Chocolate Italian Love Cake

Chocolate Italian Love Cake - Chew Nibble Nosh I love this cake. My husband loves this cake.  My children love this cake.

I’m guessing a lot of other people do too, and that’s how it got its name.  It certainly is yummy, and it’s a pretty impressive dessert for being so simple to put together.  It’s a great dessert for a crowd, or pot luck, because you can make it ahead of time and it actually tastes better the longer you let it hang out in the fridge!

I started by mixing together a box of chocolate cake mix and the ingredients it asks for on the package.  You could easily substitute any other cake flavor, whatever suits your fancy, really.  I was in a chocoholic kind of mood, and was serving this to a group of women who tend to enjoy their chocolate as well, so I went with fudgy.

Once the cake batter was mixed, I got another bowl and mixed together some ricotta cheese (There’s the ‘Italian’ part.) , eggs, sugar and vanilla together.

Chocolate Italian Love Cake 1 - Chew Nibble Nosh

I got out a 9×13 inch pan and sprayed it with nonstick spray.  Then, I poured the chocolate cake batter into the dish.  Once it was spread out evenly, I carefully poured the cheese mixture over the top of the cake batter.

Then, I popped it into the oven, and that’s where the magic happens.

As the cake bakes, the layers switch places!  I didn’t know this the first time I made the cake, so needless to say, I was pretty surprised when I took my first Love Cake out of the oven!

Chocolate Italian Love Cake 2 - Chew Nibble Nosh

That big crack in the middle of the cake didn’t worry me in the least, because once the cake was cool, I got to work on my frosting.

The frosting is simply chocolate pudding folded into Cool Whip.  If you’re changing up the cake flavor, you could just change up the pudding flavor to follow suit!

Chocolate Italian Love Cake 3 - Chew Nibble Nosh

I spread the frosting all over the top of the cake, and then it went to hang out in the fridge for the rest of the day.

Chocolate Italian Love Cake 4 - Chew Nibble Nosh

Every time I cut into one of these cakes in front of people, there’s always an “Oooh!  Aaaah!” moment.  Nobody expects it to come out in such perfectly formed layers.  In fact, I’m tickled every time that it does too!

Besides being pretty, it’s simple, and really, really tasty.

Gotta love it!

Chocolate Italian Love Cake - Chew Nibble Nosh

CHOCOLATE ITALIAN LOVE CAKE

Adapted from Paula Deen

Chocolate Italian Love Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
Ingredients
  • 1 package chocolate cake mix (I recommend using Betty Crocker brand), and the ingredients needed to make the cake according to the package
  • 2 lbs. ricotta cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 (5.1 oz.) package instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1 cup cold milk
  • 8 oz. Cool Whip
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350*F and spray a 9x13 inch pan with nonstick spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together your cake mix according to the directions on the box. Set aside.
  3. In another bow, using a hand mixer, beat together the ricotta cheese, eggs, sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
  4. *The following directions are correct. The layers switch during the baking time!
  5. Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking dish. Spread to fill the pan evenly. Once the cake batter is in place, carefully pour the cheese mixture evenly over the top of the cake batter. Spread to cover the cake batter as best as you can.
  6. Bake the cake at 350* for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before frosting.
  7. Once the cake is cool, stir the pudding mix and milk together with a whisk until combined. Carefully, fold the Cool Whip into the pudding until combined.
  8. Spread the pudding mixture over the top of the cooled cake. Cover the cake and refrigerate at least 6 hours before serving. It tastes even better the next day.
  9. ENJOY!

428 thoughts on “Chocolate Italian Love Cake

    • Just made this cake this week! It is sooo good. Followed directions exactly and it was perfect. This is the 4th day and really, it is even better today! So moist and yummy!

    • the directions state “cake, then cheese mix, then cool whip….but the pic shows cheese then cake then cool whip. Are we supposed to tip the cake out of the pan to cool and then frost?

    • I live in Norway, cake mixes are not easy to get hold of- but they have brownie mixes- do you suppose I could substitute the cake mix for brownie mix with similar results???? Hmmmmmm

      • I’m honestly not sure, but it’s worth a try! The brownie mix will be heavier than a cake mix, so the layers may not switch up as evenly. Good luck!

      • I do not think a brownie mix will work…too dense. But mixing up a scratch chocolate cake and using that batter will probably work (or at least taste similiar with a similiar texture even if it doesn’t “switch”). This cake is DEFINATELY worth the extra effort!

    • I’m in England and don’t know what pudding mix or cool whip are. Could someone please enlighten me as I would love to try this cake. Does anyone know the English equivelent to these ingredients ?

      • I’m going to go out on a limb here. Not sure if these are the right answers, but based on a little research among my friends in the UK, this is what I can pass on. Instant pudding mix comes in all kinds of flavors, but is basically a milk based instant custard of sorts, not a baked pudding like in the UK. Friends have told me that a UK version is called Angel Delight? Does that sound familiar?
        As for Cool Whip, it’s a frozen whipped topping you can find here in the States. It’s like whipped cream, but not whipped cream…if that makes sense. You could substitute freshly whipped cream that you’ve added a stabilizer to so that it doesn’t fall. Does that help? Let me know, and I’ll do some more digging, if I need to. :)

    • Not sure if anyone’s out there right now….I’ve made this cake numerous times in the past and it’s excellent. BUT! this time I screwed up and only used i lb of ricotta…..any chance it’ll work anyway??

  1. Did your baking dish over flow in the oven? I’m a little nervous it only has 22 minutes left to bake and the layers haven’t switched yet!!

      • I followed the recipe exactly and my pudding mixture turned into glob…not enough liquid . The Cool Whip didn’t blend at all with the pudding mixture which was hard and lumpy. I think the next time I make it I will use a cup and a quarter of milk. The pudding mixes are 5.9 ozs. not 5.1 as the directions state. Otherwise delicious!

        • I wonder if the pudding is a regional thing. I just made this a little while back, and the pudding I found was 5.1 oz. I had a friend tell me they could only find 5.9, though. Weird! Sorry it didn’t work out!

          • Christine, do you just make the pudding according to the directions on the box (w/ 3 cups of milk)? or do you use the 1 cup called for in the original recipe?
            Thanks!

          • I always use the one cup, but if it’s super clumpy you could always whisk in more til it’s a little smoother. Hope you enjoy it despite the clumps!

        • I had the same problem, even with the 5.1 oz. pudding. I had trouble even getting it out of my whisk! I haven’t served the cake yet, but, though the topping looks a bit grainy from the clumpy pudding mix, I’m hoping the cake will still taste choclatey-good!

  2. I’m confused… the directions says to pour cake, cheese mixture, then frosting, but the picture has cheese on bottom and then the cake topped with frosting? Is there a different method to layering? I prefer the picture and I would just switch but not sure if that would mess up cooking time. Thanks

    • Nope, the directions are right! The cake and cheese layers switch layers during the baking time! :) I hope you enjoy it.

    • I was confused to. I think it really should be mentioned in the recipe that the*layers* switch positions…LOL… sounds funny…but i would have gone with my guts and poured in the cheese mix first and then the choc cake…LOL… thanks for clearing it up though.

      • Sorry for the confusion. I mentioned the layers switching in the post, but I guess people are going straight to the recipe and bypassing the explanation. ;) I’ll add a note to the recipe.

        • Well,you cant blame anybody because the picture just looks sooooo delicious…haha… people want to just have the recipe and try it out…. ;-) seriously though,thank you for this delicious recipe (despite the fact that I also was one of the *ones* skipping certain lines within the post ;-) which was my mistake !!! hihi

  3. Delicious looking and I can’t wait try making it. I will substitute whipping cream however for the cool whip. Cool whip has hydrogenated ingredients and I stopped using it many years ago because of that.
    Many thanks for the mouth watering recipe !

    • I hope you enjoy it! :) I know what you mean, about the Cool Whip. I try to steer clear of it as well, but I’ve used it here because of the long chill time before serving. Sometimes, whipped cream just doesn’t hold up as well, but with the pudding mixed in, it just might work! Let me know how it turns out! Thanks for stopping by!

      • I’ve often wondered if adding Cream of Tarter to whipping cream (during the beating process of course) would work as a stabilizer ? hmm gonna try that

        • Whipping cream, a little powdered sugar and beat until it soft peaks. Then it will stabilize. Has anyone tried freezing it? It seems like it would be similar to ice cream cake….

        • For years I have stabilized my whipped cream with a tablespoon of instant vanilla pudding per cup of cream. It never splits and holds up well on cakes. Just be careful not to use too much.

    • I was wondering if you tried the whipping cream in this frosting and if it held up with the pudding folded into it? This cake is my all time favorite cake but I’d love to try it with whipping cream!

