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3-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cake

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The best flourless cake recipe — easy to make with just 3 ingredients, and so irresistibly delicious!

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

This past Valentine’s Day, I decided to remake a golden oldie from the blog to share with my friends. Partly because it was super easy. Partly because it’s gluten-free. And partly because, well, it’s about as chocolatey as you can possibly get.

We’re talking about flourless chocolate cake, people!

I’m sure just about everyone has tried this heavenly dessert before. But if you’ve never tried making it, you’re missing out. Because with literally just three ingredients, it’s totally do-able. And just in case you have any questions about how to make it, I decided to snap some step-by-step photos time time around and update this recipe post so that you can see exactly how it’s done.

Fair warning though. Once you know how to make this cake, you’re pretty much going to want to make it all the time. :)

(Works for me, though!)

3-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cake Recipe | 1-Minute Video

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

For a little #tbt, here were the photos that I snapped of this flourless chocolate cake when I first posted it three years ago. They are still some of the top flourless chocolate cake photos on Google…crazy!

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

Three years later, I’m obviously on a white-background-white-plates-white-everything kick. Different berries. Same rich, uber-chocolatey, gluten-free, and crazy good flourless chocolate cake. And the same easy directions:

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

We begin with the rockstar ingredient — chocolate!!!

You can really use just about any chocolate that you’d like in this cake. I typically go with a really rich dark chocolate. But I’ve also made this over the years with a chili-spiced chocolate bars, salted chocolate, toffee chocolate, and even plain ol’ semisweet chocolate chips. They all work wonderfully. (I would just avoid white chocolate with this one.)

Go ahead and break it into smaller pieces for easier melting, and set aside.

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

Then it’s time to whisk those eggs. This is 10x easier with an electric mixer of some kind, but if you’re feeling extra strong, you can do it by hand. Basically they need to double in volume, so I usually mix them on high speed for about 5 minutes. They will also lighten in color and get nice and frothy.

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

While your mixer is running, add your chocolate and butter to a microwave-proof bowl, and heat in 30 second intervals (stirring in between each) until both are melted. You can also do this on the stove in a double-boiler if you prefer.

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

Then slowly fold about 1/3 of the egg mixture into the chocolate/butter mixture, and stir until combined. Repeat with another 1/3, and then the rest of the eggs until they are all combined. You want to be nice and gentle with this process, and stir the mixture until it is just combined. Avoid over-stirring, or those eggs will deflate!

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

Once your batter is ready, pour it in a springform pan that has been wrapped in two layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil. The best way to do this is place the pan right in the middle of the foil, and then fold it up all around the edges of the pan. You want to be very careful that water cannot sneak inside the foil.

Place the springform pan inside some other larger pan (I just use my saute pan). And then slide it in the oven. Once it’s in there, take a tea pot or measuring cup full of boiling water and very carefully pour the water inside the outer pan so that it creates a “water bath” around the springform pan. You want the water to come about halfway up the sides of the springform. Please be very careful with this part — that water is h-o-t.

Then bake it for about 22-25 minutes, or until a very thin crust has formed on top of the pan. Remove the pan from the oven, once again being very very careful with that hot water, and set it on a wire rack to cool until it reaches room temperature. The pop it in the refrigerator until it has completely cooled. And then it’s ready to serve!

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

Clearly, I like to add to the famous 3-ingredients and top my flourless chocolate cake with some powdered sugar and berries. A chocolate ganache or whipped cream would be great too. Or it’s also fabulous just as it is.How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

So serve yourself up a slice, and enjoy every last bite. :)

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3-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x

Description

A decadent, gluten-free flourless chocolate cake recipe with no added sugar necessary!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 8 large eggs, cold
  • 1 lb. dark, semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 16 Tbsp. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
  • optional toppings: powdered sugar and/or berries

