Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake – a brownie layer on the bottom, covered with a strawberry cake, topped with Cool Whip, and completely covered in a melted milk chocolate shell. A delicious cake from the new cookbook, Surprise-Inside Cakes, by Amanda Rettke, creator of the I Am Baker blog.

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

I like cake…

Do you like cake?
If so, have I got a great cake for you!


Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes CookbookBut this is not only a cake, it’s like a brownie, a strawberry cake and lots of delicious Cool Whip all rolled into one.
This incredible creation is just one of the A-M-A-Z-I-N-G cakes you’ll find in the new cookbook, Surprise-Inside Cakes, by Amanda Rettke.

Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook by Amanda Rettke from I am Baker

She is the extremely talented woman behind the blog, I Am Baker. She is also the original creator of the Rose Cake which you can find on her blog. Go here to see her blog –
Since I started blogging, I have been extremely fortunate to meet so many talented, and wonderful bloggers, and many, if not all, are so willing and ready to assist should the need arise. Amanda is no exception. We’ve become friends thanks to social media, but I so look forward to the day when I can give her a big hug in person! She is one of the most talented women I know and the best part, she is self-taught! Check out her blog, read about her story and buy this incredible cookbook!
You can find it here at Amazon –

I don’t claim to be a professional cake decorator and I’m not going to try to be. One of my motivators for doing this blog is to show people who either don’t know how to do things in the kitchen or are afraid to that it can be done. All you have to do is try and gain experience. Yes, you are going to make mistakes.
We all do.
And I most certainly did the other day….See?

Spilled melted chocolate chips and canola oil.

Yes, I made a BIG mess. I melted the chocolate chips mixed with canola oil and was getting ready to transfer it to a container so that I could pour it onto the cake when the bowl slipped from my hand going EVERYWHERE – onto the floor, the stove, down the cupboards, in between the cupboards and the stove and onto me. I was SO incredibly upset!! And of course, I had only purchased one package of milk chocolate chips, so had to wait til the next day to finish.
So, yes we all make mistakes, but we just have to keep at it and keep trying.
You never know what wonderful things you can create if you do!

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

This cake turned out to be one of them. It’s so delicious in so many ways and really is incredible to look at. I have to say that I was pretty proud of myself having not made too many cakes in the past, but each cake in Amanda’s book is a step-by-step tutorial which made it not only easy, but fun as well. She also tells you which cakes are good for beginners and which are more challenging.
And not only are the directions easy to follow, but her cake and brownie recipes are out of this world!
I know that I will be referring to this book again and again. I’m excited to try out some of her other cakes like the Oreo Cake, the Tree Cake, and the Stripe Birthday Cake among others!

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

The whole cake was delicious, but since the strawberry layer turned out to be Mr. 365’s favorite (and one of his favorite cakes I’ve made to date, so far), I’ll give you the recipe for that. For the rest of it, you’ll need to purchase the book. There’s just WAY too much greatness in here for me to cover!

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

Here are some more pictures of the process…

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

Strawberry Cake

A cake from Amanda Rettke's cookbook, Surprise-Inside cakes with a delicious strawberry flavor. Using both strawberry puree and diced strawberries, this cake can be made into an 8-inch three layer cake, a 9-inch double layer cake or with one 9-inch layer included in the Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake.


  • 4 large eggs, separated and room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Rodelle Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2/3 cup strawberry puree (below)
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries, diced


