Spiced Chocolate Whiskey Lava Cake

Last night I may have made the best dessert I have ever created…of course it could have also been such a great dessert because I was able to share it with my loved ones.  Or perhaps, it was so great because it was a team effort with two of my favorites women to cook with, my mother and aunt.  Whatever the reason was, the results were magical.  Hands down, the best recipe for lava cake. The depth of flavors from the dark chocolate, smokey sweet whiskey, warm vanilla and black pepper, and the candy like hint of orange zest had rave reviews.   Don’t let the pepper or cayenne scare you away….they are not there for heat, they just add to the warm feeling you get when you eat it.  The word must have traveled fast about how delicious it was because I think that Santa took the extra one out of the fridge last night!  He must have really liked it too because I was a very happy girl when I looked in my stocking this morning!

Spiced Chocolate Whiskey Lava Cake

  • 8 oz chocolate, baking bar, I used Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet
  • 1 cup butter, unsalted
  • 3/4 tsp iodized salt
  • 3 tbsp whiskey
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp  fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 tbsp mandarin orange zest (regular orange zest works too)
  • 4 eggs plus 2 yolks
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  In a large microwave safe bowl, microwave butter and chocolate for 1 minute.  Stir with whisk.  If all chocolate does not melt, re-heat in the microwave in 30 second intervals.  (mine took 2 minutes total time to melt)  Also, be careful if you are using a glass bowl, because it will continue to heat when you remove it from the microwave, so give the chocolate a little extra time to melt before popping it back in.  (you don’t want to burn your chocolate)

Next, whisk in the salt, whiskey, vanilla, powdered sugar, ginger, cayenne, pepper, and orange zest.  Set aside.  In a separate small bowl, measure flour.  Set aside.  In another small bowl, add eggs and yolks.  set aside.  (The recipe can now be stopped and set aside until you are ready to prepare it.  If you are having a dinner party, this can be easily saved for an hour or so)

When ready to prepare the cakes, whisk in eggs and yolks one at a time.  Whisk in flour just until combined.  Divide batter into greased ramekins (or I used mini pie pans).  Place on baking sheet.  Bake for 13 minutes or until the sides are set.  The middle will have a slight sag to it, but don’t worry….that is the delicious lava filling!  Remove them from the oven and let the cakes stand for one minute.  Loosen edges with a knife and invert onto dessert plates.  Sift powdered sugar over the top and serve immediately.  Enjoy!

Serves 8

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