mini flourless chocolate cakes with buttercream frosting

by jenna on December 8, 2010

There are times in life that call for desperate measures: a new pair of jeans, Thai take-out, or a (large) glass of wine.

I like to think that’s just what it means to be a girl, right? We like wine, chocolate, girlfriends and sappy movies. We love new shoes, fresh haircuts and fuzzy little animals.

The little treats you see before you today have absolutely nothing to do with the holidays, other than the fact that sometimes winter calls for extra special treats to make us happy when the sun is hiding for days on end.

They are also definitely not cupcakes.

No, they aren’t.

Rather, they are mini flourless chocolate cakes with buttercream frosting and sprinkles.

They’re not as pretty as cupcakes, and kinda slouch in the middle. However, they’re as rich as they come, have a fudge-like consistency and will, without a doubt, make any day a better one. Guaranteed.

To be perfectly honest (and rather awkward), I made these yesterday because I had cramps.

Yep, you heard me. C-R-A-M-P-S.

Sometimes being a girl hurts. That’s why God made chocolate.

So, I dusted off a tried-but-true recipe and got to it. I have a feeling people are intimidated by flourless chocolate cake, but they really shouldn’t be. I mean, how many ingredients do you see below?

I rest my case.

And don’t let the number of eggs scare you! This recipe makes a lot of mini cakes. You could easily cut the recipe in half so you wouldn’t have to stare at half a dozen eggs, though I secretly like to.

Because flourless chocolate cakes don’t use any leavener at all (baking powder/baking soda), they rely solely on beating the heck out of eggs and sugar to give the cake it’s oomph!

Then, all you do is pour the melted chocolate and butter into the beaten eggs and sugar and you’re golden!

You can so do this.

Someone help me. I would gladly gain five pounds for these.

Mini Flourless Chocolate Cakes with Buttercream Frosting

makes about 18 mini cakes or two regular sized cakes

Print this recipe!

6 eggs, room temperature

1/2 cup granulated sugar

10 oz (about 2 cups) semi-sweet chocolate

5 ounces butter

for frosting:

2 sticks butter, softened

2 cups confectioner’s sugar

1 T milk

2 tsp vanilla extract

two drops of desired food coloring

Preheat the oven to 350.

Melt the chocolate and the butter together over very low heat.

While that’s melting, whip the eggs in a stand mixer at high speed. When they start to become thick and pale, add the sugar slowly. Continue whipping on high until the mixture is thick, pale and ribbony.

Slowly pour the melted chocolate into the egg and sugar mixture while gently folding with a spatula. Be careful not to stir, only fold, because that will cause the batter to lose it’s air.

Pour batter into muffin tins that have been thoroughly buttered and floured (not sprayed). Bake for twenty five minutes and let cool in the tins for another ten before running a knife around the outside of the cake and gently popping them out.

While the cakes are cooling, make the frosting. Beat the softened butter and add the sugar. Beat together until combined, and then add the milk and extract. Continue beating on high until the frosting is thick and light.

For tips on how to frost cupcakes, see here.

Sprinkles are optional, but highly recommended.

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{ 94 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica @ How Sweet It Is December 8, 2010 at 7:44 am

I’d gladly gain 5lbs for these too. I love the bright icing! That would brighten up any day of mine. And as for those desperate measures times? I’d like to add shoes to the list. Any and all shoes.


Heather December 8, 2010 at 9:11 am

You both are going to be responsible for any weight gain in incur in the next week or two! hahaha


Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin December 8, 2010 at 7:47 am

Those are adorable! Flourless cake is one of my favorites and the blue buttercream frosting is so cute!


grocery goddess jen December 8, 2010 at 7:47 am

Jenna, what do you DO with all of these delicious treats? Feed the homeless? Stock your freezer in case of nuclear war? Fatten up Adam? I would eat them all in one sitting!


jenna December 8, 2010 at 7:54 am

I gain major bonus points by leaving a few flourless chocolate cakes on my boyfriend’s counter. 😉


Heather (Heather's Dish) December 8, 2010 at 7:55 am

i’m so sorry to hear you had cramps, but at least something fabulous came out of them! i’m making these immediately. as in the moment i get home…


Moni'sMeals December 8, 2010 at 7:57 am

These look perfect! I like your blue food coloring for the butter cream and sprinkles. 🙂


Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun December 8, 2010 at 7:57 am

Who cares if it doesn’t go with the holidays? I hear buttercream frosting and I come running!

