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Sincere Acts of Sweetness

October 2, 2013

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Dark Chocolate Glaze

Many months ago I was asked to make this cake for my friend's husband Karl's fortieth birthday. To celebrate, they were meeting friends and family in Whistler Blackcomb for a big ski weekend and Karl had specifically requested something ridiculously chocolatey for his birthday cake. What is more decadent and over-the-top chocolate than a flourless chocolate cake? The melt-in-your-mouth truffle-like luxury of this cake was the perfect choice to celebrate Karl's 14,610 days of enduring on planet Earth.

I almost didn't post this recipe because the photos weren't as great as I would have liked, but this cake was so good and so super simple to make that I decided to post it anyway. The cake itself is not very tall - maybe two or three inches, but it's so rich that honestly you wouldn't want more than that. I decorated the cake with little chocolate buttons, as well as the yellow warning ski-inspired cake topper I made special for Karl. It's made from gum-paste and fondant.

When you make this cake, be sure to splurge a bit on the chocolate: great chocolate equals a great cake. Spend your money on brands like Lindt, Ghirardelli, Valhrona, Perugina, Callebaut or E. Guittard that are known for their consistent quality and proudly display the amount of cocao content right the label. For this cake you want to use chocolate that has between 54% and 60% cocao, more than that and it could get too bitter, less than that and it's too sweet. Please (please) avoid lower-end brands of chocolate like Hershey's, Baker's, Nestle or store brands or you'll end up with a questionable end result that won't impress. Lastly, avoid using chips too as they tend to have extra stabilizers in them that impacts the texture of the cake. Bar chocolate is much more smooth and silky.

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Dark Chocolate Glaze
Yield: 8-12 slices (small slices are typical with this type of cake)
Adapted from Whole Foods

12 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate (54%-60% cocoa) bars, roughly chopped
1 cup (2 sticks) plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
6 eggs at room temperature
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon full fat milk
1 tablespoon agave syrup, honey or corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract
Spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray (not the kind with flour, just plain Pam or similar), then line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper. Spray the paper with cooking spray, too, then set the pan aside.

Place two-thirds (8 ounces) of the chocolate and 1 cup (2 sticks) of the butter in a medium saucepan over medium low heat. Stirring often, melt chocolate with butter until completely blended. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Add sugar and mix well. Let it cool for 5 minutes.

Disclaimer: In the next step, you'll incorporate the eggs into the warm melted chocolate and butter mixture in a very specific way, which is referred to as Tempering. Since there's a risk of scrambling the eggs once they hit the warm chocolate and butter mixture, you need to incorporate the eggs very slowly, so please don't rush this part. And don't fret! It's not difficult, it just requires you to take your time.

Crack all the eggs a bowl and whisk with a folk until the eggs are broken and well combined (you can also do 2 sets of 3 eggs each if that's easier). Have a whisk sitting next to your bowl of melted chocolate and butter. *Slowly* pour about a quarter of the eggs (maybe a little less) into the bowl of warm chocolate and melted butter and immediately whisk the eggs into the chocolate and butter mixture until it's well blended. Next add another 1/4 cup of eggs, repeating the steps above. Continue adding the egg mixture in 1/4 cup- 1/2 batches until you're until all the eggs are incorporated.

Sift the cocoa into the bowl of chocolate, butter and eggs. And stir until just blended ( be sure to scrape the bowl). Don't over mix. It's ok for a few little lumps of cocoa.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until cake has risen and top has formed a thin crust. (I like to check mine after 25ish minutes and see where it is and then depending on how much more it has to bake, I continue to check on it every 5 minutes, sometimes less if it's closer to being done.) The cake should be just firm in the center when done.

Cool for 10 minutes, then invert onto a plate, removing sides of springform pan. Remove and discard parchment paper and set cake aside to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the chocolate glaze. Melt remaining 4 ounces chocolate and 3 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat, then stir in milk, honey and vanilla. Set aside to cool slightly.

When cake has cooled, pour glaze onto the center. Using a spatula or the back of a spoon, very gently smooth glaze along the top and sides of the cake. Chill cake, uncovered, for 30 to 60 minutes before serving to set the glaze and make the cake easier to slice.


  1. A nice recipe to try out. Certainly make my family members happy! Thanks for this post....


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