Boston Cream Poke Cake (+Video)
This Boston Cream Poke Cake tastes just like the pie but in cake form! Easily made with a boxed cake mix, pudding and chocolate frosting!
AN EASIER VERSION OF THE FAMOUS PIE
This is an easy and fun cake that everyone wants the recipe for. I have made this recipe more times than I can count for friends, family and co-workers. It’s requested for birthday cakes, celebration cakes and just because! It tastes just like a Boston Cream Pie but so much easier to make!
TIPS FOR MAKING BOSTON CREAM POKE CAKE:
- You’ll need a large round wooden spoon handle or other similar sized object to poke the holes. You want fairly large-sized holes for the pudding to go into.
- Don’t let the pudding set before pouring onto cake. Whisk the pudding well for a minute or two then start pouring straight into the holes of the cake.
- When softening the frosting in the microwave (to make it pourable) make sure not to get it bubbling hot. Just microwave it for a few seconds at a time and stir after each time until it gets to a smooth, pourable consistency. The cake should be completely cooled before doing this.
- I have tons of different poke cake ideas here on the blog. You can have a lot of fun with these cakes by switching out the cake, pudding and frosting flavors! One of my most popular poke cake recipes is this Banana Pudding Poke Cake
- I do not recommend doing this as a layer cake. It just won’t hold up because of the pudding.
INGREDIENTS NEEDED: (FULL RECIPE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST)
- yellow cake mix
- ingredients needed to make cake; eggs, oil and water
- instant vanilla or French vanilla pudding
- chocolate frosting
HOW TO MAKE BOSTON CREAM POKE CAKE:
Make cake mix according to directions and bake in a well-greased 9×13 pan. When cake is finished, while still warm, poke holes all over cake (about 1-inch) intervals using a wooden spoon handle or other similar size object. You want the holes to be fairly big so that the pudding has plenty of room to get down in there. Be sure to poke right down to the bottom of the cake.
In a bowl, add milk to pudding mixture and continue to whisk until most of the lumps are removed.
Pour pudding on top of warm cake. Taking care to pour straight into the holes in the cake.
Take a spoon and spread it out. I like to very gently press down to ensure that pudding goes into the holes and spread it all the way to the sides.
Put cake in fridge and allow to cool completely before adding the frosting (about 2 hours.) Remove the lid and foil covering from the tub of chocolate frosting. Pop it in the microwave for about 10-15 seconds. Stir with a spoon. It should still be thick but pourable – not bubbly hot. Pour chocolate frosting on top of pudding.
Spread frosting to evenly cover cake. Start in the middle and gently spread to the sides.
Allow to cool on the counter for a few minutes, then put into the fridge to fully cool and set up. This cake needs to be kept refrigerated.This is one of those cakes that I think tastes better after it has sat in the fridge overnight. It really helps the pudding to settle in and blend all the flavors.
CRAVING MORE POKE CAKE RECIPES?
Originally published: March 2012
Updated & republished: January 2020
Boston Cream Poke Cake (+Video)
- 15.25 ounce box yellow cake mix
- ingredients needed to make cake; eggs, oil and water
- 2 (3.4 ounce) boxes INSTANT vanilla or French vanilla pudding
- 4 cups milk
- 16 ounce tub chocolate frosting
- Make cake mix according to directions and bake in a well-greased 9 x13-inch pan.
- When cake is finished, while still warm, poke holes all over cake (about 1-inch) intervals using a wooden spoon handle or other similar size object.
- You want the holes to be fairly big so that the pudding has plenty of room to get down in there. Be sure to poke right down to the bottom of the cake.
- In a bowl, prepare pudding. Whisk together instant pudding mix with 4 cups milk. Whisk for about a minute until most of the lumps are gone.
- Pour pudding over cake. Taking care to pour it right into the holes as much as possible. Spread it all out and using the back of the spoon, gently push pudding down into the holes.
- Put the cake into the refrigerator to set and cool (about 2 hours).
- After age has cooled, remove the lid and foil covering from the tub of chocolate frosting. Put it in the microwave for about 10-15 seconds.