Instructions

  1. Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper or waxed paper and grease the sides of the pan. (Be sure to grease the sides really well!) Wrap the outside of the pan with 2 sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil and set it in a large roasting pan, or any pan that’s larger than the springform. Bring a kettle or pot of water to boil.
  2. In a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, beat the eggs at high speed until the volume doubles. This usually takes about 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, melt the chocolate and butter together. You can either do this in a double boiler on the stove (by placing the chocolate and butter in a large heatproof bowl, set over a pan of almost-simmering water, and stirring until melted and smooth). Or you can do this in the microwave (by heating the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until the chocolate and butter are melted and smooth). Then fold about a third of the beaten eggs into the chocolate mixture using a large rubber spatula until only a few streaks of egg are visible. Fold in half of the remaining egg foam, and then the last half of the foam, until the mixture is totally homogenous.
  4. Scrape the batter into the prepared springform pan and smooth the surface with a rubber spatula. Place the roasting pan on the oven rack and VERY carefully pour in enough boiling water to come about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until the cake has risen slightly, the edges are just beginning to set, a thin-glazed crust (like a brownie) has formed on the surface, and an instant-read thermometer inserted halfway into the center reads 140° F, 22-25 minutes. Remove the springform pan from the water bath and set on a wire rack; cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until cool. (The cake can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.)
  5. About 30 minutes prior to serving, carefully remove the sides of the springform pan, invert the cake onto a sheet of waxed paper, peel off the parchment paper, and reinvert the cake onto a serving platter. If desired, lightly dust the cake with powdered sugar and top with berries. To slice, use a sharp, thin-bladed knife, dipping the knife into a pitcher of hot water and wiping the blade before each cut.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Cooks Illustrated http://www.cooksillustrated.com/

This post contains affiliate links.

How To Make A Flourless Chocolate Cake | gimmesomeoven.com

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441 comments on “3-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cake”

  1. Can I use baker’s semi-sweet or milk chocolate? And how many cups/pieces would I require?

    • I recommend semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate for this recipe. Just be sure to weigh the chocolate to get the correct amount.

  2. Fabulous, no flour, Lenten offering. I love it! Fabulous to see you again, your web site has some endless surfing possibilities. I’ve got to pass it on to my foodie friends at work. Take care and we’ll check in from time to time
    Sandy

  3. Good news! I made this without the boiling water part and it was totally successful. Lazy bakers rejoice! I lined the pan with parchment paper and skipped the foil – just put it in the oven. I also don’t have a thermometer so I just used my judgment when it was done. Additionally, I beat the eggs with an electric hand mixer for five minutes, since I don’t have a stand mixer.

    • Ooh, I LOVE tips to make a simple recipe even easier. I’m much more likely to try it. Thanks! :-)

    • I found it helpful…

    • I disagree. I think it is useful to get a sense of what is mandatory and what may be malleable if necessary.

    • I just tried this and the only change I made to the recipe was vegan butter and no water bath. After 40 minutes in the oven the center is still liquid. I’m guessing it’s going to burn the edges before the center cooks. Probably going in the trash. Happy birthday, mom! :(

  4. That looks so beautiful! Amazing photograph!

  5. I have made this so many times, all from your “old” recipe. I love it! And because it is so rich, it serves a lot of people. The trickiest part for me was the water bath, but the last time I made it I just filled a 9 X 13 that was under the cake in the oven with boiling water, and that worked fine since all you need is the moisture in the air of the oven.

  6. Is there a substitution for butter? Coconut oil? I am gluten free and sadly dairy free as well.

  7. I made this cake for Christmas last year for my grandson who has wheat and dairy issues too. I substituted the butter out with Fleischmann’s unsalted margarine as per directions from Cooking for Geeks. It was perfect. Usually Carter’s foods taste like cardboard or he has texture issues because he is Autistic. But not only did he love it but every single member of my family ate every last crumb! They have all tried some of his “special” foods before and usually quietly chuck them in the garbage can after complimenting the chef. So I wanted to pass this along in case somebody would like to make a wheat and dairy free version of this cake. I don’t know if you can use any other kind of margarine besides Fleischmann’s or Earth Balance because the book specifically called for those 2 brands to sub out butter in baking. Hope this helps somebody out!

