Grilled Pound Cake with Coffee Ganache

Grilled Pound Cake with Coffee Ganache

Prep Time


Cook Time




This recipe is from The Culinary Institute of America’s cookbook, Grilling: Exciting International Flavors from the World’s Premier Culinary College.

Any good-quality pound cake will work in this recipe, but the cake recipe we give below makes a dense cake that slices neatly and stands up perfectly to the grill.

Adding the ganache and either whipped cream or ice cream provides the perfect amount of flavor and moisture for an outstanding dessert from the grill.

Read our Interview with CIA Chef David Kamen.


  • 4 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups softened butter
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 12 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup Coffee Ganache (recipe follows)
  • 1 cup whipped cream or French vanilla ice cream
  • 1 cup coarse-chopped toasted hazelnuts
  • For the Coffee Ganache:
  • 2 tablespoons powdered instant espresso
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 2/3 cups finely chopped dark chocolate


  • 1 Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare two 8-inch loaf pans by spraying them lightly with cooking spray or lining them with parchment paper.
  • 2 Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
  • 3 Cream together the butter and sugar by hand or using the paddle attachment of an electric mixer until very smooth and light, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs in 4 separate additions, scraping down the bowl between each addition and mixing until very smooth.
  • 4 Stir the flour mixture into the creamed butter mixture by hand or on low speed until the batter is evenly blended. Do not overmix.
  • 5 Fill the prepared loaf pans 2/3 full (or measure out 2 pounds of batter into each prepared loaf pan for the most even distribution).
  • 6 Bake until a skewer inserted near the center of a cake comes out clean, about 1 hour.
  • 7 Let the cakes cool in the pans for a few minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
  • 8 Cut the cake into slices and serve, or wrap and store whole cakes in the freezer for up to 1 month.
  • 9 For the coffee ganache: Stir together the instant espresso and boiling water until smooth. Set aside.
  • 10 Combine the cream and the corn syrup in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the espresso. Pour the mixture over the chocolate and let sit, covered, for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir until the chocolate has completely melted and the sauce is very smooth.
  • 11 Keep warm until ready to use, or let cool to room temperature and store in a container with a tight-fitting lid in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Reheat chilled sauce over very low heat on the stovetop or in the microwave until warm enough to pour easily.
  • 12 To grill the cake: Preheat a gas grill to medium-high. If you are using a charcoal grill, build a fire and let it burn down until the coals are glowing red with a light coating of white ash. Spread the coals in an even bed. Clean the cooking grate.
  • 13 Grill the Pound Cake slices until well marked on both sides of each slice and the cake is warmed throughout, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  • 14 Serve the grilled cake topped with the Coffee Ganache, whipped cream or ice cream, and toasted hazelnuts.


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