Individual chocolate crackle cakes

2020 update! I often describe this individual chocolate crackle cake as the love child between a brownie, a cupcake and a flourless chocolate cake. As the cakes bake, they develop a light and crunchy top with a rich, brownie-like center. In other words, they’re heaven. I can’t decide if I like the crackle crust or the rich middle the best. Hmm… I’ll leave that for you to decide. 😁 [Video below!]

Overhead shot of chocolate crackle cakes on a cooling rack.

Flourless chocolate cake

These cakes took a few tests to get right. I had originally envisioned individual chocolate cakes with fresh raspberries baked inside, but I didn’t like the texture or appearance of the finished batch. Instead, I used my easy chocolate almond cake recipe as a starting point, which is one of our favorite everyday cakes. I added butter for a more fudgy texture; I cut back on the eggs; and I bumped up the chocolate flavor with melted chocolate and cocoa powder. WIN!!! I love to serve these with berries on the side, but they’re optional. 😊

Close-up of a chocolate crackle cake with a bite taken out.

Chocolate almond cake

Instead of using all-purpose flour, these chocolate crackle cakes are made with almond flour. The almond flour gives the cakes an ultra moist and tender crumb, and it also makes them gluten-free!  

How do you make chocolate crackle cakes?

The batter comes easily using pantry staples. Softened butter is first beaten with sugar until fluffy. To that you add eggs, vanilla and melted bittersweet chocolate. The last step is to stir in the dry ingredients, including almond flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. The batter will be thick and scoop-able. 

Process shot divided into four quadrants showing the steps for making the chocolate crackle cake batter.

Individual gluten-free chocolate cakes

The batter is baked in muffin tins, making individual cakes. They only need about 20 minutes in the oven, meaning this is the perfect dessert to whip up any night of the week. 

Chocolate cake batter in muffin tins with an ice cream scoop (for scooping the batter) alongside.

How do you serve chocolate crackle cakes?

The cakes are perfectly delicious all on their own, but they can also be dressed up with whipped cream, ice cream and/or berries for a little glamour. They’re easy enough to whip up on a whim and are one of my favorite desserts for mid-week celebrations (think Valentine’s Day, birthdays and random dance parties, which yes, are a thing). But they’re also elegant enough to cap off any special occasion or holiday meal. 

Individual chocolate crackle cakes on plates, with a hand grabbing a plate.
Close-up of a flourless chocolate cake on a plate topped with whipped cream.

I hope you like these chocolate crackle cakes as much as we do! Tell me, are you a crackle-top person, or a fudgy-center person?

Close up of an individual chocolate cake in a muffin liner on a plate with a fork.

Tips for this recipe:

  • I use my stand mixer to make the batter, but you could use hand beaters instead. 
  • Whenever making cupcakes or muffins, it’s best to use a light colored pan, as dark pans can cause the bottoms to brown too quickly. If you do use a dark pan, check them a minute or two early. 
  • Be sure to line the muffin tins with liners so that they don’t stick (I use these parchment cups). 
  • An ice cream scoop with a lever works great for filling the muffin cups.
  • The cakes will slump slightly as they cool. Don’t worry, that’s what helps create the rich center!
  • This chocolate crackle cake batter can also make soft, slightly chewy cookies! Scoop the batter into 2-tablespoon-sized mounds onto parchment-lined baking sheets, leaving plenty of space for the cookies to spread. Bake for 9-10 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the cooking time. 

Other gluten-free chocolate desserts to try:

Watch the video!

Get the recipe!

Chocolate Crackle Cakes (Gluten-Free)

These individual chocolate cakes have a rich, dense center and a feather-light crackly crust. Envision a cross between a brownie, a cupcake and a flourless chocolate cake with a delicate, light crumb. The batter can also be made into soft, slightly chewy cookies. Scoop the batter into two-tablespoon mounds onto parchment-lined baking sheets, leaving plenty of room for the cookies to spread. Bake 9-10 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the cooking time.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate crackle cake recipe, easy flourless chocolate cake recipe, individual gluten free chocolate cakes
Servings: 8 cakes

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup (85g) lightly packed almond flour (also called almond meal)
  • 1 tablespoon (5g) cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • ¾ cup (130g) bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup (138g) organic cane sugar (or granulated white sugar)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For serving (optional)

  • Whipped cream
  • Berries

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line 8 muffin cups with paper liners.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the almond flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Use your fingers to break up any clumps of almond flour.
  • Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pot of simmering water or in a double boiler (alternatively, microwave the chocolate in 30 second intervals, stirring between each, until melted).
  • In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment (or using hand beaters), beat the butter and sugar on high speed until the butter is light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Scrape the sides. Add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Continue beating until the mixture is light in color and smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Mix in the vanilla.
  • With the machine running on medium, slowly add the chocolate. Beat until well combined. Scrape down the sides, and add the flour mixture. Beat until just combined.
  • Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups, filling them three-quarters of the way full (an ice cream scoop with a lever works great for this job!). Bake 18-20 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through, or until the cakes have risen and the tops are dry and crackled on top. Let the cakes cool in the pan set on a cooling rack for 10 minutes (the tops will slump as they cool). Transfer the cakes to a cooling rack and let them cool completely.
  • Serve the cakes on their own, or with a dollop of whipped cream and some fresh berries, if you'd like!

Notes

Do Ahead: The crinkle cakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Tips:
  • I use my stand mixer to make the batter, but you could use hand beaters instead. 
  • Whenever making cupcakes or muffins, it’s best to use a light colored pan, as dark pans can cause the bottoms to brown too quickly. If you do use a dark pan, check them a minute or two early. 
  • Be sure to line the muffin tins with liners so that they don’t stick (I use these parchment cups). 
  • An ice cream scoop with a lever works great for filling the muffin cups.
  • The cakes will slump slightly as they cool. Don’t worry, that’s what helps create the rich center!

Stay Connected!

I’d love to hear what you’re cooking, and I’m happy to answer any questions! Be sure to tag any photos so that I can share! @FromScratchFast

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