Chewy and light flourless chocolate cake. A crackly top gives way to a light and airy inside that's chewy and almost brownie-like. Serve with whipped cream and/or fresh berries.
This post is sponsored by Andronico's Community Markets, a year-long partner of Snixy Kitchen, but the opinions are all my own.
If I ever see flourless chocolate cake on a menu, I'll move right along. It's probably all tied back to some long-ago experience with a dense dry flourless chocolate cake. I don't trust it and will never order it. I write it off as the boring option.
But this flourless chocolate cake is anything but boring. If I knew this flourless chocolate cake would be served, I'd always order it. This sunken flourless chocolate cake has a crisp top that crackles, giving way to a light flourless cake that's somehow both chewy and airy. As it bakes, the cake puffs up and then falls and crackles as it cools.
I brought this cake to a meeting and someone interrupted the discussion to tell everyone to go have some cake. Specifically, they announced, "I'm somewhat of a flourless chocolate cake connoisseur and this is the best one I've ever had."
So trust me when I say: this flourless chocolate torte should be your Valentine's Day staple.
Why you'll love this flourless chocolate cake
There are so many reasons to love this flourless chocolate cake:
- The texture is moist, chewy, light, and airy, with a crackly meringue-like crust on top.
- The recipe uses just a few pantry-staple ingredients.
- It's so easy to make - the batter whips up lickety-split.
- The cake is naturally gluten-free!
- There's no frosting required. You can serve it up with some whipped cream if you like, but there's no need to futz with frosting here. The cake is delicious in its own right.
- Easily make the cake dairy-free with plant butter or olive oil.
Andronico's Flourless Chocolate Cake Ingredients
This flourless chocolate cake uses pantry staples, so stock up on it all at your local Bay Area Andronico's Community Market. They've got high-quality baking chocolate and cocoa powder, both of which are key here because they're the flavor drivers of this cake. Look for the good stuff!
Here's a list of all the recipes I've made in partnership with Andronico's this past year.
For this flourless chocolate cake, you'll need:
- Bittersweet chocolate (65-75%)
- Unsalted butter
- Large eggs
- Granulated sugar
- Cream of tartar: This helps stabilize the whipped egg whites
- Dark brown sugar: I recommend organic dark brown sugar, as it has a higher molasses content and will make the cake more moist inside.
- Pure vanilla extract
- Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- Kosher salt
Dairy-free flourless chocolate cake
For a dairy-free version of this flourless chocolate cake, replace the unsalted butter with the same quantity of plant butter or high-quality extra virgin olive oil.
What kind of chocolate for flourless chocolate cake
The rich chocolate flavor in this torte comes strictly from melted chocolate and cocoa powder, so it's important that you use high-quality ingredients for each.
For the bittersweet chocolate, look for a high-quality baking bar, baking wafers, or chocolate chips that are 65-75% cacao. I recommend Guittard bittersweet chocolate, which has a very consistent flavor that's well-balanced.
For the cocoa powder, I recommend a high-quality dutch-processed cocoa powder, but it's such a small amount that you can also sub in natural cocoa powder if that's what you have on hand!
How to make flourless chocolate cake
This flourless chocolate cake could not be any easier to make.
- Melt the chocolate and butter together and let cool slightly (Fast tip: you can do this in a microwave!)
- Whip the egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy, then slowly pour in the granulated sugar and whip until stiff glossy peaks form.
- Whisk the dark brown sugar and vanilla into the melted chocolate, followed by the egg yolks and cocoa powder.
- Fold the egg whites into the batter and pour into a buttered springform pan.
- Bake 30-35 minutes at 350°F. Cool 10 minutes, then release from the pan to cool completely.
How to serve flourless chocolate cake
This flourless chocolate cake is delicious enough to serve on its own without any frills or toppings, but here are a few fun ways to dress up a flourless chocolate cake:
- Dust the cooled cake with powdered sugar or cocoa powder
- Top slices with whipped cream and fresh berries
- Spread chocolate ganache over the top and let it set before serving
- Serve with scoops of ice cream
- Drizzle slices with crème anglais
- Drizzle slices with melty chocolate syrup
- Serve with a warm berry compote
How to Store flourless chocolate cake
If making the flourless chocolate cake a day in advance, store it unsliced and lightly covered at room temperature to maintain that crispy shell.
To store for longer, store slices in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Tip: If you don't plan to eat or serve the whole cake, only cut what you plan to serve and store the remaining unsliced for maximum freshness.
More Decadent Gluten-Free Chocolate Desserts
- Chewy Gluten-Free Chocolate Cookies
- Gluten-Free German Chocolate Cake
- Gluten-Free Chocolate Swiss Roll Cake
- Dark Chocolate Honey Fig Walnut Truffles
- Chocolate Mochi Donuts
- Mint Chocolate Mousse with Matcha Toasted Meringue
- 7oz finely chopped bittersweet chocolate (60-70%, I use Guittard Bittersweet)
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, plus more for the pan (see note for dairy-free)
- 5 large eggs, room temperature, whites and yolks separated
- ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- ¼ cup (50g) dark brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- Optional: Whipped cream and fresh berries, for serving
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan with softened butter.
- Either in a large microwave-safe bowl or a double broiler, melt the chocolate and butter together, whisking until smooth. In the microwave, heat for 1 minute, whisk, then heat again in 30-second intervals until completely melted. Alternatively, use a double broiler or place a heat-proof bowl over a small saucepan of boiling water so the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar over medium-high speed. Once the egg whites start to foam, slowly pour in the granulated sugar while the mixer is running and continue mixing just until stiff glossy peaks form.
- Whisk the brown sugar and vanilla into the melted chocolate, then whisk in the egg yolks. Sift the cocoa into the melted chocolate and whisk to combine.
- Use a silicone spatula to fold in ⅓ of the egg whites, mixing well to loosen the batter. Then carefully fold in the remaining egg whites in three parts, folding just until there are no white streaks remaining.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared springform pan, smoothing the top. Then bake for 30-35 minutes, until the top puffs and crackles, while the inside still looks underbaked. The top should be somewhat firm to the touch. Note: if you underbake the cake, the top won't develop a nice crust, but if you overbake, the inside won't be as soft and chewy. I recommend erring on the side of underbaking. As it bakes, the cake puffs up and then falls and crackles as it cools.
- Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Then run a knife around the outside and release the cake from the pan to cool completely before slicing and serving.
- Optionally serve with whipped cream and fresh berries.
Dairy-Free: For a dairy-free version of this flourless chocolate cake, replace the unsalted butter with the same quantity of plant butter or high-quality extra virgin olive oil.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 188Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 114mgSodium: 77mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 4gSugar: 2gProtein: 7g
This nutritional information has been automatically calculated, and as such, may be incomplete or inaccurate. Please reference the specific ingredients you use for the most accurate nutritional information.