This Chocolate Eclair Cake features layers of graham crackers with homemade vanilla pudding lightened with homemade stabilized whipped cream, and topped with chocolate icing. A wonderful summer dessert! Growing up with Sunday dinners at my grandma’s house, there were two desserts that stayed on constant rotation throughout the summer: store-bought angel food cake with strawberries and Cool Whip, and my grandma’s icebox cake. (There was also usually ambrosia in the fridge, because of course there was.) My grandma’s icebox cake was a simple layering of graham crackers with instant vanilla pudding, and (sometimes) a layer of Cool Whip on top. Totally unassuming but the best kind of comfort food, just like my grandma. It wasn’t until a few years ago when I started to see what looked like familiar icebox cake turn up on Pinterest, but it had CHOCOLATE FROSTING on top. I couldn’t imagine my childhood favorite being made any better, but if there was one way to do it, it would most certainly be to add chocolate! It wasn’t until I saw this chocolate eclair cake recipe show up in a recent Cook’s Country magazine that I decided to try it. I loved that the pudding filling was made from scratch and lightened up a bit with whipped cream. I was taking icebox cake up a notch!
2 (3.4 oz) packages Vanilla Instant Pudding mix, dry
3½ cups whole milk
12 oz. cool whip
2 (14.4) oz packages graham crackers
– FROSTING –
3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. milk
3 Tbsp. cocoa
1 cup powdered sugar
Blend milk and vanilla pudding packets for about 2 minutes. Fold in Cool Whip.
In a 9×13 pan, Layer graham crackers to cover entire bottom of pan. You may need to cut and shape the crackers to fit nicely.
Pour half of pudding/cool whip mixture on top and level.
Put another layer of graham crackers to cover entire surface. Cut and shape crackers accordingly.
Put the second half of pudding/cool whip mixture on top and level.
Put the final layer of graham crackers on top with bumpy side down. This will help the top look more smooth when you go to put the frosting on top. Once again, cut and shape crackers accordingly to avoid pits and cracks.
FOR THE FROSTING: Microwave butter and milk just enough so that they are melted together. You do not need to boil it. Add cocoa and powdered sugar and blend together. This will be a runnier frosting/glaze. Pour over top of graham crackers and smooth out nicely. (**I usually double the frosting recipe)
Refrigerate overnight and Dig in!
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