    • You could try. I’m not exactly sure if the cheese layer would bake up as light and layer the way it’s supposed to with cream cheese. The ricotta layer is nice and light, and not gritty at all like some ricotta dishes.

  4. Oh I’m going to try this but I’m going to do a sugar free cake mix and use splenda for the cheese layer. And use sugar free pudding and cool whip!!! SUGAR FREE!!!!

  5. Made this today… I hour bake time was too long…. Very dry…..would shorten cook time if I make it again,,, Ricotta layer is still in top…did not switch????

    • Did you chill the cake before serving it? I’m sorry to hear it was dry for you. I’ve made it numerous times and, after chilling it for at least 6 hours, it’s one of the moistest cakes in my repertoire. My family swears it’s even better the next day.

        • Have you cut into it yet? Sometimes, mine looks like it hasn’t switched, but it actually has. If it didn’t switch, I really don’t know why. It’s always switched for me. I hope that it tastes great even if it didn’t switch!

          • Check your oven temperature. It makes a big difference. I now use an oven thermometer to make sure its accurate.

  6. In the oven now. I looked after 20 minutes and the layers had already switched. Can’t wait to taste it tomorrow…it just may be breakfast. ;)

  7. Is there supposed to be 4 eggs added to the ricotta? I wasn’t sure if 2 of those eggs went into the cake mix or all 4 into the ricotta.

    • I’m not really sure of what you could substitute for the ricotta that would bake up the same way. I believe cream cheese might be too heavy. Maybe whipped tofu or whipped Marscarpone? I can’t guarantee the results though! Good luck!

      • I’ve used cream cheese it works and it was not heavy at all. The ricotta cost to much here in Hawaii so that’s why I tried the cream cheese..

        • Ricotta is so expensive, I always substitute cottage cheese where it is called for. I put it in a strainer lined w/cheesecloth in the refrigerator for a couple of hrs and then whiz it in the food processor.

          • I lived in Thailand for a few years, and there was no ricotta to be found. Used an Italian recipe that called for a few qts. of Buttermilk, and a few quarts of whole milk. Heat on stove until curds separate. Scoop curds into a colander lined w/cheesecloth for 4-6 hours, depending on how firm you want your ricotta. It was sooo much better than store bought and much cheaper! I used it for lasagna, and made ravioli from scratch w/the ricotta, and it was heavenly! Google homemade ricotta cheese, and they will give exact directions. I do remember needing a candy thermometer, so the cheese would not get too hot. Buon appetito!!

  8. could not wait to make this.. did it this A.M. did not switch layers, came over the side of 9×13, better off doing it in a lasagna pan.. no room for top layer

    • I’m sorry to hear it didn’t work out. I’ve always used a 9×13 Pyrex with no problems. Hopefully, it will taste just as great after you chill it though!

  9. This sounds really good. I am a from scratch baker so I am going to try it with homemade cake, pudding and real whipped cream. Fingers crossed it turns out good!

  10. I could only find a 5.9 oz box of chocolate pudding, will it still work or do I need to measure? Also I filled my 9×13 and it is so full, I’m afraid it’s going to overflow! Any thoughts or tips? Thanks!

    • I bet the pudding will work. If anything, the topping will just be a little more chocolatey! I have never run into the overflowing problem that a few of you have mentioned, and I’ve made this cake a bunch of times. I wonder if some 9×13 pans have different depths? I always use my Pyrex 9×13. I’m guessing yours is in the oven by now. I hope it works out!

      • Yes, I just frosted it (and licked the spoon- yum!) And it looks wonderful, it didn’t overflow, but looked precariously close! My two flavors didnt switch, I ended up having a big ricotta center, I’m not sure how the inside looks yet! Is there any specific way to make sure you distribute the ricotta mixture correctly? I kind of just poured it all over and it started to sink right away, but the middle stayed the creamy ricotta color. Thanks in advance, you’re fab!
        Izzie

        • Glad it’s great! When I pour in the ricotta, I just try and evenly distribute it throughout the pan. It does sink in some parts right away, but I just try and make sure there’s a full pan of ricotta. Not just right in the middle. I hope you love it once you cut into it! Thanks for your comments! :)

  11. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake | Viral Pins From Pinterest

  12. Tried this. Yum!! Mine separated. I added just a bit of instant coffee to the chocolate cake mixture. You must try this!!

  13. This looks very yummy. If anyone tries this recipe replacing the ricotta cheese with cream cheese, could you let us know how it turns out. Thank you.

  14. Any ideas on a substitute for the eggs? My son is allergic and I hate to bake anything if not everyone in the family can eat it!

    • I have never made this cake, but I do know that if you want to replace a large egg in a recipe, you can use one tablespoon ground flax seed mixed with 3 tablespoons water….again, I have no clue about it working in this recipe, but I have replaced egg with the ground flax seed and water mixture…..

    • there is a product called egg replacer that works for baking. i found it in a health food store but have seen it at whole foods and trader joes. not sure how it would work in this cake. Also, found a recipe that if you put greek yogurt into a cake mix you don;t have to add oil or eggs. My hubby loves it..hes allergic to eggs

  15. Mine overflowed all over my oven and set off my fire alarms….the layers never switched places and I lost a lot of the cake mixture…not sure what I did wrong

    • Oh my goodness! I’m so sorry. I honestly have no idea why this could be happening. Just out of curiosity, what brand of cake mix did you use? I’ve always used Betty Crocker. I wonder if the cake mix makes a difference?

    • It needs to cool completely before frosting, whether that is on the counter or in the fridge shouldn’t matter.

  16. Do you really use 2 lbs of ricotta or 2 cups? Just want to be clear before I attempt to make this. And I am planning to use a from scratch cake instead of a mix & whipped cream instead of Cool Whip…..can’t wait to make this tomorrow!

  17. How long do you mix the ricotta cheese mixture? I’m wondering if I mixed it too long because the layers didn’t switch.

  18. Instant pudding usually takes 2 cups milk.. Just double checking that the recipes only uses 1 cup milk for mixing the pudding

    • The recipe is correct. It makes a thicker pudding that is then folded into the Cool Whip. I’m assuming that if the two cups were used, the topping would be too thin. Hope that helps!

      • Thanks Christine for this lovely cake and for answering all our questions , BUT there is still one thing before I do it.. I know the pudding need milk and then put it on fire to be thick .. ir it will be thick without put it on heat??
        |If so is that mean to make it on heat then let it cool before we add the cool whipping ?? thanks sooo much

        • You need to use instant pudding mix, so it won’t need to be cooked at all before mixing it with the Cool Whip. Hope that helps?

  19. In the past I have successfully used a slice of tofu in place of the egg in baking. I’m sure you could find other ideas as well if you search the internet a little.

  20. Made this tonight for tomorrow after Sunday dinner! No overflowing and my layers did switch! Not completly but enough! I only had a 16oz container of ricotta so I just halfed my cheese topping. There was still plenty to cover the entire cake. I will add my frosting in the morning! Very excited to try this tomorrow!

  21. This looks delicious but cool whip is not available in Australia. Can you please tell me what is in cool whip and can you think of anything I could I use instead?

    • Cool Whip is a brand of frozen whipped topping in the States. Do you have it by another brand name there? As for what’s in Cool Whip, I don’t think you can replicate it at home easily. However, you could try using freshly whipped sweetened cream. I was recently told that adding a bit of flour can help stabilize the cream so it won’t fall during the chill time. Or, if that won’t work, do you have a product called Dream Whip there? It’s a powdered whipped topping mix found in the baking aisle. That might be a good substitute as well. I hope that helps!

      • I would suggest… since raw flour is… awful… add cream of tartar to the whipping cream instead. It is a delicious substitution for cool whip and one I insist on for flavor factor. Adds a little… extra real-food-ness.

        • I’ve never actually tried the flour, but a reader did send me the suggestion saying she’d used it and hadn’t noticed a flavor change. Cream of Tartar makes sense too, though! Thanks for sharing!

          • Meringue Powder is a good stabilizer for whipping cream. It can be bought at Michaels, Hobby Lobby or any cake supply shop. I make and sell cakes from scratch and the meringue powder is amazing!

        • The easiest way to stabilize whipped cream is to add a tablespoon of cornstarch for every cup of cream. Whip the cream to soft peaks before adding the cornstarch.

      • My favorite way to stabilize whipped cream is with gelatin. I have a favorite recipe I use that I uploaded to a recipe site a long time ago. http://www.grouprecipes.com/76191/stabilized-whipped-cream-icing.html It holds nicely in the fridge and I substitute it for Cool Whip often (I love the flavor of Cool Whip, but I try really hard to use whole ingredients instead). There are about 3 cups of Cool Whip in a tub, so you’ll need to make 1 1/2 recipes of this stabilized whipped cream to substitute. Or you could just make double and save the extra for another use.