Hope the cramps ease up. Chocolate is a great way to do that. 😉


Stacy @ Every Little Thing December 8, 2010 at 7:59 am

Wow, they sound delicious and super easy! Hope they help with the cramps 🙂 I think they will.


aubrey December 8, 2010 at 8:02 am

i would love to spend a day in your life.


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat December 8, 2010 at 8:02 am

In my opinion, there are far too few blue foods in the world. I love your icing!! 🙂


chelsie December 8, 2010 at 8:02 am

These are adorable. My fear with flourless recipes and all those eggs is that they will turn out tasting eggy? Or am I the only person who struggles with this?

Regardless, they look like a perfect treat to ward away awful cramps!


emily December 8, 2010 at 8:04 am

You said not to spray, but could you use muffin liners?


jenna December 8, 2010 at 8:20 am

No—I’ve tried muffin liners and failed. It’s all about the butter and flour.


Lauren at KeepItSweet December 8, 2010 at 8:07 am

i totally agree with your entire post, sometimes you really just need chocolate…. or a chocolate flourless cake that you don’t have to share!


megan @ whatmegansmaking December 8, 2010 at 8:08 am

I’ll be making this in a regular cake version! Is buttercream the recommended frosting type? These would be so good for Christmas with some red or green frosting 🙂


megan @ whatmegansmaking December 8, 2010 at 8:08 am

sorry, one more question. How long would bake the 9-inch cakes? Thanks!


jenna December 8, 2010 at 8:18 am

I baked a nine inch cake yesterday with these bad boys…it took about 35 minutes at 350. It’s done when the sides start to pull away from the side of the pan. Don’t forget to butter and flour the cake pan! (don’t spray!)


jenna December 8, 2010 at 8:19 am

A lot of people serve flourless chocolate cake with ganache….like a super rich chocolate frosting…I prefer light and fluffy buttercream though (I’m a frosting freak!). You could do either and it would be delicious.


Jess December 8, 2010 at 8:08 am

I think I’m in love. Must. Make. These. Soon.


The Blue-Eyed Bakers December 8, 2010 at 8:09 am

Chocolate certainly cures all our ailments. These cakes look delicious – perfect when you need a little pick me up! Or any time really!


Averie (LoveVeggiesandYoga) December 8, 2010 at 8:10 am

Oh these are awesome! The fact that they are GF is just music to my ears…and I LOVE the blue frosting and sprinkles. I mean anything that blue and pretty is just MEANT to be devoured 🙂

They look awesome…and would make a great 4 yr old bday party cupcake. Which is coming up soon in my house! 🙂


Coco @ Opera Girl Cooks December 8, 2010 at 8:15 am

Hoo boy, this recipe sounds intensely delicious. My dad is a chocoholic and I think he’d flip for these!


Lindsey @ Morningstar Project December 8, 2010 at 8:15 am

Let’s just say I’m glad bikini season isn’t right around the corner 😉


Laura December 8, 2010 at 8:20 am

Oh, my. I see myself baking these in the very near future, perhaps with red or green buttercream for holiday spirit.

Nothing helps cramps like some chocolate cake.


Dana Wright December 8, 2010 at 8:22 am

Hi. One of the comments on my blog sent me in your direction. After reading that last bit about the flourless chocolate cake, I think I am in love. 🙂 Awesome recipe. Little cakes, frosting and chocolate. Falls right into that cupcake fetish I am currently in., 🙂 You rock and I love your site. Mine is still pretty small, but that’s okay. Just a Bookgirl who loves cookbooks and adventures (sometime misadventures) in the kitchen. Hope you pop over some time.


