The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes

This is some of the best chocolate cake of my life. It’s so rich, dense, and fudgy it reminds me of my favorite brownies.

The lava cakes blow any restaurant molten chocolate lava cake I’ve tried out of the water.

The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes - One bowl, no mixer, so easy! The warm, gooey, fudgy chocolate center is heavenly! Better than any restaurant versions! Best chocolate cake EVER!!

When you find out how fast and easy they are to make, you’ll never settle for a restaurant version again.

Melt butter with chocolate in one bowl, no mixer is needed. Stir in sugar, eggs, flour, pour into ramekins and bake.

The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes - One bowl, no mixer, so easy! The warm, gooey, fudgy chocolate center is heavenly! Better than any restaurant versions! Best chocolate cake EVER!!

Thankfully for my thighs the recipe only makes two cakes but is easily doubled or triple depending on your needs. I’d like to say that I split one of these with my daughter but no. We both inhaled our own.

The cakes are rich, decadent, moist, robustly chocolaty, sweet enough but not too sweet. I used Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Bar and recommend using your favorite dark chocolate bar. I prefer using bars or baking chocolate rather than chocolate chips because I prefer the flavor and texture.

The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes - One bowl, no mixer, so easy! The warm, gooey, fudgy chocolate center is heavenly! Better than any restaurant versions! Best chocolate cake EVER!!

The molten, barely-set chocolate that oozes from the center is my idea of heaven.

Ice cream and 10-Minute Homemade Hot Fudge aren’t required but yes, they are. They’re the final icing on these perfect little cakes.

The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes - One bowl, no mixer, so easy! The warm, gooey, fudgy chocolate center is heavenly! Better than any restaurant versions! Best chocolate cake EVER!!

Print Recipe

The Best and The Easiest Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes

This is some of the best chocolate cake of my life, reminds me of my favorite fudgy brownies, and blows any restaurant molten chocolate lava cake out of the water. The cakes are fast, easy, made in one bowl, no mixer, and you'll never want to settle for a restaurant version again. The cakes are rich, decadent, moist, robustly chocolaty, sweet enough but not too sweet. I used Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Bar and recommend using your favorite dark chocolate bar. I prefer using bars or baking chocolate rather than chocolate chips because I prefer the flavor and texture. The molten, barely-set chocolate that oozes from the center is my idea of heaven along with ice cream and hot fudge. The recipe as written make two cakes but is easily doubled or tripled.

Yield: 2 cake, recipe easily doubles or triplee

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cook Time: about 12 minutes

Total Time: about 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces dark chocolate or bittersweet baking chocolate (I used Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate Bar; I prefer bars or baking chocolate to chocolate chips)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 of 1 stick)
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 large egg + 1 egg yolk (discard white or save for another use)
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso coffee granules, optional but recommended (doesn't make cakes taste like coffee and serves to enhance the chocolate flavor)
  • ice cream for serving, optional but recommended
  • hot fudge for serving (homemade or storebought), optional but recommended

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425F and spray two ramekins (about 3-4 inches in diameter or about 4 ounces each) with cooking spray, place ramekins on a baking sheet; set aside.
  2. To a medium microwave-safe bowl, add the chocolate, butter, and heat on high power to melt, about 1 minute. Stop to whisk until smooth. If needed, return bowl to micro and heat in 15-second increments until chocolate can be whisked smooth.
  3. Add the sugar, egg, egg yolk, and whisk until smooth.
  4. Add the flour, optional espresso granules, and stir until just combined; don't overmix.
  5. Pour batter into prepared ramekins, divided evenly.
  6. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until edges are set but center is still soft; don't overbake. Baking times will vary based on oven, ramekins, and climate variances; bake until as done as desired.
  7. Allow cakes to cool in ramekins for about 1 minute, gently rim the edges of ramekins with a paring knife, and invert over serving dishes to dislodge cakes.
  8. Optionally top with ice cream, hot fudge, and serve immediately. Cakes are best warm and fresh.

