Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake

Julianne Bayer | Beyond Frosting

Cherry chocolate chip poke cake is like a sundae in cake form. It’s just plain delish!

Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake Photo

When I moved to Portland, I did not anticipate that winter would decide to show up the way it has. I returned from a quick trip to the east coast last week and we had nearly a foot of snow in some spots. That's pretty unheard for the area, and it shut down the city for days.

I love the snow, but we just are not prepared for it whether we get 2 inches or 10.  The good thing is, work gets canceled and I can stay in and bake all day! The bad news is, I have lots of cake and no one to share it with.

Do you call these cakes poke? Whenever I tell someone they are eating a poke cake, they never seem to know what I'm talking about. I too didn't really know what a poke cake was before I started my food blog. Seriously though, these cakes are always a hit and usually super easy to make. Plus the flavor combinations are endless. 

Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake Picture

This Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake is not a very common flavor for me. I don't always consider myself a cherry girl, but if done in the right away, I will gobble it up. This is exactly what happened when I made this cake.

For this cake, you'll reach for your trusted cake mix and substitute some of the water (or milk) for maraschino cherry juice. I had a 10 ounces jar of cherries and got about a half cup of juice from it. If you prefer to make a homemade version of this cake, you could try using the same method I did, replacing some of liquid with the cherry juice. 

Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake Image

I usually prefer to use almond as a flavor compliment to the cherry; they pair very nicely together. The almond tends to mask some of the overly sweet notes that cherries can have. For this cake, I used a touch of almond extract. I also used egg whites instead of whole eggs to keep this cake more fluffy. 

This cake needs a little chocolate, so I added some mini chocolate chips and chopped cherries to give the cake some texture. I do recommend using regular chocolate chips instead of regular because the minis tend not to sink to the bottom as much. I also lightly coat them in flour, which helps prevent them from falling. 

Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake Pic

When it came time decide what filling to pour over my cake, I chose the traditional sweetened condensed milk. This is the best option to let the flavors of the cake shine through. 

For convenience purposes, I went with a Cool Whip topping, but you could certainly make a homemade whipped cream. I suggest using a combination of 1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar. Once you add the whipped topping, drizzle some hot fudge and put some extra cherries on top and call it a day. 

Cherry Chocolate Chip Poke Cake Recipe

    15 Servings


  • 1 box White Cake Mix
  • 3/4 cup Milk, Or water
  • 1/3 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1/2 cup Maraschino Cherry Juice, From a 10 ounce jar
  • 3 Egg Whites
  • 1 teaspoon Pure Almond Extract
  • 1 1/4 cups Mini Chocolate Chips
  • 2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  • 10 Maraschino Cherries, Chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 1 14 ounce can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 8 ounce container Cool Whip
  • 3 tablespoons Hot Fudge Sauce, For garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Coat a 9x13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, milk, vegetable oil, cherry juice, egg whites and almond extract. Beat all ingredients together until they’re well combined.
  3. In a small plastic bag, combine the mini chocolate chips with the flour and shake to coat the chocolate chips.
  4. Gently fold the mini chocolate chips and the chopped cherries into the cake batter, reserving a small handful of the chocolate chips to sprinkle over the top.
  5. Pour the batter into your prepared pan. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips over the top of the cake.
  6. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes. To check the cake for doneness, insert a toothpick into the middle of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is done. Allow the cake to cool for 30 minutes.
  7. Use a wooden spoon or small round object to poke holes all over the top of the cake. Pour the can of sweetened condensed milk over top of the cake, trying to spread evenly. Allow it to soak into the cake while the cake is cooling. Cool completely.
  8. Spread the Cool Whip over the cooled cake.
  9. To garnish, heat the jar of hot fudge according to the instructions on the jar. Drizzle the hot fudge over top of the cake and place a cherry on top of each slice.
  10. This cake must be refrigerated once the Cool Whip has been added. 


  • To use homemade whipped cream instead of Cool Whip, use 1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream combined with 1/2 cup powdered sugar.


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Julianne Bayer

About Julianne

Julianne loves all things dessert, and shows it on her blog, Beyond Frosting. She's sharing shortcuts to create decadent desserts using cake mix as our Cake Mix Fanatic!