This nearly foolproof flourless chocolate soufflé for two is meant to impress! The chocolate soufflé is rich and decadent, yet so light and airy in texture. Paired with fresh berries, ice cream, or ganache, this dessert is exactly what you need to finish a perfect date night dinner!
There's no doubt that chocolate is the universal symbol for love and romance. And there's nothing more impressive than finishing a dinner date with this flourless chocolate soufflé for two that takes less than 45 minutes!
If you're a chocolate lover with a palette for decadent desserts, this chocolate soufflé will definitely impress. It's rich with chocolate flavor, yet still so light and airy with a slightly gooey center.
This chocolate soufflé is shareable for two, but I'd gladly enjoy it all by myself! 😉
Ingredients to make flourless chocolate soufflé
Because this flourless chocolate soufflé requires minimal ingredients, it is very important to use good quality ingredients to yield the best flavor.
- Good quality bittersweet chocolate - Chocolate soufflé will only be as good as the quality of chocolate. That's because chocolate is the most prominent flavor, especially since this flourless chocolate soufflé only use minimal ingredients.
- We recommend Ghirardelli's 60% bittersweet chocolate, both chips or bars are great.
- Milk - For thinning out the chocolate.
- Unsalted butter - To give the soufflé a little more fat and richness. Butter will also be used to grease the soufflé ramekin.
- Vanilla extract - Chocolate desserts always taste better with a dash of vanilla.
- Eggs - The eggs will be separated into whites and yolk.
- Sugar - Granulated sugar is added to the meringue to give stability and also to add sweetness to the chocolate soufflé.
- White vinegar - Use a very small amount to help stabilize the meringue. You can also substitute the vinegar for ¼ teaspoon of cream of tartar.
Step by step of how to make a flourless soufflé for two
Prepare the soufflé ramekin:
1. Lightly grease the soufflé ramekin(s) with unsalted butter. Make sure to grease it all the way up to the rim! You can also even it out with your fingers.
2. Add a tablespoon of granulated sugar to the ramekin(s) and tilt the ramekin around so that all the buttered surface is coated with sugar. Dump out all excess sugar.
3. Run your thumb across the rim of the ramekin to clean off any extra sugar or butter. This prevents a lopsided rise.
When the weather is hot, you can let your greased and sugar dusted ramekin sit in the fridge to prevent the butter from melting.
*Buttering and dusting the soufflé ramekin with granulated sugar helps the soufflé "climb" during baking. This promotes good rise.*
For the chocolate base:
1. Combine the bittersweet chocolate, milk, and unsalted butter in a small heatproof mixing bowl.
2. Place the bowl on top of a small pot of simmering water. Constantly mix the ingredients until melted and well combined. Remove the bowl from heat and let cool the chocolate base cool for a few minutes until it's warm to the touch.
3. Separate the two eggs into whites and yolks. Place the two egg whites in a separate medium mixing bowl and add one of the yolks to the warm chocolate base. Save the other yolk for another use.
4. Also add the vanilla to the egg yolk and chocolate base. Mix until the egg yolk is well combined. Set aside.
For the meringue:
1. With the 2 egg whites in a mixing bowl, add a teaspoon of white vinegar. This will help stabilize the meringue. You can also use ¼ teaspoon of cream of tartar instead.
2. Using a hand mixer, beat the egg whites on medium speed, until foamy.
3. In small amounts, gradually add the granulated sugar and increase the speed to medium high. If it makes you more comfortable, you can pause the mixer when adding the sugar.
4. Continue beating the meringue until stiff peak. To test, give the meringue a couple of whisk and pull up. If the peak is straight and holds up, the meringue is ready.
To make the soufflé:
1. Once the meringue has reached stiff peak, add a third of it to the cooled chocolate base.
2. Gently fold the meringue into the chocolate base with a "J" motion. Make sure to be gentle and don't deflate the meringue during the folding process! The meringue is what gives our soufflé its rise and structure.
3. Once incorporated, add another third of the meringue and repeat. When all the meringue has been incorporated, soufflé base should be fluffy and pretty even in color. The consistency will be a slow flowing ribbon.
4. Transfer the soufflé batter to the prepared ramekin and bake at 375°F for about 20 minutes. At this point the soufflé will still be slightly gooey in the center. If you prefer it more molten, decrease the bake time to 18 minutes. If you prefer a more cooked center, increase the cook time to 22 to 25 minutes.
Optional toppings for this flourless chocolate soufflé
This flourless chocolate soufflé is great on it's own, but some additional toppings can never hurt!
- Fresh berries - Chocolate is great with fruits and berries. We love chocolate soufflés with strawberries. Classic and amazing.
- Powder sugar - Not exactly necessary, but definitely a classic and gives nice contrast to the brown soufflé.
- Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream - Cold and warm is always a great combo, just like warm pecan pie with cold ice cream!
- Chocolate ganache - You can never have enough chocolate! This added a different depth of chocolate flavor that goes extremely well with berries.
- To make chocolate ganache - Use 1 to 1 ratio, cream to bittersweet chocolate chips. Melt in the microwave in 15 second intervals or using a double boiler (over a pot of simmering water).