Adapted from Kraft

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69 comments

  1. Molten chocolate is heaven! And hey- they’re pretty small, so devouring a whole one isn’t *too* bad. That’s what I try to tell myself, anyways.

  2. I had no idea I could have a lava cake within 15 min but it looks like a short time in a hot oven makes it possible!! Ice cream and hot fudge on top are almost a necessity for me. These look too easy and so good!

  3. Oh, NO. You cannot have made these so easy! Now I’ll bake and eat a bazillion. This is a new fave of mine, Averie!

  4. Coffee in my chocolate = YES. Molten lava center = DOUBLE YES. These look amazing… And like something I need to make ASAP. They’ve been on my list for awhile now! Time to get bubbling!

  5. Oooh, these sound like an ooey, gooey treat. I may be expanding my baking repertoire sometime soon …

  6. I love molten lava cakes! They are so chocolatey and gooey and delicious!

  7. I’ve never bothered ordering molten lavas from a restaurant because I’ve been permanently spoiled by the homemade version! I’m the weirdo that doesn’t really like cake with ice cream (I know!) so I usually top mine with real whipped cream…Looks like you just set off a craving….

  8. My husband love molten cakes. I’ll have to surprise him with this easy homemade version. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Wow! These look so decadent and rich. Love how it only makes two so I’m not tempted to eat the entire batch! I can’t wait to try this recipe, love how easy it is!

  10. These cakes look amazing! Can I make the batter for two and bake one at a time? How long would the unbaked serving keep in the fridge?

  11. I used to not like lava cakes (I know, right) but now I’m totally a fan. I just pinned your recipe, it’s going on my to-do list soon :)

  12. You do not include in the ingredients list the flour amount. Please let me know. Thanks.

  13. Hubba, hubba! These *do* look perfect. I bet I couldn’t eat just one :)

  14. Molten Lava Cake is heavenly. It satisfies the worst cravings imaginable. :D

  15. This definitely wasn’t a time for sharing…these look so good.  I’ve never made lava cakes but you make it look easy so that may need to change.

  16. Everything about these cakes are amazing!! Love the gooey greatness!!

  17. Omg i love chocolate

  18. Averie,

    Making Molten Lava Cake is on my bucket list. I’ve pinned for later. Happy Easter.

    Annamaria

  19. Now I’m not normally a pudding person…but these look amazing! And looks so simple, will certainly be giving these a try :-). Thanks for sharing!

  20. After seeing this post – a molten chocolate lava cake is ALL I am craving. Just divine!

  21. Averie, you saved Easter dinner! I had actually made a dessert pinned from another food blogger that was an epic disaster (recipe had so many flaws in it, I should have known better) but I remembered I had pinned your chocolate lava cakes a few days ago, knew I had all the ingredients, and whipped them up in 15 min. They were AMAZING! Thank you, thank you, thank you! 

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and what a great comment to read! Sorry that your first recipe didn’t pan out but so glad mine did and it saved Easter! Happy Easter!! :)

  22. Molten Chocolate Lava cakes are my love language!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  23. Love the recipe! Chocolate lava cakes are my favorite. Is there a concern at all with the middle not technically being baked through and raw egg? I want to make this for my friend, but she is pregnant so I want to make sure this would be unconditionally safe! Thanks!

    • Yes I think the egg is cooked to a safe point. It’s not ‘that’ gooey and un-set that I would worry about anything personally (I served this to my child and felt 100% fine), but if you’re concerned use pasteurized eggs to begin with. And as always, use common sense because I’m not a dietician or food safety expert!

      Enjoy the cakes!

  24. YAY! Molten lava cakes are my FAVORITE and this looks amazingggg

  25. I think I would drizzle Hot Fudge and Caramel over the whole thing LOL sounds yummy to me

  26. Hi there! I would like to try this recipe for 10 people… but I don’t have ramekins :/ … could I add the same mixture to an oven dish instead? Thanks! 

    • Hmmm, not sure a big oven dish will bake properly due to surface area.

