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Eclair Cake

A piece of chocolate cake on a plate
For those hectic times when you need to entertain, this chocolate eclair cake is such an easy recipe requiring very few ingredients. Bring this to a party, baby shower or potluck and no one will know how little work it took to make.
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Table of Contents
  1. ECLAIR CAKE INGREDIENTS
  2. HOW TO MAKE THIS ECLAIR CAKE RECIPE
  3. HOW TO SERVE
  4. STORAGE
  5. FAQ
  6. MORE EASY DESSERT RECIPES YOU'LL LOVE
  7. JUMP TO RECIPE

An éclair cake simply takes all of the flavors of a classic eclair and makes them bigger and better—in cake form. It’s stacked in sweet, creamy, delicious layers of graham crackers and pudding. The rich chocolate frosting finishes it off, creating a decadent éclair cake that is so easy to make.

My favorite part is you don’t even have to use the oven. It’s a no-bake layered cake, so I just make the cake the day before, pull it out of the fridge, and it’s ready to serve. For other no-bake desserts, try our no bake peanut butter pie and our jello pie and icebox cake recipes. So delicious!

A piece of chocolate cake on a plate, with Graham cracker and Pudding

MORE CAKE RECIPES
Better Than Sex Cake | Red Wine Cake


ECLAIR CAKE INGREDIENTS

A birthday cake

You will need:

  • 1 box of cinnamon graham crackers
  • 2 (3.4-ounce) boxes of Instant French Vanilla Pudding
  • 12 ounces of Cool Whip 
  • 3½ cups milk
  • 1 tub dark chocolate frosting

PRO TIP: The pudding will not set with dairy-free or lactose-free milk. Make sure you are using regular milk in this recipe.

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

TOPPINGS: Cut the éclair cake into generous squares and make it yours with whichever toppings you prefer. What doesn’t go with chocolate and vanilla filling? Sprinkle your piece with some chopped nuts or if you believe you can never have too much chocolate, add chocolate chips. I like to smother mine with some whipped cream or a layer of Cool Whip and top it off with strawberry slices. You could also add sliced bananas or even pour hot fudge sauce on top. If you want to stick with simple, a dusting of powdered sugar would be a simple and elegant way to top off your treat.

PEANUT BUTTER: Try a variation with peanut butter by adding 1 cup to the pudding and milk.

PUDDING: For a real twist of flavor, change it up with banana or lemon pudding. Try strawberry pudding or chocolate pudding for one layer and vanilla on another. Mix and match. Éclair cakes are both versatile and beautiful so you can you really play with flavor combinations.

GRAHAM CRACKERS: Get creative by alternating between honey or chocolate graham crackers.

FROSTING: If you’re a milk chocolate fan rather than dark chocolate, go for it! Kids love the sweeter taste of milk chocolate and I don’t blame them! The frosting could even be delicious cream cheese frosting. The options are endless! If you have a preferred homemade chocolate frosting recipe, you are more than welcome to use that too.

HOW TO MAKE THIS ECLAIR CAKE RECIPE

STEP ONE: Begin by mixing together the dry instant pudding mix and the milk in a medium bowl with a hand mixer. Blend well for about two minutes. Then fold in the Cool Whip with a spoon or a spatula.

STEP TWO: Grab a 9×11-inch cake pan and coat it with non-stick spray or parchment paper. Cover the entire bottom of the pan with a layer of whole graham crackers. Break the crackers apart as needed to cover the pan.

STEP THREE: Next, spread only half of the instant vanilla pudding mixture over the top of the graham cracker layer.

A cup of coffee, with Cake and Chocolate

STEP FOUR: Repeat steps by adding a second layer of graham crackers on top of the pudding layer. Then pour the other half of the pudding mixture over the next set of graham crackers.

STEP FIVE: Finish the final layer of graham crackers. I wasn’t kidding—this is why you need a whole box of graham crackers!

STEP SIX: Microwave the chocolate frosting for 20-30 seconds to make it easy to pour over the top of the cake. Evenly spread the warm frosting over the top layer of graham crackers.

STEP SEVEN: Put the éclair cake in the fridge to chill for 12-24 hours. I know, having to wait overnight is the hardest part. But this is when the magic happens! You want the graham crackers to be nice and soft.

PRO TIP: Chilling your dessert is not optional. It is very important that this step happens because the pudding and frosting need to set and the graham crackers need to soften up.

HOW TO SERVE

This no-bake chocolate eclair cake recipe is such a simple but decadent recipe. It would be perfect for the kids to whip up since there is no baking. Serve a delicious slice with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and hot fudge sauce for a truly decadent treat. Add a refreshing glass of iced tea, raspberry iced tea, sweet peach iced tea, or our southern strawberry sweet tea on the side.

STORAGE

IN THE FRIDGE: Store your eclair cake covered in plastic wrap in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.

