This Super Easy 3 Ingredient Chocolate Mousse is, without a doubt, the easiest recipe I have ever posted on this blog.
This recipe actually wasn’t even supposed to be a recipe on its own. A while back I was working on another recipe when I realised this mousse was so ridiculously good on its own that I should share it like this too.
Of course, we all know that making a traditional French-style chocolate mousse usually involves eggs, beating egg yolks with sugar, adding melted chocolate, whipping the egg whites separately and then very gently, gently, gently folding them in so you don’t ruin all those perfect little air bubbles lest you end up with thick chocolate soup. Although chocolate soup may not be that bad. I’d be happy to list chocolate soup as my second favourite soup after chicken. But I digress.
This 3 ingredient chocolate mousse, on the other hand, is easy. If you can heat cream, and then whip it, you can probably make this with your eyes closed and a coffee in your other hand. Decaf, in my case, since caffeine makes my heart go bat-sh*t crazy. So, whatever beverage you’re into.
It’s almost not even a recipe, it’s a ratio and some instructions. Which means you can easily scale the ingredients up or down depending on how much you want to make. Want to make mousse for a crowd at a party? Just double or triple (or quadruple… you get the picture) the recipe, and you’ll have enough mousse for all your friends.
You can even leave out the vanilla and make it two ingredient mousse. I don’t know why you would, because chocolate + vanilla = happiness. But if you were stuck on a desert island with only chocolate, cream and a whisk… then, er, how on earth did that happen?
Anyway, where were we? Oh yes…
How to Make Easy 3 Ingredient Chocolate Mousse
The process for making this mousse is almost exactly the same as making a ganache, the only difference here is we’re reversing the ratio of ingredients: 2 parts cream to 1 part chocolate.
All you have to do is heat half of the cream until just below boiling point. Add it to the roughly chopped chocolate along with a splash of vanilla. As I said, the vanilla could be considered optional, although to me chocolate without vanilla is like fries without salt, so I’ll be leaving that in, thankyouverymuch. Whisk it gently until the chocolate is melted, then whisk in the remaining cream (I recently adjusted the recipe to do it this way because adding the cold cream helps cool the mixture down faster).
Then pop it in the fridge and put your feet up for a bit.
Once the mixture is thoroughly chilled, all you need to do is whip it until peaks form.
What sounds like “just chocolate whipped cream”, tastes like rich, fancy, smooth-but-fluffy chocolate mousse.
Just spoon or pipe it into
your mouth serving glasses or bowls.
You can serve it straight away, or chill it again to firm it up a little more.
The flavour of your chocolate mousse will be directly dependant on the quality of chocolate you use, so use something good.
For the best flavour, a good quality dark chocolate with between 50 – 60% cocoa solids is ideal. Anything less than 50% and you won’t get a rich chocolate flavour. Anything much more than 60% may be a bit too bitter, but if you like your chocolate one the bitter side, then you can use chocolate that is over 60%. Go crazy. I used my favourite Whittaker’s 50% dark chocolate.
If you find the mousse isn’t sweet enough with the chocolate you have used, you can simply add a bit of sugar to the mixture before you whip it.
I know, I know, that makes it four ingredients, but I feel like at this point we can probably stretch that far.
Is This Really Chocolate Mousse?
Because this recipe is always so popular, I share it regularly on my social media pages and every now and then someone comments to tell me that this isn’t actually chocolate mousse.
Sure, as I mentioned above, traditional French-style mousse is made with whipped egg whites and/or yolks, but that doesn’t mean this recipe isn’t mousse. In fact, according to most definitions (including good ol’ Wikipedia and my go-to baking and dessert bible “Professional Baking” by Wayne Gisslen), mousse can be made using either eggs; whipped cream, or both. So yep, I’m more than happy to call this recipe “mousse”.
I think a lot of people are surprised by just how good the texture of this mousse is despite only having 3 simple ingredients. They love that it’s so easy to make and there are no worries about eating uncooked egg. I also get a lot of comments from people who are allergic to or choose not to eat eggs saying they are so glad they can have mousse again, which makes my mousse-loving heart happy 💜
Simple Chocolate Mousse Troubleshooting Tips
Before we get to the recipe, I should mention a few troubleshooting tips, just in case you need them. While this is a really simple basic recipe, there is one thing that can really ruin your chocolate mousse dreams – the mixture splitting when you whip it.
*insert inconsolable crying noise here*
There are two main culprits here. The first is over-whipping. If you whip the mixture for too long, the same thing will happen that would happen if you whipped plain cream for ages – you’ll make butter. So make sure you just whip the mixture until peaks form.
The other thing that causes the dreaded splitting – not chilling the unwhipped mixture long enough.
It really does need to be super chilled before you get your mixer anywhere near it. Trust me.
Chilling the mix overnight is the safest way to make sure that it is cold enough, but if you’re having a sudden Mousse Emergency, you can speed up the process by popping the mixture in the freezer. You will need to make sure you stir it regularly though, don’t just chuck it in there and forget it. Regular stirring will make sure it doesn’t actually start to freeze around the edges.
I mean, worst comes to worst, you’ll get something kinda like chocolate ice cream, but that’s not what we’re going for here, so just remember to stir it.
But what can you do if the mixture does split when you’re mixing it?
It’s an easy (if a little inconvenient when you’re in a hurry) fix- put the mixture back in a saucepan over low heat, and whisk it until it comes back together. Generally, that will do the trick. Then you’ll just have to chill it again, and re-whip.
Don’t let this put you off though, I’ve made this recipe countless times and only had it split twice, when I’ve been particularly impatient or tried to make it at the last minute. But as long as you know what not to do, making this mousse should be as easy as 1…2…3…
- 500ml whipping cream
- 250g good quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Heat half of the cream (250mls) in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until bubbles begin to form around the edges.
- Place the chopped chocolate into a heatproof bowl. When the cream is heated, pour it over the chocolate and add the vanilla. Leave to melt for a minute, then stir with a whisk until all of the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth and well combined.
- Whisk in the remaining 250ml of cream. Adding this cold cream helps to cool the mixture down faster.
- Taste the mixture, and if the chocolate is a little too bitter you can add some caster or icing (confectioner’s) sugar until it’s as sweet as you want it.
Cover and refrigerate until very well chilled (at least several hours or overnight).
If you're in a hurry you can chill it faster by putting it in the freezer. Just stir it regularly and be careful not to let it actually freeze.
- Whip the chocolate cream with an electric hand mixer until stiff peaks form. It won’t take very long, be careful not to overwhip it.
- Pipe or spoon into glasses or small bowls. You can serve it immediately or store, covered, in the fridge for several days.
For best results, use good quality chocolate with 50% - 60% cocoa solids.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1/2 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 387Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 74mgSodium: 25mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 2gSugar: 17gProtein: 3g
The nutritional information above is computer-generated and is only an estimate. Please do your own research with the particular products you're using if you have specific health needs or are following a special diet.
Told you it was easy, didn’t I?
If you’re wondering whether you can make an easy 3 ingredient chocolate mousse with white chocolate, you sure can! My recipe for Three Ingredient White Chocolate Mousse is up now!