      I’d probably go to Target or TJ Maxx and pick up 10 ramekins, they’re $1-2 each and you’ll have them forever and be good to go and guaranteed that the recipe will work out!

  27. Made these for dessert tonight….omg….they were amazing! I had the TJ dark chocolate bar on hand, and had purchased some espresso powder from Sur La Table that I was dying to use, so this was the perfect recipe. I doubled it thinking my husband and I would each eat two but one was so sinful that I really shouldn’t have eaten the second (but of course I did) :-) Can’t wait to make these again!!!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! And yes, I love realllllly rich desserts that are over-the-top decadent and definitely 1 per person on this one. Unless you accidentally make 2 for each person. Then it’s 2 per person :)

      Your espresso powder from Sur la Table sounds great and can’t go wrong with TJ’s chocolate. Glad it was a hit!

  28. I need to make enough for six people, is it a straight double of the recipe? Sometimes I prefer to do two separate batches as doubling is not always successful:( I use TJ dark chocolate all the time, quality and price can’t be beat!!

    • I have never doubled this recipe and I know what you mean about sometimes just making two batches of something is safer. I think with this recipe you’d be fine to triple the recipe for a total of 6 cakes, but like I said, I haven’t done that personally. LMK how it goes!

    • Perfection! Used my food scale, tripled the recipe and it was Devine! I might have been able to leave in oven one extra minute but no matter, it was gooey and delicious!
      I highly recommend using the espresso powder and if you don’t have or don’t want to spend the money I buy instant espresso put in plastic bag and roll with rolling pin to a powder consistency, works like a charm!

      Thanks for the great foolproof  recipe!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! Glad it worked tripling it!

  29. Came out wonderful!!! It was so quick and delish! (we used sugar free chocolate because we didn’t have anything else in the house…. and it was amazing!) 

  30. Mounica Vennamaneni Reply

    Thanks for the amazing recipe, I made this today its easy to put together and tastes great.

  31. I was thinking of these for dessert on NYE.. We are going to a friends house for dinner, and I am bringing dessert.  Would it make sense to make the batter at home, fill the custard dishes, keep refrigerated and bake there?  I don’t want to invade her kitchen, and know they should be served from the oven.   Any thoughts would be appreciated.. Thanks!

  32. If we don’t have ramekins, can we use a muffin pan?

    • No because it’s too shallow and it won’t work. You can find ramekins at anywhere from Target for about 2.99 to online searches or fancier cooking stores like Williams-Sonoma, etc.

  33. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe!! I tried it out the other day and it was AMAZING – even more so because of how easy it was. I couldn’t help myself and had to add some toasted marshmallows for a s’mores variation :)  If you’re interested, here are some pictures! Thanks again.

    http://www.doughing-it-right.com 

  34. This was amazing. Came out perfectly and looked as good as the photos. To make it a bit less sweet, can I cut down or eliminate the sugar without affecting the consistency? 

    • I would probably use a darker percentage chocolate, i.e. less sweet chocolate to begin with, rather than tweaking the sugar ratios. That way you know the texture will still turn out the same. Glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  35. This is so delicious and easy  My family loves them!  I also add some cocoa in addition to the chocolate!  Awesome!

  36. Hello, This is so delicious and so yummy.thanks for sharing your recipe. i have a question can i do this cake in 9 inch round cake pan?Thanks!

  37. I made this for my Valentines and we loved it. I switched the light corn syrup to organic agave. It is so decadent; a good thing this recipe only makes 2 small cakes for our own good. Wonderful recipe, extremely easy and quick. Thank you

  38. Made these for Valentine’s day.  I used to make a different recipe that made 6 of them, and we really only need 2- so this recipe is perfect!  They were SO easy, SO delicious, and I will definitely make them again!  I added a dash of vanilla and salt to the recipe, but otherwise followed it exactly.  I’m hesitant with coffee- but you are right, I didn’t taste it!  :) Thanks for the recipe.  

  39. I tried this recipe this afternoon and it was easy and delicious.I used milk chocolate chips, and served it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.I am really impressed at how good and easy this is.This recipe is a keeper.

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