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Chocolate Cake with Espresso Glaze

Flourless chocolate cake is a crumbly and dense classic everyone loves. This version gets subtle coffee flavor from espresso powder used in the batter and in a rich, creamy dark-chocolate glaze served at the table.

  • Servings: 8
Chocolate Cake with Espresso Glaze

Source: Martha Stewart Living, April 2008



  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter or nondairy margarine, plus more for pan
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons instant espresso powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract


  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter or nondairy margarine
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream or plain soy milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt


  1. Make the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter bottom of a 9-inch springform pan, and line with parchment cut to fit. Melt butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water.

  2. With a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until thick and pale, about 3 minutes. Add espresso and salt, and beat for 1 minute. Add vanilla and chocolate mixture, and beat for 1 minute.

  3. In a clean bowl and with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites until foamy. Slowly add remaining 1/2 cup sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold whites into chocolate mixture in 3 additions. Pour batter into prepared pan.

  4. Bake until set, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on a rack. Remove pan sides. Carefully lift cake with a spatula, and remove parchment.

  5. Make the glaze: Place chocolate, butter, and vanilla in a bowl. Bring remaining ingredients to a boil, stirring, and pour over chocolate mixture. Whisk until smooth. Serve glaze warm with cake.

Reviews (18)

  • idoes 17 Apr, 2014

    I made this flourless cake for Passover two days ago and it was the most delicious cake I have ever had! I am going to make the cake and cupcakes all year long. Thank you!

  • morgan wyenn 27 Mar, 2013

    I made this for my family's passover last night, and it was a home run! Everyone loved it! Don't omit the chocolate sauce, it makes it super awesome!

  • animaldrj 17 Apr, 2011

    The recipe doesn't state to temper the chocolate prior to adding it to the egg yolks, but I assume you will need to do this to prevent egg curdling. I had to add a small amount of cream of tartar to the egg whites to get stiff peaks, which I don't believe is Kosher (unless certified), but was necessary for me (possibly related to the temperature of my kitchen?).

  • 51meerkat 14 Apr, 2011

    You can leave the coffee out and it will be fine. if you like, serve it with whipped cream and raspberry sauce, that combination is perfect.

  • Shiratb 6 Apr, 2011

    This cake looks amazing, and as a Kosher Jewish cook, I am always excited for new yummy Passover recipes. There's a website with ALL Kosher for Passover recipes, ( and I want to submit this one to them - it is most definitely gourmet, and I especially like how the glaze is served at the table. Thanks so much, can't wait to try it!!

  • jillison 21 Feb, 2011

    I just wanted to add that while it's nice to see gluten free recipes, and so many of them, a lot of us have multiple allergies, such as potato, dairy and soy so nice alternatives to those would be very much helpful. thank you!

  • serilee 1 Feb, 2011

    I don't care for the flavor of anything even remotely related to coffee. Do you think it would be as good without the espresso powder?

  • grazianolinda 30 Dec, 2010

    I have quite a selection of flourless cake rescipes, but this one trumps them all. Christmas Day guests actually said "this is the best chocolate cake I have ever had".

  • jeaninebush 5 Jul, 2010

    Quite easy for the delicious outcome! Butter the sides of the pan also. I, too, felt it important to explain to guests that it's supposed to collapse and crack. Used an 8" springform and it worked just fine too. This recipe is now going out to my firends becuase it so good

  • MariannL 22 May, 2010

    This is the best cake ever. A WOW crowd pleaser. Freezes well too!!

  • lovetoknitandread 4 Apr, 2010

    This recipe is a KEEPER!! Just delicious! My husband is gluten intolerant and raved about it. He loved that it is light yet full of flavor and wonderful for any occasion! My teenage son could barely stop eating it and between bites gave it a thumbs us! I followed the receipe exactly and did not have any problems. I also used the parchment paper as the recipe called for and did not have a problem peeling it off.

  • rufus31 26 Nov, 2008

    This cake is very good but I recommend not using the parchment paper as the cake is fragile and breaks easily when trying to peel off the paper. Use a non-stick springform pan or, alternatively, spray the pan with non-stick coating.

  • LadyVT 23 Aug, 2008

    I made this for my husband, who has a wheat intolerance. Oh, my. It was delicious! He still talks about it. I'm about to make it again tomorrow for his birthday. :)

  • jrgs1 12 Jun, 2008

    Place chocolate, butter, and vanilla in a bowl [set aside].
    Bring [cream,sugar, espresso,salt] to a boil, stirring.
    [Remove from heat].
    Pour [boiled ingredients] over chocolate mixture [in the bowl].
    Whisk until smooth.
    Is that clearer? :-)

  • SallyA 10 Jun, 2008

    Why does the pan get buttered and a liner?

  • syemaailia 20 May, 2008

    im a little confused with number 5.... it doesnt seem to make sense to me

  • marshrag 20 Apr, 2008

    I made this for Passover and everyone wanted the recipe, especially the non-jewish people at the table! It's easy and delicious! I served it with strawberries and whipped cream. Yum!

  • JessSzafran 6 Apr, 2008

    This cake was easy to make and a big hit at a birthday party. I did have to get over the crackled top. I felt the need to say, "It's supposed to look like that." The glaze was delicious and I feel like making if for special sundaes. I may also try putting the glaze on the entire cake, letting it cool and then slicing.

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