Sweet & Salty Millionaire’s Layer Cake

Elevate your dessert game with the Sweet & Salty Millionaire’s Layer Cake, an extravagant creation inspired by the beloved Millionaire’s Bars. This multi-layered delight combines rich dark chocolate cake, velvety vanilla bean Swiss meringue buttercream, homemade salted caramel, and crunchy shortbread crumble, all coated in a sumptuous dark chocolate ganache. It’s the perfect dessert for anyone looking to impress at gatherings, special occasions, or when you simply crave a luxurious treat.


For the Chocolate Cake:
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 cups superfine sugar
  • 3/4 cup dark Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup hot brewed coffee
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
For the Vanilla Bean Swiss Meringue Buttercream:
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 cups unsalted butter, cubed
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • Pinch of salt
For the Salted Caramel:
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • Generous pinch of sea salt
For the Shortbread Crumbs:
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cubed
For the Ganache Frosting:
  • 1 lb 6 oz dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup corn syrup
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract


  1. Prepare the Cake:
    • Sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
    • In a separate bowl, combine the buttermilk, hot coffee, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
    • Gradually mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until well combined.
    • Divide the batter evenly among three 8-inch round cake pans that have been greased and lined with parchment paper.
    • Bake at 350°F (177°C) for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool on a wire rack.
  2. Make the Buttercream:
    • Combine egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches 130°F (54°C) or the sugar has completely dissolved.
    • Transfer to a stand mixer and whip until glossy peaks form.
    • Gradually add cubed butter and vanilla bean paste, continuing to mix until smooth and creamy.
  3. Prepare the Caramel:
    • In a heavy saucepan, cook sugar and water over medium heat until it turns an amber color. Carefully whisk in the cream and butter (mixture will bubble), then stir in vanilla and sea salt. Set aside to cool.
  4. Make Shortbread Crumbs:
    • Combine flour, sugar, and butter, rubbing together to form pea-sized crumbs.
    • Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F (177°C) until lightly golden. Let cool.
  5. Assemble the Cake:
    • On a serving plate, place one layer of cake and spread with buttercream. Drizzle with caramel and sprinkle with shortbread crumbs.
    • Repeat layering with remaining cakes, buttercream, caramel, and crumbs.
    • Coat the entire cake with dark chocolate ganache frosting.
  6. Garnish:
    • Optionally, sprinkle the top with a little sea salt and edible glitter for an extra touch of glamour.


  • Temperature Control: Ensure all ingredients, particularly for the buttercream and caramel, are at the appropriate temperature for optimal results.
  • Smooth Ganache: For the silkiest ganache, use an immersion blender to combine the melted chocolate with the cream and butter mixture.
  • Serving: This cake is rich and indulgent, making it ideal for sharing. A small slice goes a long way in delivering intense satisfaction.


The Sweet & Salty Millionaire’s Layer Cake is a true showstopper, perfect

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