Tin Roof Ice Cream Cake

I’ve got a proposition: I say we all get together once a month to throw a communal birthday party.

You know, kind of like in grade school when all the June birthdays got to get together and party their socks off like it was 1999 — back when cupcakes, peanuts, and all that debauchery was still allowed in the classroom.


I adore birthday celebrations — the streamers, the gift-giving, the cake are some of my absolutely favorite things — so I’d have no qualms with hosting these shindigs. (Let’s ignore the fact my thumbnail-sized apartment can only fit about 10 people at a time.)

This month’s celebration would be for some of my nearest and dearest such as my partner-in-crime from college, my former roommate, my cousin, a few friends, and my man. Seeing as my man would subsist on a diet of malasadas, Have-A-Chips, bacon, and ice cream, were it possible, I figured a sweet, salty, crunchy, peanut butter-y ice cream cake was in order.

Ice cream cakes are one of those things I up and forget about until the weather gets so blazing hot I wouldn’t dare turn on the stove. And it was one of those steamers this past weekend.

Because I was feeling particularly lackadaisical, I didn’t make my own ice cream but bought some from the local market. As a twist on a tin roof sundae, I layered peanut butter ice cream with a bittersweet ganache, my all time favorite chocolate wafer cookies (got to have something for me too, you know), clouds of whipped cream, a dusting of cocoa, and a few handfuls of honey-roasted peanuts and chocolate shavings. It was such a hit that almost a quarter of the cake was gone by the time I went to take this photo!


Tin Roof Ice Cream Cake

  • Makes: 8 to 12 servings
  • Total Time: 1 hour, plus 4 to 24 hours freezing time
  • Hands-On Time: 30 mins


  • For the crust:
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • Parchment or waxed paper
  • 8 ounces chocolate wafer cookies (such as Nabisco Famous Wafers)
  • For the ganache:
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • For the assembly:
    • 2 quarts (4 pints) peanut butter ice cream, softened
    • 1 cup chilled heavy cream, for garnish
    • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder, for garnish
    • A few handfuls Roasted Salted Peanuts, roughly chopped, for garnish
    • 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped, for garnish


  • For the crust:

Using a pastry brush, coat the inside of a 9-inch springform pan with 1 tablespoon of the melted butter. Cut parchment or waxed paper into a circle the same size as the base of the pan and place it in the base.

Place cookies in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until ground; add remaining 6 tablespoons melted butter and pulse until mixture is moistened. Press mixture evenly and firmly into the bottom of the prepared pan and freeze until it’s good and set, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, take the ice cream out of the freezer to soften and make the ganache.

  • For the ganache:

Place chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl; set aside. Place cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Pour cream over chocolate and let stand until chocolate has melted, about 5 minutes.

Stir gently until smooth then stir in butter, one piece at a time, until completely incorporated; let cool slightly before using. Meanwhile, let the ice cream soften, for another about 15 minutes, or until soft enough to spread like room temperature butter but not melted.

  • For the assembly:

When ice cream is softened, and transfer to a mixing bowl. Using a rubber spatula mix until spreadable. Spread half of the ice cream over the cookie crust and smooth the top. Pour half of the ganache over the top and smooth and place in the freezer until firm, at least 30 minutes. Place the remaining ice cream back in the freezer as well.

Remove peanut butter ice cream from the freezer and let soften about 15 minutes. Mix again until spreadable. Spread peanut butter ice cream over the fudge, level the top of the cake, add remaining ganache (you may want to reheat this slightly until it’s just pourable), smooth it, and freeze until the whole cake is very firm, at least 3 hours and up to 1 day.

  • To serve:

Remove cake from the freezer and let sit at a few minutes at room temperature before cutting. Meanwhile, place whipped cream in a clean, large bowl and whip with a whisk until soft peaks form.

Top cake with whipped cream, cocoa, peanuts, chocolate shavings, and serve.

Desserts Recipes