Welcome to the Monthly Baking Challenge! In case you missed it, here is everything you need to know about the monthly baking challenge. All you really have to do is have fun in the kitchen and bake. Sounds dreadful, doesn’t it?
February Monthly Baking Challenge
The recipe is LAVA CAKES!!
Now, I’ve shared lava cakes on my blog before. They have peanut butter inside, remember? For this challenge, we’re focusing on making straight up chocolate lava cakes. I’ve gotten many requests for plain chocolate in the past year. And I decided to make them the focus for our February Baking Challenge because (1) chocolate molten lava and (2) chocolate molten lava.
Luckily the way to make them doesn’t involve anything complicated and if you don’t have the little ramekins I use– and don’t feel like buying them– you can use a muffin pan. I’ll show you how to use both.
The secret for how to make chocolate lava cakes is… well, there is no secret at all. We’re not simply microwaving frozen chocolate cakes like Chili’s does (no hate, you know how I love Chili’s!!!), but we aren’t pulling our hair out in frustration either. That’s why I wanted lava cakes as our Baking Challenge recipe this month. To learn and see how EASY they really are!
Chocolate lava cakes are so simple and here’s proof:
- no mixer
- 6 ingredients
- bake time is 12-14 minutes
- no waiting for them to cool
You’ll need 3 bowls. One for melted chocolate and butter. One for 2 eggs + 2 additional egg yolks. One for flour, salt, and confectioners’ sugar. Then you’ll just mix all the ingredients together.
Add the chocolate batter to four 6-ounce ramekins OR a muffin pan. If using a muffin pan, your lava cakes will be slightly smaller and you’ll get 6 lava cakes instead of 4. Whichever you use, grease the cups and dust with cocoa powder to prevent the lava cake from sticking.
Or the muffin pan option:
They’re baked in a VERY hot oven. The high heat will cook the lava cakes around the edges and tops, leaving the insides a little gooey. And lava-y. ?
Carefully flip the freshly baked and warm lava cakes upside down onto plates and serve with ice cream, fresh berries, chocolate sauce, salted caramel, you name it! Since the flipping step can be a little tricky and because lava cakes are just so flipping good (!!!), here’s a video for you to see.
If 4 or 6 lava cakes are simply too many to have around, you can make these Chocolate Fudge Cakes for 2 as the monthly baking challenge recipe instead. Or if you’re not into today’s recipe at all, here is the alternate February Baking Challenge:
After you’ve made the recipe, share your photos throughout this month using #sallysbakingchallenge on Instagram or email me, tweet me, or upload a photo of your recipe to my Facebook page. Let’s get baking!!
- 6 ounces (170g) high quality semi-sweet chocolate1
- 1/2 cup (115g; 1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (60g) confectioners’ sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks2
- optional for topping: ice cream, raspberries, and/or chocolate syrup
- Spray each ramekin with nonstick cooking spray and dust with cocoa powder. This ensures the cakes will seamlessly come out of the ramekins when inverted onto a plate in step 7. *Or spray half of a 12-count muffin pan and dust with cocoa powder. If baking in a muffin pan, the recipe will yield 6 cakes.
- Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
- Coarsely chop the chocolate. Place butter into a medium heat-proof bowl, then add chopped chocolate on top. Microwave on high in 10 second increments, stirring after each until completely smooth. Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt together in a small bowl. Whisk the eggs and egg yolks together until combined in another small bowl. Pour the flour mixture and eggs into the bowl of chocolate. Slowly stir everything together using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. If there are any lumps, gently use your whisk to rid them. The batter will be slightly thick.
- Spoon chocolate batter evenly into each prepared ramekin or muffin cup.
- Place ramekins onto a baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes until the sides appear solid and firm– the tops will still look soft. *If baking in a muffin pan, the cakes only take about 10 minutes.
- Allow to cool for 1 minute, then cover each with an inverted plate and turn over. Use an oven mitt because those ramekins are hot! The cakes should release easily from the ramekin. *If you used a muffin pan, use a spoon to release the cakes from the pan and place each upside down on plates.
- Add toppings. Serve immediately.
Make ahead tip and freezing: You can prepare the batter through step 4. Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Allow to come to room temperature before continuing with step 5. You can freeze the baked lava cakes for up to 3 months. Allow them to cool completely before freezing. Re-heat in the microwave.
- Make sure to use high quality chocolate, not chocolate chips. You won’t have much “lava” with chocolate chips! I suggest high quality chocolate baking bars sold in the baking aisle such as Baker’s, Ghirardelli, Nestle, or Lindt. They’re all typically sold in 4 ounce bars, so you will need 1 and 1/2 bars total.
- A note on the eggs– for this recipe, you need 2 whole eggs plus an addition 2 egg yolks. (So you can use 2 extra whites in your healthy omelet tomorrow morning or in any of these recipes!) After 10-14 minutes in an oven this hot, the eggs should be cooked to 160°F which is considered safe to eat. If you’re concerned, you can take the temperature to be sure!
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Please let me know if you have questions about the recipe or baking challenge!
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