Ice Cream Poke Cake

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You GUYS! I made a poke cake and filled it with ice cream. #YoureWelcome This Ice Cream Poke Cake is an easy potluck recipe! Cake is baked and filled with melted ice cream for a gooey casserole everyone will love.

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Ice Cream Poke Cake - an easy poke cake filled with melted ice cream! The perfect potluck recipe for summer.

Okay, so before I we talk about how excited I am about this ice cream poke cake, we MUST talk about NKOTB. (Y’all know I was nuts for them, right? Like, totally head-over-heels-tweeny-bopper gaga?)

This past weekend we finally watched the American Idol finale. As soon as I heard the New Kids were performing, I got all those butterflies in my tummy. Yes, I’m 37 years old and the thought of listening to Joey McIntyre sing gives me butterflies.

(I KNOW, okay?)

Mel queued up the DVR to the right spot and then I watched, dumfounded and open-mouthed while they sang with Daniel. They. Were. HORRIBLE. I couldn’t even finish. I made Mel turn it off halfway through. I just couldn’t even listen to it anymore.

It was truly cringe-worthy. Did you all see it?

Ice Cream Poke Cake - an easy poke cake filled with melted ice cream! The perfect potluck recipe for summer.

Seriously, I couldn’t even believe it. First of all, the leather skirts-over-jeans thing. WTH was that? I mean, Alanis Morissette could pull that off (in the 90s) but men in their 40s? Just no. And then Joey (tried) to sing Please Don’t Go Girl

…and all my dreams and childhood angst came crashing down around me. Did they always sound that horrible?

You guys. If they were always that bad and I spent over 45,000 hours mooning for them…I just don’t even know where to go from here.  Can you imagine what J. Lo and the other judges were thinking? I could practically hear them willing themselves to smile and clap along.

It was bad. Really, really bad.

You know what’s not really bad? Poke cake. You know what’s really good?

When poke cake is poked and filled with ice cream.

Easy Ice Cream Poke Cake Recipe

Anyway. Back to this cake!

I love me a poke cake, especially in the summer. And if I’m going to have a cake, a poke is what I’ll choose over any other kind. There’s just something magical that happens when the cake is poked and filled with something gooey. It becomes less like “cake” and more like something, well, awesome.

This cake starts with a box mix. I love using box mixes to make pokes because it’s just so easy. You’re welcome to use your favorite 9×13″ pan recipe if you prefer from scratch, but I’m a box girl all the way.

I used chocolate for this cake because, well, I love chocolate. And that’s the first box I grabbed when I reached into the pantry. You can use your favorite flavor mix, any brand. Just bake it up as the box directs for a 9×13″ pan.

Then the magic happens.

Ice Cream Poke Cake - an easy poke cake filled with melted ice cream! The perfect potluck recipe for summer.

These cakes are called “poke” cakes because when they come out of the oven you “poke” them with the handle of a wooden spoon. You do this several times all over the entire cake (probably about 30 holes or so).

Then you fill the poked holes with something ooey, gooey and delicious. Sometimes you use sweetened condensed milk or hot fudge or caramel.

For this poke cake? I filled the holes with melted ice cream. You can use any flavor!

I simply let the ice cream sit at room temperature near the stove while the cake was baking. Once the cake came out of the oven, the ice cream was all melty. Just pour it over the top and spread it around. Then let the cake cool and chill it for a few hours. (The longer it chills the better it is!)

Easy Ice Cream Poke Cake Recipe

When you’re ready to serve, you finish off your ice cream and cake sundae. I frosted my cake with Cool Whip (whipped cream can be substituted). Drizzle some chocolate and caramel ice cream toppings over the top, add sprinkles and cherries, and you have an ice cream poke cake!

Everyone will love this cake. It’s perfect for a potluck or as a birthday cake.

It’s also the perfect “eat your feelings” cake.

Easy Ice Cream Poke Cake Recipe

Not that I’d know what that’s like or anything…

*cough* Liar *cough*

Did you make this recipe?

Ice Cream Poke Cake

This Ice Cream Poke Cake is an easy potluck recipe! Cake is baked and filled with melted ice cream for a gooey casserole everyone will love.


