How to Make Chocolate Lava Cakes

How to make 6 ingredient chocolate lava cakes with easy step-by-step photos and a how-to video! EASY recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Now, I’ve shared lava cakes on my blog before. They have peanut butter inside, remember? Today, we’re focusing on making straight up chocolate lava cakes. I’ve gotten many requests for plain chocolate in the past year. And I decided to finally make them because (1) chocolate molten lava and (2) chocolate molten lava.

How to make 6 ingredient chocolate lava cakes with easy step-by-step photos and a how-to video! EASY recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Luckily the way to make them doesn’t involve anything complicated and if you don’t have the little ramekins I use– and don’t feel like buying them– you can use a muffin pan. I’ll show you how to use both.

The secret for how to make chocolate lava cakes is… well, there is no secret at all. We’re not simply microwaving frozen chocolate cakes like Chili’s does (no hate, you know how I love Chili’s!!!), but we aren’t pulling our hair out in frustration either. You’ll be delightfully surprised at how EASY they really are!

Chocolate lava cakes are so simple and here’s proof:

  • no mixer
  • 6 ingredients
  • bake time is 12-14 minutes
  • no waiting for them to cool

You’ll need 3 bowls. One for melted chocolate and butter. One for 2 eggs + 2 additional egg yolks. One for flour, salt, and confectioners’ sugar. Then you’ll just mix all the ingredients together.

Chocolate lava cakes on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Add the chocolate batter to four 6-ounce ramekins OR a muffin pan. If using a muffin pan, your lava cakes will be slightly smaller and you’ll get 6 lava cakes instead of 4. Whichever you use, grease the cups and dust with cocoa powder to prevent the lava cake from sticking.

Ramekins:

Chocolate lava cakes on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Or the muffin pan option:

Chocolate lava cakes on sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to make 6 ingredient chocolate lava cakes with easy step-by-step photos and a how-to video! EASY recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

They’re baked in a VERY hot oven. The high heat will cook the lava cakes around the edges and tops, leaving the insides a little gooey. And lava-y. 🙂

Carefully flip the freshly baked and warm lava cakes upside down onto plates and serve with ice cream, fresh berries, chocolate sauce, salted caramel, you name it! Since the flipping step can be a little tricky and because lava cakes are just so flipping good (!!!), here’s a video for you to see.

If 4 or 6 lava cakes are simply too many to have around, try these Chocolate Fudge Cakes for 2 instead!

Print

Chocolate Lava Cakes

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 14 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 or 6 cakes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Here’s how to make incredibly decadent homemade chocolate lava cakes!


Ingredients

  • 6 ounces (170g) high quality semi-sweet chocolate*
  • 1/2 cup (115g; 1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 cup (60g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks*
  • optional for topping: ice cream, raspberries, and/or chocolate syrup

Instructions

  1. Spray each ramekin with nonstick cooking spray and dust with cocoa powder. This ensures the cakes will seamlessly come out of the ramekins when inverted onto a plate in step 7. *Or spray half of a 12-count muffin pan and dust with cocoa powder. If baking in a muffin pan, the recipe will yield 6 cakes.
  2. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  3. Coarsely chop the chocolate. Place butter into a medium heat-proof bowl, then add chopped chocolate on top. Microwave on high in 10 second increments, stirring after each until completely smooth. Set aside.
  4. Whisk the flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt together in a small bowl. Whisk the eggs and egg yolks together until combined in another small bowl. Pour the flour mixture and eggs into the bowl of chocolate. Slowly stir everything together using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. If there are any lumps, gently use your whisk to rid them. The batter will be slightly thick.
  5. Spoon chocolate batter evenly into each prepared ramekin or muffin cup.
  6. Place ramekins onto a baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes until the sides appear solid and firm– the tops will still look soft. *If baking in a muffin pan, the cakes only take about 8-10 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool for 1 minute, then cover each with an inverted plate and turn over. Use an oven mitt because those ramekins are hot! The cakes should release easily from the ramekin. *If you used a muffin pan, use a spoon to release the cakes from the pan and place each upside down on plates.
  8. Add toppings. Serve immediately.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can prepare the batter through step 4. Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Allow to come to room temperature before continuing with step 5. You can freeze the baked lava cakes for up to 3 months. Allow them to cool completely before freezing. Re-heat in the microwave.
  2. Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | Rainbow Whisk | Muffin Pan | Ramekins | Baker’s Chocolate
  3. Chocolate: Make sure to use high quality chocolate, not chocolate chips. You won’t have much “lava” with chocolate chips! I suggest high quality chocolate baking bars sold in the baking aisle such as Baker’s, Ghirardelli, Nestle, or Lindt. They’re all typically sold in 4 ounce bars, so you will need 1 and 1/2 bars total.
  4. Eggs: For this recipe, you need 2 whole eggs plus an addition 2 egg yolks. (So you can use 2 extra whites in your healthy omelet tomorrow morning or in any of these recipes!) After 10-14 minutes in an oven this hot, the eggs should be cooked to 160°F which is considered safe to eat. If you’re concerned, you can take the temperature to be sure!

