I want to make this cake (image below), but I can’t figure out the third layer.

enter image description here

Obviously it is 2 layers of chocolate cake and 1 of chocolate mousse, but what is the caramel-like layer?

Can anyone identify it, please?

  • What makes you think mousse? It could easily be a whipped and non-whipped layer of buttercream - especially given the #tags on the IG post.
    – bob1
    Commented Jul 24, 2021 at 10:33
  • 4
    @bob1 Unfortunately, you can't rely on tags to identify the foods on accounts like that one. It exists to get tons of engagement by sharing stolen and/or user submitted pictures of "food porn". The tags are chosen by someone who likely wasn't there eating the cake with the purpose of maximising engagement. If they think #buttercream leads to more engagement than #mousse, they use the first.
    – user141592
    Commented Jul 24, 2021 at 11:07
  • I didn't go by the tags and I think it's mousse because it looks like mousse, to me, but that's not the question posed.
    – Matt W
    Commented Jul 27, 2021 at 8:19

4 Answers 4


Looking at the way it is cut, teared and smeared by the spoon in the video my best guess would be that it is some kind of custard or pudding that gets its consistency most probably from yolk and/or starch.

Please be aware that a definitive identification only from a picture will remain an impossible task as no one will be able to see if this mass contains maybe some coffee, rum or orange blossom water to add a different taste to it. So in the end you will have to fill up these gaps with your creativity and imagination.

  • Thanks - yes, I'm getting that I probably should have asked "how would you make something which looks like this" instead.
    – Matt W
    Commented Jul 27, 2021 at 8:22

... If I had to guess? Jello chocolate pudding made with less milk for the dark layer, and then a whippy chocolate buttercream or mousse for the lighter layer.

It could really be anything, but I felt the need to answer because I 1000% think that is Jello instant pudding. My only evidence is a profound feeling of nostalgia.


Caramel wouldn't be solid enough to become such a thick layer in a cake. If you try to make it thick, you will get it to the consistency of chewy caramel candy - both too sticky and too sweet to use as part of a cake.

My best guess is that you are looking at a layer of gianduja, thinned with something else - or maybe even pure Nutella. The second guess is that it can be dulce de leche based. I saw J. Mueller's post about it being a custard, but I have rarely seen a custard in this color. Maybe if it is a yolk-thickened custard without any milk products, it could produce that slightly translucent shade. But I fully agree with him that it is impossible to identify it for certain just by looking.


If you get chocolate Gnash or chocolate-cream compound, and heat it up a bit it would look like that. Don't try to recreate it exactly, try putting some cheese cream in instead, like the Costco chocolate mousse cakes.

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