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Ultimate Easter feast: flourless chocolate cake

Ultimate Easter feast: flourless chocolate cake

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Words and recipe by Maddie Rix

For me, Easter food is just as much about an amazing Sunday lunch with your family as it is about Easter eggs. It’s a wonderful time of year – winter has finally blown itself out, the daffodils and crocuses are flourishing on roadsides, and there is some fantastic seasonal produce.

For as long as I can remember, the peak of our Easter lunch has been a huge hunk of barbecued lamb, but this year I’m following it with a heavenly flourless chocolate cake – the recipe for which you can find below. It’s beautifully light and rounds off our Easter lunch perfectly.

My dad is an over-the-top barbecue enthusiast and needs very little reason to get his grill out – we once had a barbecued turkey at Christmas. However, I fully support our family tradition of barbecuing lamb at Easter. New-season lamb lends itself so well to the grill – the smoky, charred crust and succulent, blushing centre make it the perfect spring centrepiece. My dad removes the bone from his lamb leg and marinades it in olive oil, smashed garlic and rosemary overnight. He starts off the cooking on the barbecue over a high heat to get that gorgeous gnarly exterior, transfers it to the oven for about 20 minutes, then lets it rest for a further 10. He carves it at the table and doles out the meat with a drizzle of the juices from the pan – yum.

We serve our lovely lamb with a zingy homemade mint sauce, Jersey royal new potatoes and asparagus doused in butter, and big spring salad. I urge you to follow suit and get the barbecue out for Easter.

It isn’t all about the mains, though, and no Easter feast would be complete without chocolate. The flourless delight I’m baking this year is so simple to make and completely delicious, which means it’s perfect for a family occasion such as this.

Flourless chocolate cake


  • 200g dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 200g unsalted butter, cubed
  • 5 free-range eggs


Preheat your the oven at 160°C/320°F/gas 3, then grease and line a 23cm springform cake tin. Smash up the chocolate and melt it with the butter in a bowl over a pan of simmering water, then set aside to cool.

Separate the eggs into 2 large mixing bowls. Whisk the egg yolks with 100g of caster sugar until thick, pale and fluffy – this will take at least 5 minutes. Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks, then add the remaining sugar a tablespoon at a time, whisking thoroughly between each addition as if you were making meringue, until you have a thick and glossy mixture. Pour the cooled chocolate mixture into the whisked egg yolks and gently combine with a spatula. Next, gradually fold in the egg whites then pour the mixture into your prepared cake tin. Bake for 45 minutes, or until lightly crisp on top but slightly gooey on the inside. Leave the cake to cool completely in the tin and serve with some good-quality crème fraîche and fresh raspberries.

So there you have it – the ultimate Easter feast. Please give it a go and let me know how you get along. I’d also love to know about your Easter family food traditions so just pop a comment in the box below. Happy Easter everyone!

Flourless Chocolate Cake

It’s that time of year again! I can’t even believe Easter Sunday and Passover are just around the corner. I love holidays because they’re the best excuse to have a feast. No matter what holiday you’re celebrating, my Flourless Chocolate Cake recipe is festive and decadent – simply put, it’s just incredible!

You’re definitely in for a real treat – this is the best flourless chocolate cake I’ve tried. Just like the middle of a freshly baked brownie, this cake is fudgy, rich, packed with chocolate and then some. For being so indulgent, this cake is super simple to whip up.

The Ultimate Flourless Chocolate Cake

In saucepan set over medium heat, cook 1 cup sugar and 1 tbsp water until sugar is dissolved. Stir in nuts. Spread onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet let cool completely. Break into small pieces and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease bottom and sides of 9-inch springform pan sprinkle with cocoa powder and tap to remove excess. Set aside.

In heatproof bowl set over larger pot of simmering water (do not allow bowl to touch water), combine chocolate, butter and espresso cook, stirring, until smooth. Remove from heat set aside.

Using electric mixer, beat egg yolks and 1&frasl4 cup sugar until fluffy and light, about 2 minutes.

In separate bowl, using clean beaters, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Add remaining sugar beat until stiff peaks form. Fold egg yolks into chocolate mixture fold in half of the egg whites until combined, then fold in remaining egg whites until completely combined. Scrape into prepared pan.

Bake until centre of cake is still slightly jiggly, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely release from pan. Mound nut brittle on top before serving.

Test Kitchen Tip: Avoid buying spices in bulk if you follow a special diet, and check the labels of prepackaged spices to ensure they haven&rsquot come into contact with ingredients that contain gluten.

I'd love to know how it turned out! Please let me know by leaving a review below. Or snap a photo and share it on Instagram be sure to tag me @onceuponachef.

This gluten-free flourless chocolate cake is a crowd-pleaser for all occasions and ages.


