Italian Hangover Cake Recipe

Italian Hangover Cake Recipe

Irresistible Italian Hangover Cake Recipe: Your Ultimate Comfort Dessert!

Indulge in the ultimate comfort dessert with our Italian Hangover Cake recipe. This rich and decadent treat is a perfect blend of moist cake soaked in espresso and liquor, layered with creamy mascarpone cheese and cocoa. Whether you’re craving a pick-me-up or treating yourself to a cozy evening in, this cake is guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth and lift your spirits. Let’s dive into making this delightful dessert that will become your new favorite indulgence!


  • 1 package of ladyfinger cookies
  • 1 cup strong brewed espresso, cooled
  • 1/2 cup coffee-flavored liquor (such as Kahlua or Tia Maria)
  • 16 oz (450g) mascarpone cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting


  1. Prepare the Espresso Mixture: In a shallow dish, combine the cooled espresso and coffee-flavored liquor. Stir until well mixed.
  2. Assemble the Cake Layers: Quickly dip each ladyfinger cookie into the espresso mixture, ensuring it’s soaked but not overly soggy. Arrange a layer of soaked ladyfingers in the bottom of a serving dish or cake pan, breaking them if needed to fit.
  3. Prepare the Mascarpone Cream: In a mixing bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy.
  4. Layer the Cake: Spread a generous layer of the mascarpone cream over the soaked ladyfingers in the dish.
  5. Repeat the Layers: Continue layering soaked ladyfingers and mascarpone cream until you reach the top of the dish, finishing with a layer of mascarpone cream on top.
  6. Chill and Set: Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate the cake for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight, to allow the flavors to meld together and the cake to set.
  7. Serve and Garnish: Before serving, dust the top of the cake generously with unsweetened cocoa powder for a classic finish. Slice and serve chilled, savoring each decadent bite.
  8. Storage: Store any leftover cake covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The flavors will continue to develop over time, making it even more delicious with each passing day.

Variations and Tips:

  1. Flavor Variations: Experiment with different flavors by using flavored liquors such as amaretto or rum, or add a hint of almond or orange extract to the mascarpone cream for a unique twist.
  2. Chocolate Lovers: For an extra indulgent treat, sprinkle chocolate shavings or grated dark chocolate between the layers of the cake for added richness and texture.
  3. Non-Alcoholic Version: For a non-alcoholic version, substitute the coffee-flavored liquor with additional cooled espresso or strongly brewed coffee.
  4. Customize Serving Dish: Get creative with your serving dish or cake pan. Try assembling individual servings in glasses or jars for a stunning presentation at your next dinner party.

Treat yourself to the ultimate comfort dessert with our Italian Hangover Cake recipe. With its layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers and creamy mascarpone cheese, this indulgent treat is the perfect way to satisfy your sweet cravings and lift your spirits. Easy to assemble and full of flavor, it’s sure to become a favorite for any occasion. Enjoy a slice of decadence and indulge in the simple pleasure of homemade dessert!

Serving Suggestions and Presentation:

  1. Garnish with Fresh Berries: Add a pop of color and freshness to your Italian Hangover Cake by garnishing each slice with a selection of fresh berries such as raspberries, strawberries, or blueberries. The tartness of the berries complements the richness of the cake beautifully.
  2. Whipped Cream Topping: Serve each slice of cake with a dollop of freshly whipped cream for an extra indulgent touch. To make whipped cream, simply beat chilled heavy cream with a bit of powdered sugar until soft peaks form.
  3. Chocolate Drizzle: Elevate the presentation of your cake by drizzling melted chocolate over the top just before serving. Use a spoon or piping bag to create decorative patterns or simply drizzle it in a zig-zag pattern for an elegant finish.
  4. Individual Portions: For a stylish presentation, assemble individual portions of the cake in dessert glasses or jars. Layer the soaked ladyfingers and mascarpone cream in each glass, then dust with cocoa powder and garnish with a coffee bean or chocolate curl before serving.

Tips for Success:

  1. Soak Ladyfingers Quickly: Dip each ladyfinger cookie into the espresso mixture quickly to prevent them from becoming too soggy. A brief dip ensures that they absorb the flavors without becoming mushy.
  2. Use Room Temperature Mascarpone: To ensure a smooth and creamy mascarpone cream, make sure the mascarpone cheese is softened to room temperature before mixing it with the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. This will make it easier to incorporate and prevent lumps.
  3. Refrigerate for Optimal Flavor: While it’s tempting to dig into the cake right away, refrigerating it for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight, allows the flavors to meld together and the texture to set, resulting in a more delicious and cohesive dessert.
  4. Slice Carefully: When slicing the cake, use a sharp knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean between cuts to ensure clean, neat slices. This will help preserve the layers and maintain the cake’s presentation.

Variations to Try:

  1. Nutella Swirl: Add a decadent twist to your Italian Hangover Cake by swirling Nutella or chocolate hazelnut spread into the mascarpone cream before layering it with the soaked ladyfingers. The rich chocolate-hazelnut flavor pairs beautifully with the espresso and mascarpone.
  2. Fruit Infusion: Incorporate additional flavor by layering sliced bananas or strawberries between the layers of soaked ladyfingers and mascarpone cream. The fresh fruit adds a burst of sweetness and juiciness to each bite.
  3. Almond Amaretto: For a nutty flavor profile, substitute almond extract for the vanilla extract in the mascarpone cream and use amaretto liqueur in place of the coffee-flavored liquor. The combination of almond and coffee flavors creates a sophisticated and irresistible dessert.

With its decadent layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers, creamy mascarpone cheese, and rich cocoa powder, our Italian Hangover Cake is the ultimate indulgence for any dessert lover. Whether you’re serving it at a dinner party or enjoying it as a special treat at home, this delicious cake is sure to impress. Get creative with serving suggestions and variations to customize it to your taste preferences and elevate your dessert experience. Indulge in the simple pleasure of homemade sweetness and savor every luxurious bite of this irresistible comfort dessert!