This Easy Flourless Chocolate Cake is a dark, rich, and fudgy indulgence that requires no layers, no special tools, and is naturally gluten-free!
If you've ever dreamed of a chocolate dessert that perfectly captures the words "rich" and "decadent," then you've just stumbled upon your perfect dessert.
This recipe is part of my collection of Dessert, where you can find a multitude of treasures you might like. If you enjoyed this cake, you might also like this Chocolate Tart Recipe, or these decadent Triple Chocolate Stout Brownies With Nuts. Easy Chocolate Truffles are super easy to make and great for holidays, while Easy Dark Chocolate Walnut Cookies are perfect for a sweet tooth.
Why I Love This Recipe:
As someone who can talk for hours about food, let me tell you, this cake is what chocolate dreams are made of.
It's gourmet in flavor but easy to make, essentially everything a chocolate lover would want.
It's dense and chocolaty, and the textures are just to die for. You get all this elegance without any fuss. Seriously, this is the best flourless chocolate cake you'll ever have!
This flourless chocolate cake seems to be very popular on the internet as so many people look for gluten-free recipes to enjoy.
Besides that, who doesn't love a good chocolate cake? It is so good that you will not even notice that there is no flour in it.
This cake is dense, fudgy, and delicious and goes really well with a cup of good tea or coffee.
It is also effortless to make. If you manage to melt the chocolate and butter together on top of a water bath or in the microwave, the rest of the ingredients come together super fast.
What does this cake taste like?
Imagine the best parts of a brownie, truffle, and mousse all rolled into one glorious dessert. It's incredibly rich, fudgy, and just melts in your mouth.
The texture is divine. Smooth yet dense, making every bite an indulgence. Trust me, this is the kind of dessert that'll make any dinner feel like a special occasion.
Chocolate: This is the heart of this cake, and the quality matters. I'd recommend using a high-quality semi-sweet chocolate with a cocoa content between 52-70%.
Avoid milk chocolate or chocolate chips, as they usually contain additional sweeteners or stabilizers that could affect the texture and taste of your cake.
Instead, go for chocolate bars that you'd enjoy eating on their own—because if the chocolate tastes good by itself, it will make your cake taste even better.
I recommend Ghirardelli, Scharffen Berger, or Guittard. If you're looking for an ethical option, the Endangered Species Chocolate brand offers high-quality, fair-trade chocolate that also contributes to wildlife conservation efforts.
Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: I used Dutch-process cocoa powder.
Unlike natural cocoa powder, Dutch-process cocoa is treated with an alkali solution, neutralizing its acidity.
It has a slightly higher fat content compared to its natural counterpart, and the taste is more mellow and less bitter. This means your cake will be richer and have a more luxurious mouthfeel.
It also has a deeper, darker color, which makes your cake more appealing. However, if you don't have this type of cocoa, regular cocoa powder is fine to use.
Note: Make sure to use unsweetened cocoa powder for this recipe, not the sugary kind meant for making hot chocolate drinks. The latter contains added sugar and other ingredients that will throw off the balance of flavors in your cake.
Unsalted butter: Adds creaminess and fat. You can replace it with coconut oil if you're dairy-free.
Granulated Sugar: Necessary for sweetness.
Eggs: They bring structure and moisture to the cake, making it both fudgy and dense.
How to prepare your pan to prevent the cake from sticking:
Butter or Grease: Start by generously coating the entire inner surface of your 8-inch round pan with butter. If you prefer, a non-stick spray works well too.
Parchment Paper: Cut a circle of parchment paper to fit the bottom of your greased pan, or use these parchment paper rounds with lift pads, which make your life easier. Grease the parchment paper as well. The cake will stick if you don't grease the pan and the paper.
Optional Cocoa Powder Dusting: If you want to go the extra mile, you can also sift a small amount of Dutch-process cocoa powder directly onto the buttered sides of the pan (not over the parchment paper). This optional step gives an extra layer of chocolatey flavor as the cake bakes and climbs the walls of the pan.