Dana @Bookgirlinthekitchen


Steph@stephsbitebybite December 8, 2010 at 8:22 am

Anything that’s made in mini form makes my heart happy! These are so cute and look super yummy!


Cathy B. @ Bright Bakes December 8, 2010 at 8:23 am

too cute and yummy…also love your retro-glo icing!
cathy b. @ brightbakes


Jennifer @ Jane Deere December 8, 2010 at 8:29 am

Amen to chocolate! I can’t wait to try these mini little gems!


Estela @ Weekly Bite December 8, 2010 at 8:34 am

I swear… no matter how tough men think they are, they couldn’t take being a girl for a day if they tried!

These cake are super cute by the way 🙂


Katie @ Healthy Heddleston December 8, 2010 at 8:38 am

Wow these would be perfect for me since I’m GF! Looks great, can’t wait to try them!


AllieNic @Frisky Lemon December 8, 2010 at 8:46 am

I’m almost afraid to try and make these…I’m afraid that I’d make them and no one would believe that I made them…because they’d all be gone before anyone knew about them…


Maria December 8, 2010 at 8:47 am

Love the blue frosting-so fun! I think I could down my fair share of these:)


Michele @ Healthy Cultivations December 8, 2010 at 8:57 am

I’ve always been intrigued by flourless items. This recipe looks simple enough and definitely pretty enough to try out for myself.


Evan Thomas December 8, 2010 at 9:00 am

I think I gained 10 pounds reading this post and I don’t mind at all.


Jenna December 8, 2010 at 9:00 am

Oh I love the icing!!! 🙂 They look so pretty!


Camille December 8, 2010 at 9:06 am

Eeek, cramps are the worst 🙁
I had them so badly last week that I ate everything chocolate in my house. Okay, maybe that isn’t why, but the two events happened to coincide 🙂


Liz @ Tip Top Shape December 8, 2010 at 9:13 am

“Sometimes being a girl hurts. That’s why God made chocolate”.


That line seriously had be laughing out loud! The flourless cakes look delicious 😀


krista December 8, 2010 at 9:23 am

so you’re using the whole egg rather than just whipping the whites?


jenna December 8, 2010 at 9:26 am

yep! I’d just be whipping the whites if I were making a sponge cake or angel food cake.


Brittany December 8, 2010 at 9:23 am

These cakes look amazing! I’ve been struggling to decide what kind of cake to make for my hubby’s upcoming birthday. Fudge-y chocolate cake + blue buttercream = problem solved.

By the way, your blog is my go-to source for delicious recipes, and I know for a fact that I’m not alone in that.


Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman December 8, 2010 at 9:28 am

Cupcakes. Mini cakes. I don’t care what you call them–I want some!


Marie-Journey to Body Zen December 8, 2010 at 9:31 am

Mmmm, these look so good! Cupcakes are the ultimate way to cheer me up!


Amber K December 8, 2010 at 9:36 am

If you flour the pan doesn’t that make these not flourless?

I’m actually glad I read this in case someone makes me something similar for Christmas. “Here you go, it’s totally gluten-free!” Now I’ll know to ask whether they floured the pan!


jenna December 8, 2010 at 9:38 am

that’s a really, really good call! The cakes themselves are flourless but if you are gluten-free you would have to flour with another type of gluten-free flour.


Ida December 8, 2010 at 11:17 am

Or cocoa powder:)


LisaR @ The 3125 Blog December 8, 2010 at 9:45 am

So stinking delicious! I must give this a shot….


Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin December 8, 2010 at 9:49 am

Thank goodness for chocolate to help ease the pain of cramps. 😉


Vanessa December 8, 2010 at 9:50 am

Thank God for chocolate…


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey December 8, 2010 at 9:51 am

Praise God for chocolate, not cramps.


Molly December 8, 2010 at 9:57 am

my life hurt yesterday. May have to make these and test it out 😉


Baking 'n' Books December 8, 2010 at 9:58 am

So then what is the difference between cupcakes and cakes? Isn’t a cupcake just really a mini-version of cake? Seriously -what’s the diff?! 😉


Lauren December 8, 2010 at 10:00 am

Chocolate always helps. I love the bright blue frosting!


