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Chocolate Lava Cake on a white plate
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5 from 6 votes

Chocolate Lava Cakes for a Crowd

Chocolate Lava Cakes are what chocolate dreams are made of! A moist cake with a gooey, rich center that can only be described as heaven on earth. Baked in muffin tins, this is an easy dessert that will impress at your next dinner party. Plus, they can be made ahead, frozen, or reheated in a pinch! 
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time8 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12
Calories: 380kcal

Ingredients

  • 12 oz semi-sweet or dark chocolate roughly chopped
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks) cut into chunks
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup powdered sugar sifted
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs room temperature
  • 4 large egg yolks room temperature

Optional Toppings

  • Ice cream
  • Whipped cream
  • Fresh berries
  • Powdered sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F. Spray a muffin tin with non-stick spray and dust evenly with cocoa powder.
  • Place the butter and chopped chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute on high. Stir and continue microwaving in 30 second intervals, stirring after each until smooth.
  • Whisk the flour, powdered sugar, and salt together in a bowl. This will reduce lumps. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and egg yolks together.
  • Add the eggs and flour mixture to the bowl of melted chocolate and butter. Stir until combined using a rubber spatula. If there are small lumps, carefully use the whisk to remove them. Some lumps are ok. The batter will be thick.
  • Scoop the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tin. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the sides are firm and cooked through but the center is still soft and slightly wet.
  • Allow cakes to cool in muffin tin for 1 minute. Remove the cakes from the tin using a spoon or plastic utensil and place them inverted on plates.
  • Top with ice cream, whipped cream, powdered sugar, or berries if desired. Serve immediately.

Notes

Tips & Tricks
  • Don’t substitute chocolate chips or melting wafers. The reinforcing ingredients in those products prevent the cakes from developing the same lava texture. My go-to baking chocolate is the Trader Joe’s “Pound-Plus” chocolate bars or Ghirardelli baking chocolate.  
  • To avoid lumpy batter, make sure to sift the powdered sugar or whisk it vigorously to break up the lumps. 
  • The best way to evenly coat your muffin tin in cocoa powder is to use a small sifter and dust the pan over the sink. 
  • Don’t over bake! This is the KEY to lava cakes. Don’t be scared that the middle is still soft - it should be and I promise it isn’t raw if you have baked it for 8-10 minutes 😉
 
Make Ahead Instructions: 
a) Make cakes completely baking 1-2 minutes less, cool to room temperature, wrap individually, and refrigerate or freeze before reheating. 
b) Make batter completely and refrigerate in covered bowl. Bring to room temperature (may take several hours), scoop into prepared muffin tin, and bake as directed. 
c) Make batter completely and scoop into prepared muffin tin. Cover and refrigerate for up to one day. Bake as directed. 
d) Follow option c but freeze for up to one month instead of refrigerating. Results are best when thawed to room temperature before baking as directed. However, you can bake from frozen, adding an additional 1-2 minutes. 
 
Freezer Instructions: 
a) For baked lava cakes, wrap individually in plastic wrap and freeze in an air-tight bag for up to three months. If you are planning on freezing baked cakes, cook 1-2 minutes less. 
b) For raw lava cakes, freeze in prepared, covered muffin tin for up to one month. Bake from frozen for 1-2 additional minutes. 
 
Reheating Instructions: 
a) For cooked cakes from the fridge, cover with a damp paper towel and microwave until warm and soft in the center, about 30 seconds. 
b) For cooked cakes from the freezer, thaw overnight in the fridge. Once thawed, cover with a damp paper towel and microwave until warm and soft in the center, about 30 seconds. 
 
Doubling the Recipe for a Bigger Crowd: 
This recipe can be doubled to serve 24, but be careful not to over mix the batter. If you are afraid of over mixing, you can make the recipe twice in 2 different bowls.

Nutrition

Calories: 380kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 166mg | Sodium: 213mg | Potassium: 200mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 659IU | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 2mg