This flourless chocolate cake recipe is simple to make and only requires a few ingredients. Basically, if you own one bowl and have at least one arm for stirring, you’ve got this.
The only leavener in flourless cake is egg (there is no baking powder or soda) and it puffs up like a souffle in the oven. However, without any flour to set the structure, the cake sinks back down and possesses a wonderfully rich and fudgy texture.
Most people serve a flourless chocolate cake cold, straight from the fridge. I like it room temperature. However you choose to serve it, it should be chilled completely first to firm up to a sliceable texture and lose the eggy flavour.
Dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar or cocoa, or top individual slices with a soft dollop of whipped cream.
Flourless Chocolate Cake Ingredients
- Chocolate: choose a good-quality dark chocolate here as the flavour will really shine through.
- Butter: salted or unsalted is fine.
- Sugar: this yields both the sweetness and the crackly, brownie-like top.
- Eggs: the eggs bind and leaven the cake. Straight from the oven, the cake will have puffed like a souffle in fact. It’ll collapse as it stands and this is normal.
- Salt: to balance the sweetness and round out the chocolate.
- Vanilla: to enhance the chocolatey flavour.
How to make flourless chocolate cake:
- Melt chocolate and butter.
- Stir in sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt.
- Pour batter into a prepared cake pan.
- Bake until puffed, cracked on top, but still jiggly in the middle. Don’t be tempted to overbake.
- Transfer to a serving plate and chill completely.
When melting the chocolate, use low heat (50% power microwave or a in bowl over simmering water) and stop heating it when it is about 80% melted, like pictured above.
Stir to finish melting completely. This prevents the chocolate from overheating and seizing up, which makes it grainy instead of creamy and smooth.
It’s important to both grease and line the baking pan to prevent the cake from sticking.
How do I know when flourless chocolate cake is done?
- The cake will have puffed
- The top will appear dry
- Cracks will have formed on the surface
- When you gently jiggle the pan, the middle will retain some wobble. The wiggle in the middle is important for a moist cake. It will continue cooking in the hot pan while it cools, and will firm up completely when chilled.
After you let the cake cool in the pan for 20 minutes, the cake will deflate, as pictured below. This is normal. Now, run a knife around the outside edge of the cake, place a wire rack on top and confidently flip the cake over onto the wire rack. Peel off the parchment paper and flip it the same way onto a serving plate. Transfer to the fridge to firm up completely.
Is flourless chocolate cake gluten free?
YES! This recipe is naturally gluten-free gem. If you’re serving friends with celiac, just be sure to read your chocolate label and avoid cross-contamination by using fresh sugar and cocoa that was never scooped into with a floury measuring cup.
Here are some more delicious chocolate recipes you’ll love:
Flourless Chocolate Cake
- 9 oz chopped dark chocolate
- 8 oz unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 6 large eggs
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9x2" round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
- Place chocolate and butter together in a large microwave-safe bowl and microwave on 50% power for two minutes. Stir and continue at 50% power in 30-second intervals until chocolate is 80% melted. At that point, stir vigorously to finish melting (you want to avoid overheating chocolate, which can make it seize and turn grainy).(Alternatively, you can melt the chocolate and butter together in a large heat-safe bowl placed over a pot of simmering water. Ensure the water doesn't actually touch the bowl.)
- Use a strong arm to stir in the sugar completely, then whisk in the eggs about a quarter-cup at a time and fully incorporate before adding another splash. Whisk in vanilla and salt.
- Use a rubber spatula to scrape the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake for about 35 minutes, until top is cracked and dry, but centre maintains a slight jiggle. Place cake on wire rack and let cool in pan for 20 minutes. It will deflate, this is normal. Place the wire rack on top of the cake, and use two hands to confidently flip the cake over so that it's top-down on the wire rack. Right away, do the same flipping move with a serving plate, inverting the cake a second time so that it's right-side-up on the plate.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.