Poke Cake

2 3 oz packages of Jell-O, each a different color
2 layers yellow cake
fluffy frosting
2 cups boiling water, divided use

Return cooled cakes to clean cake pans. Place on cookie sheet. Using a two pronged fork or chopstick, poke random holes in each layer of cake, about 2 inches apart. In two separate bowls, mix together one package of Jell-O and one cup boiling water and allow to cool slightly. Pour one flavor over one cake layer and then pour the other of the remaining layer. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 hours. Remove from pan, dipping the bottom of the pan briefly in hot water to loosen if needed. Ice top, sides, bottom and between the two cakes with fluffy icing. Slice and serve.

My thoughts:

For New Year’s Eve we had decided to have a 80s movie marathon. We wanted to make food that reflected the time. We knew what we were going to make for our main meal (recipe to come) but I wasn’t sure about dessert. Then I remembered making poke cake as a kid. It was too campy to resist so we made it, although not in the traditional way. As my husband put it, we are probably the only two people in America who made a poke cake with Jell-O using a very delicious homemade yellow cake and fluffy, homemade beaten egg white frosting. All of the recipes I could find for poke cake on the web called for cake mixes and Cool Whip for “frosting”. I just couldn’t abide that. So even though we used Jell-O, the cake and icing are top notch. The flavor is less fruity than you would think and it is fun to cut into the cake and see the swirly different colored layers.


  1. that is too cool! i have an ancient recipe clipped from a magazine for this that i always wanted to try and never did! i even have all the stuff, so maybe i will make that tonight…it looks sooo yum!!!

  2. It’s very summery looking, too. Rad.

  3. hehe…that looks like a fun cake!

  4. Poke cake is my son’s favorite! I’ve never made it as a two layer cake though. His birthday is on the 8th.. I may surprise him with this! He’d be so excited!

    Love your party food idea.

  5. I’ve never heard of this poke cake, but your pictured one is super adorable, and I love the bright colours inside as well as that lovely, fluffy looking frosting!

  6. my husband and i like poke cake in the summer, and we even use cool whip for the frosting 🙂 it’s easy, painless, and nice and cool when it’s hot out. i like the red and green for the holiday season.