  • 1 box chocolate cake mix, plus ingredients listed on the box to make the cake
  • 2 cups of your favorite ice cream
  • 1 (8 ounce) tub of whipped topping or whipped cream
  • Chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, sprinkles, and cherries for topping


  1. Prepare cake as directed on the box using the water, oil, and eggs called for to make a 9×13” cake. Bake the cake in a 9×13” pan (that has been sprayed with cooking spray) according to the package directions.
  2. While the cake is baking, place the ice cream in a large bowl and set it near the stove so it can melt.
  3. When the cake comes out of the oven, let it cool 5 minutes. Then, using the back of a wooden spoon, poke several holes (about 30 or so) in the top of the cake. Hopefully by now your ice cream is mostly liquid. If not, microwave it for a few seconds until it’s all liquid or just some lumps of ice cream remain.
  4. Pour melted ice cream over the top of the cake, making sure it gets in all the holes. Let the cake cool on the counter, then cover and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight. (It gets better the longer it sits!)
  5. Before serving, frost the top with whipped topping or whipped cream and drizzle with ice cream toppings like chocolate and/or caramel sauce, sprinkles, and cherries.
  6. Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


Use your favorite ice cream and your favorite cake mix to make the perfect combo!

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Click here to see my best Cake Mix recipes!

Love poke cakes? Check out a Banana Pudding Poke Cake, Banana Split Poke Cake, Samoas Poke Cake or my favorites:

Snickers Poke Cake

Snickers Poke Cake (13 of 15)w

Cherry Coke Poke Cake

cherry coke poke cake (4 of 5)

Chocolate Mint Poke Cake


Sweets from friends:
Skinny Lime Poke Cake by Yummy, Healthy, Easy
Baklava Poke Cake by Life, Love, and Sugar
Banana Toffee Poke Cake by Melanie Makes

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  1. Aw, I am sorry about your disappointment about NKOTB, at least this cake has made up for it. This cake is gen-i-us, who would of thought to put melted ice cream in a poke cake?! It looks like a decadent heaven, pinned! 

  2. New Kids…yeah we’re the same age and I think I was the only person of our generation who was not really ever into them, at all. So I can kind of imagine now that things were a little lackluster. Lol

    This cake…love how easy it is and a perfect party cake!

  3. You put ice cream in a poke cake! I just fainted! I love poke cakes but I love ice cream even more so this is awesome! I remember watching NKOTB once but I didn’t get into them. Oh btw your blogger retreat looked totally awesome! Great pics!

  4. Yes, I’m guilty of those eat those feelings days, this looks like the perfect comforting cake for that! So cute 🙂

  5. I like the way you think–this looks like the perfect cake for summer! 🙂

  6. You and I are the same age and I was O-B-S-E-S-S-E-D with Joey McIntyre back in the day. So I’m kind of glad I didn’t watch this awful performance of which you speak…I’ll let NKOTB remain as they are in my mind…my perfect 6th grade boy band. That cake tho! Oh my…

  7. Melted ice cream in a poke cake?!  I’m having one those “why didn’t I think of that?!” moments.  I’m craving this cake now.

  8. They were always that bad, Dorothy. We were just a lot more, what’s the word…dumb? Nah, that’s harsh. How’s “naive?”
    But we are both brilliant now, and you are more brilliant, because you thought to put ice cream in poke cake. Fantastic!

  9. Ice cream in a POKE CAKE?! You, my friend, are a freakin’ genius! 

  10. I missed the NKOTB performance! Were they really that bad? I was a fan of Jonathan but wasn’t one of those crazed fans. i might be a crazed fan of poke cake though…

  11. I’m sorry about the NKOTB thing. I never really got them (I was more of a BSB fan, go figure). Ice cream in poke cake, though… that’s just brilliant.

  12. Outstanding. No other word for this cake! It looks and sounds outstanding! Love this idea, and it more than makes up for the NKOTB disappointment! NKOTB who?

  13. That’s why I still like listening to the 60s music; not anything new that the groups that have reunited have made. I think their voices are better when they are younger. No, they weren’t always that bad!!
    Great looking pics. I could use a slice of that right now!

