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Karina's Wildly Rich Chocolate Truffle Cake

Chocolate truffle cake by Gluten Free Goddess Karina
Truffle Cake is a flourless chocolate cake worthy of Spring.

Are you awake? Let's bake a cake.

The intricate lace of bare oak branches reaching to the piece of schoolyard sky framed by my kitchen window is softening, filling in with bursts of tender green leaves so young and sweet you miss them at first glance. Spring has arrived. The oaks say so.

To celebrate the season of reawakening, I say we bake a cake.

Yes, another cake. I know, I know. I baked a luxurious Coconut Layer Cake for you just last week. But. It was a cake with flour (albeit gluten-free flours). And what do I feel like baking this week? A flourless cake. A cake so rich it tastes like a truffle. Not the infamous pig snuffled treasure. No, Darling. The chocolate truffle. That heavenly impostor, hiding in the guise of that woodsy French piggery fungi. Spoonfuls of deep, dark ganache rolled in cocoa powder (to look like dirt, of course).

And I didn't want just a chocolate cake topped with ganache, either. I wanted to bake the ganache itself. I wanted the cake to taste like a sweet and satiny truffle- I wanted the cake to live up to its name. Truffle Cake inspires expectations.

So I fiddled around with my Flourless Chocolate Cake recipe and rustled up a divine and creamy chocolate cake so special you'll want to share it with company. It's simply too good to keep to yourself. Try it. It's shockingly easy to make. Just give yourself time to make it ahead. It is at its best chilled overnight.

Silky satin chocolate cake with a dusting of dirt- I mean- organic cacao powder with a secret ingredient. Raw maca powder.

Throw in a little superfood magic. Why not?

Truffle cake that is gluten free gorgeous
Beyond fabulous. Truffle Cake worthy of your Spring celebration.

Karina's Wildly Rich, Decadent Chocolate Truffle Cake Recipe

Originally published March 2011.

Yes. This is a wildly decadent, butter-rich chocolate cake. Perfect for serving on a special occasion when you have gluten-free guests. Gluten eaters won't miss the flour one bit. And gluten-free folks will feel pampered beyond belief. Tip: Make it the day before you serve it.


1 cup whipping cream
2 1/2 cups high quality semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips*
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons bourbon vanilla extract* or see notes
7 organic free-range eggs
1 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Organic cacao powder with maca, for dusting


Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line the inside bottom of a 9-inch Springform cake pan with a circle of parchment paper. Wrap a large piece of foil around the outside of the pan, covering the bottom and sides, to catch any leaking drips. Set aside.

In a medium sauce pan, gently heat the cream over low heat. When the cream is fairly hot, melt the chocolate chips by adding them slowly to the pan as you whisk. Add the butter, in pieces. Whisk until the chocolate and butter are melted. Add the vanilla extract. As soon as the mixture is melted, smooth, and glossy remove it from the heat.

Using a wire whisk attachment, beat the eggs, light brown sugar and sea salt until the eggs are foamy and doubled in volume, roughly 3-4 minutes. (This is where a KitchenAid stand mixer comes in handy.)

Slowly add the cooling chocolate mixture to the eggs, and beat gently until combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan.

Bake in the center of a pre-heated oven for one hour, until the cake is set and cracked. It will still appear a bit loose in the center, underneath. This is fine.

Place the cake pan on a wire rack to cool. When the cake is close to room temperature, lightly cover and chill the cake overnight.

Before serving, gently loosen the cake from the sides of the pan using a thin flexible spatula. Release the Springform clasp and remove the ring. Place the cake on a cake plate.

Dust the cake with a sifting of cacao powder with maca.

Cook time: 1 hour

Yield: 18 thin slices- this cake is super rich!
Recipe Source:

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GFG Notes:

*If you prefer using your favorite dark chocolate bar instead of chips- break the bar into small pieces and melt as directed.
After chilling, and before serving, allow the cake to sit out for a few minutes before you serve it- to achieve the best satiny texture.
I've made this recipe kid friendly by using a good vanilla extract for a kick of warm vanilla flavor. For serving adults, you could use your favorite orange, coffee, or even raspberry liqueur instead. Tune into your taste buds and make them happy.

Serve with fresh berries in season.
Vegans and dairy-free folks like me- don't be sad. I'm working on a dairy-free version for us.
For substitutions, please see my guide to baking with substitutions here.

Yes, Darling, this is a rich, sweet treat. We enjoy our sugary treats in moderation- don't we? Gluten-Free Goddess advises consuming no more than 2 tablespoons of sugar a day. xox

xox Karina  


  1. This is absolutely gorgeous. I think I might have been a lurker until this cake compelled me to comment!

  2. This cake oozes sexy.

    (You can have dairy again Karina?)

  3. Yay, Yuliya- Glad this recipe coaxed you out of lurkdom.

    Rach- No, unfortunately I'll never be able to eat dairy (four years dairy-free now). But the men in my life love dairy. So I developed and made this recipe for them.

    xox Karina

  4. Gotcha. I'm going to be going dairy free again soon. It'll be the third time in 2 years (or something like that).

  5. Oh man, I'm getting on a plane to fight off those men in your life for this cake. That looks and sounds amazing. Printing and putting on frig to make ASAP!