- Stir with a spoon. It should still be a little thick but pourable – not bubbly hot.
- Pour chocolate frosting on top of pudding layer of cooled cake. Spread frosting evenly over cake starting in the center then spreading it towards the sides.
- Allow to cool on the counter for a few minutes, then put into the refrigerator to fully cool and set up.
- This cake needs to be kept refrigerated. This cake tastes even better after it has sat in the fridge overnight.
- For a more homemade cake flavor, try substituting the water in the cake mix recipe with milk.
“The Country Cook” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.
I made this many times and everyone loves it.
Thank you so much for this recipe! I used a turkey baster to force the pudding into the poked holes, and it filled the cake in so well! Thanks again – delicious!
This cake looks yummy will have to try it for sure
I made this cake today. We will probably have it as dessert tomorrow. I used a funnel to get the pudding in the holes and it worked well. I eased the pudding down with the end of a thin spoon when it got a little thicker. Both worked great and the cake looks wonderful. Can't wait to try it!!!
i am making this cake right now….
adding the frosting in a few mins.serving tomorrow.
Looks absolutely delish, but what is 'yellow cake'? Is it butter cake? I don't use packet mixes so would like to try and figure this one out myself. I'd love to make it with strawberry jam or maple syrup poured over it, under the custard… how divine!!!
Oh my goodness this sounds delicious!!! I'm definitely pinning to remember!
Debi @ That Crafty Lunch Lady
This looks great. So easy too and at last this Scot knows what a poke cake is. Will be trying this next week. Thanks
This is the best cake EVER. This kids loved it. Thank you so much
I make this sugar free for the hubby. Just use SF cake mix (Pillsbury),SF frosting (Pillsbury) and SF instant pudding. Comes out great. A wonderful treat for a diabetic.
I just read where you use the knife sharpening rod for poking holes it is perfect, I use mine to! LOL!
This looks fantastic. I was searching for a chocolate raspberry version I had many years ago and came across your website – brilliant! I love Boston Cream pie so I have to try this. Thanks for sharing!
Could this be frozen?
I made this cake and it was solo delicious!
Our family is gluten free, tried a GF version today and my hubby just tucked in the kids and went to get a second piece! Thanks for the inspiration!
This looks sooo good. I need to get a yellow cake mix (only have chocolate and white), then I will definitely try this. I want to try the Banana Pudding Poke Cake as well.
First time I made this cake. Everyone love it! Thanks for posting.
I've made this cake several times and it comes out perfect every time. The one tip I can suggest is to "dump" your pudding in the holes immediately after mixing it. It will sink down into the holes better. Otherwise it thickens too much and harder to get into the holes. Letting it set overnight really enhances the flavor.
I'm pretty sure you're a genius. Just sayin.
My friend requests this for her birthday….so very good, easy and always hit!
It's ready for her 50th today!
We have many in our family who have Celiac Disease, or are wheat sensitive. So I will make this cake gluten free, also Weight Watchers friendly. The only change I think I would like to try is to make the topping out of a dark chocolate instead of the typical milk chocolate frosting flavor, the dark chocolate now being considered better for one.
My son-in-law loves Boston Cream Pie, so
I am going to make this for him soon. It sure is an easier alternative!
i made this last nite and it is DELICIOUS !!! i love boston cream pie and have bought them for years from bakeries , i had no idea it was just vanilla pudding in the middle hahahaha… !! anyways this was delicious and i just used pudding cups rather than make instant pudding, turned out terrific !! thanks again… great recipe !! DH , Prince Edward Island, Canada….
In the process of making this – I think that you must have let the pudding start to set up before pouring it on – I poured mine on the cake and it just disappeared into the cake – nothing to spread on top. I'm sure it will taste good but I won't have that layer of pudding 🙁
Love all your recipes!!!! You have made them real simple, quick and delicious!! Baked the Boston Cream Cake 2 days ago and after it had sat overnight, it was Heavenly! Took the first bite and thought I was in paradise! I did made some changes to the recipe…used lemon flavored puddings and homemade white chocolate frosting. This is definitely a sinful dessert but mmmmm…so yummy!!! Thank you so much for sharing your recipes!