    Strawberry Puree
  1. Blend one cup of thawed frozen strawberries and 1 - 2 tablespoons water
  2. Cake
  3. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.
  4. Prepare two 9-inch round cake pans by spraying them with a baking spray.
  5. In a stand mixer, with the whisk attached, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. This should take approximately three minutes.
  6. Add 1 cup of the sugar, using one tablespoon at a time while continuously whipping.
  7. Transfer the egg white mixture to a large bowl and clean the mixing bowl.
  8. Next, using the paddle attachment of the stand mixer, cream the butter and the remaining cup of sugar in the clean mixing bowl until light and fluffy. This should take approximately 2 minutes.
  9. Add both the vanilla and almond extracts and thoroughly combine.
  10. One at a time, add the eggs yolks, beating well after each inclusion.
  11. In a medium bowl, sift the 3 cups of flour, salt and baking powder together.
  12. Add one-third of the flour mixture to the batter and thoroughly incorporate.
  13. Add half of the strawberry puree, followed by half of the remaining flour mixture.
  14. Add the rest of the strawberry puree and then the rest of the flour mixture.
  15. Be sure to mix well after each addition and it will be thick.
  16. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the egg whites.
  17. In a medium bowl, combine the diced strawberries with the two tablespoons of flour. Fold them gently into the cake batter using the same rubber spatula.
  18. Pour the batter into the two prepared 9-inch round cake pans and bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  19. Allow the pans to cool for 5-10 minutes before carefully removing and transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.


Three 8-inch round cake pans can be used for this recipe, but for the cake, I used two 9-inch round baking pans as directed in the cake tutorial which is what follows, but only used one. If using two 8-inch cake pans, Amanda says to bake them for 45 - 50 minutes.

Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake - a brownie, a strawberry cake, and Cool Whip. Delicious! From Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook

I rate everything I make on a scale of 1-4 with 4 being the best and this Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake earned 4 rolling pins!
How could it not?
With three layers of incredible goodness AND completely covered in a chocolate shell, this masterpiece is sure to be the talk of your next gathering.
If you’re looking to impress people – your boyfriend’s parents, your girlfriends at your next Girls’ Night, those moms in your playgroup (oh, and they don’t need to be impressed, they just deserve this really good cake and will be forever grateful that you took the time to make it for them!), your boss or to make your significant other feel extra-special, then this is the cake to make.

I’ll be honest (because that’s all I ever am here on the blog), the only thing that disappointed me about this cake was the color of my strawberry cake.
It was more of a beige with bits of pink strawberries in it rather than the gorgeous, and I do mean gorgeous color pink of Amanda’s on the book.
I think just a touch of red food coloring would remedy that, but in the end, it didn’t really matter because it was pretty darn delicious no matter what the color!

The giveaway is now closed. A huge THANKS to all of you who entered!!
The 48th comment has been chosen by as the winner of the cookbook –
One person will receive a copy of Amanda’s book, Surprise-Inside Cakes! The giveaway is open to residents of the U.S. ages 18 and older (unfortunately, shipping prevents me from allowing international readers to enter).

Please be sure I have your e-mail so that I can contact you when you win!

It’s simple. It’s easy.
I will be using Random.Org to select the winner.
This giveaway will end this Friday, April 25 at 11:59 pm EST.
Good luck!

I give you BIG baking hugs and muffins!!



  1. says

    Oh my WORD, what a cake extravaganza! I can’t even imagine how upset I’d be if I lost my bowl of chocolate like you did. You’ve got determination to pick back up the pieces and start over the next day, Lynne! BRAVO :)

  2. Gina Marchant says

    I have to say that my favorite cake to EAT is German Chocolate…with homemade frosting ONLY! No canned/pre-made stuff for me! My favorite cake to MAKE is a fresh strawberry cake…including fresh strawberries as an ingredient in the frosting!!!! Y-U-M-M-O!!!!!!

  3. Ku says

    I’m in Aus so sadly I can’t enter, but I LOVE banana and raspberry cake and lemon meringue cupcakes with that beautiful lemon curd surprise centre. Yummy!!!!!! Good luck to everyone :)

  4. Marie Thibodeau says

    love your blog!! my favorite cake to make is a mandarin orange cake with vanilla/pineapple whipped cream topping. i bake in a small assisted living home with 13 ladies and 1 gentleman. this has become their favorite dessert. their eyes light up and their smiles are too precious!! keep up the good work……

  5. Kathy elrick says

    Looks really nice cake to make , I am sure if I made it that it wouldn’t turn out that way. My favorite cake is almond cake ..

