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Chocolate Ganache

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Chocolate ganache is a simple mixture of chocolate and cream that can be used as a filling, frosting, glaze, or chocolate fondue.

Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache (pronounced “guh-nosh”) is a decadent mixture of chocolate and heavy cream. It’s super-simple to make — just heat up the cream and whisk in the chopped chocolate until smooth. The result is a silky chocolate mixture that can be used as a glaze, a cookie or cake filling, a truffle center, or even as chocolate fondue. Depending on how you want to use chocolate ganache, the consistency can be adjusted by using more or less cream, making it an incredibly versatile recipe for professional bakers and chocolate lovers alike.

Uses for Chocolate Ganache

What You’ll Need To Make Chocolate Ganache

  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate: Semi-sweet provides a perfect balance between sweet and bitter, making it ideal for fondue. Choose high-quality chocolate for the best melting and flavor. Chop the chocolate into small, uniform pieces to ensure even melting.
  • Heavy Cream: Adds richness and creates a smooth, silky texture.
  • Optional Flavorings, such as liquor, vanilla, or espresso powder: Choose a liquor that complements chocolate, such as Grand Marnier for an orange flavor, Bailey’s for a creamy taste, or rum or bourbon. Espresso powder will intensifies the chocolate flavor without necessarily making it taste like coffee.

Find the printable recipe with exact measurements below.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Base Recipe

In a medium pot, heat the cream over medium-high heat, until it just begins to simmer.

bringing cream to a simmer

Turn off the heat immediately. Add in the optional liquor, vanilla, or espresso powder. In a heatproof bowl, pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate, making sure the chocolate is completely covered by the cream.

pouring hot cream over chocolate

Allow it to sit for 5 minutes.

chocolate and cream in bowl

Use a rubber spatula or a whisk to mix together the chocolate and cream until it is evenly combined and completely smooth.

If for any reason your ganache still has unmelted chocolate chunks, pop the bowl in the microwave and heat for 20 seconds, then stir again until melted. (Alternatively, in a small pot, bring 1 inch of water to a simmer. Place the bowl over the pot, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water, and stir for another minute or so until the remaining chocolate is melted.) Use basic ganache as a fondue or glaze.

chocolate ganache in bowl

Variations

Spreadable Ganache

Make the base ganache recipe and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the top of the bowl with the ganache, pressing it directly against the ganache, to prevent a film from forming on top. Allow the ganache to sit in the bowl at room temperature for 3 hours. Then, spread or pipe it onto your cake or cupcakes, or use it as a cookie filling.


Ganache For Truffles

Make base ganache recipe, but reduce the cream to 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons of cream (or 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon of cream and 1 tablespoon liquor). Allow the ganache to cool for about 10 minutes, then place a piece of plastic wrap over the top of the bowl with the ganache, pressing it directly against the ganache to prevent a film from forming on top, and refrigerate for 4 hours.

Once chilled, divide the ganache in half and put one half back in the refrigerator. Using a small spoon, scoop out generous tablespoon-sized amounts of the ganache and roll into truffles, then, roll them in your favorite coating, such as chopped nuts, confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, sprinkles, etc. Repeat this with the remaining ganache. Work quickly since the ganache softens fast!

Ganache Glaze/Fondue

Make basic ganache, but use 1 cup of heavy cream. Allow the ganache to cool for 5 minutes before using as a glaze/drizzle over cakes, cookies, or other desserts.

Whipped Ganache

Make the base ganache recipe, but increase the heavy cream to 1 cup. Allow the mixture to cool completely at room temperature for 30 minutes. Use an electric handheld mixer or stand mixer with the whisk attachment and beat the ganache on medium speed for 5 to 7 minutes, until it’s thickened like whipped cream. Use right away or store in the fridge for up to 3 days. If storing in the fridge, you may need to rewhip when ready to use for frosting layer cakes or piping onto cupcakes.

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Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache is a simple mixture of chocolate and cream that can be used as a filling, frosting, glaze, or chocolate fondue.