    • I’m sure you’ve solved your problem by now, but if it still seems liquidy in the middle, you need to bake it a few more minutes until it’s set. As far as eating it, I’d still put the topping on it and give it a try. What kind of cake mix did you use? I’m trying to figure out why some people’s cakes aren’t switching layers or are overflowing.

      • If people arena ing problems with layers not switching, couldn’t they just pour the layers in in the order they are supposed to end up, or would this not work? I don’t even understand how they switch in the first place, so I was thinking about trying it that way to be on the safe side.

      • I’ve tried making this with Duncan Hines cake mix and it failed twice! I’m going to make it again but with Betty Crocker. I also added a box of pudding mix to the cake mix that didn’t have pudding in the mix already. It made it too thick. I won’t do that anymore as it tries to overflow as well.

  22. Saw this yesterday and made it today to bring to a party tomorrow. Just removed it from the oven. It looks like the cheese and cake mixtures have switched. We’ll find out tomorrow. The only problem it looks like at the present time is, that the edges around the cake might be a little over cooked. I could smell it so is tested it, but the center wasn’t done yet, so i went the full hr, which was 10 mins more. Will try a little less time next. Can’t wait!!

    • Well, no, not exactly. It could be that the temperature of your oven isn’t exactly right. I always keep an oven thermometer in my oven to make sure the temp is right. In our old house, my oven would say it was preheated, but was actually almost 100 degrees off! If your oven is running a little hot, or heats sporadically, that could be why the edges burned.

      • This was so good that I’m making it a second time to bring some where. I do have one questions tho, is the pudding suppose to be very thick? I always end up adding more milk because it seems to thick to mix. Plus does the type of chocolate cake flavor?

        • I’m so glad you like it so much! The pudding is supposed to be kind of thick, so that when you fold it into the Cool Whip it ends up being a decent consistency. It’s kind of like “condensed pudding”, I guess! What was your question about the chocolate cake? Were you asking if the type of chocolate cake flavor matters? Honestly, you can use whatever type of cake you’d like. I always go for deep, dark chocolate, but you could certainly use anything else you have around.

  23. My family loved the cake! My husband, who doesn’t really like cake loved this cake. Thanks for posting the recipe. I will be making this again!

    • Just pulled from the oven and my layers did not switch, followed the directions to the letter, hoping it still taste good, be a shame to throw it out , will find out tomorrow :-)

  24. Made this last night. The layers partially switched. Used Pyrex dish but it was pretty full and top layer was above the dish. It still was wonderful and everybody at our church picnic loved it!

  25. I made this cake today. I used a 10×13 pan and I was glad that I did because there would have not been room for frosting!

    For some reason, my layers did not switch! But it did not matter. The cake still had defined layers and looked beautiful. It was very moist and absolutely delicious! I think we have a new favorite.

    I served fresh crushed raspberries on the side and OMG!! Now I can’t stay out of it. I can’t wait to make this for my friends when they come to my house for our sewing group. Will be so wonderful with a hot cup of coffee.

    I recommend this cake to everyone ♥

  26. made this cake this weekend for my moms birthday…it was amazing! So rich and creamy! And the layers do switch! Definitely a keeper…everyone wants the recipe!

  27. My layers did not separate, and I followed the recipe exactly…. The pudding mixture did not thicken even though I whisked it for 5 minutes and let it sit hoping it would thicken up, and the frosting was still runny when I had folded in the cool whip.

    • Was it instant pudding that you used? If it was cook-and-serve, it might explain why the topping didn’t thicken up. I’m sorry it didn’t work for you!

  28. I made this cake in a metal pan which may have been the reasoning for this but the cake didn’t switch and I cooked for an hour and it was slightly burnt and not moist at all. The icing however was amazing. I could eat a bowl of that and be content. May try another time in a different pan and watch it closer.

  29. Hi, making this today! I still have a question about the pudding mix – is it a small or large box? The small box normally takes 2 cups of milk and the large takes 3. I know you only use one cup in the recipe, but just want to clarify as it will make a big difference in the ‘thickness’ of the frosting. Thanks so much!

    • It’s a 5.1 ounce box of instant chocolate pudding. I want to say that’s the larger box? Isn’t the smaller one 3 ounces? I hope you enjoy it! :)

  30. I made this last night for a party I am attending tonight. The layers switched without me even realizing it and it looks great. Can’t wait to see how everyone likes it.

      • The edges were charred. It got trashed. Second attempt is in the oven now. It looks too amazing to not give it another shot.

        • Good luck! If this one chars too, I’d highly suggest getting an oven thermometer so you can keep an eye on how hot your oven really is. I had an oven that was calibrated incorrectly and when the oven said it was preheated, it was actually 100 degrees off! Keeping a little thermometer in the oven has saved me a lot of grief over food!

          • Second cake was a success!! I did several things differently this time. First, I used a Betty crocker mix as opposed to the Pillsbury mix I used the first time. I used name brand whole milk ricotta instead of store brand part skim. Also, I strained the ricotta to get the extra water out. I used a different 9×13 pan-my shallower one. The recipe says to mix the cake then the ricotta so that’s what I did the first time. Even then I noticed the cake mix got foamy and a little thick after waiting for me to mix the ricotta the first go round. So the second time I did the ricotta then the cake. Lastly, I do suspect my oven is too hot so I set it at about 315 degrees. Within 20 minutes my layers were switched and I can’t wait to eat it!!

          • Yay!!! I’m so glad it worked for you. I’d been wondering if the cake mix had anything to do with the problems that some people were having. I use the Betty Crocker mix too. I’m going to change the recipe to suggest using that mix! I hope you love it. Thanks for giving it a second try!

  31. The frosting is one that a family friend of hours has used exclusively for many years on her cakes. She always used a can of “Thank You” chocolate pudding mixed with the cool whip. You can find the cans of pudding right with the boxes of pudding at the grocery store. Just thought this could help make the recipe even easier, and be a fix for those whose frosting came out too runny! :)

  32. I have been “watching” this recipe for a month debating on whether or not I could pull it off because it looks so darn awesome and yummy. I decided to try it and read all the suggestions. I followed recipe exactly, used BC cake mix, name brand full fat Ricotta and checked oven temps. It didn’t over flow but it never really switched layers. Looks like a big mound of ricotta mixture down the middle. I spread it evenly and was surprised it did so well. I am hoping when I cut it, at least some of the pieces look as pretty as the picture!

  33. ::::sigh:::: My layers didn’t switch either. I used a Pillsbury brand cake mix. I didn’t read the reviews until my cake was halfway done baking. I spread the ricotta mixture very evenly over the cake layer…Maybe spreading it too evenly doesn’t allow the layers to switch? Maybe it’s the brand of cake mix like you said. I’m thinking about inverting it to get the layers in the right place!

  34. Tried this cake this weekend and followed most of the suggestions from others. Used Betty Crocker brand Chocolate Fudge cake mix. Mixed the cake first and set aside – then I mixed the ricotta mixture. The cake batter had a lot more air bubbles in it. Baked at 350, however after an hour the cake was still very raw, went an additional 25 minutes, the edges were a little crispy but I knew the topping would moisten it out so no worries. The switch happened perfectly. I was VERY nervous about the layers – in the oven it didn’t look like it was “switching” places. My thoughts about making this again in the future was the ricotta mixture was too grainy for my liking. I would prefer a smoother texture, but maybe it was because I used the ricotta right from the fridge (was in a bit of a rush). Also the pudding mixture for the topping could use a lot more milk. After the 1 cup it was really lumpy. I went ahead and mix it regardless and it left my cool whip dotted with lumpy pudding mix…..not aesthetically pleasing. Could be because I live in Canada and we don’t have a pudding mix box the size called for in the recipe. All in all – the hubby love it and it’s his new fave cake. Success!

  35. Some chocolate cake mixes are different sizes. How many oz is the Betty Crocker one u use and witch kind? Chocolate Fudge, etc? I am going to make it but I don’t want it to overflow, lol!

    • I think it’s roughly a 15 oz. box of cake mix. Just the regular, “normal sized” box. You can use whichever flavor you’d like. I usually go for Chocolate Fudge, though, but nothing with chips involved. ;) Good luck!

        • Hello, from across the pond! It’s funny you should mention the “pudding mix” issue, because a friend of mine from Wales and I had EXACTLY the same conversation at one point a few years ago. We were discussing puddings, jellies, jellos, etc. etc. Your puddings are our desserts. Our puddings are a more like a custard. I did a little research, and I can’t vouch for this exactly because I’ve never tried it and I, honestly, don’t know what it is, but I saw that sometimes a product called Angel Delight can be used in place of American pudding mixes. Does that sound right?

