Salted Caramel Sheet Cake

filed under: Cakes · Dessert on July 21, 2020

This Salted Caramel Sheet Cake is going to take your sheet cake game to a whole new level.  Deliciously moist sheet cake, cooked to perfection, and topped with an ooey-gooey blend of melted caramel, toffee bits, chocolate chips, and sea salt.  You won’t want a regular sheet cake again! Try my Texas Turtle Sheet Cake for another one of my sheet cake recipe favorites!

Salted Caramel Chocolate Sheet Cake Being Cut Into on White Plate

Salted Caramel Sheet Cake

There is this store by my house that sells these individually wrapped chocolate covered caramels topped with sea salt.  Every time I go there, I look forward to the checkout where I know they are sitting, patiently waiting for me to cave and buy one. I can barely make it to my car before its gone. They are seriously mouth-watering. 

So that got me thinking.  What if I paired the same thing with one of my favorite desserts, my best ever chocolate cake?  The results were just as I expected. Glorius. 

Salted Caramel Sheet Cake Pieces Stacked and with Chocolate Sauce Drizzled Over

Salted Caramel Sheet Cake Recipe

To make this recipe you start with a traditional sheet cake base, my all-time favorite best ever chocolate cake recipe. That is the base for this delicious salted caramel sheet cake. This recipe also uses coffee (one of my favorite additions to a chocolate cake), but you can certainly use hot water if you prefer to leave the coffee out.

Chocolate Cake

  • Brown sugar
  • Brewed coffee
  • Cocoa powder–I prefer Dutch-process cocoa for this recipe. Dutch-process cocoa will be labeled with something like, ‘processed with alkali’ and will have a less bitter taste. 
  • Butter
  • Vanilla
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salted butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Eggs

Salted Caramel Topping

  • Caramel candies
  • Butter
  • Milk
  • Sea salt
  • Chocolate chips
  • Toffee bits

Sprinkling Heath Chips Over Salted Caramel Sheet Cake

How to Make Salted Caramel Sheet Cake

This cake is prepared in three steps.  The first two steps are completely dedicated to the sheet cake, and the last step focuses primarily on the caramel topping. This recipe utilizes brewed hot coffee in the first steps and then cooled coffee in the second part.
 
Chocolate Cake – Part 1
Place the brown sugar, brewed coffee, cocoa, butter, and vanilla into a saucepan over low heat. Stir until they are fully incorporated. This will likely take between 5-7 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow to cool a bit. It should be a little thick and similar to custard.
 
Chocolate Cake – Part 2
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, and baking soda together. Add the butter, sugars, eggs, cooled coffee, and vanilla to the flour mixture and mix with a hand-held mixer until fully combined. Add the chocolate mixture from Part 1 to these ingredients from Part 2.
 
Stir by hand until all ingredients are well combined. Pour the mixture onto a prepared (sprayed or lined with parchment paper) 10×15-inch baking sheet. Smooth out the batter and gently tap the pan on the counter to even everything out. Bake for 16-22 minutes, or until the center no longer appears wet and an inserted toothpick is removed with a few crumbs.
 
I have been asked about baking these sheet cakes in a 9×13-inch baking dish. A 9×13-inch dish won’t work as well as the center will not finish cooking while the edges will burn. This is a sheet cake and is only supposed to be about 1 1/2 inches to 2 inches tall at most.
Piece of Salted Caramel Sheet Cake on White Plate with Bite Missing

How to Make the Salted Caramel Topping

This step can be prepared while the cake is baking.  In a microwave-safe bowl, add the caramels, butter, and the milk.  Heat this up in the microwave for 30 seconds. Remove the bowl and stir, and then pop it back in.  You will repeat the 30-second intervals between 1-3 minutes total, or until it is all melted together.   
 
Pour this caramel sauce over the top of the cooked chocolate sheet cake.  Top with sea salt, not table salt. (It makes a big difference!)  Follow with chocolate chips and toffee bits. Crushed pretzels would also be delicious added to this cake. You will be tempted to dive right in, but I suggest allowing the whole thing to cool completely before you start cutting it up.