  8. So do I separate the eggs and just use the whites? I’m looking forward to making this!

  9. It says nothing about seperating the eggs in the recipe. Can somebody please confirm that you whisk the whole eggs (yolk and all)?

  10. What “Tbsp” means? I didn’t get the necessary amout of sugar. Thanks!

  11. Could you use coconut oil instead of butter do you think? I am on a strict diet for health reasons and butter is a no no for me.

  12. This looks amazing, definitely going to try it, so simple and gluten-free to boot! :-)

  13. For my last party I hosted, I tried this recipe. It’s AMAZING and perfect for people with wheat allergies!

  14. Seems like this would be so bitter and you wouldn’t be able to eat it. Doesn’t make sense.

  15. Ali,

    Want to make a special ocassion cake for a friend who loves chocolate and gluten sensitive. A friend suggested a flourless chocolate cake. I am about to leave for the store to get some fabulous chocolate and come home to do a trial run before the big day. I want to thank you for your great generosity with your recipe and wisdom of how to navigate this endeavor! Love, peace and delightful sustenance to you and yours, Annie

  16. I didn’t see sugar as an ingredient in this recipe. Was that intentional?

  17. I only have a 9″ springform pan, would I change anything in the baking? And what’s the best way to tell when done if I don’t have a thermometer?

    • A 9-inch pan will definitely work! I would just bake the cake for 3-5 less minutes. It is done when a crust forms on top, and the inside is ever-so-slightly wobbly (like chocolate pudding). Good luck!

  18. I love your site and have made (and pinned!) lots of your recipes. But I made this last night and something went wrong :( The batter was very liquid-y and it took double the time to bake…almost 40 minutes. However, it actually doesn’t taste too bad- more of like a truffle than a cake – very dense. Any ideas about what I may have done wrong? Thanks!

    • Hi Chris! Sorry for the late reply! And yes, this is meant to be a VERY dense chocolate cake. You’re right — flourless chocolate cakes are closer to truffles than a traditional moist/fluffy cake. Very rich. Hope you enjoyed it!

  19. This recipe came out flawlessly! The cake didn’t ‘fall’ like other flourless cakes, and it was super fudgy and delicious. I featured your recipe on my blog since I just made it for Passover and it was a huge hit! Thanks for an awesome recipe!

  20. I made this exactly by the directions (except for salted butter); it took about 10-15 more minutes to bake, but OMG the result was fantastic! Thank you for this great recipe. BTW I used regular semisweet chocolate chips.

  21. I am so excited to make this for Easter! I know the sugar comes from the chocolate but using good dark chocolate makes a richer cake. Out of curiosity, what type and/or brand of chocolate is your preference to use with this recipe?

  22. I attempted to make two of these today…I did everything according to the directions, and after forty minutes, the thin crust on top formed, but it still was kinda not set (the middle was still wobbly)… is that from over mixing, it is that how it’s supposed to be until it comes out of the fridge?

    • Hi Ashley! Sorry for the late reply, but the middle should still be ever-so-slightly wobbly when it comes out of the oven (kind of like chocolate pudding). It will then firm up more as it cools and then sets in the fridge. Good luck! :)

  23. I made this for Easter dessert – Simple ingredients and easy to follow instructions that yield an incredibly delicious and seemingly complex dessert. It was the star of the entire meal tonight. Thanks for an awesome recipe!

  24. I’ve made this twice now, once in mini springform pans and once in a full-sized springform pan. Both times, it was amazing. It came out like this blend between cake and fudge and ganache, like all of those things and none of them at the same time. Not exactly like anything I’ve had before. The people I served it to lost their minds. :)

    I was so surprised at how forgiving it seemed to be, especially since “forgiving” is generally the opposite of “things you cook in a water bath.” I changed the pan size, no problem. I took it out of the oven, second-guessed myself a few minutes later, and put it back in the oven for another 8 minutes, no problem. Water even somehow got through my seven layers of foil, and it was no problem! It still set; it was still incredible. Crazy.

    So thank you for my new favorite recipe!

