Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

These chocolate soufflé cupcakes is a great little hit of chocolate and coffee for when you need a fix. They are my two favorite vices. Well, the two that come to mind right now. My day ALWAYS starts with a cup of coffee in the morning. About midday I open up my chocolate drawer and have a little square of some treasure I’ve been hiding. Yes, I have a drawer just for chocolate. Actually it shares space with tins of tea, but they are just a foil to throw my boys off the scent. If you lift up the tins there are about a dozen different chocolate bars to choose from. If the boys start reading my website I’ll have to find a new hiding spot.

This dessert is a perfect blend of flavors. It is also just the right size. Enough to satisfy and yet not so much as to make me feel guilty about indulging, any time of day.

The cake is a flourless chocolate soufflé that is baked just until the outside is nice and crunchy, but the inside is smooth and rich in texture and flavor. If you serve them warm they melt in your mouth. If you refrigerate them they become denser like a fudge. There are differing opinions in my house as to which is the proper way to serve them. You’ll decide which way to go. In either case they are made even better topped with whipped cream that has been steeped in coffee beans.

The basic recipe comes from page 393 of Carole Bloom’s The Essential Baker, with just a touch of extra coffee from me.

Makes about 48 mini cupcakes or one 9 1/2″ cake

6 ounces unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream

1 cup coffee beans (optional – this is an added bonus for those of us who really like our coffee)

1 pound bittersweet chocolate finely chopped

2 teaspoons pure vanilla

1/4 teaspoon salt

6 extra-large egg whites, at room temperature

1/3 cup granulated sugar

6 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 ounce bittersweet chocolate for garnish

chocolate covered coffee beans for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Prepare a 9 1/2-inch spring form pan or mini muffin tins with butter, set aside.

In a small sauce pan heat the heavy whipping cream and coffee beans over low heat until simmering. Remove from heat and let sit for at least 15 minutes. The longer you allow them to steep the stronger the flavor.

Coffee Beans In Cream | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Strain the beans from the heavy cream through a fine mesh sieve.

Straining Coffee Beans and Cream | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Take out 1/2 cup of the cream for the cake recipe and refrigerate the rest for the garnish.

Espresso Whip Cream Recipe | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Heat the 1/2 cup of cream and the butter together in a medium sized sauce pan over low heat, just to a simmer.

Butter and Espresso Whip Cream | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Once the butter is melted turn off the heat and add the chopped chocolate. Stir gently then cover the pan and allow to sit for five minutes.

Shaved Chocolate and Whipped Cream | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

gently whisk the cream and chocolate together.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

It should be nice and smooth with no lumps of unmelted chocolate. Set aside and allow to cool slightly.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Meanwhile whip the egg yolks and 1/3 cup of sugar together for about 5 minutes.

Whipping Egg Yolks and Sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

They should be pale in color, very think and able to hold a ribbon on the surface when you hold up the beater and allow the mixture to fall into itself.

Whipped Egg Yolks | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Gently fold the whipped egg yolks into the chocolate mixture.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Using a rubber spatula to combine them gently. Set aside.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Whip the egg whites and 1/3 cup of sugar together,

Egg Whites and Sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

until they reach stiff, but not dry peaks.

flourless choc cake

In three additions fold the whites into the chocolate mixture.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Working gently so as not to knock all the air out of the whites. This is what will cause your cake to soufflé.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

The mixture should be shiny, smooth and light in texture.

Chocolate Cake Batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Pour into cake pan or scoop into muffin tins.

Spooning Cupcake Batter into Pan | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

You can also use cupcake papers.

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Bake for about 20 minutes in mini-muffins (35- 40 minutes for 9 1/2-inch cake pan) or until the cakes are set and slightly cracked on the tops.

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Let the cakes cool on a rack for 5 minutes and then turn them out of the muffin tins. If baked in the spring form pan then release the sides.

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Whip the coffee scented cream with 2 tablespoons powdered sugar until stiff peaks. Fit a pastry bag with a star tip and pipe the cupcakes with a generous amount of the cream.

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Using a micro zester shave the 1 ounce of chocolate over the cream and top with the chocolate covered coffee bean.

Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

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42 thoughts to “Chocolate Soufflé Cupcakes”

  1. How cute! I think it’s about time for me try my hand out with these chocolate souffles that tempt me so much. And the idea of a chocolate souffle cupcake is taking it to an even better level 🙂

  2. Hi Patricia,

    I think infusing the cream with flavor is a nice way to layer more flavor into the dessert. Coffee beans, lavender, lemon thyme or anything else that blends well with your dish.


  3. Hey G,

    Now you know my secret and I’ll have to find a new hiding spot! Although I suspect you’ve know for a while! My lavender bar is missing, was that you?

    xo Z

  4. Hi Natalie,

    You and me both! Can’t wait for that first cup tomorrow morning. 😉


    I start out eating them warm and then the next day I eat them cold!


