Recipe: 5-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cloud Cake

updated Jan 21, 2020
Cloud Cake

This 5-ingredient flourless chocolate cake gets its lofty height from beaten egg whites.

Serves8 to 10

Prep30 minutes

Cook30 minutes to 35 minutes

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(Image credit: Yossy Arefi )

Flourless chocolate cake is a favorite for Passover and perfect for those with wheat allegories. But it’s also the fudgy, crisp-edged chocolate cake of our dreams — one we’d happily make any day of the week. This five-ingredient version is lovingly referred to as a chocolate cloud cake, as it gets its lofty height and crispy top from beaten egg whites. The extra step of whipping the egg whites makes for a truly spectacular flourless cake that everyone will love.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

What Is Chocolate Cloud Cake?

Flourless chocolate cakes are often served for Passover because they don’t use leavening or wheat. Because of that, though, most flourless chocolate cakes are extremely flat and dense. That’s why we prefer chocolate cloud cake, which uses air beaten into egg whites to make a cake that is both taller and more interesting in texture — the top rises in the oven and then falls slightly as it cools, becoming tender-crisp, while the edges bake into a chewy cake-like texture and the center remains a dense layer of pure chocolate.

Some of the steps below will feel familiar if you’ve ever baked a flourless chocolate cake, but I’ve streamlined the ingredients and processes (for example, the chocolate and butter can be melted in the microwave). Personally, I love this cake with a cloud of whipped cream on top, but a dusting of powdered sugar and some berries makes for a stunning presentation, too.

(Image credit: Yossy Arefi )

Cloud Cake

This 5-ingredient flourless chocolate cake gets its lofty height from beaten egg whites.

Prep time 30 minutes

Cook time 30 minutes to 35 minutes

Serves 8 to 10

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 12 tablespoons

    unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), cut into pieces, plus more for coating the pan

  • 12 ounces

    finely chopped dark chocolate (about 2 1/4 cups)

  • 2

    large eggs

  • 4

    large egg yolks

  • 1 teaspoon

    vanilla extract

  • 1 1/4 cups

    granulated sugar, divided

  • 4

    large egg whites

  • Whipped cream and berries, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan with butter.

  2. Place 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter and 12 ounces finely chopped dark chocolate in a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second intervals until the chocolate is mostly melted, stirring with a spatula between each interval, 2 1/2 to 3 minutes total. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

  3. Add 2 large eggs, 4 large egg yolks, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar. Whisk to combine.

  4. Place 4 large egg whites in a large bowl and use an electric hand mixer to beat on medium speed until foamy. With the mixer running, gradually beat in the remaining 1 cup granulated sugar. Continue to beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form, about 8 minutes. (Alternatively, use a stand mixer, which will take 5 to 6 minutes.)

  5. Stir 1/3 of the whipped whites into the chocolate mixture. Then gently fold the remaining egg whites into the chocolate mixture with a large spatula — swoop the spatula through the bottom of the bowl using the spatula to drag the chocolate mixture into the egg whites. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

  6. Bake until the cake is doubled in size, cracked, and the center is set, 35 to 40 minutes. Let the cake cool for 10 to 15 minutes before releasing the sides of the pan. (As the cake cools, the top will shrink and crack.) Let cool completely before serving. Top with whipped cream and berries before serving, if desired.

Recipe Notes

Ingredient/Equipment Variation: Instead of the microwave, you can melt the butter and chocolate on the stovetop. Cook in a medium saucepan over medium heat until chocolate is mostly melted, about 3 minutes.