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Peppermint Mocha Trifle

Peppermint Mocha Trifle

Trifles are the perfect holiday dessert. They are best made in advance, easy to assemble, and they serve a crowd. If you want to get fancy, you can make small individual trifles, but I usually make a large one in a pretty glass bowl to show all the layers.

  • Prep. Time 45 mins
  • Cooking Time 40 mins
  • Yields 12 Servings

This recipe received

378 votes
Jeanine Friesen

I make gluten-free taste great!

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What You Need

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/3 cup millet flour*
1/3 cup brown rice flour*
1/3 cup tapioca starch*
1 tbsp espresso powder
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 large eggs
1/4 cup oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tbsp cornstarch
pinch salt
2 cups milk
1 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp peppermint extract

Whipped Cream:
1 1/2 cups 35% cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Shaved chocolate and crushed peppermint candy canes to garnish.


*Note: if you do not require a gluten-free diet or to make things easier, use a store-bought cake mix (to make an 8x8 or 9x9-inch cake) and add 1 tablespoon of espresso powder before following the directions on the package. You can also use a package of cooked chocolate pudding mix. Prepare according to directions and add the butter & peppermint extract before cooling.

For the cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8x8-inch baking pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. Then, in a smaller bowl, whisk together all the wet ingredients.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and stir until combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Don’t assemble the trifle until it has fully cooled.

For the pudding:

In a 2 quart microwave safe bowl, whisk together the sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch, and salt. Whisk in the milk and microwave on high for 3 minutes. Whisk again.

Continue microwaving in one minute intervals, whisking in between, until the pudding has boiled and thickened.

Now, stir in the butter and peppermint extract.

Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on top of the warm pudding to prevent a skin from forming on the pudding and let the pudding cool completely before assembling the trifle.

For the whipped cream:

Place all the ingredients in a deep, narrow bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat the whipping cream until soft peaks form.

To assemble the trifle:

Cut the cake into small cubes and layer half of the cake in the bottom of your bowl. Top it with half of the cooled pudding.

Then, spread half of the whipped cream over the pudding.

Repeat with another layer of cake, pudding, topping it with the whipped cream.

Garnish the top with shaved chocolate and crushed peppermint candy canes.

Keep the trifle refrigerated until ready to serve.

The cake and pudding can be made a day in advance, and the trifle can be assembled up to 12 hours before serving. For best results, assemble 4 hours before serving.

Tip: This recipe is perfect to make one large trifle. If you are making individual serving size trifles, you will need to double the pudding to ensure enough for each cup. The pudding to cake ratio is higher in the individual serving sized trifles.


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