Looking for More Sheet Cake Recipes?

Make sure to check out some of my favorites!

Almond Pecan Sheet Cake

Rocky Road Sheet Cake

Raspberry Cheesecake Sheet Cake

5 from 1 vote
Salted Caramel Sheet Cake
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
29 mins
Total Time
44 mins
 

This Salted Caramel Sheet Cake is going to take your sheet cake game to a whole new level.  Deliciously moist sheet cake, cooked to perfection, and topped with an ooey-gooey blend of melted caramel, toffee bits, chocolate chips, and sea salt.  You won’t want a regular sheet cake again! 

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Salted Caramel Sheet Cake
Servings: 12
Calories: 548 kcal
Author: Amanda Rettke--iambaker.net
Ingredients
CHOCOLATE CAKE--FIRST PART
  • 1/3  cup  (67g) brown sugar
  • 1/3  cup  strong coffee
  • 1/2  cup  (59g) Dutch-process cocoa
  • tablespoon  butter
  • teaspoon  vanilla
CHOCOLATE CAKE--SECOND PART
  • 1 1/2  cups  (187.5g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  teaspoon  baking powder
  • teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1/2  cup  (1 stick or 113g) salted butter, warm but not melted
  • 1/2  cup  (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2  cup  (100g) packed brown sugar
  • large eggs,  room temperature
  • 1/2  cup  cold coffee
  • teaspoon  vanilla
SALTED CARAMEL TOPPING
  • 1 bag (10 ounces) individually wrapped caramels, unwrapped
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick or 57g) butter
  • 2 tablespoon milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup (68g) chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup toffee bits
Instructions
CHOCOLATE CAKE
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

FIRST PART
  1. Place the brown sugar, coffee, cocoa, butter, and vanilla into a saucepan over low heat. Stir until they are fully incorporated (5-7 minutes). Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit. It should be a little thick and similar to custard.

SECOND PART
  1. In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, and baking soda together.

  2. Add warm butter, both sugars, eggs, cold coffee, and vanilla to the flour mixture and mix with a hand-held mixer until fully combined. Or, stir by hand.

  3. Add the chocolate mixture from the FIRST PART to the ingredients from the SECOND PART. Stir by hand until all ingredients are well combined.

  4. Pour onto a prepared (sprayed or lined with parchment paper) 10x15-inch baking sheet. Smooth out the batter and gently tap the pan on the counter.

  5. Bake for 16-22 minutes, or until the center no longer appears wet and an inserted toothpick is removed with a few crumbs.

SALTED CARAMEL TOPPING
  1. Melt caramels, butter, and milk together in a microwave-safe glass or ceramic bowl in 30-second intervals, stirring after each melting, for 1 to 3 minutes (depending on your microwave).
  2. Pour caramel mixture over warm cake and top with sea salt, chocolate chips, and toffee bits.

  3. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

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Comments

  • Coleene says:

    your recipe header has Pretzel in the title…………..there are no pretzels in this recipe??

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Coleene! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. Oops! We were thinking of adding pretzels, but we didn’t. (However, they would be delicious to add.) I updated the title of the recipe. Thanks! Have a great day!

  • Anne says:

    How do you make the toffee bits? It says to add but doesn’t mention how to make it.

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      You purchase them. HEATH brand. 🙂

  • Kathie says:

    Is there something that can be used instead of coffee? We don’t drink coffee, so it isn’t an option for my family

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Kathie! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. You could use water in place of the coffee, but we have not tried that in this recipe, so I can’t say how much it would affect the end result. Let us know if you do use water and how it turns out. Have a great day!

  • Bradley Jelks says:

    You are awsome!

  • karen says:

    I made this for dessert for dinner tomorrow, how do I store it?

  • CRISTIE BELLAND says:

    If I’m short on time can I use a cake mix?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Of course!

  • Debbie says:

    Hi can I leave out the coffee, I don’t like it