Made with just nine simple ingredients, this flourless chocolate cake is a decadent dessert that requires minimal prep work. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve à la mode for an extra special treat! 

An overhead view of a flourless chocolate cake dusted with powdered sugar. Two slices have been cut.

Flourless chocolate cake is one of those sneaky desserts that look and taste like they came from a high-end bakery, but that secretly use basic ingredients and require almost no prep work. Those are the best types of dessert, aren’t they? 

Because this chocolate cake is made without flour, it’s decadently dense with a concentrated chocolate flavor. I used both semi-sweet chocolate and Dutch process cocoa powder in this cake, so it’s very rich.

You can serve this flourless cake with a simple dusting of confectioners’ sugar. Or, garnish slices with some fresh berries and add a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side. 

No one is going to miss the flour in this cake, I promise!

An overhead view of the ingredients needed to make a flourless cake.

Ingredients in This Recipe 

To really amp up the chocolate flavor without overdoing it on the sugar, I made this flourless chocolate cake with both cocoa powder and semi-sweet chocolate. Let’s quickly go over the ingredients you’ll need to make this recipe: 

  • Chocolate: I prefer to use high-quality chocolate bars for this cake rather than chocolate chips. I really love Bakers or Ghirardelli chocolate bars.
  • Butter: For the best flavor, I highly recommend using a European-style butter like Danish Creamery. If you need to make this recipe dairy-free, you could even use a dairy-free butter instead.
  • Granulated sugar: Since you’ll be using semi-sweet chocolate and unsweetened cocoa powder, a little sugar is needed to balance out the flavor of the batter. 
  • Vanilla extract: Pure vanilla will deliver the richest flavor. 
  • Eggs: Since this is a flourless dessert, you’ll need four eggs to help bind everything together and provide some structure to the baked cake. It’s also best to lightly beat your eggs, so they whisk together easily with the other wet ingredients.
  • Cocoa powder: I used Dutch process cocoa powder, but since this recipe only uses baking powder it will be fine to use natural unsweetened cocoa powder. I recommend sifting the cocoa powder to avoid any lumps as well.
  • Espresso powder: Optional but highly recommended. Espresso powder doesn’t make the cake taste like coffee, it just enhances the chocolate flavor. 
  • Baking powder: This isn’t a light and fluffy cake by any means, but you still need a little baking powder to prevent it from being too dense.
  • Salt: Balances out the sweetness from the sugar and also enhances the chocolate flavor. 

How to Make Flourless Chocolate Cake 

This is an incredibly easy flourless chocolate recipe that requires just 15 minutes of hands-on prep work. You do have to let the cake cool completely before slicing and serving, but otherwise it’s a quick and simple dessert. 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Prepare the cake pan: Generously grease an 8-inch round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. I also recommend lining the bottom with parchment paper to prevent the cake from sticking. 
  • Melt the butter and chocolate: Add the chopped chocolate and cubed butter to a large bowl. Microwave in 20-second intervals until the mixture is smooth. Stir the mixture between each 20 to 30-second interval to prevent the chocolate from scorching, then let it cool for about 5 minutes. 
  • Whisk together the wet ingredients: Add the granulated sugar and vanilla to the cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until well combined. Then, whisk in the lightly beaten eggs.
  • Add the dry ingredients: Mix the cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking powder, and salt into the bowl. You also want to avoid over mixing the batter, so only mix them in until just combined.
  • Bake the cake: Transfer the cake batter to the greased pan and spread the batter into an even layer. Place the pan on the center rack of the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean with just a few moist crumbs. 
  • Cool the cake completely: Remove the cake from the oven and cool in the pan for about 5 minutes. Then, carefully invert the cake onto a cooling rack, immediately flip right side up onto another cooling rack, and allow to cool completely.
  • Garnish and serve: I’ve given my suggestions in the section below. 

An overhead view of a flourless chocolate cake on a square of parchment paper. A butter knife rests on the side.

Serving Suggestions 

You can enjoy this flourless cake as is, or serve it with one or more of the following: 

A close up view of a slice of flourless chocolate cake that's been turned on its side.

Storage Instructions 

For the best texture and flavor, I recommend enjoying this cake within 24 hours of making it. However, it will last up to three days in an airtight container at room temperature.

You can also freeze the cake for up to three months and thaw it to room temperature before serving. Just be very careful when packaging it as this cake is very fragile. 

Is This Cake Gluten-Free? 

Although this cake is made without flour, it’s not necessarily gluten-free. To make a gluten-free chocolate cake, use certified gluten-free chocolate bars. If you’re sifting some powdered sugar on the top, you will also want to check that as well. As always, read ingredient labels closely and use your best judgement. 

A slice of flourless cake dusted with powdered sugar on a white plate with a scoop of ice cream.

Baking Tips 

  • If you don’t have a microwave, you can also melt the butter and chocolate using a double boiler. 
  • Make sure to remove the cake from the pan soon after it’s out of the oven. I prefer to flip the cake out onto a cooling rack, then immediately flip it right side up onto another cooling rack.
  • Since this cake is flourless, it is fragile and will need to cool completely before slicing into it.

More Chocolate Cake Recipes to Try! 

Video Tutorial

An overhead view of a flourless chocolate cake topped with powdered sugar. Two slices have been cut from the cake and one is being removed.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Cooling Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 1 hr 45 mins
Made with just nine simple ingredients, this flourless chocolate cake is a decadent dessert that requires minimal prep work. Dust with confectioners' sugar and serve a la mode for an extra special treat! 

Ingredients

Servings: 8 slices
  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate bars roughly chopped (226 grams)
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter cut into small cubes (115 grams)
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar (150 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs at room temperature and lightly beaten
  • cup Dutch process cocoa powder (30 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder optional but recommended
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease an 8-inch round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  • In a large microwave safe bowl, add the chopped chocolate and cubed butter. Microwave in 20 to 30-second intervals, stirring in between each increment, until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before proceeding with the next step.
  • Add the granulated sugar and vanilla to the cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until well combined, then whisk in the eggs.
  • Add the cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking powder, and salt into the bowl and mix until just combined. Don’t overmix the batter.
  • Transfer the cake batter to the greased pan and use a knife or spoon to spread the batter into an even layer.
  • Place the pan on the center rack of the oven and bake for 28 to 33 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean with just a few moist crumbs.
  • Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes. Carefully invert the cake onto a cooling rack, immediately flip right side up onto another cooling rack, and allow to cool completely.
  • Top the cake with confectioners sugar, whipped cream or chocolate ganache! Alternatively, serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Notes

Chocolate: I recommend using chocolate bars like Bakers or Ghiradelli.
Cocoa Powder: I prefer to use Dutch process cocoa powder in this cake, but you may use natural unsweetened cocoa powder instead.
Storage Instructions: For the best texture and flavor, I recommend enjoying this cake within 24 hours of making it. However, it will last up to three days in an airtight container at room temperature.
Freezing Instructions: This cake will freeze well for up to three months. Thaw to room temperature before serving. 
Slightly adapted from King Arthur Baking.
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Danielle
Did you make this recipe?Mention @livewellbakeoften on Instagram or tag #livewellbakeoften.