Dove Hot Chocolate Cake with Peppermint Marshmallows

This cake is decadent and delicious and made in three parts. The marshmallows are made first and need to rest and dry for at least 4 hours. The cakes need to be cooled completely before frosting. Because there are a few moving parts, this cake could take about 6 hours (not all active hours) to make and assemble. The work can also be split between two days. Well worth the effort I promise!



For the Marshmallows

  • 1 cup cold water, divided
  • 2 1/4-ounce packages unflavored gelatin
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, for coating the pan and topping the marshmallows
  • 4 ounces DOVE® Dark Chocolate PROMISES pieces, coarsely chopped
  • 4 ounces hard peppermint candy, crushed to medium coarse in a plastic bag with a hammer

For the Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces DOVE® Dark Chocolate PROMISES pieces, melted
  • 1/2 cup hot black coffee

For the Frosting

  • 1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces DOVE® Dark Chocolate PROMISES pieces, melted
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup heavy cream, depending on desired thickness


  1. To make the marshmallows, pour 1/2 cup cold water into the bowl of a stand mixer fit with a whisk attachment. Pour the two gelatin packs over the cold water and let sit for about 10 minutes.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring sugar, corn syrup, salt and the remaining cold water to a boil. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and bring mixture up to 240 degrees F. There’s no need to stir the mixture, just let it get hot hot hot!
  3. When the sugar is heated to 240 degrees F, turn the mixer with the gelatin and water on low speed. Carefully stream the hot sugar mixture into the bowl as the whisk moves. Be careful not to pour into the whisk and spatter the hot sugar all over the sides of the bowl. Gradually increase the speed of the mixer until you’ve added all of the hot sugar mixture. Beat on high for several minutes until a thick, fluffy, white marshmallow batter has formed, about 8 minutes. Pour in the vanilla extract and beat for another 2 minutes.
  4. Fold the chocolate and peppermint pieces into the marshmallow mixture and spread into prepared pan and smooth with a clean, wet spatula to prevent sticking. Top marshmallow with powdered sugar and let set and rest for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
  5. When set, remove marshmallow from the pan and place on a large cutting board coated with powdered sugar, Use a pizza cutter or large, coated with non-stick cooking spray to slice marshmallows. Coat the knife blade in a bit of powdered sugar if it begins to stick to the marshmallows during slicing.
  6. To make the cake, place a rack in the center and upper third oven the oven and preheat oven to 350º F. Grease and flour two round 9-inch cake pans and set aside.
  7. In a large, sift together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Combine well and add to the bowl of an electric stand mixer. In a liquid measuring cup of small bowl, whisk together milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract until well combined.
  8. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Add the melted chocolate and beat to combine. Reduce speed and carefully add hot coffee to the cake batter. Beat on high speed for about 1 minute. The batter will be loose.
  9. Distribute cake batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes, remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  11. To make the frosting, cream together butter, cocoa powder and salt. Butter mixture will be very thick. Turn off the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  12. Add powdered sugar. Turn mixer on low and mix in powdered sugar while adding vanilla, half of the melted chocolate, and a slash of the heavy cream. As the sugar incorporates, raise the speed of the mixer to beat the frosting. Beat until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minute, adding more cream as necessary.
  13. To assemble the cake, place a cake layer on a flat plate or serving tray. Top with a good dollop of frosting, spread to even and place prepared marshmallows atop the frosting. Add remaining cake layer.
  14. Frost the top and sides of the cake with frosting. Drizzle melted chocolate down the sides and across the top of the cake. Top with large marshmallow chunks and refrigerate until ready to serve.