Updated GF Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake


Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake for Easy to Make Very Special Mother's Day CakesIt’s time to revisit this Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake to make this dessert easier and more foolproof.   is not only gluten-free but perfect for Passover.  I can’t even begin to guess how many of these Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cakes we made at the bakery but I do remember having to glaze and cut 69 at one point for a banquet – 1104 pieces.  It seemed like they would never end.  For a brief moment, I almost gave up on chocolate.

Remember when the flourless chocolate cakes took everyone by storm?  They were everywhere.  The problem was most of them were dry, dry, dry and not worth the trouble.  Just because something is flourless doesn’t make it good!  However, this Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake is ultra-smooth and has a deep, intense chocolate taste without being bitter or overwhelming.

Low and slow is the mantra for this flourless cake.  When one of my clients asked for a cake such as this, my research took me to the Frog Commissary cookbook where we learned this was more of a firmly set pudding than a cake.  However, as a pudding, it sometimes wanted to bow out at the sides.  I added a little cocoa and that solved the problem so it is firm and straight.  We also added a glaze to provide a more finished look.    Do not try to hurry any step of this cake.  Air cannot be beaten into the mixture so the mixer is always set on low. Setting the oven to a  low temperature in the oven is a must also.

Since I have started making these for the restaurant, I realized that one difference when baking will lead to a much easier and better outcome.  By placing the pan with the cake in a water bath, there will be no chance the cake will rise above the rim of the pan.  The texture will be ultra-smooth and releasing the cake will be a snap.

While I usually want you to spray just the middle of the parchment, the Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake is the exception and requires spraying the inside bottom of the pan lightly  (to help keep the parchment flat), laying parchment over the spray, then spray the parchment and sides really well.

After baking the cake cool it completely while in the water bath.  The cake will have pulled away from the sides every so slightly.  Run a thin, metal spatula around the edge.   Then refrigerate until very cold, preferably overnight.  When cold, release the sides once more with the flexble metal spatula.  Place a cake board on top of the pan.  Turning it upside down so the board is on the bottom, rap it hard on a solid surface several times or until you can feel it falling onto the board.  At this point, the Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake freezes very well unglazed and wrapped in foil for several months.

Any number of sauces –  caramel, raspberry, and orange, are a few that come to mind, adding another dimension to the cake.  The photo above shows the Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake on a bed of Creme Anglaise.

Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake

Ingredients (1 of 1)

1 1/2 cups sugar (300 grams or 10 ounces)
1/2 cup cocoa (40 grams or scant 1 1/2 ounces)
3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups butter cut into pieces (340 grams or 12 ounces or 3 sticks)
6 eggs
12 ounces semisweet chocolate (340 grams)

Preheat the oven to 250°F.  Spray the bottom of a 9” round cake pan, line it with parchment and spray the entire pan well including the parchment.pan sprayed (1 of 1)

Whisk the sugar and cocoa together in a large saucepan.  Cocoa and sugar in potCocoa and sugar whiskedAdd the water and whisk until smooth.  Water addedwater whisked inAdd the butter pieces butter in (1 of 1)and heat to melt the butter, stirring often.butter melting

all melted in pot (1 of 1)In the meantime, place the eggs in a mixing bowl and mix on low.  Mix until no egg whites are showing.Eggs whisked

When the butter is melted and the mixture is hot, but not boiling, remove from the heat and add the chocolate.  Chocolate going into hot mixtureSubmerge the chocolate completely below the liquid and let sit for a few minutes. Chocolate submerged Whisk gently to completely incorporate the chocolate. Chocolate melted in pot Add to the eggs Chocolate in eggsand mix on low until everything is well combined.Batter beaten

I place my 9″ pan in a 10″ pan and filled it with 3/4 cup hot water. Place the prepared pan in a larger pan to be used as a water bath. Water bath pan for Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake

Bake for 85 minutes.It will be very slightly jiggly in the center when done.Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake bakedCool completely in the water bath. At this point, the cake will have pulled away slightly from the edges of the pan. Pulling away from the edge of the pan

Remove the cake from the water bath and go around the edges with a small flexible spatula.
releasing edgeRefrigerate to set completely, preferably overnight.

To release the cake from the pan, go around the edges of the pan again.  Place a cardboard circle on top of the pan.Cake board on top of panTurn the pan upside down.Upside down in panRap it hard several times on a solid surface.  You will feel the cake drop to the board. Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake baked on a boardRemove the pan and paper.   At this point, it can be well wrapped in foil and frozen for several months.  It is easiest to glaze if frozen.

