This Almond Joy Layer Cake is made with layers of moist chocolate cake, a delicious flakey coconut filling, almond slivers, coconut frosting and chocolate ganache! It’s the perfect cake for any celebration!
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare three 8 inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper in the bottom.
2. Add the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt to a large mixer bowl and combine. Set aside.
3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.
5. Slowly add the hot water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
6. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
7. Remove cakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
8. To make the coconut filling, add the shredded coconut and sweetened condensed milk to a medium bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
9. To make the frosting, add the butter and shortening to a large mixer bowl and mix together until well combined.
10. Add half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
11. Add the coconut extract and 4-5 tablespoons of water or milk and mix until smooth.
12. Slowly add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add additional water or milk, as needed.
13. To build the cake, use a large serrated knife to remove the tops of the cake layers so that they’re flat. See my tips on how to level a cake and how to stack a cake.
14. Place the first cake layer on a serving plate or cardboard cake circle then pipe a dam of coconut frosting around the edge of the cake.
15. Add about half of the coconut filling inside of the dam, then spread evenly into an even layer.
16. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of slivered almonds over the top and press into the filling.
17. Add the next cake layer, then top it with another dam of frosting, the remaining coconut filling and more slivered almonds.
18. Add the final cake layer to the top of the cake.
19. Smooth out the frosting on the sides of the cake, creating a thin crumb coat.
20. Add about 1 cup of frosting to the top of the cake and smooth into an even layer.
21. Frost the cake using my tutorial for how to frost a smooth cake. Stop just before using the paper towel, which won’t be necessary with the pattern on the sides of this cake.
22. Use an offset spatula to create the stripes around the cake.
23. Set the cake aside and make the chocolate ganache (see my tips on making chocolate ganache). Put the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
24. Microwave the heavy whipping cream until it just begins to boil, then pour it over the chocolate chips. Allow it to sit for 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth.
25. Use a squeeze bottle or a spoon to drizzle the chocolate around the edges of the cake, then fill in the top of the cake and smooth it with an offset spatula. See my tips on making a chocolate drip cake.
26. Allow the ganache to firm a bit, about 10 minutes, then top with remaining frosting, a little more shredded coconut, almond slivers and Almond Joy candy bars.
27. Cover well and refrigerate the cake until ready to serve. Serve at room temperature. Cake is best for 3-4 days.
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