Flourless Chocolate Cake

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This healthy Flourless Chocolate Cake is made with 5 simple ingredients and makes an impressive dessert to bring to a party. It’s rich & fudgy, and naturally gluten-free!

flourless chocolate cake sliced in pan.

This cake recipe reminds me of a cross between brownies and fudge. It has a rich chocolate flavor, and everyone who tastes it will ask for the recipe!

You can top it with a dusting of powdered sugar or cacao powder, and serve it with fresh fruit for an easy dessert. No flour required.

Prefer a fluffier cake? Try my healthy birthday cake, chocolate almond flour cake, or coconut flour cake instead.

Ingredients You’ll Need

flourless chocolate cake ingredients labeled on white surface.

What’s in a flourless chocolate cake? 

  • Dark chocolate chips
  • Eggs
  • Granulated sugar (I use coconut sugar)
  • Cacao or cocoa powder
  • Butter

This cake is very similar to the traditional version, only it’s made slightly healthier by using less overall sugar, for a dark chocolate flavor. My family enjoys grass-fed butter and pastured eggs, but you may also want to check out the substitution ideas below for a lower-fat dessert.

Tip: I use salted butter in this recipe, as I prefer the flavor it adds. If you use unsalted butter, you may want to add a 1/4 teaspoon of salt to this recipe, to boost the overall flavor. Sweet recipes need a little salt, too!

If you’d like another boost of flavor, you could also add a teaspoon of vanilla extract or espresso powder, which can sometimes elevate the chocolate flavor even more.

Want to Make it Even Healthier?

I’ve been making this flourless chocolate cake for so many years, I’ve tried lots of substitutions.

Here are some things to try:

  • Make it dairy-free. Swap the butter for a 1/3 cup coconut oil. This will give the cake a hint of coconut flavor, or you can use refined coconut oil (also called expeller pressed) which has no coconut flavor. Alternatively, you can use a vegan butter, if you prefer.
  • Make it lower fat. Swap half of the butter for pumpkin puree. You can also do this with the coconut oil variation mentioned above. The pumpkin has a neutral flavor (unlike applesauce or banana, which I don’t recommend) so you won’t taste it at all. I don’t recommend swapping ALL of the fat for pumpkin puree, or the texture will change more significantly, but feel free to experiment with it.
  • Make it egg-free. I don’t recommend using an egg substitute for this recipe, because the eggs provide most of the structure, but you can check out my vegan chocolate tart for a similar dessert made without eggs or dairy.
  • Sweeten with honey. If you’d like to avoid all refined sugar, you can swap the dark chocolate chips for unsweetened baking chocolate and replace the coconut sugar with 3/4 cup honey, instead. I haven’t tested this recipe with maple syrup yet, so I couldn’t tell you if it will work with another sweetener.
  • Reduce the sugar. I’ve tested this recipe with only 3/4 cup of coconut sugar, and it’s not quite sweet enough for my family when I use 72% dark chocolate chips as the base. However, if you use a sweeter dark chocolate (in the 50-60% range) you may be able to use less coconut sugar. Or, if you use  semi-sweet chocolate, you may only need a 1/2 cup of added sugar. Feel free to experiment with it!

flourless chocolate cake slice on plate with raspberries.

How to Make Flourless Chocolate Cake

1. Melt the chocolate. 

Preheat the oven to 375ºF so it will be ready to go, then place the chocolate chips and butter in a heatproof bowl. Melt them together using a double boiler over the stove (or the microwave, if you prefer) and stir until smooth.

I make a double boiler by filling a small saucepan with 1-inch of water, then bring it to a simmer and place the heat safe bowl on top of the pan. It should totally cover the top of the saucepan, so the bottom of the bowl will gently heat up.

Set the bowl aside to cool slightly, while you mix the other ingredients.

chocolate chips and butter melted together.

2. Mix. 

In a large bowl, mix the coconut sugar, eggs, and cacao powder. Stir well, then add in the cooled melted chocolate. (You don’t want it to be too hot, or it could start to cook the eggs!)

Use cooking spray to grease an 8-inch springform pan lightly with oil, then pour the batter into the pan. If you don’t have a springform pan, you can also use a round cake pan lined with parchment paper, to help with easy removal later. (If you only have a 9-inch pan, that will work, too! It will simply produce a thinner cake and you can probably reduce the cook time by 2 minutes or so.)

chocolate cake batter mixed in a bowl.

3. Bake. 

Bake the flourless cake at 375ºF for 20 to 22 minutes, or until the cake feels firm to a light touch in the center. Let it cool completely in the pan, for at least 30 minutes before serving.