  6. Nicole says

    My favorite cake is a true Schwarzwald Kirsch Kuchen, a Black Forest Cherry Cake, one that is made with authentic Kirschwasser. It is a rare and delectable treat!!!!

  7. Priscilla Brown says

    Wow. That’s an amazing cake. Thank you for sharing. One of my favorite cake cream cheese pound cake.

  8. says


    You don’t understand! Neapolitan is my absolute FAVORITE flavor combination! This is like all kinds of awesomness combined into one incredible creation! LOVE it!

    My favorite cake is dark chocolate sour cream cake with a layers of chocolate mousse in between covered in whipped milk chocolate ganache.

    Best Kitchen Wishes!

  9. Brenda Perzee says

    THE most awesome cake I’ve seen for a LONG time!! My favorite cake is ANY cake made with chocolate!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. kimm navarrete says

    I’m most definitely running to the store for top hat ingredients! Looks so good, my kids will love it and looks easy too!

  11. Taneka says

    I wonder how this would be as cupcakes. My all time favorite cake is a good old fashioned 7up pound cake. My granny made them all the time.Simple and sweet. I am gonna try this as cupcakes.

  12. says

    The Neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake reminds me of these mini cakes I used to get as a kid from a bakery near my home, they were either chocolate or vanilla cake with swirled cream top that came to a point and covered with chocolate. They were a special treat and certainly a favorite back then. Now…hmm… I tend to like light cakes, lemon or orange with whipped cream…but then again… 😉

  13. Shelby says

    I love a chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting. Homemade ,of course, or near to it.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  14. Jan Watkins says

    This cake is gorgeous, what an awesome job you did. My favorite cake is a Banana Cake with Caramel frosting.

  15. KAPP902 says

    thanks for such an inspirational post! not only does do you make this Hi-hat Cake look easy to make but you also showed us your goof up in the kitchen and encouraged us to just keep trying. I totally have to be in the mood to bake or else it will not come out right. I love to make cake and my favorite is German chocolate (i use the recipe on the box of German chocolate–Baker’s) with homemade coconut pecan topping…it’s soooooo good. The cookbook, by I Am Baker, looks great…i enjoy cookbooks very much…hope I can win it

  16. Julie Saxelby says

    I was going to say “Coconut cake” but after reading all the replies I realize I have many favorites….. Jam Cake, lemon cake choc cake carrot cake white cake… The list goes on.. Hahaha I think I will get up and bake….

  17. Janica says

    I am not a big cake eater but I think that the neapolitan Hi-Hat Cake might be one that I could count as my number 1 cake.

    • Lynne says

      Thanks, Jessica!
      Congratulations, your comment has been selected by as the winner!! I’ve sent you an e-mail and look forward to hearing from you!

  18. Heather Barker says

    My favorite cake of all time so far is the Hershey’s Chocolate Cake found on the back of the Hershey’s Bakers chocolate container. Chocolaty yummy goodness

  19. Susan Harkins says

    My favorite is angel food cake with fresh whipped cream mixed with strawberry preserves. My mother made this every year for my birthday until she passed.

  20. Pat says

    This cookbook looks like a must have for the collection. Your post was great. Must make this cake. Individual pineapple upside down cakes are standing in the way. Mom’s favorite. Mine is Texas sheet cake including its same pan fudge icing.

  21. Michael A. Koons says

    Wow – Usually a moist, dense Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese frosting is my fave but I wouldn’t turn down a rich dark Chocolate Cake with Fudge Frosting either! Would love to win the cookbook too!! ❤️❤️

  22. Judy Hartmann says

    I wanted to jump through the screen and take a really big bite! This is amazing! My favorite cake is German chocolate, carrot cake, mounds cake! Could I just say I like cake!

  23. Maggie says

    My favorite cake is whatever cake I am eating at the moment! It also helps if it is chocolate!
    Love Cake! Yum, yum!

  24. Pamela Gibeson says

    My favorite cake, I think, would be this Peanut Butter Sheet Cake I once had. I’ve also made some jello poke cakes that were amazing! It’s so hard to choose a favorite!

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