Clare's Take 5-Inspired Cake

Clare's Take 5-Inspired Cake

Posted by:

Jacobsen Salt Co.

Posted on:

Feb 12, 2024

For the Chocolate Cake
  • 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp Kosher Sea Salt
  • 2 tsp espresso powder
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (can sub in canola oil or melted coconut oil)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 cup freshly brewed strong hot coffee
For the Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • Pinch of Kosher Sea Salt
For the Chocolate Ganache
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar 
  • ½ tsp Kosher Sea Salt
  • 2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 ½ tsp vanilla extract
For Assembly

Shop The Recipe

Pure Kosher Sea Salt-image

Pure Kosher Sea Salt


Pure Flake Sea Salt-image

Pure Flake Sea Salt


Clare, from our Customer Service team at JSC, is an avid baker and all-around fan of our Salty Caramel Sauce, which is the perfect no-fuss shortcut for any baked goods that call for making caramel - think filling, frosting, and drizzling! 

Inspired by the classic candy bar, Take 5, she created this decadent dessert as a fun baking challenge. The final result is a chocolate cake covered in chocolate ganache with layers of peanut butter cream cheese frosting, crushed pretzels, and, of course, our caramel sauce.


Recipe by: Clare O'Bryan


Makes 1, 8-inch 3-layer cake 



Make the Chocolate Cake

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Prepare three 8-inch cake pans by greasing the pans and lining them with parchment paper rounds, then grease the parchment paper. 

Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder together in a large bowl, then set aside. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, mix the oil, eggs, and vanilla together on medium-high speed until combined. Add the buttermilk and mix until combined.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, then add the hot coffee and whisk or beat on low speed until the batter is completely combined. The batter will be thin.

Divide batter evenly between the three pans. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Remove the cakes from the oven and set on a wire rack. Allow to cool completely in the pan.

Make the Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

Cream together softened butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add peanut butter next and continue creaming for another 2 minutes.

Next, add vanilla extract, salt, and half of your powdered sugar and mix on low, scraping the bowl as needed. Add the remaining powdered sugar and continue to mix on low until frosting is creamy and incorporated. 

Make the Chocolate Ganache

Add heavy cream, sugars, butter, and salt to a saucepan on medium heat. Once the ingredients have melted down together, increase the heat to medium-high and let it come to a light boil. Cook for ~8 minutes. 

Turn the heat off and add cocoa powder. Whisk until completely smooth with no lumps. You can whisk the cocoa powder for as long as you need to make the lumps disappear, but be careful not to let it cook too long as the butter could begin to separate.

Remove saucepan from burner and add vanilla, then set aside to cool to room temperature. As it cools, it will become a good consistency for frosting. 


To Assemble

Remove cooled cakes from pans. If they are domed on top, use a serrated knife to slice a thin layer off the top to create a flat surface.

Place 1 cake layer on your cake stand or serving plate and evenly cover with the peanut butter cream cheese frosting followed by a layer of crushed pretzels and a generous layer of Salty Caramel Sauce. Top with the 2nd cake layer and repeat (frosting, pretzels, then caramel). Top with the 3rd cake layer before frosting the entire cake with the chocolate ganache using an icing spatula. 

Once frosted, decorate as desired with crushed pretzels, drizzles of Salty Caramel Sauce, and flake salt!