It will firm up even faster if you store it in the refrigerator, to help it cool down.

before and after cake in pan.

4. Serve.

Use a sharp knife to slice the cake into thin pieces (because it’s rich!) and serve it with a dollop of coconut whipped cream, or a scoop of ice cream, if you like. I think it pairs well with fresh raspberries, or any other fresh berries you like, to help cut some of the richness.

This cake should remove from the pan easily, but it may also slightly stick to the knife as you slice it. Be sure to wipe-down your knife in between slices, if you’d like to keep them looking pretty!

finished flourless cake sliced and ready to serve.

Prefer a frosted cake? It’s not necessary in this case, but you can add an easy vegan chocolate ganache on top, if you’d like.

Storage Tips: You can prepare this cake up to 2 days in advance, and keep it tightly covered in the fridge. Serve it chilled or let it come to room temperature for 1 hour, for the best flavor.

You can also store this flourless chocolate cake in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight before serving it the next day.

fudgy flourless cake bite on a fork.

flourless chocolate cake slice on plate with raspberries.
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4.93 from 42 votes

Flourless Chocolate Cake

This flourless chocolate cake is made with 5 simple ingredients and is naturally gluten-free! It's rich and fudgy, and reminds me of a cross between brownies and fudge.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword flourless chocolate cake
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 192kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375ºF and grease an 8" springform pan with cooking spray.
  • In a heatproof bowl, melt the chocolate chips and butter together, stirring until completely smooth. (You can use a double-boiler for this, or the microwave in 30-second intervals.) Set it aside to cool slightly.
  • In a large bowl, combine the coconut sugar, eggs, and cacao powder. Stir until smooth, then add in the cooled chocolate. (Make sure it's not too hot, so it doesn't start to cook the eggs.) Mix until smooth.
  • Pour the chocolate batter into the greased pan and then bake at 375ºF until the center looks firm, about 20 to 22 minutes.
  • Allow the cake to cool in the pan completely. You can speed the process by placing it in the fridge to cool, if you need to serve it in under 2 hours. You can make this cake up to 2 days in advance and store it tightly covered in the fridge until you're ready to serve. I recommend bringing it to room temperature on the counter for at least 1 hour for the best flavor. Serve with shaved chocolate on top, for a pretty presentation, or a sprinkle of cacao powder or powdered sugar, if you prefer. You can also freeze this cake, tightly covered, for up to 3 months.

Notes

Nutrition information is for 1 of 12 slices. This information is automatically calculated, and is just an estimate, not a guarantee.
For a lower-fat cake, swap half of the butter for pumpkin puree instead. You can't taste the difference at all!
For a dairy-free cake, use coconut oil instead of butter. I recommend using only a 1/3 cup of coconut oil in that case. Or, use a 1/4 cup oil + a 1/4 cup pumpkin puree, for a lower fat option.
For an egg-free cake, check out my Vegan Chocolate Tart, instead.
Prefer a cake made with NO refined sugar? Try this other variation:
Ingredients:
  • 4 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 4 eggs
Melt the baking chocolate with the coconut oil, then set it aside to cool slightly. In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, cacao powder, honey, and eggs, and stir well. Add the cooled melted chocolate mixture, and mix again. Pour into a greased 8-inch springform pan and bake at 375ºF for 20 to 22 minutes, or until the center is firm. Cool completely, then slice and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 118mg | Potassium: 110mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 324IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg

If you try this gluten-free chocolate cake, please leave a comment and star rating below, letting me know how you like it.

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Comments

Sarah

Oh WOW. This is incredible.

    Kerry

    I made it in ramekin cups, which I sprayed with canola oil, for individual servings and made a mixed berry sauce from frozen berries with a bit of Truvia in for sweetness. You just let sit a bit to cool and you can turn them out on a plate to serve with the sauce poured over. Yummy.

    I also substituted all the honey for 3/4 cup of Truvia in the recipe. It came out awesome.
    20 min baking. Made 5 short little cakes. One was just perfect to satisfy. I will double the recipe for guests when I make it again!

    Thanks so much.

      Marlena

      I’m going to try it with the berries. Sounds yummy.

    Sarah

    Just made this and it was a hit! Will definitely be making it again in the future!

Monsterscircus

That looks like a winner, do you really think this cake will last a week? 🙂 have a lovely day!

    Megan

    It sure didn’t last that long in my house!

Julie (A Case of the Runs)

How many servings is this? Would it freeze well?

    Julie (A Case of the Runs)

    Okay, so I made this last night, and the leftovers are in the freezer right now. I think I like it a bit more firm, so this is working for me. Thanks for the recipe!

