This chocolate torte is a flourless chocolate cake making it naturally gluten-free. It is filled with rich real dark chocolate and whipped egg-whites making it both light and dense at the same time. This version is also dairy-free making it perfect for serving guests with varied food intolerances.
Do you remember that episode of Friends where Joey doesn’t share food? There is a moment where Joey orders cheesecake and is disgusted by the raspberry coulis on top, so he tries to eat his date’s dessert – a slice of decadent chocolate torte.
Despite her telling him that he can’t share it, he eats it all, and she walks out while he proclaims ‘I’m not even sorry!’
The richness and apparent deliciousness of this chocolate torte is something that has stayed with me, and I’ve always wanted to make one. Luckily this recipe makes a whole cake, not just a slice so there is plenty to share.
But I mean if you don’t want to, I won’t judge.
What is a chocolate torte?
When my husband came home from a weekend away and found this cake on the kitchen bench, he proceeded to cut himself a slice to enjoy. I wasn’t home at the time, but when I walked through the door the first thing he asked me was what kind of cake that was, because while it was delicious it was not what he had expected from a chocolate cake as the texture of a torte is what separates it from a traditional cake.
The difference between a chocolate cake and a chocolate torte lies in the ingredients. While both have sugar, butter and eggs, a chocolate torte does not contain any flour. This, combined with more eggs than a traditional cake, gives the torte a heavier texture and taste.
Because we are using only eggs to play the roles that traditional cakes would use flour and some form of leavening agent (such as baking powder), the method of making this torte becomes so much more important.
How to make a chocolate torte
There are just 5 ingredients in this chocolate torte and each one plays a key role;
- Eggs – the yolks provide the structure of the cake, while the whites provide the lift. Together they give the torte it’s unique texture.
- Butter – for richness, texture and flavour.
- Dark Chocolate – The star of the show.
- Vanilla – I find vanilla brings out the flavour of the dark chocolate, much like in my vegan chocolate tart.
- Sugar – providing structure and stability to the egg whites and giving the torte some sweetness to balance out the dark chocolate.
The order in which you combine the ingredients is also important.
The first thing you want to do is separate the eggs. This is much easier to do when the eggs are cold, so make sure to do this step first.
I find this process is so much easier with a stand mixer, but if you only have a hand held one, that will work fine. You want to make sure you have 2 bowls available for your mixer as well.
Start by using the whisk attachment to beat the egg whites to soft peaks, before adding in the sugar. Keep whisking until the egg whites become glossy. Set aside and add a new bowl to your stand mixer with the paddle attachment fitted.
Melt your dark chocolate and butter together in 30 second bursts in the microwave, making sure to stir thoroughly before adding more time. The quality of your dark chocolate here is important because it is the basis of the flavour so make sure you use a brand that you love to eat.
In the new bowl, beat together the egg yolks and vanilla together until the yolks start to become pale. Add in the melted chocolate mixture and beat together. The batter will get really thick and sticky. From here, add in about a third of the egg whites and continue to mix to loosen the mixture. Add in the rest of the egg whites and fold through with a spatula being careful not to lose all of the air.
Pour the batter into a lined springform pan and bake until set in the middle. The torte will puff up quite tall to the top of the pan while baking. Once done, remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. The torte will sink as it cools to give it the unique look and texture.
Give the top a light dusting of cocoa powder or icing sugar if you prefer.
This chocolate torte is both dense and light all at once and is rich with dark chocolate flavour without being overly sweet. It is the perfect decadent dessert without that ‘death by chocolate’ coma afterwards.
I love this chocolate torte for serving at the end of a dinner party as being gluten and dairy free it is perfect for all different dietary needs and is light enough that it won’t have your guests rolling home afterwards from feeling like they overdid it at dessert, but still feeling satisfied with that rich chocolatey treat.
If you do make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and rating below! And tag any of your creations on Instagram with #eightforestlane as I would love to see.
Chocolate Torte (Gluten-Free)
- ½ cup (125 grams) dairy-free butter
- 225 grams dark chocolate
- 6 eggs seperated
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup white sugar
- cocoa powder for serving (optional)
- cherries for serving (optional)
- Preheat oven to 180°C and line the base and the sides of a round springform pan with oil spray and baking paper.
- In a medium sized bowl, add the butter and chocolate and melt in the microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring well in between until it is melted and silky smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Using the whisk attachment on a stand mixer, add the egg whites to a clean, dry bowl and whisk until soft peaks start to form. Add in sugar and continue to whisk until glossy. Set aside.
- In a second bowl, using the paddle attachment of a stand mixer, beat the egg yolks and vanilla until they start to look a bit pale, then add in melted chocolate mixture and continue to beat until thick. Add in about a third of the egg whites and continue to beat to loosen the chocolate batter.
- Add the remaining egg whites and fold through by hand with a spatula to ensure the mixture remains light. Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, until the cake is set in the middle.
- While cooking, the cake will puff up quite high, and when removed from the oven and allowed to cool slightly, it will sink to about half the size. That is normal. Let the cake cool completely in the pan before releasing the sides. Dust the top of the cake with cocoa powder if desired and serve with fresh fruit, such as cherries, blueberries or strawberries.