How to make:
Step 1. Melt the chocolate with butter: Using a double boiler or the microwave, melt together your chocolate and butter until smooth.
Step 2. Mix and Pour: Stir in the remaining ingredients, including the cocoa powder. Pour into your prepared pan.
Step 3. Bake: Simple as that. Place the pan for 25-30 minutes in a preheated 350F oven or until the edges are set but the center is still a little wobbly.
Tip: Gently shake the pan. If the cake slightly wiggles but doesn't look liquidy, it's done. Remember, it will continue to set as it cools.
Step 4. Cool and serve. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edges to help release it. Allow it to cool completely. You can place it in the refrigerator for a few hours.
Decorate and serve it sliced.
How to serve this cake:
By itself: This cake is a masterpiece on its own, but you can elevate it further with a few simple touches.
Powdered with sugar or cocoa: For a gourmet experience, dust the top with a light layer of Dutch-process cocoa powder or powdered sugar.
Whipped cream: If you're a chocolate lover seeking the ultimate indulgence, a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream can be the perfect complement.
Fresh fruit: Fresh berries on the side add a pop of color and a burst of natural sweetness. For the holidays, decorate it with candied orange peel.
Red wine or a cup of coffee: For those who enjoy a beverage pairing, consider serving it with a glass of red wine or a steaming cup of espresso to round out the experience.
While all flourless cakes are naturally free of wheat flour, being flourless doesn't automatically mean a cake is gluten-free. Gluten can still be present in other ingredients or additives.
However, in the case of this flourless chocolate cake, it is indeed gluten-free, as it doesn't include any ingredients that contain gluten.
On the flip side, a gluten-free cake might still contain other types of flour, like almond or rice flour, that are free of gluten but still serve the same purpose as traditional wheat flour in the recipe.
Essentially, all flourless cakes can be gluten-free, but not all gluten-free cakes are flourless.
We are using an 8-inch round pan. Choosing between dark and light pans is important, as the color plays a role in how your cake turns out.
For this recipe, you need a light-colored, aluminum pan. Lighter pans reflect heat, allowing the cake to bake more evenly.
Dark-colored pans absorb and retain more heat compared to their light-colored counterparts. Your cake will likely cook faster and could end up being drier if you're not careful.
If you only have a dark pan, it's not a deal-breaker. Just be aware that you may need to reduce your oven temperature by about 25°F and keep a close eye on the baking time to avoid overcooking.
In a flourless cake, the eggs provide the most structure. As the cake cools, the proteins in the eggs contract, which can result in the cake falling slightly.
Also, a slightly fallen center is often considered a visual hallmark of a rich, decadent, flourless chocolate cake. So, embrace the dip—it's a sign you're on the right track!
How to store this cake:
This cake needs refrigeration. First of all, refrigeration helps extend the shelf life of the cake. Store the cake in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
Bring the cake back to room temperature before serving.
This cake also freezes well for up to 3 months without losing its quality.
Allow the cake to thaw in the fridge overnight and bring it back to room temperature before serving.
Finally, if you are short on time or want to bring back that just-baked warmth, you can also gently reheat individual slices in the microwave for 15-20 seconds.
You can play with the flavors. For example, you can remove a teaspoon of cocoa powder and replace it with instant coffee for a coffee flavor.
Or you can replace the vanilla flavor with rum flavor or almond.
More gluten-free recipes:
More cake recipes:
Easy Flourless Chocolate Cake
- 4 ounces dark chocolate chopped (Iused 72% Trader Joe's Belgian Chocolate
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Butter an 8" round cake pan and dust it with cocoa powder.
- Prepare a double boiler and place chopped chocolate and butter over simmering water until the chocolate and butter melt together.
- Remove from the stove and set aside to cool down for 5 minutes.
- Stir in cocoa powder, sugar, beaten eggs, and vanilla.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes.
- Let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Remove it from the pan and place it on a wire rack to cool completely.
- When cool, dust it with powdered sugar or cocoa powder and serve it sliced.