Flourless Chocolate Cake

June 21, 2009
4 Stars
Photo by James Ransom
Author Notes

This is an improvisation on a cake from my Gourmet cookbook -- I use a bit less sugar, for a richer flavor, and beat the egg whites for much better structure, IMHO. This is wonderful for dinner parties, a quickie hostess gift and children adore it. For the latter group, I like to cut out a shape (recently I used a trumpet for a Music Man cast party), lay it in the center of the cake held down with dimes, then sift powdered sugar over it. Carefully remove the paper pattern, and voil√†, a themed cake. You can half this recipe and make in an 8 inch cake pan for smaller groups. —Jestei

  • Serves 10 to 12
  • 8 ounces high quality bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 1 cup Dutch processed cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
In This Recipe
  1. Put rack in middle of oven and preheat to 350. Generously butter 10 inch spring form pan. Line bottom with parchment paper and butter paper.
  2. Chop chocolate in small pieces and melt with butter over very low flame, stirring frequently until smooth. (You can also do this in microwave.) Remove from heat and whisk in sugar. Let cool for 5 minutes, then add egg yolks, one at a time. Sift cocoa and salt over chocolate mixture and whisk to combine.
  3. In standing mixer, beat egg white at high speed until peaks form but are not yet stiff. Gently fold into chocolate mixture.
  4. Pour batter into pan and bake 35-40 min or until cake forms thin crust on top. Remove before its sides move from pan.
  5. Cool for ten minutes, invert on a plate then reinvert on cooling rack. (I have also served this right from cake pan, sides removed. Sue me.)
  6. Let cool completely before sifting powdered sugar over top.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • tastysweet
  • Burf
  • Rhonda
  • alahanson
  • pamela

21 Reviews

tastysweet December 17, 2017
If you serve this cake straight from the pan, an idea I like, when you go to cut it, I would assume the parchment paper would still be on the bottom of the slice.
Tarta February 13, 2016
I am currently baking this cake it's now been 50 minutes and it's still not done. Did anyone have this issue? I definitely used the correct ingredients and my oven is 350 degrees..
Burf June 8, 2015
this was great! very rich & moist. I cut the recipe in half, and divided that batter between two 4.5" springform pans (because of this, they cooked really fast). Stacked 'em with Nancy Silverton's whipped cream & berries. Perfect for 4 people. Thanks!
Rhonda April 20, 2015
Did anyone else have theirs turn out dry. My cake went stale pretty darn fast, like within hours. What about adding more fat?
alahanson December 18, 2014
Can I use regular Valrhona cocoa powder?
Artemis V. June 30, 2015
Valrhona cocoa is Dutch process!
pamela November 1, 2014
my spring form pan broke, can i bake in regular cake pans or rectangular glass?
Angela P. October 13, 2014
I just made this tonight! Very good! Serving it warm is a great suggestion. Very light.
lisa L. June 21, 2014
can this cake be made with a sugar substitute for a diabetic?
Heidi B. May 12, 2014
can I use coconut sugar for the sugar and raw cacao for the dutch cocoa?
Rae P. May 7, 2014
If you make this the day before serving, how should you store it?
Author Comment
Jestei May 8, 2014
in a closed container
teresa August 30, 2013
love this cake, HUGE HIT! and not too hard to make either. so tasty warmed up with ice cream :)
luvcookbooks December 7, 2010
dr babs, just read yr comment in the cooking spotlight and saved the recipe for passover 2011
drbabs December 7, 2010
It's quite decadent and amazing.
drbabs December 20, 2010
I posted a photo of the cake I made for a holiday party with crushed peppermint candy on top.
drbabs March 30, 2010
OK, i wish I had decided to keep it on the cake pan--when i inverted it onto the cooling rack, it was so soft in the center that it kind of collapsed into the grid. Maybe I didn't let it cool long enough? Anyway, I'll just whip up some cream for serving to hide the broken part. And I got to taste it--amazing.
drbabs March 30, 2010
I made this today for Passover--I added the zest of an orange and a teaspoon of cardamom powder. The batter tasted amazing--I'm looking forward to having it tonight.
Food52 June 21, 2009
Never knew the dimes trick -- cool!
Holly May 7, 2014
What is the "dimes trick"?
pcskinner October 14, 2014
Holds the parchment paper design cutout down while you sprinkle powdered sugar.