One of the most popular cakes here in Utah is a poke cake called “Better Than Sex” Cake (or BTS Cake for those looking to avoid s-e-x talk in mixed company. I don’t care much for the name either way, because sex-based comparisons seem bound to end in disappointment one way or another. But I digress!)
The great thing about poke cakes like BTS Cake is that they’re so easy to make! They aren’t any harder to make than a boxed cake mix, but they feel a bit more “special” somehow. So today I wanted to share some of my favorite poke cake recipes with you, to help demonstrate exactly how easy and versatile this dessert can be!
I’ll start by sharing the recipe for BTS Cake, and then I’ll share 6 more poke cake variations you can either make at home, or use as inspiration for your own poke cake creations! But before we get to all of that, I thought it might be useful to start by defining what a “poke cake” actually is.
What Is A Poke Cake?
The majority of the poke cakes I’ve made or eaten start with a store-bought cake mix. After the cake is prepared and baked, it gets “poked” full of holes, filled with a sauce or filling of some sort, then covered with whipped cream or frosting.
Adding both a filling and a topping to a poke cake provides a unique opportunity to mix and match different flavors and textures. In that way, poke cake is actually closer to a decadent dessert than a standard birthday cake!
And that is especially true of BTS Cake! I personally love it as a “once in a while” treat, but it could be a bit intense if you’re into sweet desserts. (But if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth, you can always adjust the recipe to cut back on the sweetness of the various elements!)
How To Make “Better Than Sex” Cake (AKA BTS Cake)
1 box devil’s food cake mix (plus the required ingredients to make it)
7 oz sweetened condensed milk
6 oz caramel sundae syrup
8 oz Cool Whip, thawed
(3) 1.4 oz Heath bars
Chocolate sundae syrup, for drizzling
Step 1 – Make The Cake
Start by tossing your Heath bars in the freezer, then preheat your oven to the temperature listed on your box of devil’s food cake mix.
Prepare the cake mix according to the directions on the box, using a 9×13” cake pan for best results.
Bake the cake, then let it cool for about 10 minutes or so.
Step 2 – Poke And Fill
After about 10 minutes of cooling, use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke round holes into your cake. (Aim for 2-3 dozen holes spaced as evenly as you can manage, but don’t sweat trying to make it look perfect. It’s going to get covered up after all!)
Warm the sweetened condensed milk and caramel syrup in a small saucepan on your stovetop, just until the mixture is warm and slightly thinned out.
Pour the warm mixture over the surface of your cake and into the holes.
Step 3 – Top And Cool
Take the Heath bars out of your fridge and break them up into small pieces. (I usually just smack them against the corner of my counter, but you can use whatever technique you like!)
Sprinkle two bars’ worth of Heath bits over the surface of the cake. Set the remaining Heath bar aside to use later, then let your cake cool in the fridge for one hour.
Step 4 – Finish And Eat!
After cooling, take your cake out of the fridge and spread the thawed Cool Whip evenly across the top. Sprinkle the remaining Heath bar bits over the Cool Whip, then drizzle a bit of the chocolate sundae syrup over the top to finish it off.
Enjoy a piece of your finished BTS cake (and don’t be afraid to schedule in a post-cake nap too!) :-)
… And 6 More Delicious Poke Cake Recipes!
Poke cakes are so versatile that the only real limit is your imagination! If toffee, caramel, and chocolate aren’t your thing, consider giving one of these 6 other deliciously decadent poke cakes a try!
I’ve listed the elements of each cake in the following format (along with notes or additional instructions as needed):
- Boxed cake mix
1. Banana Split Poke Cake
- Yellow cake
- Banana pudding
- Whipped cream, sliced bananas, sliced strawberries, and sprinkles
2. Red Velvet Poke Cake
- Red velvet cake
- Sweetened condensed milk
- Cream cheese frosting
3. Lemon Blueberry Poke Cake
- Lemon cake
- Blueberry pie filling
- Whipped cream, fresh blueberries, and lemon zest
4. Strawberry Shortcake Poke Cake
- Yellow cake
- Strawberry jello
- Dissolve strawberry jello mix into 1 cup hot water, then stir in 1 cup of cold water and pour the mixture over the poked cake.
- Cream cheese frosting and sliced strawberries
5. Cinnamon Roll Poke Cake
- White cake
- Cinnamon filling
- Stir together 1/2 cup of melted butter, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1/2 cup of sweetened condensed milk, and 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon then pour over the poked cake.
- Cream cheese frosting
6. Black Forest Poke Cake
- Devil’s food cake
- Cherry pie filling and hot fudge
- Whipped cream
- Click here for recipe
Have you ever made a poke cake before?