  25. May I say thank you and absolutely fabulous!!! Husband loved it & he likes nothing made minus regular way of baking:))

  26. Any luck with milk chocolate for this recipe?

  27. This cake is absolutely incredible. I made it today for mother’s day, especially for my gluten free mother, and it is one of the best cakes I’ve ever eaten. SO rich and dense that you’ll only need a small slice. I topped it with a thin layer of chocolate ganache and raspberries. My mom said it was the best flourless chocolate cake she’s ever had! Thanks for the recipe.

  28. This reminds me of Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Chocolate Oblivion Truffle Torte (The Cake Bible). I’m sure that’s where Chris Kimball’s crew got it. I like that you’ve increased the number of eggs from Rose’s recipe. That makes the mix stronger – and easier to increase the volume of the eggs. I’ve been making this cake for years, adding different ingredients for variety. They always turn out well. I’m looking forward to trying your recipe.

  29. Can the ingredients be halved? If so, should the baking time be halved as well? New to baking :)

    • If you halve the ingredients, this will need to be baked in a different pan, or baked for significantly less time (which would yield a very flat cake, by the way). If you need to make a smaller batch, I recommend baking it in 2 small springform pans.

  30. can I bake it in a 10″ spring form pan and how do I adjust the timing if you do not check the cake by how dry the center is on a tooth pick or such?
    just want to know how to tell when it is cooked…even with a crust on top it is liquidy in the center…will it thicken up as it cools?

    • Yes you can. I would lower the baking time by 5 minutes, and you will be able to tell that the cake is done when a thin crust forms along the top, but the inside will be ever-so-slightly jiggly (kind of like chocolate pudding). It will firm up in the fridge.

  31. I’ve made this cake countless times! It is a winner every time, with those who are GF and also with those who are not! I use E. Guitard Bittersweet chocolate 72% baking chips (which come in a 1 lb. box). I use organic butter and eggs in order to make the “healthiest” dessert possible. I like to store it in the refrigerator and know worries if you don’t have any toppings on hand – I find most everyone likes it just as it is! Also.. I do not own a double boiler or a spring foam pan. I use a wide glass bowl over a kettle of water and melt the butter and eggs together while I beat the eggs. For the pan, I use a 9″ round cake pan. I trace around it and place a circular piece of parchment in the bottom and a bit of olive oil (or spray) around the sides. After cooled, it flips out perfectly!

  32. Do you use celcius or farenheit in your recepies?

  33. I just made this cake and I have to say yum! I think I need to cook it a bit longer next time though as it’s very soft, like a mousse, probably needs another 5-10 mins

    • Actually I take that back, cooking time was fine. I think my husband & I were just too impatient to eat it so it hadn’t been in the fridge long enough. Now it’s perfect!

    • Oooh, good to know. Awesome! :)

  34. Hi, thank you for the detailed recipe!
    I actually tried following le cordon bleu’s recipe yesterday and it required 15 eggs!!?? As expected, the cake did not set even after 25 mins.

    Do you think using 15eggs is even feasible?

  35. My goodness, how did you manage to get all the batter in a single pan?? I didn’t have a spring form, but the 8 inch pan I have has fairly high walls, and I still had enough left over for another small cake! Oh well, more cake for me :)

  36. Thanks for sharing; I love CI’s recipes! This recipe can be easily pared down and made into cupcakes by baking in a generously-buttered cupcake/muffin tin at 375-degrees for 9-12 min. No bain-marie was necessary; they turned out perfectly!! Since I only needed 2 servings, I quartered the recipe, using 2 eggs (+ I added 2 tbsp. granulated sugar), 4 oz. of chocolate, and 1/2 stick of butter. The recipe yielded 4 individual cakes, which I served on a pool of fruit sauce* with whipped cream on the side. The cakes were quite bitter because I used 72% cacao (it was what I had on hand), but the sauce was sweet enough to balance it out. Next time I make it though, I will probably add 1/4 cup of granulated sugar to the eggs, and will stick with 60% cacao. And there will DEFINITELY be a next time!

