Bundt cakes are a classic, homey cake. I’m afraid they get a bad rap as being a bit boring. It does feel like many recipes for Bundt cake create more of a pound cake type of Bundt cake. That’s not the case with the assortment of recipes found in Beautiful Bundts by Julie Anne Hession (Amazon).
Consider this Irish Cream and Chocolate Swirl Bundt cake a step above the usual. It’s anything but boring. Bonus: it makes a lovely countertop cake. What’s more welcoming than that?
If you know how to make cake, you’ll find this recipe a breeze. If you are beginning to dabble in homemade baking, you won’t believe you waited this long to ditch the cake mix. It’s easy, like Sunday morning.
You don’t have to worry about softening cream cheese or butter or futzing with sour cream for this cake recipe. The only “exotic” ingredient would be the Irish Cream liqueur. Are there substitutes for Bailey’s Irish Cream if you want to go nonalcoholic? Yes, I believe you could sub in Bailey’s Irish Coffee Cream Coffee Creamer, no problem.
Notes About the Marbled Chocolate Cake and Irish Cream-Flavored Bundt
Marbled cakes are too often chewy, rubbery, and disappointing. A poor cake texture, whether a Bundt cake or a layer cake, is often due to overmixing.
When you’re making a marbled effect, it’s hard not to overmix your cake batter.
To avoid this common cake problem, stop mixing your cake batter when you see a few floury streaks in the bowl of your electric mixer. Then, give it two stirs to barely incorporate those streaks. You aren’t looking for well-combined ingredients here—you just don’t want any massive lumps of flour to mess with batter division.
When you divide the cake batter into two bowls, you’ll add cinnamon and cocoa powder to one to create the chocolate cake and the Irish Cream and vanilla extract to the other. That’s when you’ll finish mixing your cake.
Making the Marbled Chocolate Effect
Remember how I was talking about the difficulty in keeping marbled cakes from becoming chewy and off-textured? First, the term marbled cake refers to combining two or more flavored batters swirled together with a butter knife to create an interesting texture and intertwining of flavors.
It is hard to get a marbled cake right, not only in appearance but in texture.
Note: I am ambidextrous, so I grabbed two 1/4 measuring cups for the two flavors. Then, I scooped up 1/4 of the batter at once, adding them into the pan in staggered groupings. It moved a bit faster than one at a time (but it still will take you a minute or two).
Beautiful Bundts by Julie Anne Hession Cookbook
I’ve hankered for this cookbook for the past month. It’s nothing but Bundts! Bundt cakes of all kinds and flavors. Dust off your Nordic Ware Bundt cake pan and get ready. Beautiful Bundts offers 100 recipes in the 7.75 x 0.63 x 10.5-inch, 287-page book.
If you require images in your cookbooks, then this is the cake cookbook for you. Every cake recipe includes a full-color, full-page image — and they are wonderful. I’ve already made two recipes from it (this one and a chocolate Bundt cake).
Set aside your sheet cake and layer cake pans. A Bundt pan is different.
To use this cookbook in full, you will need the following Bundt pans:
- Minimum 15-cup Bundt Pan (will work for all the recipes except for the mini Bundts)
- 10-Cup Bundt Pan
- Mini Bundt Pans
There are different brands of Bundt pans, but Nordic Ware was the first. The Nordic Ware Bundt pan is found in more than 75 million households globally, according to the Nordic Ware website. I’ve included a selection of nice Nordic Ware Bundt pans below in the 10-cup size.
Although this book uses cups and the metric system (cups are listed on the left side of the ingredient list, and mL are listed on the right-hand side), other home bakers find the metric measurements off.
Do the math on your own (or use a quick Google conversion chart) and write in your cookbook for easy future reference.
Inside the Beautiful Bundts cookbook
- Part 1: All About Bundts
- Equipment and Tools
- Key Ingredients
- Basic Bundts, Start to Finish
- Specialty Bundts
- Part Two: Beautiful Bundts
- Basic Bundts
- Breakfast and Brunch Bundts
- Filled Bundts
- Layered and Swirled Bundts
- Pull-Apart Bundts
- Holiday Bundts
- International Bundts
- Mini Bundts
- Savory Bundts
- Bonus Recipes: Glazes and Sauces.
The Triple Butterscotch Swirl Bundt cake is high on my list to bake next. Butterscotch chips, brown sugar, a little cinnamon, sour cream to keep it not dry (I hate the m-word to describe cake texture), and Scotch or Whiskey for a little something extra sound amazing.
Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Bundt (because chocolate chips), Carrot Cake Bundt with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting (that’s a nice twist), and the Cinnamon Swirl Caramel Bundt would look lovely on a cake plate. Oh, and the Chocolate Hazelnut Latte Bundt. Hey, now — there’s lemon cake, too.