  6. I can tell by reading the recipe that this has to taste just unbelievable.

  7. oh this looks and sounds so rich and delicious! Definitely a special occasion cake where there are to be no leftovers to be tempted by!


  8. YUM! I love chocolate cakes, especially ones like this! I'll have to make it now ;)

  9. Dawn22:00

    Oh, this looks delightful! Will be watching for the dairy free version!

  10. I usually love your recipes, but I am confused many eggs showing up...eggs?

    7 eggs?

    I'm not even sure how to translate this into a vegan cake....did I miss something?

    No matter, I won't be cooking or baking with eggs so I guess this will not appear on my table anytime soon or late.
    thanks again for being a gf vegan pioneer.

  11. Thanks, Everyone! This cake was enjoyed by two special men in my life.

    To the vegan question- I will be making a vegan version of Truffle Cake soon. Promise. (I don't eat dairy. I do, however, have a large readership who do- who are not vegan. This is a cake for them.)

    Truth is, I have way more vegan recipes on the blog than omnivore recipes. I even have a vegan flourless chocolate cake recipe. And a Mexican chocolate cake recipe that is vegan.

    My blog is not 100% vegan (though I am, 99% of the time). I am open minded in my approach to baking- baking both gluten-free, and gluten-free vegan. I enjoy readership in both camps.

    I hope, with all my heart, we can all respect one another's differences and express gratitude, non-judgment, and tolerance for one another's preferences.



  12. I really appreciate how many vegan recipes there are on your site! But like an earlier commenter, I'll be interested in how you convert a 7-egg recipe to a vegan one!

  13. Karina,

    I am wondering if coconut cream would work for this recipe. My birthday is next month and I would love to make this to share. I never tell people it's my birthday and so far, no one at work has figured out that the cake is symbolic. :^) It's a low key way to celebrate with co-workers and we all have a little better day. Karen

  14. Bring on the dairy free version! Can't wait!

    Of all of the recipes in all the bloggosphere, your's Karina, never fail to be amazing!

  15. Anonymous00:23

    I too am looking forward to a yummy vegan version of this cake.

  16. Marty01:42

    Karina, I'm so looking forward to a GFV (gluten-free vegan) version! My husband is neither so he'd love this cake, though I try and bake things for him I can eat too.

    I have a potluck to go to Saturday, perhaps I'll make your flourless vegan choc cake to wow my friends. It's ESP exciting when you don't say a word and they're wowed! Love your blog!

  17. I recently saw a product called MimicCreme that might be a good substitute for the cream. On the box it claims you can whip it like real cream but it is GF, dairy free, soy free.
    This cake is gorgeous!

  18. OMG, I am putting this recipe up on the fridge . . . I'm sure that an appropriate event will come along very soon! (Like, perhaps, the first of the month, or the 10th of the month, or the 20th of the month...)

  19. Anonymous03:55

    My family and I will love this cake, as all your recepies do. What is the over temperature to bake this one please?

  20. Anonymous04:08

    Liebste Karina,

    I have 5 non-vegan family members that love chocolate, so I thank you for this recipe! Your recipes, vegan or not, are always winners. Applause to you from southern Germany!!


  21. Wow! Can't wait to try this. Do you think this would work made in individual springform tins, to serve a mini one to each person? Do you have any idea of cooking time or would it just be trial and error, juding by the "cracked" top?

  22. Oh this looks very different from the flourless chocolate torte I usually make, I will have to try this and compare! Really like the idea of adding in cream to the cake batter, I've never done that before :)

  23. This one's a stunner, Karina! What a visual treat for me this morning. I'm making muffins for a birthday event at work, but I'll be thinking about this cake. :-)

    Other than the obvious omission of gluten, I see no reason not to share recipes that work for others. I did that when I was eating dairy and I made dairy-free recipes and, likewise, will do it now when I'm not eating dairy by making an occasional dairy recipe that works for family, friends, and many readers. I love that you are inclusive like that. :-) Inclusion seems to work so much better in life I think. ;-)


  24. With Bourbon that must be so delicious. I am always looking for more GF desserts recipes. Thanks!

  25. This looks lovely. I do have a question...why do you call the version with vanilla extract "kid friendly?"

    The alcohol in the bourbon will have long evaporated before any child comes in contact with the cake, and vanilla extract is alcohol-based as well.

    It seems as if you're making a distinction where none exists.

    Love your blog!

  26. Anonymous11:50

    This looks so delicious!!! I must ask, since there are just two of us here, how long will this cake keep, refrigerated? We don't eat large portions of sweets, and I could see this lasting at least a week here.


  27. This looks delicious! I wonder how it will taste if you swap the normal cream with coconut cream... I might test it out! :)

  28. This Chocolate Truffle Cake is absolutely divine. I think this will even impress my Mother-in-law!


  29. For someone as generous and talented as you are, you seem to be taking a bit of a beating w/ this particular post. I don't whine when it's a vegan recipe, although I'm able to eat dairy. Let's focus on the positive, people. This is the BEST gf blog and I appreciate all that you do. xo

  30. Anonymous13:35

    Ah, you can't please everyone, so don't bother trying.