Chocolate Butter GlazeGlaze ingredients

1 stick butter (114 grams or 4 ounces)
6 ounces semisweet chocolate (170 grams)

Heat the butter and the chocolate together until the chocolate is mostly melted but do not let it get too hot or the glaze will be dull and reddish in color. Glaze ingred. melted Let it sit, off heat, a few minutes and then whisk gently to combine. Whisking glaze

Glaze whisked

Make a glazing tray by placing a cooling rack inside or on top of a rimmed pan such as a half sheet pan. Glazing RackTo glaze, remove the Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake from the cardboard and place it on the glazing rack.  Pour the glaze onto the center of the cake and Pouring glazegently push it off the sides with an offset spatula making sure it runs down the sides to cover them completely.  Shoving over edge 1Shoving over edge 2Rap on the table several times to settle the glaze.
Rapping on tableRemove from the rack with two pancake turners and place on a serving tray or a cardboard round and store in the refrigerator.Spatulas under ultimate Moved to Board

Yield:  1 – 9” cake. 1450 grams or about 3 1/4 pounds. 16 servings

Note:  Because this has no flour, it has a long shelf life in the refrigerator.  As long as the cut edges are covered it can stay for 10 to 14 days.  This is an ideal foil for one of the dessert sauces.   This cake freezes well unglazed.  It may be glazed straight from the freezer.

Alternatively, if you don’t want to glaze it, sprinkle it with powdered sugar just before servings.

Other naturally gluten-free recipes include:

Gluten Free Turtle Cake with Salted Caramel
Almond Macaroons
Flourless Chocolate Raspberry Cookies

Pastry has not only been my profession, but my passion. If there is anything in particular you would like to see or any questions about baking or pastry, please let me know. Be sure to subscribe so you don't miss a post!
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17 thoughts on “Updated GF Ultimate Chocolate Fudge Cake

  1. sallybr

    Flourless is one of our favorites – I used to make a recipe from David Rosengarten which was pretty good, but had a very rustic look to it – the surface was kind of crackly and you were supposed to press down on the cake while still warm to increase its “density” even further – it was good but lacked elegance, you know what I mean? Your version is perfect and of course you add all the small details to make it doable in the home kitchen

    thank you!

  2. Manisha

    Hi Helen, I made this cake yesterday and it was devoured :) Making some more…infact it is in the oven when I write this :) thanks for this fabulous recipe….

  3. Naina Sachdeva

    thank you soooo much for receipe….am going to try as soon as an opportunity arises

  4. Jorge Restrepo

    Helen- what brand of cocoa do you recommend ? I’ve baked 2 other cloudless chocolate cakes and have turned very dry. I’ll have to try this one.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Jorge: It’s not the cocoa, it’s the recipe. I’ve used everything from Hershey’s regular to very expensive dutched cocoas. At work I use Cocoa Barry’s 22% cocoon and I apologize I don’t know the name of it. Generally, I use any 22% dutched cocoa. I agree there are some really dry flourless cakes out there. Do try this one, as you can see from the photo it is definitely not dry!

  5. Kim

    Helen, I made this cake for my mother in laws birthday in January and it was very decadent. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  6. agnes eusebio

    Thank you so much for all the details. I have another similar recipe, but nuts are added, I would love to know you opinion about adding roastted and chopped nut with orange peel to this recipe. Angain thanks so much for all your post. I lately tried your tips on making flat surface cake, it was a great success, I would post there to thanks you, but the comment is closed. Thus I write here to let you know about it. THANK YOU Helen!

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Agnes: Thank you so much for commenting. I think the roasted nuts and orange peel sounds wonderful. I like the combination of chocolate and orange. Be sure to cut the nuts, almonds would be great, very small.
      So happy the flat layers work for you.

      1. agnes eusebio

        certainly I will try when there is chance and let you know! Thanks and wish you a nice weekend.

  7. Vicki Bensinger

    Helen this sounds amazing. I’m definitely going to make this for Passover this year instead of the cake I was planning to make. What brand of chocolate are you using in this? What topping have you found your customers like best with this? Great recipe, I can’t wait to make it. I can taste it just thinking about it.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Vicki: I use Callebaut semisweet callets. They are available at Kitchen Conservatory. We only glazed them at the bakery. I suggested the powdered sugar for those that might be timid abut glazing. Thanks for your comments – I appreciate them.

  8. Janet Woodward

    Just about licking the screen here…such a wonderful treat. Might have to make one of these …Thank you.
    More gluten free goodies, please…

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