The best flourless cake recipe — easy to make with just 3 ingredients, and so irresistibly delicious!
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
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!
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:
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
So serve yourself up a slice, and enjoy every last bite. :)
A decadent, gluten-free flourless chocolate cake recipe with no added sugar necessary!
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
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.
In a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, beat the eggs at high speed until the volume doubles. This usually takes about 5 minutes.
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.
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.)
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.
Question for anyone. Is it suppose to be mousse like. This is they way mine came out. Was it not cooked enough?
Hi, I was wondering if I could use a round pan instead of a springform pan. I don’t have a springform pan. Thanks! I can’t wait to make this!
Thanks Liz! And sure, you can use a round pan instead — just make sure you grease it well and use parchment. Hope you enjoy!
Would this work if I did individual cakes in ramekin dishes? In the water bath
Sarah, I think that would be an excellent idea, and should work great! I hope you enjoy them! : )
This recipe is copied from Cooks Illustrated without attribution. As important, it’s a gooey mess…cooks at too low a temperature for too short a time.
Hello Susan, I appreciate your concern, but if you’ll kindly see below the recipe, you will notice it says I adapted this recipe from Cooks Illustrated. I feel very strongly about attributing credit any time I’m adapting someone else’s recipe for my blog. I am sorry this cake did not turn out well for you!
You are absolutely right about the Cooks Illustrated attribution. I am so sorry. Cooks Illustrated has never failed me but this cake didn’t set up. I would love to know what I did wrong. Is there a “trick?” I have looked at many other recipes and most cook at a higher temperature for a little longer—say 375 for 30 minutes. I wonder if 325 is a misprint? Thoughts?
Does this freeze well?
Do have the nutritional value of this recipe?? I’m on weight watchers and need to count the points for this gorgeous cake!! Thank you
Hey Cindy, I’m sorry but we currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site. The nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, a lot of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. I hope that helps you!
If I only have a 9 inch springform pan, can I use that? I know the cake will be a bit shorter, but I’m curious if it’ll also massively mess up the cake if I use a slightly larger sized pan.
Hey Christina, no that should work fine!
Thanks, Ali! Very excited to see how this turns out – I just took it out of the oven. So I really need to let it completely cool and refrigerate INSIDE the springform pan until 30 minutes before it’s ready to be served? I’m so worried the sides will stick. If I don’t have waxed paper, is parchment okay to use again?
nice post, thanks
maybe i’ll make this one
The most perfect recipe for a decadent dessert! Thank you for posting and I have reblogged!
Thank you, Wendy! I hope you enjoy it! : )
This cake looks amazing, thanks for sharing! Could you please post how much the butter weighs that’s needed for this recipe? I live in Holland and I don’t think our pieces of butter weigh the same as the ones you use. I’m afraid I would ruin the cake if I’d try to measure it with spoons.
Thanks, Michelle. Of course, that’s no problem! The butter for this recipe is 1/2 lb. I hope that helps, and that you enjoy this! : ) Cheers!
Thanks for the recipe and the explaining pics. Love the cake, already did it twice. I love that it’s moist and very chocalatey. Only problem was changing US measurements to German measurements – but google helped me :-)
Thanks, Michaela! : )
Thank you I will try this recipe tomorrow morning for sure!!!!
Sure, Milla, hope you like it! : )
have you made this cake with egg whites or eggbeaters and canola butter?
Have you made this with eggbeaters and canola butter?
I haven’t! If you try it with those, let me know how it works out! : )
Whoa- aren’t there four 1/4 pound cubes in a pound package? If so, wouldn’t this recipe be using 1/2 pound, not 1/4 as you wrote to Michelle in Holland on May 21?
Hi Megan, I’m a little confused, I wrote that the butter in this is 1/2 pound.
nice post :) i like your chocolate cake recipes tutorial.
Thank you, we’re glad you found it useful!
But, is this cake sweet enough? There is no sugar.
Hey, Jackie. We find that it’s sweet enough, because there is still sugar from the chocolate. It will be sweeter if you use semisweet, instead of bittersweet. If you’re still concerned it won’t be sweet enough, you could certainly always add some sugar — maybe a couple tablespoons, or 1/4 cup. We hope that helps!
On the photo+paragraph step-by-step section you write about folding the egg mixture into the chocolate mixture 1/3 at a time. Could you edit to describe the mixture as “chocolate and butter mixture”. I am very visual and with a three ingredient recipe like this one, I could see myself following it from the pictures and paragraphs. (I reviewed the photo and description of the chocolate and butter steps. I had skimmed that part because I don’t use a microwave!) Does this make sense?
I love your photos and understand how they are still tops on Google search. You should take photos for a living if you don’t already!
Sure thing — just edited that for clarity! Thanks so much, Lisa! And thanks for your kind words about the photos too! :)
My batter turned out very liquid-y. I assume it was because of the difference in ingredients as I am from Bulgaria. It’s in the oven and it smells amazing. Dying to see how it turns out!
