Submitted by Madeline McWhorter
About the cook: My name is Madeline, and I currently work as a caregiver at an elephant sanctuary. Even though my full time job is working with animals, I've always had a passion for cooking. I grew up cooking with my mom and grandma, especially starting when I was 11, after my mom returned from her deployment in the Middle East. It was the way that we re-connected with each other and how my mom re-learned where everything was in her kitchen. To this day, cooking is still one of my greatest joys in life, and every time I visit my family, the first thing we talk about is "what are we going to cook?!"
About the dish: Inspired by my favorite coffee drink, this dish has quickly become a family must-have at the holidays
National Origin: American
Estimated Time: Over 2 Hours
1 standard box of chocolate cake mix (enough to make a 13×9 inch cake)
Eggs, oil, and water directed on the box of cake mix
1 oz box instant chocolate pudding
3 c. cold milk
12-oz container frozen non-dairy whipped topping (like Cool Whip), thawed
2 tbl instant espresso powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup jarred caramel sauce
1 tsp kosher or sea salt
3/4 c. butterscotch chips or mini chocolate chips (either or both depending on your preference)
1. Prepare cake as directed on box (it’s easiest to make the 13×9-inch cake). Allow to cool completely in pan.
2. Dissolve the espresso powder in the vanilla extract and gently fold into the whipped topping until completely combined.
3. Make the pudding as directed on the box. Set aside.
4. Cut the cooled cake into 1 1/2 – 2-inch chunks.
5. Time to layer! Place 1/4 of the cake in a large tall bowl (preferably clear glass so you can see all the beautiful layers). Spread 1/4 of the pudding on top, followed by 1/4 of the whipped cream, 1/4 of the chips, 1/4 of the caramel, and a 1/4 of the salt. Repeat until your bowl is filled, but do not sprinkle salt on the top layer. The top layer should be whipped cream, caramel, and a sprinkle of the chips.
6. Can be served immediately or chilled in fridge for several hours or overnight.
Note: if you have any leftover ingredients, you can make individual trifles in bowls or glasses to use it up! Trust me, everyone will be happy you did.