The Lemon Lover’s Bundt is made with cake flour for a softer texture than your typical lemon Bundt cake, plus sour cream for a little tang, and softened unsalted butter for flavor. Lemon zest, lemon juice and a lemon glaze add up to big lemon flavor. Yes, it’s on my baking list too.
Savory Bundt Cakes Too
If you really want to up your Bundt pan usage, this cookbook will cover you there too with cakes outside the norm. Since the recipes in the cookbook sometimes call for six-cake mini Bundt pans, I included a selection of mini Bundtlettes above.
Find savory recipes for breakfast, brunch, and even dinner. Rosemary, Apple, and Cheddar Beer Bread Bundt, Crispy Parmesan Hash Brown Bundt (it looks so good), or the fancy Baked Brie and Spicy Raspberry Jam Bundts almost guaranteed to impress your guests.
The section of pull-apart Bundts cover all the bases.
From Pumpkin Spice Pull-Apart Bundt to Savory Cheese and Herb Monkey Bread Bundt (wow, is it beautiful) to Spiced Apple Hazelnut Monkey Bread, I think this book will surprise and delight.
Irish Cream and Chocolate Bundt Cake Recipe
Irish Cream and Chocolate Swirl Bundt Cake Recipe with Irish Cream Glaze
- 1 10-Cup Nordic Ware Bundt Pan (minimum 10-cup. 15-cup also works)
- 2 Cups Flour
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 2 Cups Granulated Sugar
- 3/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
- 4 Large Eggs Room Temperature
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 Cup Buttermilk
- 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder (use a whisk to break up any clumps)
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1/3 Cup Irish Cream Liqueur (you know it as Bailey's Irish Cream)
Irish Cream Glaze (enough for a 10-cup to 15-cup Nordic Ware Bundt pan)
- 1/4 teaspoon Espresso Powder
- 2-3 Tablespoons Hot Water
- 2 Cups Powdered Sugar Whisk or sift to remove clumps
- 3 Tablespoons Irish Cream Liqueur (you know it as Bailey's Irish Cream)
- 350* oven. Spray a (minimum) 10-cup Bundt pan with Baker's Joy or Pam for Baking with Flour and set aside.
For the Cake
- Combine the Flour, Baking Soda, and Salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to remove clumps.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat Sugar and Oil for two minutes on medium speed. It will look light and fluffy. Scrape the sides to ensure a good mix.
- Add in the Eggs one at a time.
- Add Vanilla Extract and combine for two minutes.
- Put your electric mixer on low speed and alternate adding in the Flour mixture and the Buttermilk. Start and end with Flour but stop mixing when there are a few floury streaks left. You're dividing up the batter into two different flavors: Irish cream and chocolate. If you mix too much now, your cake's texture may suffer.
- Pour half the batter into a medium bowl. Add the Irish cream and mix just until combined.
- Add the chocolate and the cinnamon to the NON-Irish cream side. Mix just until combined.
- Using a 1/4 cup dry measuring scoop, dollop in the batter. Alternate the flavors. It's a bit liquidy, so don't expect perfection. Once all the batter has been added to the Bundt pan, alternating the chocolate and vanilla portions, run a butter knife throughout in an "S" pattern. Move your knife in an "S" pattern all around the Bundt pan several times to create the swirl pattern. TOO MUCH and you will lose the marble effect and mix the batter together instead. Seriously, just swirl the knife around a couple of times. Note: I am ambidextrous, so I grabbed two 1/4 measuring cups for the two flavors. Then, I scooped up 1/4 of the batter at once, adding the soupy batter into the pan. It moved a bit faster than one at a time (but it still will take you a minute or two).
- Bake for 50-60 minutes or until the center comes out clean. Leave the cake in the pan to cool for 10 minutes. Invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely before glazing. If you try to glaze the cake before it is cool, the glaze will melt right off.
Make the Irish Cream Glaze
- Whisk together the Espresso Powder and 2 Tablespoons of Hot Water in a medium bowl. Start with the lower end of the water so your glaze is pourable, not soup. Whisk.
- Whisk in the Powdered Sugar and the Irish Cream liqueur and combine until smooth.
- How's the texture? If it feels too thick, add up to 1 teaspoon of water at a time. You want a thick glaze here.
Cookbooks by Julie Anne Hession:
Julie Anne Hession won more than $100,000 in competitive cooking contests, according to her bio on the Mini Pies cookbook page. Is anyone else surprised to see only three cookbooks to her name?
I have her 175 Best Mini Pie Recipes and 100 Best Decorated Cookies cookbooks, courtesy of Robert Rose Publishing (several years back now). They are excellent books but do not have the same format or styling as Beautiful Bundts.