Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake
Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake Recipe: All the amazing layers of Dairy Queen Buster Bars in a quick 5-ingredient treat! Ice cream, fudge, red-skinned peanuts, and chocolate coating are pressed into easy-to-cut bars.
Why We Love This Copycat Dairy Queen Buster Bars Recipe
For years Dairy Queen Buster Bars have been my ultimate guilty pleasure.
On a rough day, as an after-school treat for the kids, or even as a late-night snack… Dairy Queen was there, ready to lift my spirits with creamy vanilla ice cream, swirls of soft fudge, red skin peanuts, and brittle chocolate coating.
Buster bars are seriously the most perfect combination of salty and sweet with all the best textures!
So, I set out to make a buster bar recipe right at home. Instead of making it into bars, I made a buster bar cake that is absolutely to die for. This peanut buster bar dessert is a no-bake, no-fuss dessert recipe that is even better than the Dairy Queen version!
The best part? You can make your buster bar ice cream cake ahead of time and store it in the freezer until you are ready to serve.
This ice cream cake is perfect for birthdays or simple get togethers!
Let’s forget about pulling out the cake pans to make chocolate cake and frosting.
Summer is now all about the ice cream cake rather than the cake layers.
If there was ever a time for a simple no-bake dessert recipe, it’s right now, in the heat of summer.
I love simple desserts you can whip up in minutes, especially if they taste like my beloved Buster Bars.
Today’s easy-to-make 5-Ingredient Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake is just what the doctor ordered. It’s the perfect pick-me-up and cool-me-down for summer parties!
Our Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake recipe has all the components of classic Dairy Queen Buster Bars pressed into a baking dish so it can be cut and served as an ice cream cake.
Buster Bar Cake Ingredients
- Vanilla Ice Cream. Although Dairy Queen uses their famous soft-serve for Buster Bars, a couple of layers of good quality vanilla ice cream will soften in minutes, once cut and served.
- Hot Fudge Sauce. Buy a big jar of chocolate fudge sauce, so you have a nice even layer of fudge in the middle. If you have to heat it a tad to spread it, that’s ok. But it should be no more than room temperature or the ice cream will melt.
- Red Skin Peanuts. The Buster Bar little extra something!
- Chocolate Shell Coating. Use Magic Shell or any grocery store chocolate coating that hardens when it gets cold.
- Chocolate Graham Crackers. Although there is no sign of graham crackers in classic Buster Bars, these act as the platform on which to build the ice cream cake, making it much easier to scoop each piece out of the dish and serve.
How To Make Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake
Honestly, this could not be any more simple… Just layer it in!
- Layer 1, graham crackers.
- Layer 2, ice cream.
- Layer 3, fudge and peanuts.
- Layer 4, more ice cream.
- Layer 5, more peanuts and chocolate coating.
Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake Recipe Tips
Make sure to press both layers of ice cream smooth before moving on.
Also make sure that you sprinkle the top of the cake with peanuts before you add the Magic Shell, so it seals the peanuts in place.
Set the ice cream out to soften. Line the bottom of a 9X13-inch baking dish, with graham crackers. Break several crackers in half in order to cover the entire bottom in a single layer.
Scoop half the ice cream on top of the graham crackers. Use the scooper (or a stiff spatula) to smash the ice cream into a flat layer.
Pour the fudge over the ice cream layer. Spread it out in a thin layer over the ice cream. Then sprinkle half the peanuts over the surface of the fudge.
Scoop the remaining ice cream over the fudge and peanuts. Press gently into a smooth layer, sealing in the fudge.
Sprinkle the remaining peanuts over the ice cream in an even layer. Then drizzle the Magic Shell over the peanuts to secure them into place. Place the pan in the freezer for at least 3 hours before cutting.
For an extra level of celebration, you can add some whipped cream and maraschino cherries on top to hold birthday candles or other decorations.
Get the Full (Printable) Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake Recipe Below. Enjoy!
Best Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake
Final thoughts on the results?
Yes. Yeeeeeeeeees. This recipe will definitely satisfy a hardcore Buster Bar craving.
Plus, it’s easy to make, feeds a crowd, saves money (if you were actually going to buy 24 Buster Bars) and feels like a celebration in appearance, flavor, and creamy texture.
This Buster Bar Cake is a summertime win!
I highly recommend you make one in the next couple of weeks… Say around Independence Day?
If you’ve already enjoyed this classic combination, and want to build upon the recipe, consider adding new flavor combinations with peanut butter and caramel sauce, chopped peppermint patties and mint ice cream, or strawberry ice cream with strawberry jam and chocolate sauce!
Or simply replace the vanilla ice cream with chocolate ice cream for a chocolatey twist!
For a dairy-free option, use coconut milk ice cream and dairy-free chocolate substitutes!
Frequently Asked Recipes
Can I make this cake ahead of time?
This is a great make-ahead dessert. Wrap the top of the baking dish well with plastic wrap before you freeze it so that it doesn’t get freezer burn. If it is wrapped well, it will keep in the freezer for many weeks.
Do you place an ice cream cake in the fridge or freezer?
If you want to make sure that you can easily cut into the cake for any party, you can store it in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes before serving. Otherwise, it must be stored in the freezer.
What should I use if I cannot find the chocolate graham crackers?
If chocolate graham crackers are not available in your local stores, you can purchase them online, or use chocolate wafer cookies, thin brownie crisps, or even crushed Oreo cookies.
Can I use crushed chocolate cookies on the bottom? Will they get stuck?
You could crush Oreo cookies or chocolate teddy grahams, but make sure to line the pan with parchment paper before pressing down the cookie crumbs so that you can lift out the cake easily.
What about using magic shell on the bottom of the pan?
You could try it! I would cover the bottom of the pan in plastic wrap or parchment paper, spread the magic shell over the bottom, and freeze it to harden before moving on. If you don’t use plastic wrap or parchment on the bottom, the magic shell won’t lift out of the pan.
Do you leave the red skin on the peanuts?
Yes, they are part of the appeal. The red skins offer a bit of bitterness to balance the rich nutty flavor. Plus, they provide a little extra texture.
Other Amazing Frozen Treats
- Boozy Bomb Pops
- Cereal Milk Popsicles
- Blueberry Pie Homemade Ice Cream
- Strawberry Basil Italian Ice
- Affogato al Cafe
- Bubble Gum Ice Cream
- Duke’s Hula Pie
- Dipped Chocolate Ice Cream Cones
- Homemade Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Flavor by Chew Out Loud
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Recipe by JoyFoodSunshine
Buster Bar Ice Cream Cake
- Set the ice cream out to soften. Line the bottom of a 9X13 inch baking dish, with graham crackers. Break several crackers in half in order to cover the entire bottom in a single layer.
- Scoop half the ice cream on top of the graham crackers. Use the scooper (or a stiff spatula) to smash the ice cream into a flat layer.
- Pour the fudge over the ice cream layer. Spread it out in a thin layer over the ice cream. Then sprinkle half the peanuts over the surface of the fudge.
- Scoop the remaining ice cream over the fudge and peanuts. Press gently into a smooth layer, sealing in the fudge.
- Sprinkle the remaining peanuts over the ice cream in an even layer. Then drizzle the Magic Shell over the peanuts to secure them into place. Place the pan in the freezer for at least 3 hours before cutting.