Turtle Cake


Turtle Cake is a decadent dessert that combines layers of moist chocolate cake, gooey caramel, rich chocolate ganache, and crunchy pecans. This dessert is reminiscent of the popular turtle candy, and it’s sure to satisfy your chocolate cravings. Here’s how to make this delightful Turtle Cake.


For the Cake:

  • 1 box (15.25 ounces) chocolate cake mix (plus ingredients needed for the cake mix, usually eggs, water, and oil)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

For the Caramel Layer:

  • 1 package (11 ounces) caramels, unwrapped
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter

For the Chocolate Ganache:

  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Additional Toppings:

  • Additional chopped pecans (for garnish, optional)
  • Whipped cream (optional)


  1. Preheat your oven to the temperature specified on the cake mix box.
  2. Prepare the chocolate cake batter according to the instructions on the box. This typically involves mixing the cake mix with eggs, water, and oil. Stir in the chopped pecans.
  3. Pour half of the cake batter into a greased 9×13-inch baking pan. Bake this first layer according to the cake mix instructions, usually around 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  4. While the first layer is baking, prepare the caramel layer. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the caramels, evaporated milk, and unsalted butter. Stir continuously until the caramels are completely melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove it from heat.
  5. Once the first cake layer is done baking, remove it from the oven and immediately pour the caramel mixture evenly over the hot cake.
  6. Pour the remaining cake batter over the caramel layer. You can gently spread it with a spatula to cover the caramel layer, but it’s okay if it’s not perfectly even.
  7. Return the pan to the oven and bake for another 20-25 minutes, or until the top cake layer is done. Check for doneness with a toothpick.
  8. While the cake is baking, prepare the chocolate ganache. In a microwave-safe bowl or using a double boiler, heat the semisweet chocolate chips and heavy cream until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Stir well.
  9. Once the second cake layer is done baking, remove the cake from the oven and let it cool slightly.
  10. Drizzle the warm chocolate ganache over the top of the cake, spreading it evenly with a spatula.
  11. If desired, sprinkle additional chopped pecans over the chocolate ganache while it’s still warm.
  12. Allow the cake to cool completely before serving. You can speed up the cooling process by placing it in the refrigerator.
  13. Once the cake is fully cooled, you can serve it with a dollop of whipped cream if you like.
  14. Slice, serve, and enjoy your homemade Turtle Cake!


  • Be sure to follow the cake mix instructions for the best results. This usually includes using the specified number of eggs, water, and oil.
  • When melting caramels for the caramel layer, keep the heat low and stir constantly to prevent scorching.
  • You can add a pinch of salt to the caramel layer for a salted caramel twist.
  • Store any leftover Turtle Cake in the refrigerator to keep it fresh.


  • If you’re short on time, you can use store-bought caramel sauce instead of making your own caramel layer.
  • Experiment with different types of nuts, like walnuts or almonds, for a unique flavor.
  • For an extra chocolatey version, add chocolate chips to the cake batter.

This Turtle Cake is a delightful treat that’s perfect for special occasions or any time you’re craving a rich and indulgent dessert. Enjoy!

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