Hmm, we’re not sure why it would be liquidy, but hopefully it still came out well, and tasted good — let us know! :)
I love your recipe! I am sensitive to glutten and am allergic to dairy. I used dairy free chocolate chips and Earth Balance dairy free butter. I also made a ganache with the chocolate chips and coconut milk. I made it for my son-in-law who loves dark chocolate, then i made a second a week later, now i am making one for my son to take to work. It has been a huge hit in my house. Thank you for sharing this.
Kandy, that’s so wonderful, we’re glad you were able to adapt it and that it was a hit with your family! :)
This is similar to a repice I used at Thanksgiving so I know what you mean about rich. Yes, a tiny sliver is plenty! It so good, though very fitting for a special occasion, like your birthday. Hope it was a great one!
Thanks Cintya, we hope you enjoy the recipe! :)
Would i be able to use a non dairy alternative to butter? I was thinking coconut oil.
Nancy, we think coconut oil (just make sure it’s melted) would work great in this! We haven’t tried it, so we’re not 100%, but we can’t see why it wouldn’t work, plus we think it would be super yummy! You could also probably try olive oil. If you try it, definitely let us know how it turns out! :)
I have been making this cake for a number of years and it is so good. I lost the recipe and could not remember the temperature to bake the cake at. I have printed your recipe off and filed it.
I do have a way that I cut my cake and that is to use dental floss, put a string of floss across top of cake and push down, then pull the string out across the cake. Thank you again.
Thanks John, that’s so nice to hear! We’re so happy you’re a fan of this recipe! :) And we love that dental floss trick!
This. Are came out awesome! My daughter has a wheat allergy but loves chocolate cake. I made this for thanksgiving and it came out beautifully! I wish I was able to post a photo.
We’re so glad to hear that Debbi, thank you for sharing! :D
HI, have you tried making this with sugar free chocolate? Just curious!
Hi Kari! We have not tried this with sugar-free chocolate, so we can’t say how that would work. But, if you try it, definitely let us know how it turned out!
please give me more info on using round pan with parchment instead of springfoam pan? How does it work with the water … Etc? Thanks in advance !!!
First of all – this is my third or fourth time making this cake – and people REQUEST that I make it for get-togethers! Seriously – such a great hit! I serve mine with raspberry coulis and fresh whipped cream! Delicious!
Any how – I have several parties on Christmas and want to make these ahead of time. Is it okay for me to make the cake the day before, refrigerate it and then prep it right before the parties? Or will it get dry and lose that fudgy texture?
Hi Yaz, we’re thrilled that you love this cake, and that it’s been such a hit! We think this should be fine made the day before and refrigerated, though we’d advise letting it get to room temp before serving. We hope your parties are a blast! :)
In the oven now – making a second tomorrow! I used Earth Balance instead of butter, so I’m hoping it will turn out just as good as the ones with real butter. What a perfect grain-free dairy-free soy-free desert option!
Awesome, we hope you enjoy! We’ve never tried this with Earth Balance, so you’ll definitely have to let us know how it turns out! :)
Can this be made without the waterbath?
We really recommend doing the water bath – it will help provide a constant source of heat and will slow cook the cake, keeping it most and smooth, and it will also give it a nice texture. We hope you enjoy! :)
This is a great recipe! Made it in a jiffy, and yet the best cake I’ve made till date.
Keep up the great shares :)
Thanks Tanaya, we’re happy you enjoyed it! :)
I first have a disclaimer; I am baking challenged. I can /have cooked almost any cusine known to man. However; I cannot bake my way out of a Pillsbury dough box honey.. and that ain’t no joke. But I followed your recipe to the letter ( I studied it for better than an hour ) and finally tasted success… AND IT WAS GOOD!!
Thank you for sharing and making me feel like a rock star!
Haha! We’re proud of you Staci, and we’re so happy you loved the cake! :D
We’ve had this delicious recipe for years, but haven’t made it in a long time. We just baked it, but sadly the water bath made it into the cake and was pooling on top. We removed most of the water and put it back in the warm oven to dry out a little. Hopefully, it won’t be ruined because it’s for a party.
It seems that the problem is that the only foil available here is very lightweight and not wide enough to come up the sides of the pan. We tried multiple layers, but obviously that didn’t work. Any tips for creating a waterproof barrier for the water bath without American width/thickness foil? Thanks!
Hi Dawn, we’re so sorry this happened! We hope it still turned out okay – please let us know! We’re wondering if maybe your spring form pan could have leaked? We would think several layers of foil would have worked. :(
I made a mistake I forgot to put the foil paper I don’t know how this going to turn out . Any suggestions what can be done ?let me know.thx
Hi Himal! The foil just helps keep the water from getting into the springform pan. Did your cake get end up getting waterlogged? We hope it’s okay!
Looks delicious. Can this cake be frozen? I’m making several desserts for a friend’s wedding and would like to them. Thank you.