  5. Hi, Zoe,

    I am wondering—these look fabulous, but I am not a coffee girl. Can you tell me if I could just omit the coffee pieces of the recipe, or should it be adjusted in some way? Thanks…

  6. Hi Sarah,

    By all means just take them out! You can add a vanilla bean instead if you want to add a bit of something extra, or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract if you have that on hand.

    Enjoy, Zoë

  7. Zoe,
    These look wonderful!! I can’t wait to try them! Coffee and chocolate is such a superb combination!

    I love your blog, and your book! I just finished mixing up 3 doughs – Boule, Olive Oil and Deli Rye. I’ve had the book for months, but my family has been so thrilled with the Boule bread, this is the first time I’ve tried any others! I’m certain they will be great!

    Thank you!

  8. Hi Rebecca,

    Thanks so much for the kind words! I’m so glad you are enjoying the book and all the bread you’ve been baking.

    You should try making a pizza with the olive oil dough. It is one of my favorites!


  9. Zoe,
    My first plan with the olive oil dough is the Sun-Dried Tomato and Parmesan bread – that sounds so yummy! I will definitely try making a pizza as well!

    I have actually been making a couple batches of Boule each week since I got the book. My family of 6 eats a loaf just about every night with supper! We really love it, and I’m sure we will love everything else in the book!


  10. Hi Rebecca,

    If your refrigerator will handle it you can mix the dough in larger batches. But, it is more fun to just have lots of batches of different doughs on hand. That is how I do it. I have a dorm fridge dedicated to my buckets.

    Have fun! Zoë

  11. This looks gorgeous! I think I’m gonna try this out. How do you think the cake is like without the whipped cream garnish? Do you think I omit that?

  12. Hi mj,

    The cake is wonderful with or without the whipped cream. Trust me I ate my fair share before I got around to garnishing all of them! A drizzle of ganache or melted chocolate would be nice too.

    Enjoy, Zoë

  13. What wonderful little cupcakes. With your fabulous photos, I feel like I’m having my own private cooking class. And from the way you talk, I think I’ve found someone that enjoys coffee almost as much as I do….

  14. Hi Eileen,

    I sit here sipping my first cup of the day. Don’t start a day without it. Thanks for the note, it is always nice to know there are others that appreciate the same things that I do! 😉


  15. Hi Zoe,
    I just made this souffle/cake in a 9 1/2 inch springform pan….it’s cooling as I write. I’m more of a fudgy chocolate person, so I’m gonna eat it cold tomorrow. I’ll let you know how it turned out tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe!

  16. Hi Zoe,
    I had the cake cold, and it’s delicious. I did one silly thing though…I didn’t wait long enough yesterday to pipe the whipped cream…and understandably, it ran a little when it hit the hot surface…but apart from that, it tasted good 🙂
    So thanks again for the recipe.

  17. I just found my Valentine dessert…yum!

    I love Healthy Bread in 5 Min as does my family; after trying lots of recipes elsewhere it’s the first time that my husband has liked my homemade bread. Thank you for simple, tasty recipes!!

  18. Hi!
    I’m trying to make this and i have a question,
    so if I mixed the refrigerated cream that was soaked with coffee beans for the coffee flavor with the sugar, will the RESULT be the white cream you decorated the top of the cupcake with?
    please answer me back
    Thanks soo much!

    1. Hi Alice,

      Depending on how long you steeped the coffee in the cream, it will either come out white or slightly off-white. It is so very tasty!

      Enjoy, Zoë

  19. Hi. I wanton make the cupcakes but with a non dairy substitute for the cream and butter. Almond milk might work…do you think? Omit the butter? Use sthg else? Do I need corn starch w the almond milk?

    1. Hi Jill,

      I am not sure about the almond milk, although I suspect there is a version that has a high enough fat content to mimic the cream? I don’t know if it will require cornstarch to get the right texture, you may have to play with it a bit to find out. You can use a butter substitute in place of the butter, such as health balance or a similar product.

      Thanks and please keep me posted on how it turns out! Zoë

  20. I really want to make these, but unfortunately coffee has started triggering migraines for me. Is there a good substitute I should try or should I just omit the coffee?

    1. Hi Sandy,

      The coffee is optional in the recipe. To jazz it up a bit you can add a vanilla bean or a cinnamon stick or both to the cream, instead of the coffee.

      Enjoy, Zoë

  21. Hi Zoe,

    I baked my souffle and they come out of the oven just like yours. But they sink right away? Can you tell me what could be wrong?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Erika,

      Did they sink completely or just slightly? As with any souffle they may sink slightly, but if they collapse all the way you may need to bake them longer.

      Thanks, Zoë

  22. Hi Zoe,
    It wasn’t stated specifically in the step by step instructions, so when are the pure vanilla and salt supposed to be added to the cake batter? Thank you! 🙂 they look fantastic!

  23. Hello, Zoe! So excited about this! First things first, just wanted to ask what the baking temperature is. I apologise in advance if it’s written and I just missed it. Also, is the vanilla to be mixed with the yolks and sugar? Looking forward to hearing from you. Thanks so much. x

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