  36. I think I know why some cakes over flowed. I have learned that not all cake boxes are the same in ounces. If it’s not Betty Crocker it will probably be a bigger cake. I’m going to follow the recipe to a “T”! Hope it works! :D

  37. I made this with a Pillsbury devil’s food cake mix. My layers didn’t switch but it tasted great. I only made half the recipe and put it in an 8 x 8 pan and that turned out fine. Thanks for the recipe!

  38. Thank you so much for this recipe. I made it last weekend for Fathers Day (NZ) and everyone loved it! We don’t have anything like cool whip here so I used fresh whipped cream with a pinch of cream of tartar and about a tsp of icing sugar. It turned out perfectly. Amazing how it switches during baking. This recipe is definatly a keeper.

    • Hi Shari, am thinking of making this at Xmas and I also live in Nz. did you just use an instant pudding mix for the top? and what brand cake mix did you use?

      • Hi Tracey,

        For making this in NZ, use either Betty Crocker or Ernest Adams chocolate cake mix and I used two sachets of hansells or Gregg’s instant pudding – check the size/ weight of the packet to get the correct quantity. Hope this helps.

  39. I followed the directions for the cake exactly. I used chocolate Cool Whip Frosting instead of making the frosting. It all turned out perfect and everyone loved it. Thanks for a keeper recipe. It was so easy!

  40. In the process of baking this right now! Layers switched within the first 15 minutes! Can’t wait until it’s completely done! :0)

  41. My ricotta mixture just sunk into the chocolate mixture. Mostly in the middle. I tried to spread some out to the edges but going into the oven it looks like a marbled cake mix. Not much room left at the top so I’m keeping an eye on it. Glad I’m not making it for company!

  42. Made it today, followed all the instructions…it switched, left a thin layer on the bottom of chocolate, then the custard, then cake again. It cracked a little showing the custard and it proofed up, but there was still room for the frosting! Only complaint, waiting 6 hours.i think the ricotta tasted a bit like tapioca or flan. Yummy!

  43. I have made a very similar recipe at least 20 times over the years. The recipe I had called for a Marble Cake mix, which was wonderful. The layers switch as the cake rises and the heavier ricotta mixture sinks down. It is always a hit whenever I take it anywhere. It has always turned out great. And yes it gets better the next day after sitting in the fridge.

    • Hi! Cool Whip is a whipped “cream” (I use that term loosely) topping that you can find in the freezer section of the grocery stores here. You could substitute fresh sweetened whipped cream, beaten with some sort of stabilizer (like a little cornstarch) to help it hold up. Hope that helps!

  44. Hi! I just over the look of this cake and had to try it. I used a Betty Crocker devils food cake mix. I also was surprised to find out I was out of granulated sugar, so I had to use powdered sugar instead, which I think worked great! My layers switched like you said! My daughter and I were so excited, since some people said theirs didn’t work. It doesn’t look like it from the outside, but like you said, when you cut into it, it’s beautiful! We couldn’t wait for it to chill 6 hours in the fridge, but I know it’s going to be even better tomorrow!! Thanks for the recipe!!!

    Bethany P.

  45. I have this in the oven now!

    My layers have definitely switched and I followed the recipe exactly. However, your layers look so perfectly portioned– I dont see how mine will possibly look like that, judging by the quantities of the layers as I put it in.

    Also, I have a thermometer in my over and the hour is almost up and the cake is very gooey in the middle :-/ Suggestions??

    • If it’s still not set in the middle, I’d bake it a little longer. Just keep an eye on it, testing every five minutes. Good luck!

  46. Just made these!!! Came out great. Used Dr. Oz recipe for cake mix. One box, one Greek yogurt, one cup of water. Used homemade recotta cheese. Was worry about how it would turn out. But it was perfect. My husband loves it. Thanks for posting it. :)

  47. I’m making this for the second time this week. This time I folded in some boysenberry jelly I made into the ricotta mixture. Can’t wait to see if it turns out! My family loved it, and it sat up so well in the fridge for days!

  48. This cake is amazing!!! Thanks SO much for sharing the recipe Christine! I had no problems with it being too much for the pan or the layers not flipping. Your directions were spot on. Thanks again!

  49. OMG! THEE BEST CAKE EVER…seriously! BUT make it the day before you need it…it is definately one of those recipies that gets better with age!!!!!

  50. HOORAY!!! it didnt overflow….not sure if it separated or not but it looks delicious. i did use a Pillsbury sugar free chocolate cake mix and glad to say it turned out ok. WOOHOO! also, i was able to use part skim ricotta instead of whole. AND, will be using sugarfree chocolate pudding for the topping. great recipe.
    now to let it cool all the way to top it of with more wonderfulness.

  51. I made it for our supper club tonight. It was easy, delicious, and beautiful! Everyone was impressed and wanted the recipe. I used Betty Crocker dark chocolate fudge cake mix and Jello dark chocolate fudge instant pudding. The layers switched without a hitch. I made the cake this morning before work, finished cooling it in the fridge, added the Cool Whip layer at noon, then back in the fridge and ready to eat this evening.

  52. I made this cake last night. Super easy and the directions are extremely easy to follow thanks for that!! My cake did switch layers like it was supposed to. It is beautiful. I am taking to a dinner party tonight thanks for sharing! I also used one tub light ricotta and one fat free to try to cut calories and it worked wonderfully! Along w sugar free instant pudding still taste delish! Now I just have to have patience and not dig in there before this dinner party!

  53. Well……just made this cake……must say am extremely disappointed!!!! followed directions to the letter…..it didn’t switch layers!!!….am still going to frost it and hopefully it will still taste good.
    Disappointing, disappointing, disappointing…

    • Have you cut into it yet? I made it once where it looked like it hadn’t switched, but once I cut into it, I found that it had. Hope you find good things inside and that you enjoy it.

  54. Not much of a baker, but I’m wanting to make my beautiful mother a cake. This one looks and sounds so delicious! I’m curious if with the ricotta mixture- if I could hand mix it instead of using an actual plug in mixer?! I mean will the cheese still do what it needs to do? Lol

  55. ok thanks I found them on internet.I live in Holland but I can order ingredients on line. Let you know when I make that Love Cake for my husband and children.Looks super.

  56. Good morning Christine,

    My mornings usually start with a quick scroll through the postings on Facebook, saving recipes on a ‘Page’ I created, (just for recipes), as I discovered if I would ‘share’ the recipe to my timeline; I would have to spend hours searching and never finding the recipes. However, when I saw the photo for this recipe I clicked the ‘More” & read the blog posting, (loved the photos) & I knew my daily schedule had just flown out the window! I printed the recipe and then continued reading the posts & comments, (which did address, all but one question and thought), proving I did not waste time on Facebook… for a change! !

    I have not been the excited & anxious to try a new recipe since I made my first pumpkin pie from scratch. Thirty-seven years ago, I was a new bride and a proud of being a ‘little miss Suzy homemaker’ & making everything from scratch; had a large garden, (half an acre garden), canned vegetables & made jelly, etcetera. I digress; shortly before Halloween my husband came home with a pumpkin, I asked what the pumpkin was for and he said, “You said you were going to make a pumpkin pie.” Perplexed & bewildered, I asked, “from answered pumpkin?!?!?! I was thinking of the ‘Libbey, Libbey, Libbey’ can of pumpkin.”

    I never knew, or even gave a thought about how to make pumpkin pies. Yes, I may be blonde, but, in my defense, I remember it took me almost a week to find someone who had a recipe & knew how to make a pumpkin pie from scratch — no Internet searching those days!

    I did want to ask if it is possible to remove this cake from the pan, because I was thinking of making it in a Bundt pan. How do you think that might work? I might still make & leave in the dish the 1st time I make it and then try the ‘Bundt pan’. I do know that I will be making this recipe prior to a specific event, because of the various comment.

    In addition, did anyone try making this substituting the Ricotta cheese mixture with a cream cheese, or a sour cream mixture?

    • You are one step ahead of me! I’ve never made a “real” pumpkin pie. I’ve always used canned pumpkin! I’m impressed! I’m sure it was delicious. :)
      As for the cake, I am going to go out on a limb and suggest that it would not work in a bundt pan. Reason being, I don’t think the layers would distribute as easily since the pan bakes at an angle. (Does that make sense at all?) I would stick with a flat pan, if I were you. Try it with the regular pan and see what you think. I’ve never removed the cake completely from the pan, just slice by slice as I’ve served it. With it being so fragile, I would be nervous about removing the whole thing.
      I don’t think anyone has responded yet on the swapping cream cheese out question yet…but I’ll let you know when someone does! Thanks for stopping by! :)

  57. Pingback: Chocolate Whipped Cream Frosting | Food and Stuff

  58. Just made it and it is just cooling. No overflowing and it switched for the most part (one part in the middle, I can see a little white in the crack) Cant wait to try it with the icing, don’t know if i can wait 6 hours for the first piece!