For the Cake

  • 1-1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder/instant espresso (optional, for a more intense chocolate flavor)
  • 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted (see note)

For the Topping

  • 1-1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 3 tablespoons Confectioners' sugar
  • Cocoa powder and/or chocolate curls, for decorating


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Grease a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter in the microwave until hot and foamy (careful not to boil it, or it will splatter all over your microwave). Add the chocolate and espresso powder (if using), and whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. (If necessary, pop the bowl back into the microwave for 20 seconds to melt any remaining bits of chocolate.)
  3. Add the granulated sugar to the melted chocolate mixture. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed until well combined, about 30 seconds. Add the eggs one at a time, beating on low speed between each addition for about 20 seconds. Quickly beat in the vanilla. Add the cocoa powder and mix on low speed until evenly incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 32 to 35 minutes, or until the cake is puffed and set (it will likely crack a bit on top that's normal and part of the charm of the cake). It's a little tricky to test for doneness, but if you insert a toothpick or cake tester into the center of the cake through one of the cracks, you should get wet crumbs. Let the cake cool on a rack for 15 minutes, then remove the ring on the springform pan and allow the cake to cool completely.
  4. No more than 3 hours before serving, make the topping. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or beaters), whip the heavy cream until slightly thickened. Sprinkle the confectioners' sugar over the cream and beat until soft, pillowy peaks form. Do not overbeat.
  5. Dollop and swirl the whipped cream decoratively over the cake. Sift a bit of cocoa powder over the cream and decorate with chocolate curls (if using).
  6. Note: The easiest way to sift the cocoa powder is to pass it through a fine mesh sieve when adding it to the cake batter.
  7. Make-Ahead Instructions: The base of the cake can be made up to one day ahead of time and stored in a covered container in the refrigerator. Allow the cake to come to room temperature before topping with whipped cream and serving. Leftover cake can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days (bring to room temperature before serving).

Nutrition Information

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  • Per serving (12 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 slice
  • Calories: 401
  • Fat: 29 g
  • Saturated fat: 18 g
  • Carbohydrates: 35 g
  • Sugar: 31 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 45 mg
  • Cholesterol: 149 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

The best part about this flourless cake is that it doesn't require any flour alternatives. It's just the perfect cake that happens to have zero flour. Cocoa powder and eggs give it all the lift and structure it needs. This is the cake I make most often for dinner guests or over to a friend. It's can be made ahead of time, takes minimal effort, any gluten-free guests can still enjoy, and most importantly it always elicits oohs and aahs when I pour the ganache on just before serving.

Not over-baking this cake is key. To have a soft, fudgy center this cake should only take about 35 minutes to bake. A matte crust will form on top and the center will feel just barely set.

A springform pan makes it much easier to remove from the pan. It is a more delicate cake so flipping it out of a standard cake pan isn't recommended. If you don't have a springform pan and prefer to bake in a standard round cake pan, let the cake cool completely before flipping it out onto a platter or cutting board. since it will topped with ganache I recommend leaving the cake upside down instead of flipping it again.

If you love this cake, then you also need to check out our perfect flourless fudge cookies.

Recipes for a Passover Feast

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Chicken Soup with Matzo Balls

"Every nationality has some kind of chicken soup. It's one of the simplest meals you can make and almost everyone can find a chicken and some vegetables to cook up a big, satisfying pot of soup for the family. Some people even ascribe magical medicinal qualities to chicken soup, and who am I to disagree? The Greeks have a chicken and lemon soup called avgolemono, Italians make tortellini en brodo, the Vietnamese have pho and, of course, the Chinese make egg drop soup with chicken broth. I grew up on chicken soup with matzo balls, so that's my particular favorite. The broth starts with whole chickens and vegetables, plus fresh herbs like parsley and thyme, an entire head of garlic and lots of salt and pepper. I simmer it away for hours while I futz around the house and make some easy matzo balls. I end up with a rich, delicious soup that will delight everyone on a cold night!" says Ina.

Roast Turkey Breast with Glazed Vegetables

Sweet potatoes, turnips, fennel and onions are coated in a sweet honey mixture and roasted along with the turkey.

Roasted Carrots with Za'atar

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Best Flourless Chocolate Cake

Chocoholics rejoice, this flourless chocolate cake is going to make all your chocolate dreams come true! Every bite is smooth, fudgy, and simply decadent.

I have tried a few recipes for flourless chocolate cake before, but this one is by far the easiest. And it tastes just as amazing as the ones that took twice as long to prepare. That’s a win in my book for sure!

The batter for this cake is so smooth and creamy you can just tell it’s going to be amazing. Not to mention the fudgy chocolate glaze on top! It seriously melts in your mouth.

Not every “flourless” recipe is safe for gluten free diets, but this cake is. It’s also perfect for those who observe passover!


  • Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 375°F. Grease an 8-inch round cake pan with softened butter. Line the pan with parchment, and set aside.
  • Put a large bowl over a pot of barely simmering water, making sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Add the butter, chocolate, and espresso powder, and heat, stirring occasionally with a silicone spatula, until the butter and chocolate are melted.
  • Off the heat, add the sugars, whisking until incorporated. Whisk in the vanilla and then the eggs one at a time, breaking up each egg with a whisk before gently mixing it into the chocolate mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the cake after 15 minutes. The cake is done when the top is crackly and the center wobbles just the tiniest bit.
  • Let the cake cool on a rack for about 10 minutes. Carefully invert the cake over the rack, then flip right side up to cool completely. The top of the cake will collapse slightly as it cools.
  • Wrap the cake in plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. Serve slices at room temperature sprinkled with sea salt, a dollop of crème fraîche, and fresh berries, if you like.
  • Alternatively, and if you are stretched for time, after the cake rests on the counter for 10 minutes, transfer it to a wire rack set inside a cookie sheet, and place in the freezer for 20 minutes. Then, invert the cake out of the pan and right side up onto a serving plate and serve warm, with the crème fraîche and berries, if you like.
  • Store wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Recipe Notes

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Reviews (5 reviews)

What a treat! I made this last night to uplift our stir crazy souls and it is outstanding in deliciousness, moistness and unique difference from the less pudding-suggestive flourless chocolate cakes I know. My family was delighted! Thank you!

I'm not gluten free, so maybe I'm biased -- but I did not like this. I followed the recipe exactly, and the end result was a very sweet cake with the consistency of hard pudding or a slightly unbaked brownie. My guests still enjoyed it (because it's chocolate) but I've had flourless cakes before that are much less. sticky? My cake rose a lot, but I felt nervous about the middle being undercooked. it was fine after cooling and hardening in the fridge.

Recipe Summary

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for pan
  • 8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 6 large eggs, separating yolks and egg whites
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
  • Sweetened whipped cream, for serving

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees with the rack in the center. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

Place butter and chocolate in a large heatproof bowl and microwave in 30-second increments, stirring each time, until completely melted. Let cool slightly. Whisk in egg yolks.

In a large bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add granulated sugar, and continue beating until glossy stiff peaks form. Whisk 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture then gently fold in remaining egg whites.

Pour batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Bake until the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan and is set in the center, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack remove sides of pan. Serve at room temperature, dusted with confectioners' sugar. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.


Making the gluten free chocolate cake is the same old story of sifting together the dry ingredients, adding the wet ingredients, mixing it all up, and baking the sponges until risen and fluffy and wonderful.

But let’s start at the beginning.

Sift together gluten free flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa powder.

Add in the sugar and salt. Whisk it up.

Pour in the vegetable oil, milk and crack in the eggs.

Whisk it all together until you get the most luscious chocolate cake batter. At this point, you might think that this is it – it looks like it has the perfect consistency and you might be tempted to bake it as is.

But nope, there’s one more thing, and it’s… boiling hot water. I know it sounds kind of out there, but it really truly works. This will ensure that the gluten free chocolate sponges stay moist and delicate. No, it won’t scramble the eggs. And no, it won’t make the cake “puddingy”. Don’t worry, mmkay?

The final cake batter will be runny, and it will look like a super luxurious hot chocolate. It will be oh-so tempting to have a taste (or two), but al least try to resist.

Pour the cake batter into lined round cake pans, and bake. That’s all there is to it.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 tablespoon hot water
  • ¾ cup LAND O LAKES® Unsalted Butter
  • 6 ounces high-quality bittersweet chocolate baking bar, broken into small pieces
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 LAND O LAKES® Eggs
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon hot water
  • 1 cup LAND O LAKES® Heavy Whipping Cream, chilled
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon extra fine edible glitter

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

Wrap outside of 9-inch springform pan with aluminum foil. Line bottom of pan with parchment paper. Butter parchment paper and sides of pan.

Combine 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder and 1 tablespoon hot water in bowl set aside.

Place butter and chocolate in 2-quart nonstick saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until melted. Remove from heat stir in espresso mixture. Add sugar beat with whisk until combined. Add 1 egg at a time, whisking after each addition. Whisk in cocoa until well mixed.

Pour cake into prepared pan. Place springform pan into center of large roasting pan. Place roasting pan in oven. Fill space around springform pan slowly with hot water, to about 1 inch up sides of pan. Bake 40-45 minutes or until center of cake is set.

Remove springform pan from roasting pan. Place onto cooling rack remove foil. Cool completely.

Combine 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder and 1 teaspoon hot water in bowl set aside.

Beat chilled whipping cream and 1/4 cup sugar in chilled bowl at high speed, scraping bowl often, until stiff peaks form. Stir in espresso mixture.

Combine powdered sugar and edible glitter in bowl.

Remove sides from springform pan place cake onto serving plate. Place snowflake stencil on top of cake (see Recipe Tips). Lightly dust top of cake with powdered sugar mixture. Carefully remove stencil.


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