Servings: About 1 ¼ cups in liquid form (or 16 heaping 1-tablespoon truffles)
Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time: 5 Minutes
Total Time: 10 Minutes

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup heavy cream (you may need more or less depending on how you plan to use the ganache; see variations below)
  • 8 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped

Optional Flavorings

  • 2 teaspoons liquor, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, or 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder

Instructions

Base Recipe

  1. (Adjust quantity of cream depending on how you plan to use the ganache; see variations below)
  2. In a medium pot, heat the cream over medium-high heat, until it just begins to simmer. Turn off the heat immediately. Add in the optional liquor, vanilla or espresso powder. In a heatproof bowl, pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate, making sure the chocolate is completely covered by the cream. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes.
  3. Use a rubber spatula or a whisk to mix together the chocolate and cream until it is evenly combined and completely smooth. If for any reason your ganache still has unmelted chocolate chunks, pop the bowl in the microwave and heat for 20 seconds, then stir again until melted. (Alternatively, in a small pot, bring 1 inch of water to a simmer. Place the bowl over the pot, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water, and stir for another minute or so until the remaining chocolate is melted.)

Spreadable Ganache

  1. (For frosting layer cakes/cupcakes and using a sandwich cookie filling)
  2. Make the base ganache recipe and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the top of the bowl with the ganache, pressing it directly against the ganache, to prevent a film from forming on top. Allow the ganache to sit in the bowl at room temperature for 3 hours. Then, spread or pipe it onto your cake or cupcakes, or use it as a cookie filling.

Ganache For Truffles

  1. Make the base ganache recipe, but reduce the cream to ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons (or ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon of cream and 1 tablespoon liquor). Allow the ganache to cool for about 10 minutes, then place a piece of plastic wrap over the ganache, pressing it directly against the ganache to prevent a film from forming on top, and refrigerate for 4 hours. Once chilled, divide the ganache in half and put one half back in the refrigerator. Using a small spoon, scoop out generous tablespoon-sized amounts of the ganache and roll into truffles, then, roll them in your favorite coating, such as chopped nuts, confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, sprinkles, etc. Repeat this with the remaining ganache. Work quickly since the ganache softens fast!

Ganache Glaze/Fondue

  1. (For glazing cakes with a smooth finish, dripping down sides of a cake, dipping the top of cupcakes and cookies, and using as fondue)
  2. Make the base ganache recipe, but increase the heavy cream to 1 cup. Allow the ganache to cool for 5 minutes before using.

Whipped Ganache

  1. (For frosting layer cakes and piping onto cupcakes)
  2. Make the base ganache recipe, but increase the heavy cream to 1 cup. Allow the mixture to cool completely at room temperature for 30 minutes. Use an electric handheld mixer or stand mixer with the whisk attachment and beat the ganache on medium speed for 5 to 7 minutes, until it’s thickened like whipped cream. Use right away or store in the fridge for up to 3 days. If storing in the fridge, you may need to rewhip when ready to use.

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Comments

  • I tried the espresso version today with Lindt 92% and it split – the solids look grainy (but are not) and fat is running out of it. I halved the recipe, and broke up the chocolate in larger chunks than yours is pictured, but otherwise made it as written. Do you know what I might have done wrong, and is there any way to fix it??

    • — Jennifer on November 27, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Jennifer, I’m sorry you had a problem with this! Unfortunately, I don’t think there’s a way to fix it now, but in terms of troubleshooting, is there any chance that the bowl, pot or utensils you used had any water on them? Another possibility is that you might have overheated it. I hope you have better luck next time if you try it again!

      • — Jenn on November 29, 2023
      • Reply
  • This doesn’t seem like it would be sweet… is there a sweeter version? I remember having Angel food cake with a sweet chocolate ganache as a child, and am trying to replicate.
    Thanks!!
    (Ps I love all of your recipes!)

    • — Jess on June 4, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Jess, glad you like the recipes! And I think you’ll find this plenty sweet. 🙂

      • — Jenn on June 6, 2023
      • Reply
  • For dipping the strawberries into the ganache, do you just let it sit for 5 minutes and then dip in the strawberries. No refrigeration needed? You showed the dipped strawberries but never mentioned to dip right away or wait for 5 minutes, etc. Thank you

    • — Laura Courson on February 13, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Laura, Yes, you should let it sit for 5 minutes before dipping. (I just updated the recipe to reflect that.) Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on February 17, 2023
      • Reply

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