  59. I am trying to bake this. I baked it 1 hour and cooled it completely. It was not done in the center. I tried 20 more minutes, and now am almost done with an additional 30 minutes, and still not done. Any thoughts? It is for my grandmas b-day party tomorrow and I think I am going to end up with a cheesy boxed cake :/

    • From now on, test the cake with a toothpick or cake tester as soon as the timer goes off to see if it’s done in the middle, or if you need to bake it a little more. With any cake, time may fluctuate, that’s just the nature of the beast. Since the cake had cooled completely before you tried to re-bake it, it might be in trouble. I actually just baked this cake again last night too and it took about an hour and ten minutes this time.

  60. This cake is now my families’ favorite! I’ve made it 3 times for different events in the past few weeks. Each time I’ve made it, the “switching” results have been different. It worked PERFECTLY the 2nd time and now I have to try to remember what brand cake mix I used! I also used dark chocolate mix each time (just my preference). It’s important to only use 1 cup of milk in the pudding and to fold in the Cool Whip or whipping cream right away as the pudding continues to “set up” and becomes thick pretty quickly. The most important tip however, is that this cake gets better with age. So, if you want it for a specific event…make it 2 days ahead of time and keep refrigerated! Trust me…it’s AMAZING! And you won’t have to worry about it getting yucky after a few days because it will be GONE! YUM!

  61. The Recipe says this: “Once the cake is cool, stir the pudding mix and milk together with a WHISK until combined. Carefully, fold the Cool Whip into the pudding until combined.”
    Are you actually supposed to use a hand mixer, since I saw some of the comments mentioning an actual thick pudding????

    Confused?!

    • No. Mix the pudding and milk with the whisk and the, using a spoon or spatula, fold the Cool Whip into the pudding. The whole point of folding it in is to keep the whipped topping from falling. If you just beat it in with a mixture, it will lose its fluffiness. The frosting should be like a chocolate mousse consistency. Hope that helps!

  62. Very excited to try this cake! The layers have switched and its only been 20 minutes or so . I plan on bringing it to a gathering tonight, and will let you know how it turned out.
    Thanks for the recipe!!

  63. This cake looked so good i had to make it for my birthday.. it is literally in the oven right now and let me just say the ricotta mix went on beautifully and even if it turns out i dont like the cake.. which i doubt.. that would be fine because the yummy frosting recipe is worth it! I live in colorado so i had to modify the cake recipe a little for high altitude but i am so excited to see how it goes! Thanks again for the recipe!

  64. I made this cake this morning and now my company has called and said they won’t be here till NEXT weekend! Has anyone tried to freeze it? (I don’t think my layers switched but will see when I cut into it)
    Thanks

  65. Seriously, this is an awesome recipe. I followed it step by step. My layers switched, the cake was good the first day, but it was AMAZING the second day. Thank you, thank you, thank you! This recipe is a keeper!

  66. Everything came out perfectly until I made the frosting.Is it suppose to be a little lumpy when folded into the cool whip?

  67. Do you think this could be made in a springform pan, and if so, what size? I am thinking of making the icing using someone’s recipe above where they incorporated unflavored gelatin. After cooling and setting in the fridge, I would imagine it should present and slice/serve quite nicely? Thoughts?

    • I’m really not sure exactly how you can could convert it to a springform pan. In theory, it would present beautifully, but you’d need a very big springform pan to accommodate all of it. The pans I have wouldn’t cut it. If you try it out, be sure to let me know what happens!

  68. We made this yesterday. Everything went fine–the layers switched, the topping was smooth and delicious. It wasn’t until we began to eat that we realized the ricotta layer came out grainy and eggy and just odd. The texture is somewhat like heavy wet cake. I tried a little bit just now, having been refrigerated overnight, and still heavy eggy wet crumb that is rather tasteless. Not good at all. :-(

  69. Just made this yesterday for a party today. Followed the directions to the letter with the exception of having to cook it about an extra 15 minutes. My layers switched but when I cut it the very bottom was a slimy mess. Kinda like a gelatinous texture. Once you cut that away the flavor was great! Any thoughts on what went wrong? Also Christine what brand of ricotta do you recommend using? Thanks!

    • Hmmm…I’m not sure! The last time I made it, I used store-brand ricotta, and I did notice it wasn’t as smooth and creamy as previous times. In the past, I’ve stuck with “brand name” ricotta, but Kroger was out this time. What type did you use?

      • I believe it was Kraft. Maybe it was just a one time oddity. I will try it again for sure though as people still loved it!
        Thanks again Chrintine.

  70. hello. thank you for sharing this recipe!! i have yet to cut into mine…

    first note… i live at 9200 ft elevation so baking here is always a task…

    i too was nervous it was going to flow over.. but it did not.
    it currently looks like it didn’t flip however, i haven’t cut into it.

    i made my own whip cream. i didn’t use cream of tarter nor gelatin…i should have as it isn’t as stiff as i would like….

    looks yummy!~ i will report back. i made this cake so my S.O. would have a treat while i went out of town… he will be my judge…lol

  71. I put the ricotta mixture in a gallon-sized Baggie, snip a corner, a easily squeeze it evenly over the cake layer. Made this twice. Perfect both times.

  72. I’ve made this several times, most recently for my pastor and a thank you for a friend. My pastor stated it was the best cake he’s ever had, and my friend posted it on Facebook as a cake like no other cake she has ever had….what a git! Thanks for this easy “hit” recipe!

  73. this looks really, really, REALLY good. But too expensive to make. The ricotta cheese is $14 alone. Maybe one day for a treat. I really wanted to try it

  74. I think it does matter which kind of cake mix you use. I used a gluten free mix and the layers didn’t switch. So disappointing!

  75. I made this cake today and it turned out beautifully!!! I am from Canada and I used a Safeway (grocery store chain) cake mix and the layers switched places no problem. Thank you for this wonderful recipe

  76. I made this last night and just took my first bite about 16 hours later. It turned out perfectly. The layers switched and everything fit in my pan. It looks exactly like the picture. I whipped up my own whipped cream and used a bit of cream of tartar to stabilize it and it’s held up just fine in the fridge. The only thing I wasn’t a fan of was the ricotta cheese layer but this cake looks so nice I think I will try it again with cream cheese. I think I was expecting it to be sweet and it’s not necessarily supposed to be? Maybe I’ll add more sugar next time.

  77. I don’t know what happened but everything that could have went wrong did. My cake didn’t switch layers. The pudding and cool whip didn’t work at all. It was too thick so the cool whip wouldn’t bond to the pudding. I cook seven days a week and know how to follow a recipie and this turned out awful! If it tastes ok I may try to make it again…but it looks horrible….

  78. I’ve been making this cake for years and everybody always loves it. My question is can you freeze this? or will it be soggy when it defrosts. I need to bring it to a dinner right after work. If I leave it in my car all day (with ice packs) will it be ok

    • Hmmm…I’m not so sure about freezing it. I’m concerned that the ricotta layer might not hold up too well that way. If you have enough ice packs or a cooler to keep it cool throughout the day, I think I’d go that route!

  79. Hey there, I made this cake yesterday. The layers switched places!I was amazed… i wonder what the science is behind this switch, might have to do a bit of research. Anyway, I have a question. I used a regular sized box of betty crocker devil’s food cake mix. I made it just like the box said and I poured it in first. When my cake was done and I cut into it, the cake layer was much more thicker than the cheese layer. I did use 2oz less of the ricotta (i only had 2 16oz tubs) but everthing else to the T. Should I pour less cake mixture next time? Or did the 2oz missing really mattered that much? Also want to note my frosting, while, tasty the pudding didn’t blend well with the whipped cream. My storr carries a small and a big packets of pudding. I bought the big which was 5.9oz… Should I have added more milk because it set very thick thus didn’t blend. Other than that this cake was DELISH. Wish I could make it and take it out of the pan.

    • I wouldn’t think that 2 oz. of cheese would make that much of a difference. Maybe you just had a really fluffy cake! In regards to the frosting, I’ve found you have to work very quickly, otherwise the frosting can end up lumpy…but it does taste good!

  80. I have used this recipe for years (not sure if it is exactly the same in terms of measurements, etc.) before seeing this post. My favorite way to make it is with a marble cake mix and the chocolate frosting — it is sooo good.

  81. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake | Yummy Food Market

  82. Pinned it and made it today. So fun to make! I used a 2 inch deep 13X9, no overflow, layers switched and cake rose about a quarter inch from the top of the pan. The layers switched around 20 minutes :) Delicious and impressive. Thanks so much!

  83. A tip I learned the hard way years ago is the cake mix should NOT have pudding in it or it will keep the layers from switching. First time i made it I used a cake mix with pudding in it and the cheese stayed on top. After a lot of reading I tried it again with a no pudding mix and Voila it worked perfectly and was delicious.