Keywords: chocolate lava cake, lava cake

 

How to make 6 ingredient chocolate lava cakes with easy step-by-step photos and a how-to video! EASY recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to make 6 ingredient chocolate lava cakes with easy step-by-step photos and a how-to video! EASY recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

329 Comments

  1. Sally, it’s like you read my mind: I’ve been thinking of lava cakes for a couple of weeks now (normal, right?), and I’ve been looking for a dessert recipe that doesn’t require too much work or time to replace my Twinkie problem (I’m mostly an adult, sometimes). I cannot wait to make this! I’ll top with a generous dusting of matcha powder – it’ll practically be a health food!

    P.S. thank you for the awesome baking challenge idea – so excited to see the recipes made by everyone!

  2. Oh man, lava cakes are my favorite! Add vanilla ice cream and I’m in heaven! I will definitely do this recipe this month. I’m excited to compare it to my standby recipe. Thank you for this challenge! 

  3. Hey these look good maybe I might get them right this time? Also why don’t you put some of your healthy muffin recipes as suggestions for the extra egg whites. I like to use the double chocolate ones!!!!

  4. Omg! I’ve always wanted to learn how to make lava cake, and your directions make it sound simple and straight forward. I’m going to have to set aside a weekend for this. Plus, I have four brand new ramekins waiting to me used. They look soooo mouthwatering!

  5. 1) Can I make the batter ahead of time, and bake one-offs? I can’t eat 6 at once, and don’t want to be stuck with 5 cold ones the next day. 

    2) If I were to make all 6 at once, will it be lava-y and molten the next day if I reheat it? 

    1. Hi Nelly, I wish I have your incredible self-control…Before I read your comment I was thinking how to double the recipe…God bless you.

    2. She has this note at the bottom of the recipe:

      Make ahead tip and freezing: You can prepare the batter through step 4. Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Allow to come to room temperature before continuing with step 5. You can freeze the baked lava cakes for up to 3 months. Allow them to cool completely before freezing. Re-heat in the microwave.

  6. Can’t wait! These will our Valentine’s Day dessert! Could I use a jumbo muffin pan to make 4, and adjust the time closer to the ramekin bake time?

    1. This is exactly what I was thinking of doing. I was also thinking of placing a cutting board on top and flipping them on to that instead of scooping them out. I’d be so afraid to prematurely burst any!

      1. Jaime and Brianne! — I’ve done this with jumbo muffin pans and flipped onto a cutting board that I lined with tinfoil, this way you can cut the tinfoil in-between the cakes so they’re all on their own little piece of foil, and then you can scootch them over onto your serving plate! Saves you the risk of them all falling off the cutting board when you’re trying to transfer to a serving plate (speaking from an extremely disappointing experience!!)

