Cherries are the shape shifters of the fruit world.
They are the perfect lazy day summer food – a kids-sitting-back-on-the-porch-swing-spitting-pits kind of thing.
But they clean up well, starring in elegant desserts and entrees with the best of them.
And they successfully occupy every space in between.
This Slow Cooker Chocolate Cherry Pudding Cake is one of those in-betweens.
It’s good enough for company, but easy enough for family meals, too.
A classic pudding cake, it separates into layers of rich fudgey pudding and dense chocolate cake with minimal effort.
Because it cooks in the slow cooker, your oven is free for other things. This also gives you a bit of flexibility because an extra 20 minutes or so in the slow cooker isn’t going to over cook your cake.
If you have fresh or frozen cherries on hand, you can make your own cherry layer for the dessert, but if not, no worries. A can of cherry pie filling will work just fine.
(You can also completely leave out the cherries for an all chocolate experience.)
Once you discover how easy it is to pull this pudding cake together, it will become one of your go-to recipes.
- 1 cup / 250 ml fresh or frozen cherries, pitted and halved
- ½ cup / 125 ml orange juice
- ½ teaspoon / 2.5 ml cinnamon
- ¼ cup / 60 ml brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon / 15 ml cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons / 30 ml cold water
- *you can substitute 1 can of cherry pie filling for these ingredients
- 1 cup / 250 ml flour
- ½ cup / 125 ml granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup / 80 ml cocoa
- 1-1/2 teaspoons / 7.5 ml baking powder
- ½ teaspoon / 2.5 ml salt
- 1 cup / 250 ml milk
- ¼ cup / 60 ml oil
- 1 teaspoon / 5 ml vanilla
- ½ cup / 125 ml brown sugar
- ¼ cup / 60 ml cocoa
- 1-1/4 cups / 310 ml boiling water
- Place cherries and orange juice in small saucepan.
- Mix together cinnamon and brown sugar and add to pan.
- Heat over medium heat and bring to a simmer.
- Simmer for five minutes.
- Stir together cornstarch and water. Add to cherries and reduce heat. When mixture has thickened, remove from heat.
- Put cherries into bottom of 3 - 3.5 quart / 3-3.5 liter slow cooker.
- (If you are using canned cherry pie filling, simply empty content of can into bottom of slow cooker.)
- Stir together flour, granulated sugar, cocoa, baking powder and salt.
- In separate bowl, combine milk, oil and vanilla.
- Stir milk mixture into flour, and mix until combined.
- Gently spoon batter over cherries in slow cooker.
- Mix brown sugar and ¼ cup / 60 ml cocoa. Sprinkle over cake batter in slow cooker.
- Gently pour the boiling water on top of all ingredients. Do not stir.
- Place lid on slow cooker and turn heat to high.
- Let cake cook for 2 to 2-1/2 hours.
- When the cake is done, there should be no water on top, and cake should look puffed up.
- Turn off the heat and remove slow cooker insert from the heating element. Remove the cover. Let the cake sit for 20-30 minutes before serving.