  84. I made this cake this weekend and it came out great! The layers separated just like they were supposed to! Amazing! And it isn’t overly sweet which I liked. Thanks for the recipe!

  85. My cake switched layers perfectly! So exited! I am a little nervous about the ricotta and chocolate together,but couldn’t pass up the recipe!

  86. My cake turned out ok, layers switched perfectly and we will eat it today. However, I had a terrible time trying to mix the pudding and milk together — it came out like paste and I could hardly stir it. Once I tried to fold in the Cool Whip it started to blend but it looks nothing like the picture. It was very stiff trying to spread on the cake but I finally got it done. Now it is back in the fridge chilling some more until later on today. Has anyone else had a problem with this and how did you rectify it? When you try and stir all that pudding with only one cup of milk — it was a nightmare. Please reply and thank you.

    • This happened to me. The ingredients list the 5.1 oz box of pudding but in the store they only sell the 5.9 oz box. I’m making this cake again (for tomorrow for TG) and I am going to add an extra splash of milk to compensate for the little bit extra in the 5.9 oz box. So I’m guessing you can just add more milk.

    • Just found a fix! For the 5.9oz box of pudding, add 1 1/2 cups milk instead of 1. I just did this adjustment and my frosting came out JUST like the pic. With my first attempt my frosting was a disaster, I even came and commented about it. Now this cake is perfect, I’ve found a solution. This is only for the 5.9 oz box for a 5.1 it is best to follow what the recipe said.

      • I only had the small box of pudding when I made this (3.9 oz I think) and I used it with the 1 cup of milk and the frosting was perfect!

  87. Just finish making this. Layers switched perfectly! I used Betty Crocker Devils Food Cake mix. One question though…the ricotta layer seems a bit grainy….were planning on eating the cake tomorrow night but will it smooth out more over time? I’m really hoping it turns out!!! Will let you know!

    • Ricotta is, inherently a little grainy. Once it’s baked up and chilled, I believe it’s smoother. It’s not like a cheesecake filling, but not as grainy as when you first start out. Hope you enjoy it!

      • followed directions exactly…used the suggested cake mix…looks like a cowhide some chocolate switched and some didn’t…took it out of the oven after an hour and as it is cooling on the rack…some of the choc batter is seeping thru to the top…put in a toothpick in that area and is totally liquid…now racking my brain as to what will be for desert tomorrow thanksgiving day with 11 guests…

  88. I should have read comments first haha, mine also did not completely switch and is completely cake on outside and cheese mixture in middle. I saw that you asked at some point what kind of cake people were using and I used Pillsbury super moist devils food. If it taste it and it is delicious maybe i will try the betty crocker to see if that switches properly!

  89. I just made this and I think next time I will use a bigger pan bc I don’t have room for frosting and my layers didnt switch. I think it had something to do with the pan size. Anyway, hopefully it still tastes good! :) Thank you for the recipe

  90. I made this cake yesterday for a family dinner tonight. The layers switched and it fit in my pan fine. I used a 9×13 glass Pyrex baking dish. I made the cake yesterday and left it in the fridge overnight. About an hour before serving, I whipped some cream, added the chocolate pudding (sugar-free) and sprinkled crushed Oreos over the top. Then refrigerated until we ate it. It turned out really well. Next time I think I would 1/2 the ricotta recipe because it was quite rich.

  91. Pingback: Baking, Bailando and Birthdays | Natalie's Adventures in Ecuador

  92. Made this last night and took to a potluck today! Was worried about the layers switching but when I cut into the cake today it was perfect. I am in Canada so the pudding was the 170 g package and 1L of the frozen cool whip. The frosting layer was nice and thick just like your picture. If you have a Pyrex with a lid you probably wouldn’t want to put it on as you would lose some of the frosting but I couldn’t believe how easy it was to make! Next time I am going to add some coffee to it so I really get a tiramisu flavour!

  93. I am trying this for a party Sunday and instead of chocolate I am going to use spice cake and the holiday spice pudding. I am also going to put some of the pudding into my ricotta mixture cause the last time i did it it seem bland.

  94. Has anyone tried to freeze this. I made it tonight to try and it worked ok. Layer changed but not completely. I won’t to freeze it for Sunday so thats four days time or do you think it would keep that long in the fridge

    • I would leave it in the fridge… It does honestly taste better with time. Leave it in there but don’t add the frosting till that day or day before.

  95. I made this cake for my family and it turned out perfect! Thank you so much for the recipe! The layers switched 20 minutes into baking time and I had no problems with it overflowing. Delicious!!

  96. I just made this for Christmas tomorrow. I read a lot of the comments above and was very worried about how it would turn out. I used the betty crocker cake mix, an off-brand of Ricotta, and baked the dessert in a 9 x 13, clear pyrex pan. I baked it on the convection mode of my oven for about an hour and 5 minutes. The layers switched beautifully, there was no overflow and my kitchen smells wonderful. I can’t wait to try it tomorrow! Thank you for this beautiful recipe! Merry Christmas!

  97. I made a 9×13 and cupcakes with this recipe for Christmas Eve. The cupcakes worked just fine but the cake was a HUGE hit! Thanks r sharing your recipe.

  98. Made this cake for Christmas and everyone absolutely loved, loved it! It’s now a new family favorite! My layers switched and it did not overflow. It turned out beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.

  99. Well I have successfully read every comment about making this cake. I am so excited to try it! I am making it for my birthday, which is new years day and I’m sure my 2 little baby girls will love it regardless of the way it turns out. It is cake afterall! I scrolled through all of the comments and copies and pasted the reviews which seemed helpful and I will use them as a guide while I’m cooking it. A very helpful review I found said put the ricotta mixture into a piping bag in order to evenly distribute it. So simple, yet brilliant! The other helpful one I found said to make the ricotta mixture first then mix the cake. Something about the cake getting foamy while it sits.

    • Yes, all four of those eggs go into the ricotta. You mix the cake according to the directions on the box with additional eggs.

  100. I’m wondering if anyone has tried experimenting with the flavors. I’m thinking lemon cake with lemon pudding topping might be nice and light in the springtime. Anyone try it?

  101. Made this cake for an Italian homemade dinner for my in-laws yesterday. They loved it! Some helpful hints:

    – Use Duncan Hines Chocolate Fudge Cake mix (15 oz box) (Betty Crocker mixes have pudding mixed in and some ppl said their ricotta mixture didn’t switch to the middle like it should and this could be the reason. It’s sooo rich!
    – I increased the sugar in the ricotta mixture to 1 cup. You can even make half the ricotta mixture as 2 lbs. ricotta is a bit much. It was done in 50 mins and I baked it in a dark metal pan.
    -I used a 3 oz package of Hershey’s chocolate pudding mix for the frosting and it made plenty. Used it for 2 cakes.

    Definitely making it again :)

  102. Pingback: Appleton Desserts by Whitney Beery

  103. Does the Ricotta layer come out at all eggy? I love recipes like this and it looks so yummy, but recently every time I try to make a sweet cheese layer in a cake or pie the layer ends up tasting like scrambled eggs. I dont know if Im doing something wrong or if its the recipes! Do you have any tips?

    • I don’t think that it tastes eggy at all…I mean, there’s clearly egg in it binding it all together, but it’s more like a ricotta custard. My kids LOVE this cake, and wouldn’t touch it with a ten foot pole if the middle tasted like scrambled eggs! ;)

  104. My cake is in the oven as we speak! I really hope it goes over well! =) I love to bake…I’ll reply with how it worked out!

    • I can’t see why it wouldn’t work, but you’d need a VERY large springform pan. This cake fills a 9×13 inch pan to the brim.

  105. This cake was AMAZING!! My whole family loved it, and it was such a hit with everyone at college, as well. I highly recommend this cake! My layers switched, which was awesome to see!

  106. Do you think you could make this in a springform pan so that when it’s fully chilled you could pop of the sides like a cheesecake for display purposes?

  107. My layers didn’t fully switch. :( I thought it was working perfectly as I was flipping the oven light on periodically since others had issues, but when the hour was up I had a small section that didn’t flip. Oh well, I’m sure it will still taste good.

  108. Thanks for sharing this recipe! I’m in Canada. Just cooling out of the oven and layers flipped — incredible. My daughter calls it “magic cake”!! I used 515g Duncan Hines cake mix (it called for 3 eggs and other ingredients), and 3.5 cups ricotta cheese (with 4 eggs — wow this recipe is gonna have a lot of protein!!). My ceramic 9×13 pan is 3 inches tall, and the cake rose a lot, but as it’s cooling it shrank back down. There will be room for the frosting/Cool Whip layer. I won’t add that until tomorrow. I noticed at 1 hour baking that the centre was jiggly (even though toothpick came out clean), but baked an additional 10 minutes (total bake time 1hr, 10 minutes). Glad I did that because it was no longer jiggly after that. Looks and smells incredible, can’t wait to try it tomorrow. This looks like a crowd pleaser cake, as it is quite huge! I’ll be cutting it up and sharing with 2 other families!! Thanks again!

