Ooey Gooey Butter Cake

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This flavor is second only to Salted Crack Caramel in popularity. Nothing is sweeter, more sinful, or more of a guilty pleasure than Ooey Gooey Butter Cake. It’s exactly the indulgence you need to mend a broken heart. Originally a St. Louis tradition, the cake is something Brian first had during summers at Trout Lake in upstate New York. Hilda, the grand matron of Trout Lake, made the cakes for potluck dinners. Brian asked her for the recipe, but she said no. After sneaking into her cabin but failing to wrestle the recipe from Hilda’s wiry hands, Brian remembered Google, and went to work. A couple of seconds later, he had found hundreds of recipes. As with many dishes, there really isn’t a secret to good ooey gooey butter cake, except the quality of the ingredients you use. We use an organic yellow cake mix, real vanilla beans, and European butter with a high fat content. Then we add cream cheese to the ice cream to highlight the gooey, cheesy qualities of the cake.

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Ingredients

For the Ooey Gooey Butter Cake

  • Butter for the baking pan
  • 1 cup (240 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 package yellow cake mix
  • 3 eggs
  • 8 ounces (225 g) cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pound (455 g) confectioners’ sugar

Method

  1. Prepare the cream cheese ice cream according to the recipe directions. Transfer the cooled base to a storage container and refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Make the ooey gooey butter cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking pan and line it with parchment paper.
  3. Place ½ cup (120 g) of the butter in a small saucepan. Halve the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Add the seeds and pod to the pan with the butter and cook over low heat until the butter has melted. Use a fork to remove and discard the pod.

  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the cake mix, 1 egg, and the melted butter on medium speed until just combined. The batter will be thick and doughlike. Spread it evenly across the prepared baking pan.
  5. In a small saucepan, melt the remaining ½ cup (120 g) butter. In the clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a clean paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on high speed until smooth. Add the remaining 2 eggs, vanilla, and melted butter and beat on medium speed until combined. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat on low until combined. Now increase speed to high and beat until completely smooth.
  6. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the cake batter. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, until the top has browned slightly, and the cake is no longer jiggly in the middle. Let the cake cool completely, then chop it into bite-size pieces.
  7. Transfer the cooled base to an ice cream maker and churn it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  8. Transfer the ice cream to a storage container, folding in the pieces of ooey gooey butter cake as you do. Use as much of the cake as you want; you won’t necessarily need the whole batch. Serve immediately or harden in your freezer for 8 to 12 hours for a more scoopable ice cream.