This Milky Way Cake is the best of two worlds: chocolatey candy bars and buttery cake! A delightfully moist cake with swirls of caramel and Milky Way bars is coated in a white chocolate glaze to make a dessert worthy of sweetening up just about anyone’s day!
I’ve mentioned my childhood love for candy bars on the blog before. As a kid, one of the simplest ways to put a smile on my face was handing me a butterfinger or a couple turtles. Just about anything coated in rich chocolate and filled with some kind of sweet caramel or crunchy nut was good enough for me.
One of my absolute favorite candy bars, then and now, is a Milk Way. I mean, I can’t be the only one to think they’re a bit underrated right? Chewy nougat, pull-worthy caramel, and milk chocolate seem like the ultimate candy bar trio to me.
Now, I don’t eat as many of these bad boys as I used to. But that might just change with this recipe! Milky Way Cake is a fun, creative way to integrate a childhood favorite into a more “grown-up” dessert. It’s tender, moist, sweet, and oh so deliciously indulgent.
So, what do you say we round up the kids, grab a few Milky Ways and have a little fun today?
Perks and Highlights
Cuisine Inspiration: Galactic Goodness
Get ready to launch your taste buds into a cosmic journey! This Milky Way Cake is not just a dessert; it’s an out-of-this-world experience that orbits the delicious flavors of the iconic candy bar.
Primary Cooking Method: Baking
Where the magic happens: the oven. Baking this celestial creation to gooey, chocolaty perfection is key to achieving the decadent layers that mirror the mystique of the galaxy.
Dietary Info: For the Sweet Tooth
Packed with chocolate, caramel, and nougat goodness, this cake is a dream for anyone with a sweet tooth. It’s a confectionery constellation not meant for dietary restrictions!
Key Flavor: Chocolate-Caramel Cosmos
Imagine the richest, most decadent chocolate and smoothest, creamiest caramel uniting in a cake that’s simply cosmic. That’s the universe of flavor you’re about to explore.
Skill Level: Intermediate
While you won’t need to be a rocket scientist to make this cake, a bit of baking experience can help you reach for the stars!
- Candy Bar Heaven: This isn’t just inspired by a Milky Way; it’s like eating a giant, cakey version of the candy bar itself!
- Texture Galaxy: Experience the blissful balance of fluffy cake, creamy frosting, and gooey caramel that’s simply out of this world.
- Star of Any Event: This cake doesn’t just taste heavenly; it looks stunning, too, making it the show-stopping centerpiece at any gathering.
- Customizable Constellation: Want more caramel? More chocolate? Go for it! This galaxy is yours to explore and make your own.
- Memory Meteor: One bite, and this cake will skyrocket to the top of your ‘best-ever’ dessert list, creating sweet memories that linger like stardust.
Milky Way Candy Bars are made up of three layers: nougat, caramel, and milk chocolate. As the bars melt, the layers come together to breed a whole new tasty mixture. If you’d like to experiment, try out your favorite candy bar instead!
Unsalted Butter needs to be softened in order to properly cream with the sugar. Be sure to allow it to sit out at room temperature for an hour or two before baking.
Granulated Sugar is simply a sweetener here. Cane sugar is perfectly fine as well.
Eggs have to be at room temperature to prevent the batter from seizing; this causes a denser cake.
All Purpose Flour should be properly sifted for this recipe. There are quite a few heavy ingredients in this cake and sifting the flour helps to lighten the load a bit.
Salt will help to boost flavor. Kosher salt is best.
Baking Soda is a leavener. Use fresh, active baking soda, otherwise the cake won’t rise properly.
Buttermilk is tangy and tasty; it not only tenderizes the cake but also adds a gentle zing to the batter.
Vanilla is a baking staple! Use high-quality vanilla or vanilla bean paste for the best result.
White Chocolate Glaze is made with white chocolate and heavy cream. The combination of these ingredients creates a smooth, luscious topping for the cake.
How to Make a Milky Way Cake
There is a bit more work involved in this recipe than you might expect but I promise that it’s all worth it in the end. By reading through the recipe and properly preparing your ingredients, this Milky Way Cake doesn’t have to be hard to make.
Keep it simple. Follow the steps. Have a lot of fun with it!
- MIX THE BATTER & BAKE- As always, start by preheating the oven and greasing the pan very thoroughly (Bundt pans have a nasty habit of sticking). Melt the candy bars with some butter until everything comes together, then set aside. In a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar, then add in the eggs one at a time. Next, add in the dry ingredients, vanilla, buttermilk, and Milky Way mixture. Once fully combined and smooth, pour the batter into the pan and bake for 55-60 minutes. See, it’s not so bad right?
- MAKE THE ICING- While you wait for the cake to cool, make your icing! Add white chocolate to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and bake at 250 degrees for 10 minutes, then use a spatula to smooth and re-spread. Repeat 3-5 times, then scrape the chocolate into a heat-safe bowl and whisk until smooth. Finally, combine the chocolate and heavy cream in a small saucepan over low heat. Once the glaze is nice and smooth, transfer it back into the heat-safe bowl.
- COOL, ICE, + SERVE- Before icing, your cake should reach room temperature. Otherwise the chocolate mixture will run right off. Pour the icing over the top of the cake, making sure to cover the entire top. Allow the icing to set for about 10-15 minutes, then serve!
Leftover Cake Storage
Butter-based cakes have a high moisture content that will begin to dry out from the moment you cut into it. Though they can be kept at room temperature for 1-2 days, I find that it’s best to refrigerate them. Cover the leftover cake with either foil or plastic wrap then place it in the refrigerator for up to a week.
To Freeze: Wrap the cake in aluminum foil or plastic wrap then put it in a heavy-duty freezer bag. If frozen, this cake will keep for 4-6 months. When ready to consume, thaw overnight in the fridge.
Candy Themed Recipes
I may be all grown up but I won’t say no to a candy bar every now and then. Use your favorite sugary treats to create something brand new and exciting, I just might have a recipe or two to get ya started!
Check ‘em out:
Milky Way Cake
For the Cake
- 8 Milky Way full sized candy bars
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter room temp and divided
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs room temperature
- 2 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
For the Icing
- 12 oz white chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
For the Cake
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 12-cup bundt pan.
- In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt candy and 1/2 cup of butter. Stir until everything blends together. Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a stand mixer bowl, mix sugar and remaining butter for 5 minutes on high speed. Add eggs 1 at a time, combining well after each addition.
- Turn mixer to low and add flour, salt and baking soda then add Milky Way mixture, buttermilk and vanilla.
- Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake’s center comes out clean.
- Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate.
For the Icing
- Preheat oven to 250F and add white chocolate to a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- In increments of 10 minutes, bake chocolate then smooth and re-spread using a spatula.
- Repeat 3-5 more times. Scrape chocolate into a bowl and whisk until smooth.
- Add chocolate to a pot over low heat and whisk in heavy cream. Once glaze is smooth and pourable, set aside to cool then pour over room temperature cake. If glaze is too thick, heat in increments of 30 seconds to achieve pouring consistency.