heavy (whipping) cream
2 tbs light corn syrup
1 1/2 c butter – soft but still cool

1 large box malt ball for decoration

Malt Cake

Preheat oven to 325 F. Move oven rack to the middle position. Butter 3 eight inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper and butter the parchment. Set aside.

*Just a note, make sure never to set your prepared pans on top of the oven because it might affect your cake.*

In a large bowl sift your flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, malted milk powder together. Set aside.

In the bowl of your standing mixer on medium, beat the butter, sugar and vanilla together for 3-4 minutes until fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and add flour, alternating with the ice water. Do 3 additions of dry and 2 of wet. Scrape down the bowl and mix another minute.

In a medium bowl add in your egg whites whisk until soft peak form. This take a couple minutes by hand, well for me anyways ;)

Scoop all your egg whites on top of your batter and then with a spatula gently fold in the egg whites.

Line up your 3 pans and divide your batter between the pans evenly.

Place pans in the oven for 40-45 minutes turning them 1/2 way through. You can tell when they are ready when you insert a toothpick in the centre and it comes out clean or with just a few crumbs on it.

Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Then flip out and let the cake cool completely. Once completely cooled very carefully wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge or freezer to chill. This makes it easier to assemble the cake.

Milk Chocolate Frosting

Put all of your chocolate in the bowl of your standing mixer. In a small sauce pan whisk together your cream and corn syrup. Bring cream and corn syrup to a boil. As soon as it boils remove from heat and pour over your chocolate. Let it sit for 2-3 minutes and then starting in the middle and working your way out whisk your chocolate mixture until smooth. Set aside until it comes to room temp.

Once it comes to room temp.(you don’t want it warm) put your whisk attachment on your mixer and on medium speed gradually add in your butter until completely combined. Frosting should be smooth and there should be no pieces of butter.


Put your frosting in the fridge until it holds its shape and firms up a bit. Unwrap your first layer and place on a cake board or your serving platter. Trim the top of your cake to create a flat surface and then spread about a cup of frosting on the top. Add your next layer, some of the frosting may spill out, don’t worry. Repeat until all the layers are stacked. Crumb coat the cake (cover the cake with a thin layer of frosting. It’s ok if the layers show through.) Place in the fridge for 15 minutes until the frosting firms up. Take the cake out and use the remaining frosting to completely cover the cake. Decorate the base and top with malt balls.

Serve cold or room temp. Best served in the first 3 days.

Slightly adapted from Baked – New Frontiers in Bake