Chocolate Lava Cakes

Yield: 6 cakes

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Chocolate Lava Cakes are ultra right, decadent, and gourmet but surprisingly simple! Make them for Valentine’s Day this year, just follow the video to see how they’re made. Make-ahead tip inside the recipe!

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Ultra chocolatey and decadent. I love pairing this with fresh raspberries, it’s a wonderful combination.
Texture: Definitely the best part of lava cakes! The cake itself is moist and tender around the edges but once you get into that molten ooey gooey rich and thick lava filling it is HEAVEN on earth.
Ease: So surprisingly easy. I don’t know why I was ever intimidated to make these. AND they can be made ahead of time.
Appearance: Gwahhhhjussss. Like a fancy schmancy restaurant dessert.
Pros: One of my all time favorite desserts, and it’s easy! Perfect for Valentine’s day.
Cons: Decadent.
Would I make this again? YES. I fell in love with this recipe the first time I used it in culinary school and it is a go-to for special occasion desserts.

Chocolate Lava Cakes with a step-by-step video - they're so simple!

Chocolate lava cakes, aka one of my favorite things on the planet. This recipe is dangerous. It’s too quick and easy not to want to make these babies all the time. They look so complicated and intimidating, like something you’d only get to indulge in at a restaurant, but I made a video for you guys to show you how truly easy they are. You can’t mess these up, as long as you don’t overcook them! I remember the first time I ever ate a chocolate lava cake at a local restaurant that soon became a family favorite throughout my childhood. I think that was the moment I became a true chocoholic.

There are so many possibilities with these chocolate lava cakes to switch up the flavor profile and plate presentation. Add in a tablespoon of espresso powder to the batter for a mocha flavor, or a tablespoon or two of flavored liqueur such as Grand Marnier or Chambord. I served my chocolate lava cakes with some fresh raspberries and powdered sugar. You could also do strawberries, fresh mint, whipped cream, ice cream, or whatever your heart desires.

Feel free to halve this recipe if you don’t want to have 6 lava cakes on hand, which can be dangerous since the batter can be made, divided into ramekins, and refrigerated for a day to make ahead of time. I usually make the full recipe and we just have a crazy chocolate lava cake weekend.

Chocolate Lava Cakes

Yield 6 cakes     adjust servings
Prep Time 15 minutes Cook Time 10 minutes Total Time 25 mins

Chocolate Lava Cakes are ultra right, decadent, and gourmet but surprisingly simple! Make them for Valentine’s Day this year, just follow the video to see how they’re made. Make-ahead tip inside the recipe!


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus more for coating ramekins
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 10 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Fresh berries
  • Powdered sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 425Β°F. Spray 6 (6-ounce) ramekins with nonstick baking spray. Coat the insides of the buttered ramekins with granulated sugar, tapping out the excess.

    Combine the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir, then continue heating in 30 second bursts, stirring between bursts, until the mixture is melted and smooth. Alternatively, melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. Gently stir in the flour and salt.

    In a medium bowl vigorously whisk the eggs, egg yolks, vanilla, and the 1/2 cup of granulated sugar until thick and pale in color. Gently fold in the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Divide the batter among the ramekins.


    At this point the batter-filled ramekins can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day.

    Bake for about 10 minutes, or until the edges are firm but the center is runny. Add an additional minute of baking time if baking straight from the fridge.

    Run a knife around the edges to loosen and invert onto dessert plates, if desired. Serve with fresh berries and powdered sugar, if desired.


Recipe Notes

You can bake the batter in 10 paper-lined muffin tins for 10 minutes for smaller, more portable servings. You can also easily cut this recipe in half.

About Tessa...

Tessa is a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. She loves to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. She's on a mission to make the world a more unapologetically DELICIOUS place. Tessa lives in Phoenix, Arizona.

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21 Responses to “Chocolate Lava Cakes”

  1. #
    Taylor @ FoodFaithFitness — January 29, 2014 at 4:26 am

    Thank you SO much for this video! My hubby is a lava cake FIEND but I had no idea how to make them…and how easy they are! Like you said, dangerously easy! Pinned!

  2. #
    Jenny Flake — January 29, 2014 at 7:58 am

    Tessa!! You are adorable! Love your video and this yummy recipe!! xo

  3. # — January 29, 2014 at 8:15 am

    My favorite….nothing beats this dessert! Thanks for the recipe.

  4. #
    Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction — January 29, 2014 at 8:18 am

    Chocolate lava cake is the best!

  5. #
    Gaby — January 29, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    This is the perfect Valentine’s dessert and I would not be able to resist baking them all up and eating every bite!

  6. #
    Eleni — February 1, 2014 at 7:16 am

    These look unreal!!! Just curious though – since the centre is liquidy and contains eggs is there a chance that they’re unsafe for pregnant women to consume? Or do they bake long enough for the eggs to pasteurize?

    • #
      Tessa — February 1, 2014 at 3:23 pm

      I hesitate to make any recommendations one way or another for pregnancy-safe foods. With the amount of chocolate lava cake recipes that exist that are similar to this one I would say it should be fine, but that’s really the decision of the pregnant person eating. If you’re really concerned you can use pasteurized eggs, preferably whole pasteurized eggs like Safest Choice Eggs:

  7. #
    Heidi — March 30, 2014 at 7:57 am

    Hi Tessa,

    I am making these as we speak & wondering when you incorporate the flour?
    Thank you!!

  8. #
    Heidi — March 30, 2014 at 8:12 am

    Oh my goodness, never mind…I see where!! How embarressing πŸ™‚ Thanks for the recipe.

    • #
      Tessa — March 30, 2014 at 8:28 am

      Phew! πŸ™‚

  9. #
    Lauren — December 19, 2015 at 8:21 am

    If I want to add Grand Marnier, do I add it to the chocolate/butter mixture or the egg/sugar mixture?


    • #
      Tessa — December 19, 2015 at 10:59 am

      You can always add flavorings and liqueurs in with the vanilla πŸ™‚

    • #
      Lauren — December 21, 2015 at 3:28 pm

      Thanks! Can’t wait to make these for Christmas dessert!

  10. #
    Emily — January 9, 2016 at 7:22 pm

    Made these for my family and everyone loves them! SO delicious and easy!! Thank you so much for this recipe!

  11. #
    Elizabeth — February 1, 2016 at 8:38 pm

    Can they be prepared and put into a fridge until the next day and then bake them

    • #
      Tessa — February 2, 2016 at 6:17 pm

      Yes, your question is answered in the recipe.

  12. #
    Peggy — February 6, 2016 at 10:07 pm

    Can they be cooked at 4, and not served until 6? Will they lose the lava insides if they sit too long? Would you put them on the counter or in the fridge until read to serve?

    • #
      Tessa — February 7, 2016 at 9:43 am

      Hi Peggy, did you see that the batter filled ramekins can be refrigerated for up to 1 day ahead of time? They need to be served right after baking, so refrigerating the batter is the best way.

  13. #
    Anam — February 19, 2016 at 8:18 pm

    Hey i wanted to ask why do you use egg yolks besides eggs? Whats the use of so many eggs?

  14. #
    Annabelle — October 15, 2016 at 9:38 pm

    Hey Tess:
    I have read this recipe several times and I must be missing something, when do you add the flour into the batter. Can you fix the recipe? Thanks in advance.

  15. #
    Me — November 5, 2016 at 8:45 am

    Made these lase night, sorry to say but they were not very good. I made exactly by the recipe, and they had a rubbery texture. I did make the batter ahead of time and refrigerated for about 5 hours. Maybe that’s what did it, but recipe said it’s ok to do. I would not make this recipe again.

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