  109. I’m going to try making this cake but I’m going to make a different whipped cream frosting that I use when I make angel cake from a box mix and my family loves this frosting. And it holds up great.

    I pour a pint carton of all purpose cream in a bowl, add a teaspoon of vanilla, and a half cup of liquid coffee, brewed or instant, to give it a mocha flavor. I slowly mix this with my mixer and a minute later when the liquids are well blended, I slowly, really slowly, start adding a box of instant chocolate pudding powder (don’t follow the directions on the box). The cream liquid starts to thicken immediately when you add the pudding powder and I turn down my mixer to low speed. Don’t beat it too long after this or it will turn back into liquid. When it looks thick enough it is done. Just frost the cake like usual. I’ve never had this frosting separate and my relatives beg me to make this for every holiday. It doesn’t travel well as a tall angel cake, so I keep the frosting in the bowl and when I arrive at my destination, I frost the cake there.

    I also slice the angel cake into two layers first with a serrated knife and put frosting in the middle and then put the other layer on top and it makes a two layer cake with frosting in the middle. You can’t cover this cake with plastic wrap or foil after it’s frosted because it would come off the cake. That’s why I frost it at my destination. Good luck if you try this version. It’s very simple to make and takes less time that it took me to describe it.

    • Cool Whip is a frozen whipped topping, that you thaw before using. I wouldn’t use canned whipped cream as a substitute. I’d try whipping fresh cream along with a stabilizer (like plain gelatin).

  110. my daughter made this today we thought when it was baked it didn’t switch cause it looked brown all around…when we cut into it it did indeed change…the whipped cream with chocolate pudding is awesome…we didn’t really like the cheese mixture it was crumbly and tasteless next time we will use cream cheese..and we also only made half of the recipe 2 cups of ricotta cheese and half batter used a smaller baking dish :)

  111. Ok so I tried to make this tonight and let’s just say that love overflowed in my oven. Is it suppose to be 2 cups of ricotta cheese or is it 2lbs?

  112. I thought I had chocolate cake mix at home but i actually have BROWNIE mix. I have twenty minutes left and the ricotta mix hasn’t really sunk to the bottom much. however it turns out, I know it will still taste great. I’ll keep you posted!

  113. Thank you for posting! Just made this for the first time. It is cooling as we speak. Will just whip up the topping tonight. Can’t wait to try it for our Valentine’s Day treat.
    I have read through ALL the comments while waiting for it to cool. People really need to read. lol Btw, you did a great job explaining everything and giving tips. Thank you…especially for policing this post and answering questions. You must be a nice person to put up with all of them. :)

  114. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake |

  115. I’m making an Italian Valentine’s Day dinner for my husband and thought this would be perfect for dessert. I couldn’t resist a “taste test” (i.e. I tasted…and tasted, and tasted until two big pieces were gone! lol) and it’s wonderful! Since we only have the 5.9 oz pudding mix here in KS, I took the advice of another commenter and used 1 1/2 cups milk. Turned out great! I did use my largest 9×13 dish, which is Pyrex, and it fit and did not overflow and the layers switched as expected. :)

  116. Where I live I can only get a 3..9oz box of instant chocolate pudding I was going to make both boxes and slowly add to cool whip until color of third layer looks like picture. Any other suggestions

  117. I made this yesterday for my hubby’s birthday. He’s a cheesecake kinda guy and not really into cake. I used a gluten-free devil’s food cake mic. The layers didn’t switch all the way but mostly. Needless to say It is delicious! My husband ate two pieces. (That usually only happens with cheesecake. :D) Thanks for the great instructions. :)

  118. I made this with red velvet cake and white chocolate pudding for valentines day. Fun, festive, and delicious! I was wondering if anyone had any success with smaller batches, there are only two of us and we although we loved it, our waistlines don’t encourage making a whole one again. :)
    Thanks!

  119. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake | Food WoW

  120. Pingback: Italian Chocolate Cake | givingitthekisstreatment

  121. Wow, what a lot of comments. I made the cake. It turned out. We loved it. I finally took it to a friends for her kids since I had eaten too much of it. The ricotta filling was delish, I used full fat version though which would be creamier than low fat versions. I make my own vanilla and so I used 1 tablespoon in the cheese layer. :P

  122. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake | Veronica's Cornucopia

  123. I made this cake and love it. My question is: my layers did not turn out as thick as the one’s in the picture.Did I do something wrong, perhaps when mixing? I used the 13 x 9 glass baking dish but the cheese mixture on the bottom was much thinner. :(

    • I honestly have no idea why your layers would be thinner. It could be from overmixing or simply just a different brand of Ricotta that may have been a little more dense. I also used a glass 9×13 inch dish. I’m glad you enjoyed it, even though it was a little skinnier!

  124. My cake didn’t turn out like the pic. Could the element in the oven be bad? It looks watery on top and there’s lots of cracks. It doesn’t look like the cake part is on top. :( UGH! Disappointed!

    • It’s a frozen whipped topping that’s readily available in the States, but as I’ve learned from others’ comments, not to easy to find elsewhere. You could substitute fresh whipped cream that you’ve added a stabilizer, like plain gelatin, to.

  125. What kind of cake mix do I use? Betty Crocker has pudding in the mix and traditional cake mixes. A cake mix with pudding in it, will it make it to thick?

  126. I made this for the first time today, and WOW and wow this was so good and everyone loved it!! I made it almost entirely to the recipe specs except that I found I had bought a box of pudding that was only 3.56 oz. in size. I went ahead and used it anyway. There was NO problem, it came out great. The pudding I used was Hershey’s Instant Chocolate Pudding. I will definitely be making this cake again!

    • I always use Jello brand pudding, and the ricotta varies, although I’ve had better luck with brand name ricotta than store brand. Don’t know what the difference would be!

  127. Pingback: Chocolate Italian Love Cake!

    • I made this cake and mine did flip. But there was no room for the frosting in the pan. I used an aluminum 9 x 13 pan and the cake rose to the top. It actually made it easier to transport to another house party. As I cut the cake like brownies, I frosted each piece as I put them on a plate. I brought the frosting with me in a bowl. Everyone loved it and it was gone immediately. I had to scramble to get a piece to try for myself. Don’t know why yours didn’t flip Linda but I know a lot of people in the comments had that happen to them too. Maybe you will find an answer there. Good luck.

  128. Mine turned out perfect! I used Duncan Hines dark chocolate fudge cake mix and substituted coffee(cooled) for the water. Mixed the ricotta mixture first based on other comments, and used almond extract instead of vanilla. I made sure all ingredients were at room temp also, thinking that cold cheese and eggs may be one of the reasons others had issues with the filling not cooking properly.

  129. Do you really use 2 lbs of Ricotta? My cake turned as it should and it didn’t spill over, but there is no room left for the topping. I’ll put it on but there is no way to cover it in the fridge.

    • Yes, two pounds is correct. You must just have an extra fluffy cake! :) you could refrigerate the cake and when it’s time to serve, make the topping and serve each piece with a dollop on top.

  130. Excited to try this but I did not notice the chill for 6 hours at least at the very bottom after I whipped all the ingredients together for a BBQ tonight with only 3 hours or so to spare. I took the “total time” of just over an hour as total time before we got to eat this delicious treat which is disappointing.

  131. I don’t know if it’s my oven but it took about 11/2 hours does it make a difference I
    Used part skim ricotta

  132. Just made this for a Mother’s Day Brunch at church and the layers didn’t switch. Used almond milk since my has daughter is allergic to dairy, could that be the reason it didn’t switch?

  133. I made this Sat night to have on Sunday for Mother’s Day dessert – I added Kahlua to the pudding frosting mixture. I wasn’t 100% sure I liked it but I have to say it gets better the longer it sits in the fridge. I think I just don’t LOVE baked ricotta cheesecake type fillings – so I may try a 50/50 mix of ricotta and mascarpone next time. I even think other flavor combos would be interesting – maybe yellow or lemon cake with lemon pudding/frosting. One thing to point out – this is a dessert that can feed a crowd – it goes a long way because just a small piece is rich and satisfying enough!

    • Also I thought I should add that in a 9×13 pyrex, cooked for 1 hour, everything fit just right – and the layers switched perfectly. Looks just like the pictures when cut. (I used Betty Crocker Devils Food cake, Jell-o brand pudding and 2 lbs of Polly-O Whole Milk Ricotta.)