Alina @ Duty Free Foodie December 8, 2010 at 10:04 am

I love flourless chocolate cake (I prefer the texture to the flour-full ones). Thanks for the recipe!


sarah b December 8, 2010 at 10:10 am

These resemble every baking adventure I’ve had in the kitchen 🙂 But, I’m sure they’ll taste as good as you say, and I’m sure my little nieces and nephews won’t mind scarfing down another on of their dear Aunts blog re-creations.


Allison K December 8, 2010 at 10:16 am

I have C-R-A-M-P-S right now! ugh. I sort of want to eat my computer screen looking at these.


Jessica @ The Process of Healing December 8, 2010 at 10:17 am

This could not have come at a better time. Dear Jesus, thank you.


Olympe December 8, 2010 at 10:25 am

Looks amazing… Can you send some of them to me, please?!!
Have a great day


paula December 8, 2010 at 10:25 am

yummers… there’s no way I could make these. I’d go crazy popping them into my mouth every hour on the hour.

Totally enjoyed looking and salivating over your pictures.


Stephanie December 8, 2010 at 10:44 am

These look amazing!!!!! Maybe i’ll treat my co-workers and bring some in! I’ve also been looking for a buttercream frosting recipe so i’m just going to have to give this a try! Thanks for posting!


Faith @ lovelyascharged December 8, 2010 at 10:46 am

Oh gosh, that’s where it’s AT! Being a girl may kinda suck once in a while but see, at least we have an excuse to demand chocolate and curling up with some blankets and sappy tv once a month 🙂


Sara December 8, 2010 at 10:57 am

Oh those look tasty 🙂 I wouldn’t mind the slight bluish tint on my teeth either to get a bite of one of those. I’ve never had flourless cake but I would love to try. And I agree, chocolate is a must with dreaded cramps. Whenever I’m cramping and my husband sees me react I just tell him, “Owwww, my uterus.” haha He knows to get me something tasty to make me feel better and I love him for it. But even with cramps I would still rather be a woman than a man, hands down. 😉


Amanda December 8, 2010 at 11:01 am

Thats a perfectly sound reason to make chocolate cake!


Lauren December 8, 2010 at 11:17 am

Thank you for finally doing a gluten free baked good!!


Kylie @ A Hungry Spoon December 8, 2010 at 11:23 am

These look incredible! I absolutely love a rich vanilla buttercream paired with chocolate cake… and the flourless part makes it even better 🙂


Natalia - a side of simple December 8, 2010 at 11:47 am

Flour less? GF? I need to wait for my heart to start beating again before I make these.


Angharad December 8, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Super cute! My friend makes a killer flourless chocolate cake I’ve been wanting to try out. She doesn’t frost/ganache it though – simply dusts it with powdered sugar and it’s fan-freaking-tastic.


Annie@stronghealthyfit December 8, 2010 at 12:17 pm

Speak for yourself, I like action movies and trucks! 😉
Your cakes look fabulous.


Megan (Braise The Roof) December 8, 2010 at 12:42 pm

You know, these COULD be considered Hannukah cakes. 🙂 No leaveners and they’re blue!


Bethany December 8, 2010 at 12:49 pm

ANOTHER wonderful recipe that I cannot wait to try out! Thank you!!!!!


Alicia December 8, 2010 at 1:10 pm

Adorable — great to have recipe in the ol’ back pocket for when you’re feeling less than…. comfortable. Looks delicious!


Lauren Z. December 8, 2010 at 1:58 pm

Hey Jenna! I went back to your previous posts linked here for how to frost cupcakes and then to the first one about Brown Sugar Italian Buttercream (Adam’s birthday cupcakes)…do you still think you might be able to do a video demo on how to make that buttercream? I tried it once and it didn’t quite turn out as good as yours looked (not as fluffy and lovely and pale), so if you’re up to it, a demo would rock! I do aim to try it again, in the very near future.


