Flourless Chocolate Torte

Recipe By Tessa Arias
May 4th, 2009
5 from 1 vote
5 from 1 vote

This Flourless Chocolate Torte is delicious and far from being the typical, boring cake!

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook: 8 hours

I’ve been wanting to make a flourless chocolate cake for quite some time now after having a miniature one from Whole Foods. I don’t really care for normal normal cake, I think it is too boring. I like flourless chocolate cakes, though, because they are indulgent and rich. So I decided to test a recipe from Williams-Sonoma: Dessert cookbook. The recipe for Flourless Chocolate Torte is actually the cover photo and it looks incredibly delicious. My photo didn’t come out looking as good, partly because of obvious reasons like lack of photo equipment but also due to some kitchen problems. This recipe is fairly complicated, but the only mistake I made was setting the oven temperature. I set it to 350 when the recipe called for 300. No, I’m not retarded.

Side note: My dog just threw up on my bed. Great.

I realized my mistake when there was 12 minutes left of cooking so I just took the torte out of the oven then and it appeared to be done. It was a taaaad bit overcooked but nothing horrible.

Another side note: My dog just ate his own puke. Awesome.

The other problem I ran into was that I didn’t have a flat plate to place the torte on to cool (someone take me to Williams Sonoma!) So the torte ended up a little misshaped with the sides higher than the middle. Whatever, right? Until the choclate glaze decided to obey gravity and sink to the lower middle part. All in all, the torte might not have looked its best, but it tasted fantastic! My family each ate their entire piece while singing high praises. Next time I make it, I will find a flat plate and learn how to read oven temperatures!

Last side note: At least I didn’t have to clean the puke… right?

5 from 1 vote

How to make
Flourless Chocolate Torte

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 45 minutes
This Flourless Chocolate Torte is delicious and far from being the typical, boring cake!



  • Unsweetened cocoa powder for dusting
  • 10 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces, plus extra for greasing
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum or brewed espresso (optional) (I used 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature

Chocolate Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 8 oz chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup


  1. Preheat the oven to 300. Grease the bottom of an 8 inch round cake pan and line it with parchment paper. Grease the paper and the sides of the pan, then dust with cocoa powder.
  2. In the top of a double boiler, combine the chocolate and the 3/4 cup butter. Set over barely simmering water and melt, then whisk until well blended. Set aside to cool slightly.
  3. In large bowl, with a mixer set on medium high speed, beat together the egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar, dark rum (if using), vanilla, and salt until pale and very thick. Gradually pour in the chocolate mixture and continue beating until well blended.
  4. In deep, clean bowl, using a mixer on medium high speed, beat the egg whites until foamy. Gradually add the remaining sugar and continue to beat until medium-firm peaks form. Scoop half of the egg whites onto the chocolate mixture and fold them in gently. Fold in the remaining whites just until no streaks remain.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread it out evenly. Bake the torte until it puffs slightly and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out very moist but not liquid, about 35 minutes. Do not overcook. Let cool on a rack for 30 minutes.
  6. Run a small knife around the inside of the pan to loosen the cake, then invert the pan onto a flat plate. Lift off the pan and carefully peel off the parchment paper. Let cool completely. Cover and refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours or up to overnight.
  7. Glaze the cake with the chocolate glaze (below), then refrigerate again until firm, at least 2 hours. Transfer to a flat serving plate. Using a thin-bladed knife, cut the cake into small slices, dipping the knife into hot water and wiping it dry before each cut.
  8. To make the glaze, combine butter, cut into 4 pieces, and chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Set over barely simmering water and melt, then whisk until blended. Remove from the heat and whisk in the corn syrup until smooth and glossy. Set the cold cake on a wire rack over a large plate or baking sheet. Slowly pour the warm glaze over the center of the cake. The glaze should cover the surface evenly, spilling over the edges and running down the sides, the excess falling onto the plate below.

Recipe Notes

From Williams-Sonoma: Dessert
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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  1. #
    Sara — May 5, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    Yum! I also just made a flourless chocolate cake last month. They are sooo good. And you made a chocolate glaze on top of it – sounds so rich.

  2. #
    Tessa — May 5, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    I remember that! You had some problems in the kitchen too, not your fault though! Guys…

    Yeah the glaze made it super rich, I was considering making a raspberry sauce instead but my raspberries went bad!

  3. #
    Jennifer — May 6, 2009 at 9:23 am

    Tessa, your cake is beautiful!!! I can give up flour any day for chocolate cakes and tortes alike! Well done! Ive never had it with a chocolate glaze either!

  4. #
    Jessica — May 6, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Welcome to blogging and CEiMB! Your recipes look great and photos too.

  5. #
    Tessa — May 6, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    Thank you Jennifer and Jessica!!

  6. #
    Emily — May 7, 2009 at 6:32 am

    Wow, I dunno, this torte looks amazing! Geeez. I wish I had some right now.

