This oatmeal chocolate chip cake is smothered in cinnamon cream cheese frosting, making it a delightfully different kind of treat. Enjoy this as a snack or at the end of a nice dinner party!
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If I could have one kind of cake on hand at all times it might be oatmeal chocolate chip cake with cream cheese frosting. It has everything I want in a cake – it’s tender, sweet, full of chocolate, and has plenty of frosting.
I originally found this recipe in the cookbook Baked Explorations (affiliate link), which is full of some of the best treats you could ever make at home. I decided to boost two of my favorite flavors beyond the original – bourbon and cinnamon.
This oatmeal cake makes a great snack, but I wouldn’t judge you for eating it for breakfast or serving as an after dinner dessert. It’s really versatile with just the right balance of flavors.
One thing to keep in mind is that this cake is a little messy. It’s hard to get a clean slice out of it, which isn’t really a big deal because it’s one of my favorite things about the texture of the cake, but keep it in mind if you’re hoping to serve it with a nice presentation.
Oatmeal chocolate chip cake ingredients
- Boiling water
- Granulated sugar
- Brown sugar
- Baking soda
- Baking powder
- Chocolate chips
How to make oatmeal chocolate chip cake
- In a small bowl, stir together bourbon and chocolate chips. Add 2 tablespoons flour and stir to coat.
- Place oats and butter in a large bowl. Pour boiling water over the top, wait 30 seconds, and stir to combine it all. Set aside for 30 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, both sugars, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon until combined.
- Fold in the cooled oatmeal mixture and stir until well combined.
- Gently fold in the remaining flour, then the chocolate chips.
- Pour the batter into a buttered 9×13 baking pan and spread out evenly.
- Bake the cake for 35-45 minutes at 375ºF until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let cool on a wire rack at least 30 minutes before frosting.
Cinnamon cream cheese frosting ingredients
- Cream cheese
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
How to make cinnamon cream cheese frosting
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until smooth.
- Add the cream cheese and beat until combined.
- Add the cinnamon, powdered sugar, and vanilla and beat until smooth, about 1 minute.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Spread a thin layer of frosting over the cooled cake. Refrigerate the frosted cake for 15 minutes to allow it to set before slicing and serving.
Top tips and questions
Do I need to use bourbon?
If you prefer not to cook with alcohol, you can swap the bourbon for vanilla extract (although keep in mind, extracts often contain alcohol, especially if it’s my homemade vanilla extract), or leave it out entirely.
You could also replace it with a bit of vanilla paste or powder.
How long do I need to let oatmeal chocolate chip cake cool before frosting?
You want your cake to be completely cooled before frosting, so it will need a minimum of 30 minutes. The safer bet would be 2 hours.
If you frost the cake before it is cooled, the frosting will melt and slide around.
Can I freeze oatmeal chocolate chip cake?
You can freeze oatmeal chocolate chip cake. Once you’re ready to serve, thaw the cake in the refrigerator overnight, or let sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes.
Can I use quick cooking oats in oatmeal cake?
I have not tested quick cooking oats, but I do think they would work in this recipe. I do not recommend using steel cut oats or the quick cooking oatmeal packets that come with flavorings.
Can I make oatmeal cake vegan?
While I haven’t tested it, I think vegan swaps of the dairy products would work well along with 2 flax eggs to make this vegan. Be sure to use the stick version of vegan butter rather than the tub, and use organic sugar to ensure it is vegan (most granulated sugar is created using bone char).
Tips for customizing
- If you prefer not to use bourbon, swap it for vanilla extract
- Leave the cinnamon out of the frosting if you prefer a plain cream cheese frosting
- Swap half or all the chocolate chips for raisins
- Skip the frosting and dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar
More cake recipes
- Butternut Squash Cake
- Banana Bundt Cake
- Applesauce Cake
- Chocolate Cake with Warm Butter Sauce
- Lemon Pound Cake
- The Best Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Frosting
- Orange Scented Chocolate Cake
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake
- 8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon bourbon
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ½ cup butter, cut into small cubes, at room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups boiling water
- 1 ¼ cups firmly packed brown sugar
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Butter the sides and bottom of a 9×13 glass or light-colored metal baking pan. Set aside.
- Place the chocolate chips in a small bowl and toss them with the bourbon until covered. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour over the chips and toss until coated. Set aside.
- Place the oats and cubed butter in a large bowl. Pour the boiling water over the oat mixture, wait 30 seconds, and stir to moisten all the oats and melt the butter. Set the mixture aside for 25 to 30 minutes to allow it to cool.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the both sugars, eggs, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon until combined. Fold in the cooled oatmeal and stir until well combined. Gently fold in the remaining flour and then the chocolate chips. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth out the top.
- Bake the cake for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes.
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
- In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until completely smooth. Add the cream cheese and beat until combined. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon and beat until smooth, about 1 minute. Cover the bowl tightly and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Spread a thin, even layer of frosting over the cooled cake. Chill it for 15 minutes so that it can set. Slice and serve. The frosted cake will keep, refrigerated and tightly covered, for up to 3 days. Bring the cake back to room temperature before serving.