IN THE FREEZER: Freeze this tasty dessert sealed in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

A slice of cake on a plate, with Chocolate and Cracker

The creamy, rich layers of pudding, graham crackers, and chocolate make this delicious Eclair Cake the perfect dessert year-round. It’s cool and light in the spring and summer, and it’s the best comfort for cozying up in the house during fall and winter. You can’t beat the superb results for a treat that takes minimal effort to make.

FAQ

Can I use different flavors?

There are several ways to change up the flavors in this cake. Try mixing and matching pudding, graham cracker and frosting flavors.

Can I serve this dessert right away?

You definitely need to plan to make this recipe at least a day in advance. It needs to chill, let the pudding set and the graham crackers need time to soften up.

Do I have to use Cool Whip?

You can opt to use homemade whipped cream if you prefer in place of the Cool Whip.

MORE EASY DESSERT RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE

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A piece of chocolate cake on a plate

No Bake Eclair Cake

5 from 11 votes
For those hectic times when you need to entertain, this chocolate eclair cake is such an easy recipe requiring very few ingredients. Bring this to a party, baby shower or potluck and no one will know how little work it took to make.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 12

Ingredients
  

  • 1 box of cinnamon graham crackers
  • 2 3.4-ounce boxes of French Vanilla Instant Pudding
  • 12  ounces of Cool Whip
  • 3 1/2  cups  milk
  • tub dark chocolate frosting

Instructions
 

  • Spray a 9×11-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Mix pudding and milk using a mixer, then fold in Cool Whip using a spoon.
  • Next, layer graham crackers along the bottom of the pan covering the entire bottom.
  • Divide the pudding mixture in half and spread the first half on top of the graham cracker layer.
  • Next, spread the second layer of graham crackers on top of the pudding layer.
  • Lay a final layer of graham crackers.
  • Microwave the dark chocolate frosting for 20-30 seconds to make it easier to spread.
  • Spread the warmed frosting over the top layer of graham crackers evenly, then refrigerate for 24 hours.

Video

Notes

TIP: Try changing the flavor of the pudding or mixing in peanut butter for a twist on this delicious dessert!
TIP: Chilling your dessert is not optional. It is very important that this step happens because the pudding and frosting need to set and the graham crackers need to soften up.
TIP: The pudding will not set with dairy-free or lactose-free milk. Make sure you are using regular milk in this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 400kcal
Have You Tried This Recipe?Follow me on Pinterest @spaceshipslb

Proudly Prepared by the Spaceships Kitchen

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  1. Hazel says

    This looks so good! I’m from New Zealand and we don’t have Graham crackers over here, are they kind of like pastry? Could I cook a couple of sheets of puff pastry to use in their place? And is cool whip just like cream? Thank you so much!

  2. Serena says

    Love the recipe! My 5 year old had so much fun making it. I did find it to be a tad too sweet. Any suggestions on how to make it less sweet?
    Thanks!

  3. Kera says

    How many days could you make this in advance and it still be ok? Would 3 days be too many? (I have so many things going on and travel for Thanksgiving so I’m trying to plan my time wisely)

    • Layne Kangas says

      You could make it a day ahead of time, like maybe Wednesday morning for serving at Thanksgiving. I think three days and it would be a little too soggy to enjoy. Good luck 🙂

  4. Carla says

    5 stars
    One of my family’s favorite desserts! I add one additional ingredient … one 8 oz package of cream cheese! Adds some extra richness! (Not that it needs it, but so delish! )

  5. Ginnie says

    5 stars
    My husband loves eclairs so I had to try this. He really likes it. I won’t use the cinnamon Graham crackers next time. I would also use more pudding and less cool whip. But overall an easy and tasty crowd pleaser!!

  6. Michaelene Bush says

    5 stars
    Everyone loved it! I agree about the sweetness so the second time I made it, I didn’t put a full layer of chocolate on top. Instead I just kinda slung it around making a design. That helped a lot but everyone likes it however its made.

  7. Jacqueline Deveau says

    I was wondering if this could be made by a half, I live alone and am diabetic but watch what I eat, I will use the no sugar added pudding mix and make a ganache for the top with low cal chocolate.
    I make a similar one which is called lazy lady Tiramisu….really good.
    Jackie

  8. Karen says

    5 stars
    Made this a few weeks ago. Big hit I guess because my husband just bought me all the ingredients I need to make another one! Guess what I’ll doing after while?? 5/5 stars. Super easy AND delicious!! What more could we ask for? Thank you!

    • Layne Kangas says

      Hi, Kathy – you would still use the same amount of milk for two puddings. This recipe uses 3.5 cups of milk for two 3.4-ounce boxes of pudding mix. Enjoy!

  9. Sandy says

    5 stars
    This was a huge hit at work! And so easy to make. I only had a 9.5×7.5″ pan so I made the full recipe, filled the pan I had, and used the rest to make a few single servings in small glass tupperware containers to give my family 🙂

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