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Our family has been wanting to make chocolate lava cake for almost eight years, but never got around to it until now! It all started when Mom pulled a recipe for chocolate lava cake from a magazine. She wanted to make it for a homeschool geology club meeting, but our schedule was too busy. Years later, when one of my younger sisters, Bookworm Beth 📚🐛, was studying volcanoes in her science book, we wanted to make one as an edible volcanic treat, but we didn’t get around to it. Finally, I made these individual chocolate lava cakes for my youngest sister, Artistic Alex’s 🎨🖌 birthday this year!
You won’t want to wait eight years to make this recipe, though. It’s ready from start to finish in about 45 minutes, which makes it super fast! What’s even more convenient about this recipe is that the batter can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge until needed. Plus, the cakes only cook for 7-8 minutes in a 450 F oven, which really speeds up the process. Make sure to serve these little desserts as soon as they’re ready, or their molten centers will start to solidify.
Ready for some molten chocolate? 🙋 I am!Print
These easy individual chocolate lava cakes are simple to make! Each moist cake is filled with molten chocolate, making it a delightful dessert for kids or for entertaining. Plus, it can be made in about 45 minutes from start to finish.
- 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped (113g)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (115g), plus extra for greasing ramekins
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (48g)
- 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting ramekins
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- Icing sugar
- Whipped cream
- Maraschino cherries (optional)
Preparing the Ramekins (5 minutes)
- Generously butter 4 ramekins that each have a 1/2 cup capacity. Flour the inside of each one, tapping out excess flour. Set the ramekins on a rimmed cookie sheet and set aside.
Making the Cakes (30 minutes + 7 minutes baking + 5 minutes cooling)
- Preheat the oven to 450 F and make sure the rack is in the middle of the oven.
- Finely chop the chocolate with a large, sharp knife and cut the butter into smaller pieces. Place both ingredients in a dry heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water! Stir constantly until the mixture is fully melted and well combined. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Crack 2 eggs into a large mixing bowl. Separate the other 2 eggs, reserving the whites for another purpose, then add the yolks to the mixing bowl. Pour in the sugar and beat with a handheld electric mixer on medium-high speed until the mixture is pale, thick, and at least doubled in volume. You should be able to make a complete figure 8 with the batter when the whisk is lifted.
- Fold in the melted chocolate, flour, vanilla extract, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Beat briefly with the mixer to fully combine.
- Evenly divide the mixture among the prepared ramekins, then bake at 450 F for 7-8 minutes, until the sides are set but the middle is still soft.
- Remove the tray from the oven and set on a wire rack. Let the ramekins cool for 5 minutes, then gently loosen the edges with a sharp knife. Set a plate on top of each ramekin and turn them over so the ramekin is on top and the plate on the bottom. Let the ramekins sit inverted on each plate for about 10 seconds, then carefully remove the dish to reveal the cake. Serve immediately.
- Just before serving, top each cake with a dusting of icing sugar and a maraschino cherry. Place a generous dollop of whipped cream beside each cake.
- The batter can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge until needed.
- Make sure to bake the cakes just before they are served, or their molten centers will solidify as they cool.
- Don’t decorate the cakes in advance, because the whipped cream will melt from the warm cakes.
- If you must make the cakes in advance, reheat the cakes in the microwave before decorating and serving.