Lynna December 8, 2010 at 3:55 pm

The blue frosting and rainbow sprinkles make me happy 🙂


Erica D @ Gratitouille December 8, 2010 at 6:28 pm

But of course! Calcium and chocolate. Makes it better.

Your batch doublings/triplings remind me of my summer at a summer camp cook. Baking cookies? Fun. Baking 500? Kind of laborious. Even though there’s always the test cookie to sample!


Jessica December 8, 2010 at 6:59 pm

Delicious! can’t wait to make these.
Also, “Sometimes being a girl hurts; that’s why God made chocolate” = new favorite quote. <3


salah@myhealthiestlifestyle December 8, 2010 at 8:37 pm

holy moly….those look amazing!!!


Kristin December 9, 2010 at 5:39 am

I’m celiac and yes… I can’t wait to try these!!!!!!! (I like white rice flour for flouring pans.)


Jaime Ramsay December 9, 2010 at 3:21 pm

I like to look at a half-a-dozen eggs? You crack me up! Cakes look yum. 🙂


Liana @ femme fraiche December 9, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Damn girl sounds like you deserved those little pieces of heaven!! And just for the record, they might not be the prettiest, but they sound much tastier than any cupcake I’ve ever seen!


sarah December 9, 2010 at 8:07 pm

The whole time I read this I thought the “mini” said “mint”. You should make these with mint!


Rachael December 12, 2010 at 11:19 pm

Oh my. I may just make the frosting!


Rachael December 12, 2010 at 11:19 pm

Oh my. I may just make the frosting!


krista December 22, 2010 at 9:20 am

I just made these (got the frosting technique down!) and sent a picture to my boyfriend.. I don’t know that he believes I made them, lol. 😛


Suzanne January 2, 2011 at 12:06 pm

I made the cakes last night (did a chocolate buttercream) and they were incredible. My husband said it’s the best “cupcake” he’s ever had. I say they were the best dessert I’ve ever made.


Lauren January 5, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Jenna- What is the cooking time if I were to do this as a cake? Or do you think I could use those cupcake liners that don’t need a muffin tin?


Lauren January 5, 2011 at 4:29 pm

Sorry! Just saw you answered my question in an earlier reply you did.


sallyanne January 18, 2011 at 8:18 am

I’m going to make these this weekend for a tea, but i’m just curious how full to fill the muffin tins… 3/4 full like normal cupcake recipes?


jenna January 18, 2011 at 8:21 am

yep! I always fill my muffin tins a little on the high side. Almost full! The batter will be thick so just scoop it in (and make sure they are greased!).


Erin February 6, 2011 at 8:46 pm

I made your buttercream frosting for cupcakes for a baby shower today, and it turned out really well! Unfortunately, I wasn’t as successful with using pastry tips, so I just gave up and frosted normally. Thanks for the super easy recipe. 🙂


corinne June 20, 2011 at 7:35 am

Made these (in cake form) yesterday for fathers day! They were superb! Everyone was astonished that there was no flour in the cake and dad LOOOVED 🙂 thanks Jenna


Tiahne Taylor June 28, 2011 at 5:04 am

Hey I’m from Australia and I really want to try this recipe!!!
Only thing is…is the oven temp. on Celsius or Farenheit?
I need to know ASAP!
thanks, Tiahne 🙂


Hannah September 11, 2011 at 8:42 pm

I just stumbled upon this recipe and it looks so delicious! I am gluten-free as well as dairy free– sometimes nondairy subs like a vegan margarine work well, but usually with some other leveners present at all. Do you think with the simplicity of this recipe I could replace the butter with a vegan margarine?


Elise September 17, 2012 at 8:35 pm

I raise backyard chickens and we just got a new batch of chicks, so in about four months I’m going to have waaaaay more eggs than I will know what to do with… I am so totally making these.


Stephanie March 20, 2014 at 4:31 pm

This is an old enough post that I don’t know if you’ll see and/or respond to this inquiry, but I am curious about what would happen if you allowed the mixer to continue to whip the eggs and slowly drizzled in the melted chocolate mixture to incorporate the two, vs. folding it in?


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