2 Ways to Make Chocolate Ganache

December 11, 2014

This article is brought to you by our friends at Electrolux as part of an ongoing series focusing on seasonal ingredients for the holidays. This month we're talking chocolate.

Today: Skip the bakery and learn two easy, foolproof ways to make ganache at home instead.

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We leave chocolate ganache to the experts far too often. It can be tricky, so we’d rather not risk it. But the truth is that making ganache doesn’t have to be hard; in fact, it can be quite simple. Here are two ways to make your favorite cake-topper and cookie-filler at home:

On the cooktop: Place 8 ounces of chopped bittersweet chocolate and 1/2 cup of heavy cream in a heatproof bowl large enough to fit over a small saucepan. Fill the saucepan about halfway with water and bring it to a simmer. Place the bowl over the simmering water, and cook until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. (In addition to making ganache, you’ve also just hacked a double boiler.) Stir in a dash of vanilla extract, if you like. 

Alternatively, you can melt the cream and chocolate together directly on the stovetop over very low heat -- just be sure to watch it carefully and stir continuously. Use the finished ganache with reckless abandon, or let it cool completely -- it can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 

More: Make Alice Medrich's spur-of-the-moment chocolate sauce at home, without a recipe.

In the microwave: Place the chopped chocolate and heavy cream in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on low heat for 30 seconds. Remove the bowl from the microwave and stir with a spatula, and repeat in 30 second intervals until the chocolate is completely melted and the cream is fully incorporated.

Photos by James Ransom

This article was brought to you by Electrolux, who's all about great taste and the appliances to help you make beautiful meals in your own kitchen. Learn more here.

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Julie Myers

Written by: Julie Myers

Perpetually hungry. Will travel for food.


Lynn S. March 4, 2021
These techniques are both useless if you do not give a ratio of chocolate to cream/milk/etc. Too little cream and the chocolate seizes no matter how you heat it, Too much cream and you end up with a runny, often grainy sauce that will not firm up when cooled. Also, the ratio of chocolate to cream changes depending on what type of chocolate you want to use-dark, milk, dark-milk or white chocolate.
Maria A. June 1, 2015
How do I make it sweeter if the person I'm preparing it for does not like bittersweet chocolate??
Maria A. June 1, 2015
What type of chocolate do you recommend if I don't like dark chocolate, or what should I do if I use bittersweet chocolate but I want to make it sweeter?
Maria A. June 1, 2015
How do I make it sweeter if the person I'm preparing it for does not like bittersweet chocolate??
mary June 1, 2015
Use semisweet chocolate
mary December 11, 2014
My way is even easier....I just heat the milk/cream to a scald in the microwave and pour it over chopped chocolate. Then I just stir until smooth. Add-ins can go in at the same time (such as salt or vanilla).
Chickenfog December 12, 2014
Yeah, I agree. I don't use a microwave so heat the cream in sauce pan, then pour over chocolate chips. Wait a few minutes, stir. Am I doing it wrong? It seems to always work. ??
The P. December 13, 2014
This is how my wife makes ganache. She has become an excellent self-taught chocolatier!
jmwh December 11, 2014
Love the easy recipes...I have some leftover in the freezer. Was that a mistake? Will I be able to use it?
Julie M. December 11, 2014
Happy to hear that! It should be fairly stable in the freezer. When you're ready to use it, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator, then take it out to soften before you use it. You shouldn't refreeze it after it's been thawed, however.
Posie (. December 11, 2014
Love this, so useful, and that top picture is incredible.