    *The sauce was made by microwaving 1/4 cup Bonne Maman 4 Fruit Preserves for 20-30 seconds just to thin them a little bit, then adding 3-4 tbsps. jellied cranberry sauce and stirring to combine. After straining the mixture through a sieve, I stirred in 2-4 tbsps. of Chambord (to taste), and then refrigerated the sauce for about an hour.

  37. So happy to find this recipe. We’re moving and I packed my recipe book with the flourless chocolate cake I love. So I tried this one-added vanilla and a pinch of cinnamon-I also did half since it is for my husband and me and it would be dangerous to have too much leftovers and I used a smaller pan -it’s his birthday and the smaller pan is heart shaped so perfect for the occasion. It came out beautiful and it tastes fantastic. Will take it to family gatherings. Thanks for sharing it.

  38. Nvm i saw it alrdy~ Trying it out tmr!

  39. Do you know how many calories this is per serving? Looks delicious!!!

  40. YUM! I’ve never seen a more beautiful flourless cake! I can’t believe that those three ingredients are able to produce such an amazing dessert. Love your site!

  41. Hi, your cake looks deliciuos! Will try make it tonight!
    I see that you refer to ‘ stick’ of butter, can you tell me how much each stick weights? I can then convert to metric. 
    Regards from Melbourne, Australia

  42. I just made a half recipe of  this wonderful cake.  I was most upset when I tested the cake and the thermometer had already hit 165 which was way past the 140 degrees recommended.  I had also made a little 1/2 cup size one along side to sample the cake.  Both cakes seemed almost liquid even at 160 degrees,  After cooling the cake I put them in the refrigerator for several hours.  When I took out the 1/2 cup cake out of the frig , it was solid and  like a very stiff fudge even a little crumbly. I microwaved it for 30 seconds on 40% just to take the chill off.  It was just  barely warm and the texture was soft, smooth and absolutely lovely. I am very pleased but think everyone should be warned that the cake is almost liquid when you take it out of the oven.

  43. I am interested in baking this in a pastry pie shell. Have you tried it?

  44. This cake is so rich and chocolaty my whole family loved it!
    Here is how my turned out: https://www.munchkintime.com/3-ingredient-gluten-free-chocolate-cake/

  45. I made this cake for my husband’s birthday and it was amazing! He just loves it so much! 
    The only thing I had to change was the baking time. I had the impression that 25 minutes wouldn’t be enough anyway so, after this time, I checked and the batter was completely runny. I let it bake for 1hour and 10 minutes total. The outside was finally forming a crust and the inside was soft, but not gooey. I made chocolate mousse and used it to cover the cake and it was a nice touch!
    Thanks for the recipe, it is great!

  46. I halfed the recipe and cooked them in 4 ramekins (using the water bath).  Delicious!!!

  47. Well… So far it LOOKS right. 
    I’m waiting for it to cool(guess I’ll enjoy it tomorrow!).

    My friend from Paris serves hers with a vanilla cream sauce under the slice on a saucer style dessert plate (GORGEOUS presentation!)

    I’ve made hers, and have substituted the sauce with high quality vanilla ice cream… MELTED! Yum! I can’t wait to try this with your cake! 

    I’ve made this type of desert before and I’ve notice the water bath is crucial for a better outcome. 
    Anyhow-thank you for sharing! The batter in the bowl was D-LISH, so I’m guessing the piecè de resistancè will be FAB!

  48. I have tried recipe 2x and I keep getting moisture in my spongiform pan! anything I can do in addition to the tin foil to prevent this from happening?

    Thanks

    • Oh no! Maybe the pan has a leak? If that’s happening, you can just set the pan on the oven rack above a pan of boiling water. It should have nearly the same effect.

  49. Do you have a recipe for the chocolate gnache that you recommend?
    Thank you!

  50. I have made this several times now and we LOVE it!!  I love how your recipe is 3 ingredients, easy to follow and turns out delicious every time!!  Last time, I topped it with frozen raspberries in their syrup-  YUM!!
    Looking forward to trying some of your other recipes.  
    Vicki