      Megan

      Glad to hear it stores well in the freezer! We prefer most of our desserts frozen over here, too. 😉

Sara Maples

That cake looks AMAZING! I’ll have to try that for my next dessert craving!

Kilee

Yum! I want to lick my screen right now. I’m always craving chocolate, but don’t like eating the refined sugar that’s in more chocolate bars. Thanks for posting this. Have a great day!

Lauren

Made these tonight, substituted organic applesauce for the butter, and upped the cocoa powder a tiny bit. Came out delicious! Thanks for the recipe–definite keeper!

    Megan

    Thanks for sharing your results! Glad it turned out so well. 🙂

    Ivana

    So, you took all the oil out and use apple instead? How much?

Lauren @ Fun, Fit and Fabulous!

This looks delicious! I will have to make this for the baby shower I am hosting in July!

jeanne

This looks amazing, I can’t wait to eat it! I can’t believe it’s detox!!!!

maryrose

looks delicious

Lora

This looks sooo yummy! Can anything be subbed for part of the honey (or can it be reduced)?

    Megan

    For my first attempt, I used only 1/2 cup of honey and it was too bitter to serve! If you don’t mind adding some stevia to the batter, you could experiment with that, but if you do, make sure you add more than you think you need– stevia loses some of the sweetness with baking.

    I’d also like to experiment with subbing some applesauce for the butter, which may reduce the need for some of that honey, too.

    If you have any luck, please come back and let us all know! 🙂

    Karla

    Equal amount of raw agave worked perfect in replace of the honey

LizAshlee

Wow, this look amazing! It’s definitely my kinda recipe too!! Thanks much for sharing! I just might have to try it this weekend-if I can wait that long! 🙂

Laura @ Gluten Free Pantry

This cake looks incredible. I think I’ll whip this dessert up this weekend to my family’s delight!

Lisa

Let me just wipe that drool off my keyboard now. This looks insane. In a good way! I think this is a must make for a future dinner party!

Sherry

Megan,
Is there any other way to print out these recipes without all the pictures included? It uses up so much of the ink in my printer when the pictures of the prep are included.

    Lynette

    Sherry, I copy/paste the recipe into a Word document, then delete the pictures before I print. Hope that helps.

    Megan

    I’ve just started updating my recipes with an improved print function– including this one! Hope it helps! 🙂

    Debbie

    I also copy and paste into Word. I delete the photos I don’t want and shrink the ones I do want. I also move the photos next to one another so they take up less space. On Word, I try to fit all on one page, so sometimes I change the layout to narrow margins. I also change the font sizes. The recipe title I make 14, the recipe 12 (I am older!), any explanation I want 10. I also keep any comments I like in size 10 as well. You can really tailor the recipe to how you want it to look.

    This cake is a version of what my mom always made for us, though her recipe has no eggs as my brother was and is highly allergic to eggs. He recipe is yummy and always a hit when I make it.

      Ilse

      What is the version without eggs? I’m allergic to eggs and would love to attempt this with an egg substitute!

      Gabriella

      My brother is allergic to eggs too! What did you use as an egg substitute for this recipe? And if you didn’t use any egg substitute how did it turn out? Was it dryer/gooier/flatter? I’ve read you can use condensed milk as an egg substitute but unsure of how much to use and if I would then need less of another ingredient since condensed milk is so sweet. What do you think?

Pure2raw twins

looks great!!! we made a chocolate flourless cake a few years and we remember it being a huge hit 🙂
kinda love rich chocolate desserts!

Amrita

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I can’t say that enough!

Flourless chocolate cakes are such favourites in my family and amongst friends, but we can hardly make them on a regular basis [cake that uses 1/2-pound of chocolate, on a regular basis…if only!] because of the whopping amount of butter. And to be honest, waiting around for a special occasion just to have some flourless chocolate cake is a hint that we need to prioritize our lives!

But honey instead of sugar and coconut oil instead of butter? This is totally do-able!

Niki

I love the look of this! Rich and sounds super simple to make. I’m usually lazy and will resort to just eating my dark chocolate after dinner but this looks worth the effort :D.

Ana @ BraveLilJuicer.tumblr.com

Wow Megan, this looks dangerously, sinfully delicious!! 🙂 I will have to try it soon!

Evelyn

This looks delicious! Has anyone tried making this with either just egg whites or flax eggs? Bf and I don’t keep “real” eggs in the house.

    Megan

    I would think egg whites should work as a substitute, using 2 eggwhites for each egg. Flax eggs are trickier, so that would take some experimenting!

    Please come back and let us know if you have any success! 🙂

jen

That looks freakin’ out of this world.

