Easy Chocolate Funfetti Tsunami Pull Up Cake

This delicious rich and moist one bowl chocolate wacky or crazy cake is easily transformed into this layered Tsunami cake or pull-me-up-cake. The cake itself is made in one bowl and made with very very basic pantry ingredients. The fudgy chocolate buttercream is made in the food processor and is so fluffy and fabulous coating each layer. The special part of the tsunami cake is the smooth glaze or ganache that creates all the fun drama in this cake. We can forget the sprinkles over top it - it is a funfetti cake after all.

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

What is a Tsunami Cake?

Basically a cake that has taken over the internet this year. Layers of chocolate cake and fluffy buttercream with a surprise chocolate ganache topping. It’s so easy to recreate at home. It is a cake with most of its frosting suspended inside of a thin, acetate cake collar - or simply acetate sheets taped togther. When you remove or pull the plastic up, you guessed it, the glaze cascades over the side of the cake, much like a tsunami, so your guests can watch the magic happen. The thicker the glaze the slower it’s runs - the thinner it is the runnier it will be when the acetate collar is removed. I like mine thick so that that some of it actually stays on the cake itself instead of on the cake platter but for a more dramatic take you can leave it a bit runnier.

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

I was asked to create a recipe for this fun cake my Metro and I was excited to make it. I used Metro’s in store brand Selection dark 70% Baking Chocolate and their Selection Premium Cocoa Powder to make this chocolate decadent cake, frosting and ganache. As much as I like a fun internet trend Iike this one - I never think they are practical or easy to make at home. So I was on a mission to create a recipe that everyone can make at home. An easy way to make this fun layered cake for all the homemakers and their little helpers in the kitchen. A fun baking project that the kids will love for sure. Let me tell you more about each component of this cake.

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

What is Chocolate wacky/crazy cake?

It’s a cake that has been around since the Depression Era when ingredients were scarce. It’s doesn’t use eggs or diary in it, making it vegan, and bakes up moist and tender, thanks to a combination of baking soda and vinegar. It’s also cake that kids love to help prepare because it is so easy. I chose this recipe to be the cake component of my Tsunami cake because it’s so easy but also so very versatile. This cake batter can be made into one 9x13 baking pan, one 13x18 baking sheet as shown in the video, or 2 (9-inch) round cakes pans. So if you weren’t up to making the pull up cake you can just use this as a base for a wonderful sheet-pan or a stacked two layered 9 inch cake. You can even cut this sheet-pan cake in half and make it a double layered rectangular cake as well. It doesn’t get more versatile than that. I chose to cut out 4 rounds out of it to create this tsunami cake (watch me do this in the video). I only used three this time but it can make up to 4 layers. I would recommend placing a stabilizing skewer or straw through the middle of it if you are going taller than three layers to keep the cake stable. Any leftover cake can be enjoyed in cake parfaits, or cake pops. You can also add sprinkles into the batter if you wish - up to 1/2 cup for some double sprinkle action.

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

Food processor buttercream frosting

This is a genius way of making buttercream frosting that isn’t new but new to me! There are loads of versions out there - I used the one from Sky High Irresistible Triple Layer cakes cookbook. It comes together so fast in the food processor but if you don’t have one that is ok you can use a stand mixer or hand held. The texture will not be exactly the same but it will work. It can be made 1-2 days ahead and refrigerated and then brought to room temperature before spreading it on your cake.

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

How to assemble a Tsunami Cake

  • Trim cake rounds - Feel free to pop the layers on a clean baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze briefly while you make the frosting. This will make assembly a little easier.
  • Plate the 1st cake layer - use a plate with a lip to catch any extra ganache
  • Spoon or pipe on the frosting - be generous with the frosting
  • Place the second cake layer over top - gently pressing it into the buttercream
  • Add buttercream to this layer of cake as well
  • Add your third cake layer- gently pressing it into the buttercream
  • Add your final layer of buttercream (at this point you can add a 4th layer or leave as is)
  • Wrap cake with acetate sheet that is at least 2 inches taller than the cake. Tape off ends. Check that there are no gaps between acetate and frosting on the top layer, adding more frosting as needed.
  • Pour ganache over frosting
  • Sprinkle over the rainbow sprinkles
  • Slowly and gently pull acetate sheet complete off the cake allowing ganache to drip down the cake. Slice and enjoy!

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake

Whether you stack layers of this crazy/wacky chocolate cake with that tasty fudgey buttercream into a Tsunami cake or enjoy it as a sheetpan cake - you will not be disappointed!


Servings: One 13x18 or 15x10 sheet pan cake
Prep Time: 30 mins
Cook Time: 20-25 mins


For The Cake

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅔ cup Selection Premium Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups granulated white sugar
  • ¾ cup neutral tasting vegetable oil like canola
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups room temperature brewed black coffee (optional - use water instead)
  • ¼-½ cup rainbow sprinkles (optional)

For The Fudge Buttercream Frosting

  • 6 ounces Selection dark 70% Baking chocolate , chopped, melted and the cooled
  • 4½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1½ cup unsalted butter , softened to room temperature (3 sticks)
  • 6 tablespoons whole milk or half and half
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

For The Chocolate Ganache

  • 200 g or 7 oz Selection dark 70% Baking chocolate, chopped
  • 250 ml or 1 cup of heavy cream


For The Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Liberally grease 13x18 (or 15x10) rectangular baking sheet with cooking spray and line with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and granulated sugar until combined. Mix in the oil, vanilla, vinegar and room temperature coffee OR water and whisk together until a smooth batter comes together. Pour into the prepared pan.
  3. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool completely. Refrigerate or freeze for a few minutes after it’s room temperature to make it easier to slice.

For Fudge Buttercream Frosting

  • Add all ingredients to a food processor and run for about 20 seconds until frosting comes together. Scrape down the bowl and run until smooth.

For The Ganache

  • Place chocolate in medium bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium heat (or microwave) until just below simmering. Pour hot cream over chocolate, leave as is for 1 min then stir well until smooth and glossy, set aside to cool.

To assemble cake

  1. Once cake is cool, use a 5” round biscuit cutter or plate to help you trim out circles of cake. You should be able to get 3 full circles and a 4th made from two halves. Place the first one down on a rimmed plate. Spread 2-3 tablespoons of the frosting over cake, then place second cake layer over it pressing it down lightly then repeat with remaining cake layers. Finishing off with the buttercream.
  2. Wrap cake with acetate sheet that is at least 2 inches taller than the cake. Tape off ends. Check that there are no gaps between acetate and frosting on the top layer, adding more frosting as needed.
  3. Pour ganache over frosting
  4. Add the sprinkles all over the top of the ganache
  5. Slowly and gently pull acetate sheet complete off the cake allowing ganache to drip down the cake. Slice and enjoy

Recipe Notes

  • Adding the coffee is optional in the cake. It will deepen the chocolate flavour without tasting like coffee. You can always substitute with cool water instead, but I love the richness the coffee adds.
  • The cake can be stored, covered with plastic wrap or in airtight container refrigerated preferably, for up to 4-7 days.
  • This cake can be made 4 ways - in one 9x13 baking pan, one 13x18 baking sheet, one 15x10 baking sheet or 2 (9-inch) round cakes pans

Chocolate Funfetti Lava Cake