  14. Another 37-year old here who was in love with Joey McIntyre in 6th grade! This cake looks yummy, definitely pinning!

  15. Ugh, I know what your saying about NKOTB. I’ll love them forever tho! Think I just found my birthday cake this year. Thanks!

    ~Ashley @ A Cute Angle

  16. I think this is the best poke cake EVER!!

  17. Holy moly, Dorothy!  Pinning this one as I see it being a big hit at our house this summer.

    (And I totally agree with the NKOTB performance…)

  18. I was never in to NKOTB! But I’m glad that I got to see Paul McCartney sing live in the late ’90’s, when he was still a great singer.  Now it’s not the same; voices just don’t last that long. Frank Sinatra was retired by 70, right? Hey, great poke cake!  You are a genius!

  19. Wow! this looks soooooo good right now!

  20. Wow, that sounds fantastic.  Also, why have I never made a poke cake, or, um, heard of them before?  Because that sounds absolutely amazing and I definitely need to make one soon!

  21. I have yet to try to make poke cake, but I always drool over the recipes that you post. Looks like I’ll have to experiment with this one very soon. 🙂

  22. Ingenious! Grown mean should not wear skirts over jeans!!

  23. I saw them two years ago this month in concert and they were very good.  I didn’t see the show but I hope it was a one time thing.  A friend of mine saw them a few weeks ago and enjoyed the show a lot.  I may make this in the next few days for my sister’s b’day.

  24. OK, I probably shouldn’t say this out loud but I’ve never made a poke cake!!!! Where have I been?!!! I mean I’ve seen them all over Pinterest. .  so I def need to get my act together and try this deliciousness!!! and esp a poke cake filled with ice cream. Brilliant!!!! 

    • Alice you totally should! They’re so easy, SO good, and everyone loves them (especially pinterest!) But only do it when you have company or you’ll eat the whole thing!!

  25. This poke cake is masterful!  Seriously freakin masterful!!!!  I am so in love with it!!!!

  26. Oh YUM! It’s like an ice cream sundae in cake form – obviously. So good for summer!

  27. Oh my god I bet this cake it moist overload!

  28. Say it ain’t so! I missed out on the NKOTB tragedy since we’re a Netflix only fam. So bummed to hear they were horrific! I might just continue living my life in a hole and pretend they are still their 20+ yr ago fantastic selves while I eat my feelings with this ICE CREAM?! – #youreagenius – poke cake 🙂 

  29. Aaah I totally missed that performance! Sounds like they were pretty bad though. Definitely have to find it on YouTube later!! This poke cake is genius! Love that you used ice cream! It looks completely amazing! 

  30. Did you just refrigerate to chill or put it in the freezer to turn it back into frozen ice cream?  I think this is what I’m bringing to family dinner this weekend!!

    • It doesn’t turn back into ice cream, the melted ice cream soaks into the cake making it super moist and then the cake tastes like whatever flavor you use! I like to keep mine in the refrigerator, especially once the topping is on!

  31. Okay, I had no idea that NKOTB performed, so naturally I Googled it. Yea, it was pretty horrible. This poke cake is PURE GENIUS and I am 100% certain I will be making this for the next office birthday! 

  32. Love love love this poke cake. 

  33. I stopped watching American Idol a few years ago, but now I need to Google for that video! Although once you watch it, you can’t un-watch it. I’m afraid it will ruin me. Lol. This poke cake is genius – PERFECT for summer.

  34. Holy moly!  This is seriously awesome!  What a perfect summer dessert!

  35. I live behind a Mexican super market that has a fantastic bakery. My favorite dessert to get from there is a tres leche cake and your cake  reminds me of them. I have never come across an ice cream poke cake. And ice cream is my favorite food ever. I can`t wait for the weekend to be over so I can make this 

  36. ohhhh nooo! I’m so sorry about your dreams being dashed 🙁 I feel like I loved NYSYNC and BSB but then I distanced myself and was like “omg I was so lame when I liked them” and now I’m like…they hold up. They were good. No regrets.

    other news: LOVE that you put ice cream in a poke cake!!! INSANE

  37. NKOTB was a letdown..sorry Joey. But everyone has a bad performance every decade or so right?? And btw, the poke cake looks AWESOME. I’ve never even thought of melted ice cream! 

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