Caroline

I made this last night and it was great! My dad was in town and he has high cholesterol, so I used 4 egg whites. It turned out really well!

Callie

I actually just had flourless chocolate cake for the first time last night and fortunately came across your recipe on tastespotting. So excited to try it!

Linda

Could I replace the honey with palm sugar?

    Megan

    Yes, I think that would work just fine! I’m not sure how the sweetness compares to honey, so you may want to adjust the amount to your tastes.

    Please let us know if you have any success! 🙂

      Linda

      The sweetness is a lot milder than honey. That’s why I like it. But would I have to substitute for the liquid? Palm sugar is kind of moist anyway, just not as liquid-y as honey.

        Megan

        I don’t think you’ll need to add any additional liquid– I was actually surprised the honey worked! Most recipes call for traditional sugar, and the result might be a slightly firmer cake.

Linda

Great! I’ll give it a try! Thanks!

Alison

Hi Megan!

I have just baked this delish treat!…I am currently 4 days into a detox and am crrrrrraving chocolate and each ingredient in here is allowed for my detox. I substituted apple sauce for the butter. Its so tasty!!! Its rich and moist, I cant believe how “healthy” it is. Thank You!

    Marsha

    Alison did you sub applesauce 1/2 cup for 1/2 a cup or is it different?

    Lori Evert

    how much applesauce did you use? Thank you!

HCT

I made this last night. It was easy and delicious! Thanks!

Melly

This was the best chocolate cake I have ever had! I felt well satiated with a tiny piece. Fantastic! 1/2 a cup of orange rind is a nice addition too.

Ellen Lowrey

GREAT recipe! I made it for Thanksgiving and everyone loved it! Thanks 🙂

Jules

I’m always a bit hesitant to use honey when cooking for others…want to make sure it turns out tasting as close to ‘normal’ cake as possible. Any recommendations on the amount of sugar if I go that way instead of honey?

Also, am making this for a birthday cake, and want to get it looking extra special. Recommendations for toppings that would go well?

Thanks! Always love your recipes.

    Megan

    Traditional flourless chocolate cakes call for granulated sugar, so I’d do a search on Google to find a more traditional recipe to follow. I think some shaved chocolate would make a beautiful topping!

Jesse

Do you have the nutrition facts? I really would like to make this recipe, but I need to know if it’s healthy enough. Thanks! 🙂

    Megan

    You can calculate the nutrition information for any recipe using a free website like Fitday.com or MyFitnessPal.com. Simply add in all of the ingredients into the nutrition calculator, and divide by the number of servings!

      Jesse

      Okay, thank you!

Anna

Oh my gosh! This cake is delicious! I made it last night and I’m eating one of the last few slices now. My husband and I really enjoyed it. So rich!

Claudia

I am looking forward to trying this recipe but I need to substitute the honey for xylitol. Do you know the ratio?

    Megan

    I haven’t worked with xylitol, because it’s so poisonous for dogs, but I think I’ve heard the ratio is similar to sugar? If that’s the case, I’d try a similar ratio to the honey– maybe start with a little less, and adjust it to your taste. Please let us know if you have any success!

Rei

Does the cake taste like honey? What is the honey there for?

    Megan

    No, the cake is too rich and dark in chocolate to taste the honey much. The honey acts as the sweetener, and I use honey in my recipes because it’s one of the only natural sweeteners that is a monosaccharide– a single sugar that is easy on the digestive system, and safe for people on special diets.

Laura

I wonder, do you think this would work as cupcakes? I want to bring them to the office with me!

    Megan

    This cake isn’t the type that rises, so your cupcakes would probably look like hockey pucks! Perhaps they’d work as brownies?

Lindsey

I have never used coconut oil, but am interested in trying it. Can you add it in its’ solid form and melt it with the chocolate or should it be in its liquid form? Thanks! Can’t wait to try it.

    Megan

    If you’re adding it directly to the melted chocolate, then the solid form of coconut oil should work, since it would melt immediately in the warm chocolate. Just make sure to mix very well, so you don’t wind up with chunks of un-melted coconut oil!

karen

glad it contains butter– don’t be afraid to use it and forget the applesauce- get your healthy fats in!! Unless you are subbing with coconut oil– that’s good too. Or, at least that’s my opinion…
sometimes we think we are doing a better thing by making something “healthier”, but in fact, we’re not.
Thanks for sharing– I’ll make this weekend with pastured butter and raw honey!

