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Ice cream sandwich cake is a favorite in our house. I only make it twice a year though, and those two times happen 6 days apart from each other. You see, 2 of my children were born in late June and their birthdays are 6 days apart. Ever since the first year I made ice cream sandwich cake for one of them as birthday cake, it has been the cake they ask for year after year.
This cake is not at all healthy, but it sure is yummy. Due to the fact that you are using ice cream sandwiches and other heat sensitive ingredients you have to work really fast or you will be up to your arm pits in ice cream mess (trust me–I have learned this the hard way).
Tips for making ice cream sandwich cake
- Have every ingredient out and ready to go. Certain ingredients melt fast and make a mess quickly.
- Take the cool whip out of the freezer at least 1 hour before you start to prepare the cake, but 2 hours might be better if it is cool inside your home.
- Prepare a space in the freezer for the cake before you make it so that you can have it in the freezer the moment it is finished.
- Make this cake the day before you plan to serve it. Ice cream sandwich cake needs 12 to 24 hours to firm up enough to slice.
Ingredients for ice cream sandwich cake
- 1 cup chocolate sauce (I use homemade from a recipe found in The Tightwad Gazette)
- 2 8 ounce tubs of Cool Whip topping (I use Aldi brand)
- 2 (4 serving size) packages of chocolate flavor instant pudding
- 20 chocolate sandwich cookies
- 32 vanilla ice cream sandwiches (boxes usually contain 12 so 3 boxes will give you a few extras)
You will also need a 9 by 13 pan. I always make mine in a metal pan but I am sure glass would work just fine too.
(psst….I buy all my ingredients at Aldi. Do you know this little known way to save more money at Aldi?)
Start by combining one container of cool whip topping with the chocolate sauce. I used my Hamilton Beach stand mixer to beat my ingredients but you can use a hand mixer or just a wooden spoon and some arm power.
While these ingredients are mixing in your stand mixer (or after you have mixed them by hand) you can get the cookies ready to add in.
I like my cookies a bit on the chunky side so I simply place them in a bag and crush them up with my own hands. If you want the chunks smaller you can hit them with a rolling pin or large wooden spoon. If you prefer fine cookie crumbs go ahead and crush them up in your food processor.
Next you need to add the packages of instant pudding. Mix them for 2 minutes and then go ahead and add the cookies you crushed.
Mix in the cookies and then place the whole bowl to one side while you prepare the first layer of the ice cream sandwich cake.
In a 9 by 13 pan I find it best to put the sandwiches down in 2 rows of 5 length ways. You will end up with a gap at the end of the pan. I cut ice cream sandwiches to fit these (eating the leftover pieces as I go 🙂 ).
(mine don’t look pretty, but I think they melted a bit on the way home from the grocery store and that caused the discoloring)
For the second layer of the ice cream sandwich cake you are going to pour the bowl of cookie mixture on top of the first layer of ice cream sandwiches and spread it out evenly.
Top the layer of cookie mixture with another layer of ice cream sandwiches. Do not press the sandwiches down too hard, that will make a mess in a hurry! You again want to fill any holes in with partial ice cream sandwiches so the whole 9 by 13 pan is covered.
For the last layer, take the second container of cool whip and empty it out on top of the ice cream sandwich layer. Spread it out until even.
At this point you can place it in the freezer or if you want you can quickly add a few M&Ms or sprinkles in a fun design.
If your whipped topping is really soft you might want to put the cake in the freezer for several hours before trying this, but mine was fairly firm. I simply plopped a large star cookie cutter on the center of the cake and filled it with red M&Ms.
I then carefully took off the star cookie cutter and placed a side plate on top of the red star pattern. I outlined the plate and then carefully took it off and filled it with blue M&M’s .
The result was a Captain America design, that my teenagers thought was pretty cool.
The end result is an ice cream cake so good that it is hard to stop at just one piece.
- 1 cup chocolate syrup
- 2 (8 ounce) tubs of Cool Whip topping
- 2 pkg (4 serving size) instant chocolate pudding
- 20 crushed chocolate sandwich cookies
- approx 32 vanilla ice cream sandwich cakes ( buy 3 boxes of 12 and you should have some leftover)
- thaw cool whip topping (takes 1 to 2 hours on counter tops)
- mix 1 tub cool whip with chocolate syrup
- add in instant pudding and mix for 2 minutes
- add in crushed sandwich cookies
- put cookie mixture to one side
- cover the bottom of a 9 by 13 pan with ice cream sandwiches (see photos in post)
- cover ice cream sandwiches with cookie mixture
- cover cookie mixture with another row of ice cream sandwiches
- cover row of ice cream sandwiches with the second tub of cool whip
- place in freezer to freeze overnight.
- Serve the next day.
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