    This looks STUNNING. I will have to sneak it sometime when my dairy-sensitive daughter is spending the night with her grams. And now I must go and plot a way to make that happen soon...

  31. Anonymous14:06

    This looks like it would melt in your mouth mmmm

  32. oh my goodness this looks sinful! yum!

  33. Anonymous17:26

    I substituted coconut milk for the cream to make it dairy free and it turned out great! :)

  34. Ooooohhhh Myyyyyy...... but I guess when my mouth's full of this yumminess it will be more like Ommmmmmiiiiii.... and that's all you'll be hearing from me for a while till that cake's all gone!

  35. Ohh Karina Karina- this is one for the file, I will be sharing with my readers!

  36. Looks divine! I've never baked a truffle cake before, using whipping cream in a cake? that's new to me. I'll try out this recipe soon....very soon...(I'm a chocoholic, this cake will never last long in my house)

  37. this cake looks delicious and i love your photographs. there really is nothing better than a flourless chocolate cake

  38. Veronica02:24

    This cake looks amazing! I can't stop looking at it. I've decided to make this for my choir dessert auction in May but will be making it first for myself and my loved ones. Thank you for all your great recipes!

  39. What a shame that some snarky readers can't actually search through your site to find your vegan recipe you already have, or bother reading your note which states there will be a recipe for them. I realise we all have our dietary requirements and that you can't possibly please everyone all the time - you shouldn't have to defend what you (which is incredibly generous) post for all our benefit as well, the fact that these recipes are GF is the reason we love your blog and which to us is truly pioneering. I thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all the wonderful recipes you share xxx

  40. mmmmmm Wow! We can't have the dairy so I'm going to try this with coconut cream. I made some awesome truffles with coconut cream so I believe it can be done. I'm also going to cheat and heat the chocolate and cream in the microwave. I just found enjoy life chocolate chips on sale and bought 12 bags. Time for a chocolate fix!

  41. forgot to say I can sub the butter for earth balance soy free or maybe ghee....

  42. Made this. Loved it! Shared it with friends and they loved it too:) thank you for all you give to us so freely:)

  43. Anonymous12:39

    Sounds great. I just got to get my momto make it for me.

  44. Anonymous03:57

    Hey Karina, just wanted to let you know i made this with lactose free cream and dark chocolate for a friend and she loved it! Many thanks :)

  45. Looks incredible! Can't wait for the dairy-free version! :)

  46. Maca + cacao? Yes please. Are the eggs essential here? Or do you think some funky starches/egg replacer could help?

    I used to go on your site for good vegan recipes. Now I think I may be needing it for gluten issues as well. So thank you for being.

  47. Thanks, Everyone! I imagine coconut cream and vegan butter could work in this recipe.

    Nat- Eggs are definitely hard to replace in this recipe. Perhaps you could play with my vegan chocolate cake recipe and add the cacao and maca to that one?


  48. Anonymous07:27

    oh yummmmm... i'm making this now. cross fingers for me :) thank you for this beauuuuuutiful blog!

  49. Mackenzie12:34

    This was so, so, sooooo good! I made it for a friends birthday, and everyone loved it! Thank you so much!!!

  50. Anonymous16:08

    Made this yesterday for a friend who loves chocolate cake but can't eat gluten anymore. She said it was one of the best things she's ever eaten. Thank you so much for posting this recipe!
    I also made some homemade whip cream to top it off. It was heavenly!

  51. My Keeley, who is six years old and loves to cook (Julia Child is an idol of hers), saw this photo and said, "Mmmm". Then I read her the title of the cake and she begged me, "Mama, can you please make that for my birthday cake?! Please?!" Her birthday is in January. :) Thanks and we can't wait to try it. I love flourless cakes.

  52. Love this cake do you think it would work with a coconut milk? Instead of whipping cream for a dairy allergy??

  53. For subbiing dairy- you'll have to use a butter sub that has structure (not just liquid oil) and a creamy rich non-dairy sub- perhaps full fat coconut milk, yes. Or maybe thick cashew cream? These will both alter the taste, though. If I had experimented with making it dairy-free I'd be more comfortable suggesting specific substitutions, but not having developed this recipe as a dairy-free recipe, I hesitate to say anything definitively.

  54. Anonymous13:54

    Does it have to sit overnight? I wasn't able to make it yesterday but did today and was hoping to have it with Thanksgiving dinner tonight, Should I put it in the freezer to make up for it not sitting over night?

  55. Definitely chill it. In the fridge, I think. Better than freezing. It might be a tad softer for you, but I think it will be delicious. Happy Thanksgiving!

  56. WOW! Made this on New Year's Eve for my husband's birthday party (yeah, his bd is Jan 1) I didn't have time to chill overnight (that'll teach me to read the recipe through twice before proceeding). Anyway, it was totally awesome! Everyone loved it light and delicious and totally chocolatey (a bonus for ME). Thanks, Karina ♥♥