Molten Chocolate Lava Cake is a rich, fudgy little flourless chocolate cake with a soft, gooey centre. This one is made with only 3 ingredients in about half an hour. Served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, it's simply divine!
I love that this happens to be a gluten free flourless chocolate cake that everyone enjoys! Make it in a muffin tin to be turned out and served elegantly, or dispense with the fuss and simply bake and serve it in ramekins. It will taste just as good either way!
This recipe was inspired by the molten chocolate lava cake topped with chocolate ganache and garnished with a sliced strawberry that I was served last year when my husband and I went to Benmiller Inn for Valentine's Day.
- Baking Chocolate - Use semi-sweet or bittersweet baking chocolate. If you have only unsweetened chocolate, add ¾ cup of sugar during the melting stage.
- Eggs - Allow your eggs to come to room temperature before you beat them, for best results.
- Butter - I've only tested this recipe with pure, real butter. The smaller the chunks, the quicker it will melt.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Set an oven rack in the middle position. Prepare the insides of each cup of a jumbo, 6-cup muffin tin by spraying them with oil or coating them with an oil-dipped pastry brush.
For smaller lava cakes, use a regular, 12-cup muffin pan. There should be enough batter for 12 little cakes.
Alternately, you could simply bake and serve each individual cake in a ramekin. There's no need to line ramekins with parchment paper as you'll be eating directly out of them.
Melt chocolate and butter together over very low heat, stirring occasionally. If you don't have a low, melt burner on your stovetop, you could use a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. (double boiler)
While the chocolate and butter are melting, beat the eggs at high speed until they become pale in colour and tiny bubbles cover the surface, about 5 minutes.
Once the chocolate and butter have melted, remove the mixture from the heat. Carefully stir about ⅓ of the beaten eggs into the melted chocolate.
Adding one-third of the eggs at a time, stir them gently into the chocolate until they are all combined.
Pour the chocolate batter into the prepare muffin tin.
Bake just until the cake has set around the outside but is still soft and gooey in the centre, 144 degrees F in the centre. This took about 10 minutes for this 6-cup muffin pan. An instant read thermometer really takes the guesswork out of it!
Allow the cakes to cool for a few minutes until you can slip a knife or small spatula around the edge of each and lift it out to place on a serving plate.
Recipe FAQ's and Tips
You can use a muffin tin for baking lava cakes as I have here in this recipe. I used a large jumbo 6-cup one. If you would rather make smaller cakes, a regular muffin pan would work. In that case, it will bake faster, so check it sooner.
Chocolate lava cakes freeze very nicely. Allow them to thaw in the refrigerator.
You can reheat lava cakes for 10 minutes in a 300 degree F. oven or for 15 seconds each in a microwave.
Prepare the batter ahead, refrigerate for several hours, bring to room temperature, and bake just before serving.
More Special Gluten Free Desserts
Molten Chocolate Lava Cake
- Preheat the oven to 450° F. Place a rack in the middle of the oven.
- Prepare a jumbo, 6-cup muffin tin OR a regular 12-cup muffin pan by oiling the muffin cups. Cut circles from parchment paper to line the bottom of each muffin cup. ALTERNATIVELY, you could bake and serve the lava cakes in individual ramekins without any parchment liners.
- Melt the chocolate and butter together gently over very low heat, checking and stirring it frequently, until it is melted and smoothly combined. Remove it from the heat.
- Meanwhile, beat the eggs at high speed for 3 to 5 minutes until they become light in colour and foamy with small bubbles on the surface.
- Gently, stir the beaten eggs into the chocolate mixture one-third at a time.
- Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups, and bake until the centre reaches a temperature of 144° F (62° C), 5 to 10 minutes, depending on size. The centre should still be very soft.
- Allow the cakes to cool in the pan until they are set just enough to remove without breaking, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Invert a warm cake onto each serving plate, and drizzle Chocolate Ganache Icing over each one.
- The finer you chop the chocolate and butter, the faster they will melt.
- If you use a double boiler to melt your chocolate, be very careful not to get any water into the chocolate-butter mixture.
- If you make smaller cakes in a regular muffin tin or small ramekins, they may cook faster.
- Serve lava cakes warm.