Texas turtle sheet cake – it’s definitely decadent and we absolutely love it for that. It seems impossible to think that some people haven’t tasted the glory that is the Texas turtle, but if you had to do an iteration on this classic, let it be this delicious Texas turtle sheet cake. A rich, chocolate- and coffee-flavored cake topped with buttermilk chocolate icing (YUM), then topped with caramel sauce, chocolate chips and pecans (or walnuts, if that’s what you have on hand). Holy guacamole, guys, this stuff is good.
If you want to save money, you can use a store-bought cake mix, but if you have the time… this take-out cake is really something. We use a cup of coffee to add a special depth of flavor, then we use buttermilk to add a little bit of flavor and keep things very moist – no dry cake here! You may find the cake is a little lighter in color than a regular chocolate cake, but don’t worry, there’s just as much flavor – if not more – to shake your taste buds. And that’s just the cake, we haven’t even gotten to the icing and topping of this bad boy yet!
Not only do we use buttermilk in the cake, but it also plays a role in the icing, and let us tell you that it’s addictive and probably our favorite chocolate icing. Buttermilk wouldn’t be our first star ingredient idea, but it really balances the flavors here in this cake. We mentioned that it adds spice, but it also balances all the sweetness in the recipe and keeps this cake from being too sweet or too clownish. Once you’ve added the caramel sauce, chocolate chips and nuts, buttermilk and coffee help keep this cake on track – in short: you need this cake and you need it now!
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups baking flour
1 cup of butter
1 cup strong black coffee
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup buttermilk
the chocolate icing :
1/4 cup butter
4 tablespoons of buttermilk
3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
the turtle filling :
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup caramel sauce, to baste
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour the pan or use parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix the baking flour and granulated sugar. Set aside.
2. In a saucepan, combine 1 cup of butter, 1 cup of coffee and 1/3 cup of cocoa. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Pour into prepared dry ingredients. Using a hand mixer, stir at medium speed until dry and wet ingredients are well blended. Add the eggs and 1/2 cup buttermilk. Blend on medium speed for about one minute longer until well blended.
3. Pour into the pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. When the cake is done, a toothpick or fork inserted in the middle of the cake should come out clean.
4. Prepare frosting. In a medium saucepan, mix 1/4 cup butter, 4 tablespoons buttermilk and 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.
5. Remove from heat and use a whisk to gradually stir in the powdered sugar, half a cup at a time.
6. Spread or pour hot icing over the cake. While the cake is still warm, sprinkle with chopped pecans and chocolate chips. Drizzle with caramel sauce.