    2. Definitely! But jumbo muffin pans can hold 7 ounces, so make sure you don’t fill with batter all the way to the top. The bake time will be the ramekin bake time, yes. 🙂

  7. Hi Sally,

    I LOVE,LOVE your baking challenge and I can’t wait to try it. I wish CNN, ABC, CBC report on this…life should be all about baking!

  8. Great idea! I’ve always wanted to learn how to make these so I’m gonna try them for sure! I recently moved to France and these lava cakes are everywhere – literally. And the temptation is unreal… But hey, how cool is it that now I’ll be able to make them at home?!  😉

  9. Mmmm these look so delicious! And even better, the recipe looks so simple compared to the dozens of others I’ve read. By the way, your photography is absolutely gorgeous in this post! (Although, when is it not?) Can’t wait to try these out this weekend!

  10. What a perfect Valentine’s Day dessert! I’m soooo happy about this Baking Challenge. So fun! 🙂

  11. Lava cakes are my guilty pleasure when we’re out for dinner because I never think I have enough time to make my own at home. I have before and they were AMAZING – this has re-ignited my desire to make some at home! I can’t wait to fire up the oven and top these with vanilla ice cream!

    1. Just wanted to check back in and let you know that they stole the show at our Valentine’s day dinner! 🙂 I served them topped with caramel ice cream and salted caramel sauce. Even my non-chocolate loving hubby enjoyed them!

  12. Oh yay I’ve never made these before.  My husband and I don’t typically order dessert out, because lets me real, most desserts taste better at home.  But when we do it’s always lava cake!  Totally adding these to our Valentines day menu <3

  13. Sounds pretty good!  I’ve made them before but for some odd reason I never blogged about them, at least I don’t think so (gotta double check)

    plus, what could be better for valentine’s day?????

  14. All day yesterday I was thinking about what your recipe for today would be! Oddly enough, last night I made your peanut butter lava cakes! I’m one step ahead of the game, but will be making this recipe ASAP.

  15. This looks so simple! Can’t wait to try it. The best thing about this recipe is you already have all the ingredients! Your pictures make my mouth water! It’s a good Valentines Dessert for sure! I’ll give it a “test run” this weekend and get the picture to you! Even though all your readers here are EXCELLENT bakers of course, this challenge reminds me of a “virtual” “Worst Cooks in America” Challenge from the Food Network….you watch the chef make it and try to replicate it! How fun! Thanks, Sally! 🙂

  16. I really wanted to make chocolate lava cakes this month for Valentine’s Day, but your original recipe only made 2 and I needed more but didn’t want to double it so this is perfect. I know why you have to serve lava cakes pretty much immediately after baking, but if there’s leftovers, how do the cakes hold up re-heated a day or so later? Still good, I hope 😉 ?

  17. Well isn’t this perfect! I was planning making lava cakes for a Valentine’s Day dessert for my boyfriend and me. I was debating if I should make your peanut butter lava cakes, or just go classic, but guess this solves it!

    Question: could I half the recipe to just make 2 lava cakes in the ramekins, or will that mess up the ingredient ratio? Thanks!

  18. Hi

    Love the recipe!!!
    I have one question when you say large eggs how much does 1 large egg weigh  on an average?

    Thankyou!

    Marziya

      1. Awesome and fast response! This is why my family enjoys everything I make from your posts… not one fail yet, and every question answered. Your the best! 😉 

  19. Oh these look soooo good! I don’t think I’ve ever had lava cakes so I’ll definitely have to do this challenge. I’ll have to do it when I visit family in a couple weekends, as I don’t need so many lava cakes hanging around my apartment (self control is not my strong point). 🙂

  20. Hi Sally!
    This sounds like a wonderful recipe!! Quick question: is the receipe the same if I substitute white chocolate, or should I decrease the butter because white chocolate has more fat?

    Thank you,

    Heline

  21. I am so excited about this baking challenge idea! And lava cakes have been on my “things to try” list for so long its the perfect start.

  22. I am seriously so excited for this baking challenge! What a great idea to get us all active in the kitchen. Not that I need motivation to bake… but it’s fun when it’s a group effort 🙂

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