These decadent, individually-sized Bittersweet Chocolate Cakes contain just five basic ingredients and can be ready in about 40 minutes.
Deceptively simple and endlessly versatile, these Bittersweet Chocolate Cakes are the little black dress of desserts.
Like a classic LBD, you can dress this dessert up or down, which makes this indulgent recipe appropriate for almost any occasion.
These individually-sized cakes taste incredible oven-warm for a molten chocolate experience, but they’re equally delicious at room temperature for a smooth, fudgy texture. They’re also terrific frozen, which I learned when I tucked an ice cream-topped cake in the freezer to eat later after I finished photographing it.
How to Make Bittersweet Chocolate Cakes
With just five ingredients — chocolate, butter, eggs, sugar, and salt — these cakes are so easy to prepare.
Start by melting bittersweet chocolate and butter in a small bowl over simmering water. Once the mixture is melted and smooth, remove the bowl from the pan to cool a bit as you whisk the eggs.
In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix the eggs to combine. Add sugar and a pinch of salt and whisk over medium-high speed until pale yellow and fluffy, about five minutes.
Pour about a third of the egg mixture into the bowl with the chocolate and fold to combine. Scrape the egg-chocolate mixture into the bowl with the eggs and gently fold to incorporate the chocolate.
Divide the batter between six 8-ounce ramekins and bake at 375° F until the tops are firm and cracked but the centers are still gooey, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Alternatively, you can cover the ramekins, refrigerate them, and bake them later. Just take them out of the fridge about 30 minutes before baking. They’ll take a bit more time to bake since they’re cool, between 20 to 25 minutes.
While these cakes taste incredible on their own, toppings add personality and help strike the right tone for the occasion.
I love them with vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, and cocoa nibs, but the possibilities are endless! Here are some other topping ideas to consider:
- Coffee ice cream with mocha sauce and candied almond slivers
- Strawberry whipped cream with fresh strawberries
- Cinnamon ice cream with cocoa nib brittle
- Peppermint ice cream with crushed candy canes
- Mint chip ice cream with Guinness hot fudge
- Cocoa vanilla swirl whipped cream with fresh raspberries
- Vanilla ice cream with hot fudge, sprinkles, and a maraschino cherry
Whether you serve these petite cakes hot, cool, or frozen, you’ll love the indulgence and versatility of this quick, easy recipe.
Bittersweet Chocolate Cakes
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter sliced in pieces
- 3 large eggs
- 2/3 cups granulated sugar
- pinch kosher salt
- If baking immediately, preheat oven to 375° F.
- Combine chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl. Set the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring frequently until melted and smooth. Remove the bowl from the saucepan to cool slightly.
- In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with a whisk, mix eggs to combine. With the mixer on low speed, pour in the sugar and add the salt. Increase speed to medium-high and whisk until the eggs are pale yellow and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Fold about 1/3 of the egg mixture into the warm chocolate mixture. Scrape the chocolate mixture into the remaining eggs and fold gently until evenly combined.
- Divide the batter between 6 ungreased ramekins.
- To bake right away, set the ramekins on a baking sheet. Place them in the lower rack of the oven and bake until the tops puff up, turn crisp, and crack, revealing gooey centers below, about 15 to 20 minutes.
- To prepare ahead, cover the ramekins and refrigerate them for up to 1 day. Let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes while the oven preheats to 375° F. They'll take longer to bake after refrigeration, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Serve warm or at room temperature with toppings of your choice.
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