Common soufflé troubleshoot and recipe tips
Deflated chocolate soufflé
Soufflés will inevitably deflate minutes after they are out of the oven. But they should have a nice rise while they are baking.
- Under-whipped meringue - Stiff peak meringue is the support structure of soufflés. The meringue should stay a pointy peak when you hold it up. If the meringue curls when you hold it up, it needs to be whipped a little bit longer.
- Over-mixed soufflé batter - Because meringue is quite fragile, it is very important to gently fold in the meringue and stop when it's incorporated. Over-mixing can cause meringue to deflate and result in flat soufflés with no rise.
- Opening the oven during baking - For temperamental desserts and pastries (which usually involves meringues), it is best to keep the oven door closed during the entire baking process. The difference in temperature will cause the meringue to collapse.
Use a double boiler
Double boilers or bain maries uses water to gently cook food. I highly recommend using one to melt the the chocolate base for the soufflé to prevent the chocolate from breaking.
To make a double boiler, select a heatproof bowl that comfortably sits on top of a pot. Add 1 inch of water and bring it to a simmer. Place the bowl on the pot with the chocolate base ingredients. Stir constantly until everything is melted and well combined.
You could also use the microwave, but make sure to heat in 15 to 30 second increments to prevent burning or breaking the chocolate.
Use baking ramekins
To give your flourless chocolate soufflé the best rise, use baking ramekins with straight sides and rim. This will prevent your soufflé from going lopsided and cracking.
We wanted to make our soufflé shareable in a cute ramekin, but our ramekin's rim had a slight outward curve. So the result was a well risen chocolate soufflé, with a couple cracks. But don't worry! A couple dusting of powdered sugar will make it look perfect! Plus, it still tasted amazing!
You can also portion this flourless chocolate soufflé into two 8 ounce ramekins so that you each can have your own. Just reduce the baking time to 15 minutes.
Just like a classic chocolate soufflé, flourless chocolate soufflé tastes decadent and full of rich, chocolate flavor. The top and exterior is slightly crackly, light, and crisp. And if properly made, the interior is light, fluffy, and has a melt-in-your-mouth texture. However, to enjoy any chocolate soufflés at their best, the center should be slightly gooey, almost molten.
Yes! This additional step helps the soufflé "climb" the sides of the ramekin, promoting a good rise.
Soufflés will inevitably collapse, however, they should hold its height for a few minutes. If they collapse immediately out of the oven, they are usually either over or under-baked, meringue is under-whipped, or the batter is over-mixed.
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Flourless Chocolate Soufflé for Two
- ½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips 3 oz (chocolate bars are good too)
- 3 tablespoons milk
- ½ tablespoon unsalted butter plus extra for the ramekin
- 1 large egg yolk about 30g
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 large egg whites about 62g
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar plus extra for dusting
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar or ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- Prepare the ramekin:Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Lightly grease the baking ramekin(s) with butter and dust with granulated sugar. Tap out excess sugar and clean off the rim of the ramekin.
- For the chocolate base:Combine the chocolate, milk, and butter in a heatproof bowl. Place the bowl on a pot of simmering water (double boiler). Constantly stir the ingredients until everything is melted and well combined. Remove from heat and set aside to cool until warm to the touch.
- Add the egg yolk and vanilla. Mix until everything is well combined. Set aside until needed.
- For the meringue:Place the egg whites in a medium mixing bowl. Add the white vinegar or cream of tartar and beat on medium speed until foamy.
- While mixing, gradually add the sugar, a little at a time. Once all of the sugar has been added, increase the speed to medium high and beat the meringue to stiff peak. The meringue should stand on a peak when lifted up.*Feel free to pause the mixer in between adding the sugar. Also, refer to the post for photo reference of stiff peak meringue.*
- To make the soufflé batter:In three sessions, add a third of the meringue into the cooled chocolate base. Using a rubber spatula, gently incorporate the meringue using a "J" folding motion. Repeat two more times until all the meringue is added and well incorporated.*Refer to the post for step by step photo reference!*
- To bake the soufflé:Pour the chocolate soufflé batter into the prepared ramekin and bake for 20 minutes. If making two smaller ramekins of soufflé decrease the bake time to 15 minutes.*Make sure the actual oven temperature is at 375°F when you bake the soufflé. An oven thermometer is highly recommend to ensure the oven temperature is correct when baking. Also, avoid opening the oven while baking to prevent the soufflé from deflating.*
- Serve the soufflé:Serve the chocolate soufflé immediately with powdered sugar, whipped cream, ice cream, fresh fruits, and/or ganache.
- If you prefer a gooey center, decrease the baking time to 18 minutes. For a more cooked center, increase the bake time to 22 to 25 minutes
- Ganache - Combine ½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips with ½ cup heavy cream. Melt and mix until well combined.
- Whipped cream - Combined ¼ cup heavy cream, 1-2 tablespoons granulated sugar, and a dash of vanilla (optional). Whip until medium/stiff peak.
- Fresh fruits - Berries are great, especially strawberries.
- Powdered sugar - Great contrast against the chocolate soufflé.