  7. #
    Tessa — May 7, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Thank you Emily! There’s only one piece left now!! 🙁

  8. #
    Carmen — May 10, 2009 at 4:48 am

    That. looks. absolutely. delicious!! So could do with a slice of that right now!

  9. #
    Tessa — May 10, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    Thank you Carmen!!

  10. #
    Natalie — May 12, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    I’m going to attempt this, it looks delicious and I have never had chocolate torte before! This may be a really dumb question, but is there any particular trick to seperate egg whites/yolk?
    Also, what brand of chocolate did you use/ reccommend?

  11. #
    Tessa — May 13, 2009 at 4:08 am

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  12. #
    Tessa — May 13, 2009 at 4:09 am

    With separating the eggs, just make sure you think about what you’re going to do first. I simply crack the egg, break the shell in 2 halves, and transer the yolk from half to half until all the white falls out into a bowl underneath. Have bowls ready and a good edge to crack the eggs well. Visualize what you’re going to do with your hands and what is going to go in what bowls. I’d recommend searching youtube videos for a better description.

    I used Ghirardelli brand chocolate because its available at most stores (in American at least)and still affordable. However, if you’re willing to spend some money: Scharffen Berger, Valrhona, and Callebaut are top notch baking chocolate brands. Whatever brand you buy, just make sure it contains 65-75% chocolate liquor, which should be labeled on the packaging. Let me know if you have anymore questions!

  13. #
    nick — May 13, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    This is one of my favorite desserts, so decadent.

    Some advice: I used to separate my eggs the way you describe above. The main problems encountered here are 1) you will occasionally puncture the yolk with sharp edges of the cracked shell, 2) it is slow.
    I've found the “professional” way is easier and much quicker. After you crack the egg pour the whole thing into your palm and let gravity move the egg down to your slightly spread open fingers (not far enough for a yolk to pass). The white will fall through and you'll be left with only the yolk in your hand.

    G/L cracking them 2 at a time with (1 in each hand) so you can go through a dozen in < a minute. I still can't do this trick yet! 🙂

  14. #
    Tessa — May 19, 2009 at 3:26 am

    Thanks for the advice, Nick! I’ve seen people use that technique before but the thought of gooey slimy raw eggs going through the my fingers freaks me out haha. I’ll have to get over it though! This way sounds better.

    • #
      Phyllis — August 6, 2015 at 5:32 am

      Well I have to comment on the egg separating,the only way I was taught by my mom the desert queen was to crack egg and put into palm of hand.There are so many gadgets nowadays,who wants to put the slimey egg into hand exceexcept us old fashioned ppl.LOL

  15. #
    Anonymous — August 14, 2009 at 5:44 am

    yeah! I think I will stick to the old way, yuk, slimy egg in between fingers I am obviously not a chef xxx Rete xxx

  16. #
    Anonymous — May 9, 2010 at 12:38 am

    great cake recipe 🙂 but i thought the use of the word “retarded” in the intro was unnecessary.

    thanks for sharing this!

  17. #
    Brandon — August 1, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    My favorite way to separate eggs: I learned by way of Youtube to use an empty disposable water bottle; squeeze it a bit and set the open mouth of the bottle against the yolk of the egg after cracking it into a bowl. The yolk slips into the bottle so easily. It works so well and can be done after several eggs are in the bowl. I had fun doing it over and over. It is amazing. Unless it is just one egg, I use this method as much for how well it works as for the amusement of it.

  18. #
    Magui — December 30, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Hi, i want to ask because i’m translating this recipe for my aunt, i get confused with the temperature, it is in Centigrades or in Farenheit? Thank you!

    • #
      Tessa — January 3, 2014 at 9:17 am

      All the temperatures on this site are in Fahrenheit

  19. #
    Alfred — March 9, 2015 at 11:48 pm

    Your recipe sounds delicious but my appetite was destroyed with your dog puke. Please refrain from such comments when writing about food. Im sure you thought it was cute but it was actually disgusting when reading about a dessert.

  20. #
    Jeanne — February 12, 2016 at 9:08 am

    [Your code is showing:
    “This Flourless Chocolate Torte is delicious and far from being the typical, boring cake! [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Flourless Chocolate Torte[/caption] I’ve been wanting to make a flourless chocolate cake…”]

    This recipe looks wonderful – I’m trying to reduce my simple carb intake, thank you!

  21. #
    Laine Boyd — October 3, 2019 at 10:47 am

    Somehow, during our move, I LOST my Williams Sonoma Dessert cookbook. Go figure. All the other cookbooks arrived just fine. I am so happy to find this on your site!!! This is by far, the very best flourless chocolate torte ever. I have tried several different recipes, and while most were good, this literally takes the cake! I make it exactly as written – it’s one of the few recipes I don’t change. Mine looks pretty much like the one on the cover of the cookbook. Be sure to use really good quality chocolate. Don’t skimp on quality ingredients. This cake deserves the best you have to give it! Don’t be fooled by the small size – it’s very rich, so you’ll get more pieces.

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