The flavors of Cookies and Cream never tasted better than in a big slice of this Oreo Cake. Layers of white sour cream cake hold chunks of Oreo cookies. It’s wrapped in creamy white buttercream speckled with real chocolate sprinkles.
Yet another cake I’ve been dreaming of making for too long, is an Oreo Cake. I’ve seen a lot of different versions online, and I’ve been eager to put my own spin on it. But each time I started, I’d get side tracked with a different Oreo cookie inspiration (Cookies and Cream Cheesecake, anyone? Or how about Oreo Peanut Butter Pie Cups?). Finally, I sat down and hashed out a formula for three fluffy white-sour cream cake layers loaded with Oreo cookie chunks. After some testing, I had a great base on which to build a truly delicious Cookies and Cream cake.
Cookies ‘n (sour) cream cake batter.
First, separate the Oreo cookies and their cream centers. In my (very specific) Oreo Cake research, I found that many bakers who left the cream centers in had problems. Some had sticking and tunneling occur when the cream centers melted under the heat. I’m not looking to have big gaping holes in my cakes. So, just leave them out. It does not compromise the Oreo flavor at all.
The batter whips up pale and fluffy, which is the perfect color and texture to show off those dark cookie pieces. Instead of folding the cookie pieces into the batter, sprinkle them over the batter in the pans and lightly tamp them in with an offset spatula.
The cookie pieces will sink down even more as the cakes bake. When you take them out of the oven, the tops will be a little uneven due to the cake puffing around the cookie pieces. Lay a paper towel on top of the warm cake in the pan. Then lightly press the top flat. Don’t over do this – you’re not trying to compress the cake, just knock down some of the high spots. And be careful not to get burned. Steam will be expelled as you press, so use a light touch.
Chocolate sprinkle buttercream.
This recipe uses American buttercream, which is the simple combination of butter, confectioners’ sugar, and milk or cream. For this recipe, don’t use grass-fed cow butter. It’s usually more expensive and more yellow in color. Just go for the grade A grocery store brand that is pale in color. As a result, and with lots of whipping, your buttercream will turn white, just like Oreo cream filling. This removes the need for any kind of artificial whitener in the frosting.
Add real chocolate sprinkles to the buttercream. Not the waxy fake kind. Instead, purchase real chocolate sprinkles such as an imported Dutch brand. (Dark chocolate “vermicelli” is also great!) They’ll make a huge difference in the flavor!
Stack up those cookies ‘n (sour) cream cake layers with the buttercream. Smooth the frosting all over the cake evenly. I recommend using a large offset spatula to smooth on the frosting. A bench scraper just seems to drag the sprinkles through the frosting leaving trail marks. A spatula is more precise and effective at smoothing on sprinkle-y frosting.
Use a large open star tip to pipe swirls of buttercream on top. This allows the chocolate sprinkles to easily flow through the tube. If you used a closed star tip, the sprinkles would clog the tube.
The final touches are simple. Apply a ganache drip after the swirls are piped on, so that it flows around them. Then, lean whole Oreo cookies on the swirls at an angle.
The cookies soften to a cake-like consistency in the baked layers. It’s such a nice texture, and the Oreo flavor really comes through. There’s no mistaking that this is a true Cookies and Cream layer cake!
Layers of sour cream cake hold chunks of Oreo Cookies throughout. The layers are stacked and frosted with chocolate sprinkle buttercream, and topped with rich chocolate ganache.
Oreo cake layers
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain salt
- 5 egg whites
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup sour cream at room temperature
- 2/3 cup whole milk at room temperature
- 15 whole Oreo cookies cream centers removed
Chocolate sprinkles buttercream
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter
- 6 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Milk or cream to thin
- 2/3 cup real chocolate sprinkles such as DeRuijter
Chocolate ganache topping and decor
- 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 6 whole Oreo cookies
Oreo cake layers
Preheat the oven to 350F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whip attachment, beat the butter until creamy. Sprinkle in the granulated sugar gradually as you mix. Beat until light and fluffy.
In a separate large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
In a 4-cup measure or batter bowl with a pour spout, whisk together the egg whites, vanilla, sour cream, and milk.
Switch the mixer beater to the paddle attachment Beat 1/3 of the dry ingredients into the creamed butter mixture until just incorporated. Add in half of the liquid mixture; beat until combined. Continue adding 1/3 flour mixture followed by the remaining liquid; end with the flour mixture. Beat until the mixture is lightened in color and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Coat three 8-inch cake pans with flour-based baking spray. Alternatively, grease and flour the pans. Coarsely crush the Oreo cookie shells under your fingers in a large bowl.
Divide the cake batter between the prepared pans. Sprinkle each pan with 1/3 of the cookies; lightly tamp the cookies into the batter using the tip of an offset spatula. Smooth the top of the batter with the flat edge of the offset spatula.
Bake the cakes for 25-30 minutes, or until the cakes spring back when pressed in the centers. Remove the cakes from the oven. If the tops are lumpy and uneven due to the cake batter puffing around the cookie pieces, flatten gently using a paper towel (see blog post for visual). Do this gently and carefully as steam will escape as you press.
Remove cakes to a wire rack to cool completely.
Beat the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whip attachment. Whip until creamy. Add the confectioners’ sugar. Beat until combined. Add vanilla extract; mix well. Beat on medium speed adding milk or cream 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture thins to piping consistency. Beat on high speed until the frosting turns almost white in color, about 4 minutes with a timer set. Scrape down the bowl. Beat again on high speed. Fold in the chocolate sprinkles. Remove 2/3 cup of frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large open star tip (also called French pastry tube).
Fill two of the cooled cake layers with about 1/2 cup of the buttercream on each layer. Spread evenly. Stack them and then place the remaining cake layer on top. Generously cover the cake with the remaining buttercream using an offset spatula. Refrigerate the cake until the frosting firms, about 25 minutes. If the buttercream has trails or pull marks throughout from the sprinkles, warm a large offset spatula in a glass of water, wipe dry, then smooth the frosting with the warm spatula. This will remove most any blemish on the cake’s exterior.
Using the reserved piping bag of frosting, pipe six large swirls on the top edge of the cake, well-spaced. Refrigerate the cake while you make the ganache.
In a medium microwave-safe bowl, combine the chocolate chips and heavy cream. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Allow the hot mixture to stand for 2 minutes, then whisk together until a smooth, shiny ganache forms. Let cool slightly. The mixture should still be quite liquid and not at all thick before applying to the cake.
Spoon the ganache conservatively at the edges of the cake, and around the frosting swirls, to control the amount of drip you desire. Then, pour or spoon more of the ganache onto the top center of the cake, so that it covers the entire center. Immediately lean whole Oreo cookies at an angle against each frosting swirl.
Refrigerate cake to set. Store the cake at room temperature in an airtight container.
Butter. In the blog post I mention using grade A grocery store butter (Such as Kroger, Publix, etc.). These butter varieties are usually made from corn-fed cows. The butter will be pale yellow, which is desirable in this recipe for white buttercream. The butter will not say ‘made from milk from corn-fed cows’ so this may seem confusing. Just avoid any butter that boasts ‘grass-fed’ on the label because it will be more yellow in color.