Chocolate lava cakes are one of the world’s great indulgences, and I love to make them at home any time I feel like treating myself to a special chocolate treat. They’re not difficult to make, but they have to be eaten as soon as they come out of the oven, so they’re more time-sensitive than most desserts. The typical chocolate lava cake is made with dark chocolate for a rich chocolate truffle flavor. I enjoy white chocolate just as much as dark chocolate, however, so sometimes I change things up by making White Chocolate Lava Cakes instead of their darker counterparts.
The cakes have a delicious dairy and vanilla flavor, which makes them almost taste like melted vanilla ice cream – in a good way. The center is creamy and silky smooth, while the exterior of the cake has a nice fluffy texture to it. Although it contains white chocolate, this cake is not overly sweet and cutting down the small amount of additional sugar could have a negative impact on the overall texture of the cake. If you want to introduce some contrasting flavors, serve this cake with fresh berries or a drizzle of bittersweet chocolate sauce instead.
It is very important to use a high quality white chocolate in this recipe. You can’t use vanilla baking chips or other similar products that are made with vegetable oils. You must use a white chocolate made with pure cocoa butter to ensure that you get the best texture and flavor in the finished cake. Although the name is “white chocolate,” quality white chocolate has an off-white hue to it because that is the color of cocoa butter, so you’ll see that the finished cake is slightly blonde, rather than being pure quite.
It’s never a bad idea to make extra lava cakes because you can store them in the refrigerator and heat them up the next day, though they won’t be quite as molten as a freshly baked batch. That said, this recipe can easily be halved if you only want to make enough for two or three. If you are using larger ramekins, you may need to keep an eye on the baking time to ensure that your cakes don’t over bake.
White Chocolate Lava Cakes
6 oz white chocolate
1/3 cup butter
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1/4 cup all purpose flour
Preheat oven to 400F. Butter and flour six 6-oz ramekins.
In a medium sized, microwave-safe bowl, melt together white chocolate and butter on medium heat, stirring until smooth.
In a large bowl, beat together eggs and egg yolks on medium-high speed until foamy. Add in sugar and beat on high speed for 1 minute. Blend in salt, vanilla and the white chocolate mixture, mixing until very smooth. Blend in the flour, mixing until no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
Divide batter evenly into prepared ramekins.
Bake for 10 minutes, until the tops of the cakes are dark golden and feel slightly firm to the touch. Remove from oven and prepare to serve immediately.
To serve, run knife around the outer edge of the ramekin. Place a small dessert plate on top of the ramekin and invert; when inverted, the cake should release from the ramekin. Serve immediately.