Thanks Judy! And yes, you can freeze this. Make sure it has cooled completely before you get ready to freeze. For best results and preserving freshness: You’ll want to wrap the cake in two layers of plastic wrap, then slide it into a large freezer ziploc bag. Zip the bag almost closed, leaving about one inch open. Carefully push out as much air as possible. Insert a straw into the opening, zip the bag closed around the straw, and suck the air out of the bag through the straw. The bag will shrink in toward the dessert. Quickly pull out the straw and zip up the bag. You will need to let it thaw for about 24 hours in the fridge, then take it out 1-2 hours before you want to serve. We hope all of this helps!
You never say HOW MUCH of each ingredient
Hi Diane. We’re a little confused by your comment. There are amounts listed for each ingredient in this recipe. We’re wondering if perhaps you didn’t scroll down far enough (after the text of the blog post)? There you will find the full, complete recipe.
Hello! My husband and I are gluten and dairy free. Your recipe looks like the most delicious valentines cake I can find that is gluten free, but is it possible to make it dairy free? Could I use coconut oil instead of butter? Or maybe coconut cream?
Hi Beth! Unfortunately we can’t say for sure, since we haven’t experimented with making this cake dairy free. We think coconut or olive oil would work in this, but we’re not sure about leaving out the eggs/subbing them. We did find two similar dairy free recipes that we think you would like though! We would check these two out: – this one has eggs (not sure if you guys can do eggs). We hope this is helpful!
What if i dont have a springform pan what else would work for this?
Hi Angelique! You can definitely use a non-springform pan for this (the springform pan just makes it look more attractive, as it is very hard to unmold the cake when you’re using another pan – you’ll most likely have to just leave it in that pan). Spraying your pan and lining it with parchment should help though, and you might be able to get it out. But yes, you can certainly bake this in an 8-inch round pan. We hope you enjoy!
This is probably the best chocolate cake I have ever had. I made it for my wife and kids for Valentine’s day and topped it with homemade whipped cream. I will definitely be making this cake again, possibly with some espresso powder mixed into the batter.
Thanks Jake! We’re so glad you and your wife enjoyed this! :D
Hi, can you tell me, how much TWO STICKS of BUTTER weighs?!? Here in Europe, we dont get our butter in ‘sticks’ as you do in America! Want to try this recipe – looks good. Thank you, Ann
Hi Ann! Yes, 2 sticks of butter should weigh 226 grams. We hope you enjoy!
I was wondering if this could work out with fondant as well…I need a good flourless recipe to work with :)
Hi Aani! Hmmmm, we haven’ tried using fondant on this cake, so we’re not sure how that would work. We think it’s probably worth a shot though! We hope you enjoy. :)
I have a person that cannot have butter, his replacement is coconut oil… Would that still work or would I need more than just eggs, coconut oil and dark chocolate ?
Hi Sara! Yes, you definitely can! You can still use the same quantities of other ingredients as well. We hope he enjoys the cake! :)
Can I make these into cupcakes? I was thinking that it be OK as long as I still use the water bath.
That’s a good question Patty! We haven’t tried that, but we like the idea, and we feel like it should work (especially with a water bath). If you do give it a try, definitely let us know how they turn out! :)
Looks delicious. Two questions- could applesauce replace some or all the butter or oil? Also – if using bakers chocolate could sugar be added. Making this for a craft night with friends!!!
Hi Mindy! Hmmm we know that works great in some recipes, but we haven’t tried it in this. We definitely wouldn’t use it to replace all of the butter or oil. You certainly could try experimenting with subbing some of it for applesauce and see, but we’re just not able to say ourselves how that would work. We also would recommend using bittersweet chocolate vs. baking chocolate and adding sugar (it will affect the texture). We hope this helps and that you and your friends enjoy! :)
Hi from down under, In pounds & ounces, or metric
,what does 16 tablespoons of butter weigh? Regards,
Hi there! 16 TBS of butter should weigh 8 ounces. We hope you enjoy this! :)
I made this for my Dads 70th birthday lunch. He loved it so much he has asked for the recipe!! Note to self when using extra large eggs use less, was more mousse like but not a drop was left.Making it again and again and again.
Oh my goodness, this is the sweetest thing! We’re so happy your dad loved this! :D
Hi does this need to be used the same day or can it be made in advance and frozen ?
Hi Kim! You should be able to freeze this — we hope you enjoy!
I just made this and it smells amazing. But, it took about twice the recommended baking time. My oven usually does take a bit longer than most recipes indicate, but not this much longer. My cake was still jiggly at 25 mins baking time. I just took it out and it looks perfect, but does the longer baking time mean some water from the water bath leaked in? Will it still be ok?
Hey there! Oh no, we’re sorry this took so long to bake — that’s strange! We don’t think any water from the water bath would have leaked (we certainly hope not), but please let us know how this ended up turning out!
I was wondering if putting the eggs into the hot chocolate mixture will make scrambled eggs?! Does the chocolate have to cool at all?
Hi Erin! The melted chocolate shouldn’t be piping hot when you fold your eggs into it, so it is a good idea if you can let it cool for a few minutes first. But also, if you work pretty quickly when you’re folding (still be gentle, but moving the spatula continuously to incorporate everything), the eggs should be okay and shouldn’t scramble. We hope this helps and that you enjoy!