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How to Make Dark Chocolate Ganache

Updated on October 26, 2017
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Jan has been cooking and writing about food for over twenty years, and has cooked on multiple television stations, including Food Network.

How to Make Dark Chocolate Ganache

This Chocolate Ganache Will Wow Anyone

Although the name seems fancy, chocolate ganache is actually one of the simpler dessert tricks you can use. It's simply a chocolate sauce. It involves just two ingredients: chocolate and cream. And the only trick to it is the technique. Even that is about as simple as it gets, so you'll love the results, especially with how little effort there is.

Use a good quality dark chocolate. Find good chips if you want - that's what I have available in my own store. Or if you want, you can find really high-quality baking bars - they both work equally well.

If using baking bars, make sure you carefully chop the dark chocolate. The smaller the of the chopped chocolate, the more quickly the final ganache will come together. If the pieces are too big, you may end up with lumps in the ganache.

The other trick is to scald the cream. Scalding just means that you bring the cream just barely up to the boiling point. Don't let it actually boil, but you do want it completely hot - let it heat until bubbles form at the edges.

Also, the recipe I list makes a rather thick ganache. I like it that way, and it sets beautifully. However, if you want it looser, go ahead and use another tablespoon of cream. It's yours - make it how you want it! Ganache is so easy and delicious you'll find yourself looking for excuses to make it!

Dark Chocolate Ganache Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup heavy cream - also called heavy whipping cream*
  • 8 ounces dark chocolate*

*if you'd like a thinner ganache, use a touch more cream - four tablespoons will do it

*you can use dark chocolate chips, or you could buy good, high-quality baking dark chocolate and chop it finely - just pick your favorite! Because the chocolate is literally the only flavor, it's important to pick a good quality chocolate. Frugality here will get a poorer outcome.

Dark Chocolate Ganache Directions

  1. Place the chocolate chips into a small, glass bowl. Alternately, if using baking bars, chop the chocolate into fine pieces. The smaller the pieces, the easier and quicker it will be to finish the ganache smoothly.
  2. In a heavy-bottomed, small saucepan, scald the cream. This simply means to bring the cream up to the boiling point, but without letting it come to a full boil.
  3. Pour scalded cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for just a minute, then stir. It won't seem to come together at first, but just keep stirring. The chocolate will melt, and the cream will incorporate and you'll end up with a very smooth, chocolate sauce.
  4. Pour the chocolate over whatever it is you want to cover immediately. The chocolate will set relatively quickly as it cools. That's it!

High-Quality Dark Chocolate Chips

Place dark chocolate into a glass bowl - use good quality dark chocolate chips or high quality baking bars and chop them finely before adding it to the bowl.
Place dark chocolate into a glass bowl - use good quality dark chocolate chips or high quality baking bars and chop them finely before adding it to the bowl.

Scald the Cream

Scalding the cream - bringing it just to a boil but not letting it fully boil - is a key step. Use a heavy bottomed saucepan and watch it to just start forming bubbles. Remove from heat immediately.
Scalding the cream - bringing it just to a boil but not letting it fully boil - is a key step. Use a heavy bottomed saucepan and watch it to just start forming bubbles. Remove from heat immediately.

Pour Hot Cream over Dark Chocolate

Pour the scalded cream over the dark chocolate in the bowl. Let it sit for a few seconds before you begin to stir.
Pour the scalded cream over the dark chocolate in the bowl. Let it sit for a few seconds before you begin to stir.

Stir the Ganache - and Keep Stirring!

At first it will seem as the ganache isn't coming together - don't worry and just keep stirring. As the chocolate melts, the cream will incorporate and it will get super smooth and silky.
At first it will seem as the ganache isn't coming together - don't worry and just keep stirring. As the chocolate melts, the cream will incorporate and it will get super smooth and silky.

Dark Chocolate Ganache - Finished!

After just a minute or so the cream and chocolate incorporate, and you have dark chocolate ganache. It's ready to use immediately - pour it over your dessert, or use it to dip treats into.
After just a minute or so the cream and chocolate incorporate, and you have dark chocolate ganache. It's ready to use immediately - pour it over your dessert, or use it to dip treats into.

Pour the Ganache Over Cake or Cupcakes

The ganache will pour easily - but use it immediately. Here I poured it over a black velvet cake frosted with simple buttercream.
The ganache will pour easily - but use it immediately. Here I poured it over a black velvet cake frosted with simple buttercream.

Check out the Quick Tutorial!

Try Ganache on Black Velvet Cake!

© 2017 Jan Charles

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