    Debbie

    Karen – I can have nothing that comes from cow milk, so butter is out of the question! It is not a matter of fat for me and for many others. My son gets seriously ill (as in call the ambulance) from cow milk products. Interestingly, we can both have goat milk and goat milk products. I also can’t have honey, it gives me migraines and I feel awful. “Healthier” is a very individual concept.

    Layla

    Karen, did you use 1/2 cup butter instead of the coconut oil and pumpkin? That was my plan but wondered what amount you used if yours turned out well

Miranda

I just discovered your site the other day and have been checking out your recipes. I have a serious sweet tooth and I don’t mess around when it comes to dessert. I have to admit, I made this expecting it to taste “pretty good for being healthier” and was completely surprised, bordering on blown away by how amazing it tastes. It was unbelievably easy to make and tastes as good as the flourless chocolate cake I order at my favorite restaurant. Thanks a million – I look forward to cooking and baking my way through the rest of your site.

Angel

This is delicious! I cut the honey down to a 1/3 of a cup and added a few drops of vanilla stevia. I had to force myself to stop eating it.

Vanessa

Do you know how many carbs this cake has ? I am on the Atkins diet
Wonder if I could have a smll piece everyday !

Christie

For the 1/4 cocoa powder, I know the link is for raw cacoa. But would Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa powder work the same? Thanks!

Maggie

So so delicious

cred

Yum! I had pinned this recipe a couple of months ago and had yet to try it. I considering it as a healthy dessert recipe for hosting my sister & brother-in-law on Sat. Then my sister mentioned that she’s been avoiding gluten for the last 6 wks- so it was settled.
If was delicious- even the men, who aren’t really looking for healthy when they’re scarfing down dessert, loved it.
I successfully made mine into individual serving sizes by using a silicone muffin pan. I had recently donated my seldom-used spring form pan in a purging spree. The mini cakes worked beautifully.

thanks for the delicious dessert.

    Debbie

    How long did you bake the mini cakes in the silicon muffin pan?? Thanks

Robbi

This cake is just what I’ve been looking for! Easy, flourless, rich, elegant, and good healthy ingredients. I used coconut oil instead of butter and dark chocolate chips in lieu of unsweetened baking chocolate. Came out beautifully now chilling in fridge until I serve it tomorrow night. I’ll probobaly dust with some,powder sugar and raspberries. Thanks!! I’ll be back to this site!

Debbie

Hi, This cake looks great! I want to try it but cannot tolerate honey and was thinking about trying to sub pure maple syrup. Do you think that would work? How many servings dose the recipe make. Thank you

Cameron

Do you know the nutrition info for one serving?

thanks!

MICHELE

I made this today for my boss’ birthday, she doesn’t eat grains or sugar…she LOVED it and sooo did I. So easy to make…I added fresh raspberries on and around the cake for decoration. I was worried at first because I only have a 9′ spring-form pan and I thought it would be too flat but it came out great…Thanks for the wonderful recipe 🙂

    Lucia

    Hi Michele- I am glad to here that a 9′ springform pan worked out. That is all I could get and I was worried it may come out flat. I will be baking tonight! Thanks!

Kareena

Wow! This cake was rich and yum! My daughter and I loved making it as much as we loved eating it.

Angela

I tried this for a birthday brunch and surrounded it with fresh fruit. It was fabulous. I looked like a domestic rockstar!

lynnmarie0123

JUST MADE THIS AND LOVED IT!!!
I prepared this recipe to the T- as written. The only thing I added was chocolate chips to the top. YUMMO. ok heres my experience: Cooked at 375, it took mine 30 mins and it still wasn’t all the way firm in the center, I used a springform pan, but the edges started to burn, so I removed it from oven after 30 mins. Next time, i will cook at 400. it was a little bitter but still very good, next time I will add some vanilla or peppermint extract. (i love choc mint stuff:) I used a little bit of unsweetened applesauce in place of the coconut oil, but very little maybe 1/8 cup. I think next time I will try all applesauce in lieu of butter or coco oil. To see if the end texture is different. I allowed this cake to cool completely before serving because it was still not firm in the middle, i actually put in fridge for an hour. After an hour it was firm enough to slice and held its shape. I would have called these “brownies” rather than cake, as it didnt rise. it had more of a brownie texture to me but still HEAVENLY!! Will make this one over and over. THANK YOU!!!

    Taylor

    The purpose of the butter/oil is to keep it more solid and stable. Not only that but butter and coconut oil is HIGHLY nutritious. Won’t contribute to your waistline, rather it will take away from it. 🙂

Lorna

I have been reading about substituting avocado for butter in some recipes. Do you think it might work here? The applesauce is a fine option, but avocados are so creamy. Just not sure about how they do in the baking.

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