  134. My layers did not switch and the cake is so close to the top of my 9×13 pan that I don’t have room for the frosting. Can I store it in the fridge without a lid on it? I hope it tastes good – looks nothing like the picture.

    • You can. If I were you, I’d frost it and stick some toothpicks in the top, and then drape some foil or plastic wrap over the toothpicks and kind of tent the cake, so it’s still covered but not smooshing the frosting. Also, I hope the layers did switch and you just can’t see it yet. The first time I made it, it looked like it hadn’t switched and I didn’t realize it had until I sliced it. Good luck! Hope you enjoy it.

  135. What a fun cake! And I must say you are SO awesome at helping to answer questions, thank you for your dedication! I hope you wouldn’t mind answering one more..I made this tonight and have it cooling right now. I was just checking out the layers and noticed the bottom of the cake looks wet..is that normal? I can see some liquid between the bottom layer of cake and the glass. I used a Betty Crocker dark chocolate cake mix and Sargento whole milk ricotta. I noticed a comment that mentions using the ricotta and egg at room temp, I used mine straight from the fridge ..wondering if that matters? I also mixed the ricotta with a kitchen aid stand mixer just until blended instead of using a hand mixer.

    Just hoping the extra moisture on the bottom doesn’t make it soggy.

    • Hi! Sorry for the delay on this. I’m hoping that the moisture won’t be a problem. It could be that it’s just a very moist cake, but when I bake a regular cake, without the ricotta layer, seeing liquid like that usually means that it needs to bake for a few more minutes. Was the cake set when you removed it from the oven or was it still jiggly? Once the cake has been chilled, it could be just fine. I hope it is and that you really enjoy it!

  136. Okay, so I saw this recipe a few months ago and finally made it last week! I went ahead and made he chocolate version, Delicious! I’ve seen a lot of people remarking about the frosting not working right with the large pudding mix so I used the small 3.9oz box and the 1 cup of milk….it was perfect!
    Today is my birthday so I decided to make this cake again using a lemon version. I used a Betty Crocker lemon cake mix and lemon pudding mix. I know the lemon pudding has a pretty mellow flavor and I wanted a little tang so here’s what I did….added the zest of one lemon to the ricotta mixture and did the ricotta portion in the food processor….it made the bottom layer a little creamier. I added the juice of one lemon to the cake mix in place of some of the water. Baked as directed. When the cake was cooled I spread a layer of LEMON CURD on it before the frosting. Added lemon zest to the pudding mixture and it turned out beautiful. The lemon version is delicious!!
    Thanks for posting this great recipe!

  137. Just made this because it looked so good. I made it exactly as the directions stated and my layers didn’t switch.

    • Well, I hope when you cut into it that you find a pleasant surprise. Sometimes it doesn’t look like it’s switched until you cut into it. Fingers crossed and I hope you enjoy it even if the layers are upside down. :)

  138. Pingback: Love Cakes with Raisins (Not Your Mother’s Chelsea Buns…) – Hosea 3:1 | Eating the Bible

  139. I made a lemon version of this on the weekend and it was big hit. I used 1/4 cup lemon juice and 3/4 cup of water in the cake mix. I used the zest of a whole lemon rubbed into the sugar before I added it to the ricotta and a lemon pudding with the cool whip. It was great light way to end a meal. There were lots of requests for the recipe. Thanks for posting it.

  140. I have tried this recipe three times, and it changed only the first time. What causes it to change? I want to know what I’m doing wrong. Does baking it lower and slower help? Does using everything at room temperature help? Please help.

  141. Lol mine has been in the oven for an hour. Looks no where near done & layers don’t look like they’ve switched. It’s a overflowing blob. Followed the reciepe to a T. It has to be the cake mix (I used Duncan Haines) or pan depth.

  142. I made this cake on Friday for our family’s 4th of July picnic and it turned out delicious and looked just like the picture!! I used a Pillsbury chocolate cake mix and baked in an aluminum cake pan with no problems at all. Everyone loved it, even my husband who was skeptical about eating cake with ricotta cheese.

  143. I read all the comments before attempting this cake. I used my 9×13 pyrex pan (it’s almost 3″ deep) If I had used my metal pan it would certainly have overflowed. However there was hardly any room to put the Cool whip layer on top. Next time I think I’ll use my 10X15 pyrex pan. I used a Chocolate Fudge Duncan Hines cake mix and had my cheese mixture at room temperature. I piped the cheese mixture on top as was suggested in a previous comment. I baked it on the center rack of the oven for 75 minutes. The layers switched perfectly. It was delicious!!! Rich…not overly sweet. Now I’m going to try and freeze a few pieces to see how that works out. Thanks for this recipe… can’t wait to share with friends.

  144. Hi, thank you for this easy and very yummy looking recipe, I am going to make this cake tonight for a Saturday party. i have a bit of a silly question, but I have to transport the cake to a friend’s party about 40 min away and looking at the pictures it seems as though the cake comes right upto the brim of the pan so will i be able to use a lid if I use the 9×13 pan? If not how did you transport the cake?

    • I have been able to use the lid on mine, but if yours is a little too poofy (never a bad thing), try poking a few toothpicks in the top of the cake and then laying foil over the toothpicks, so that the toothpicks help tent the foil and keep it off of the topping. When you’re ready to serve it, remove the foil and the toothpicks and then you can smooth out the frosting on top. Nobody will ever know! ;) Hope that helps!

      • Hi Christine, thanks for your prompt reply! The toothpick/foil idea is great! I did make the cake last night! I had a 13×9 foil pan with a high plastic lid so used my pyrex pan but used the plastic high cover and my pan has handles so the lid sits nicely on the handles!

        Also the layers switched perfectly and it looks great! I cannot wait to try it tomorrow! Thanks for the recipe. i will let you know what the verdict on the taste!

  145. Pingback: New continent, New Meal | Bounce Around in the Kitchen

  146. Mine did not work and I don’t know what I did wrong. The layers did not switch, i can see the chocolate a little bit on the sides but even that part looks burnt. The ricotta part is still on top and seems fully cooked and yellow, not white and fuffly like how I expected. I followed the recipe exactly, i used a glass pan and part-skin ricotta cheese, perhaps either of those factors is why, but the recipe doesn’t specify either. Im thinking maybe I should have used full fat ricotta, but wish the recipe would have said that. Also i added the four eggs to the ricotta which seemed like a lot, but I followed the recipe and did it, where some of the eggs meant for the cake batter?

    Please help i don’t know what went wrong and really want to try this cake.
    Thank you

    • I’m sorry yours didn’t turn out. I have used both part skim and whole milk ricotta in this recipe with no problem…the whole milk just tastes a little richer, obviously. You were right, the four eggs do go in the ricotta mixture. What type of cake mix did you use?

  147. I am an experienced and seasoned baker. Last week I followed your recipe exactly, even using a pyrex dish when I would never ever bake a cake in pyrex. No baker would. But like many others, my layers did not switch. Cake turned out delicious, but the layers were not even and it did not switch. I did not use Betty Crocker, but what I use exclusively, Pilsbury Plus. I have another cake in the oven now, using a Betty Crocker mix, and the layers have already switched! So anyone with reservations, try it again, and use Betty Crocker. Must be something scientific about it!

    • I’ve had this recipe for a number of years. I got it from a cookbook that specified to use Duncan Hines Marble cake mix. I always made the recipe with a Marble Cake mix, and over the years I probably made it successfully several dozen times, always using Duncan Hines mix. Just to agree with Betty, it apparently matters what brand of cake mix is used. Apparently, using any old brand will not do. Certain ones will work and certain ones may not work. There may have been one time that the layers failed to switch but I believe I overbeat the ricotta mixture, making it too light and fluffy, i.e. not heavy enough to sink to the bottom like it was supposed to.

  148. I just want to say that this cake is AMAZING (Obviously you’ve heard this many times before but it’s something that just must be said)!! I made two of them last year for my daughter’s birthday party, one chocolate and the other vanilla cake with vanilla pudding. Everyone gobbled it up and wouldn’t shut up about how awesome it was! I was just bummed that there were no left overs! Haha. So here I am making the two cakes again this year for her birthday party (everyone begged me to!) and patiently waiting for them to cool. I used Betty cake mix, cold part-skim ricotta cheese straight from the fridge (I might have even beaten the cheese for too long but who really knows) and foil 9×12 baking pans. It switched perfectly with no issues whatsoever, just like it has every over time I’ve made it. I haven’t decided yet, but I might be adventurous and use oreo cookies and cream pudding on the vanilla cake. If not, I have banana cream pudding as a back up plan! I can’t wait to eat it! Get in my belly, cake! Thanks for the recipe!!

  149. LOVE the cake but sure needed too use a bigger cake pan. Next time I’ll use 11×15 pan so I have room for 3rd layer

Leave a Reply