A heavenly treat that is so easy to make. Torta Caprese (Italian Flourless Chocolate Cake) gives you a perfect balance of sweetness, bitterness, and crunchy bits of ground almonds in every bite. Everyone would be asking for seconds!
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Originally from Capri, an island in South Italy, this flourless chocolate cake is now served in all major cities in Italy — even in the northern regions.
But, no need to travel to an Italian city to try an authentic Torta Caprese; you can make this delicious cake in your own kitchen!
- Sugar – regular sugar.
- Eggs – at room temperature.
- Butter – I use unsalted butter for this flourless chocolate cake.
- Powdered sugar
- Amaretto – my choice of liquor to add because it’s almond-based.
- Chocolate chips – I use dark chocolate chips in this recipe.
- Almonds – no need to blanch these before grounding.
Start by preheating your oven to 180°C (350°F) and preparing an 8-inch cake pan by greasing with butter and lining with a baking sheet.
Grind almonds by using a food processor or a blender — aim for a coarse texture (photo 1).
Using a large mixing bowl, combine half of the sugar with the softened, unsalted butter (photo 2).
Combine with a hand mixer until it becomes creamy, then add the egg yolks one a time.
Add Amaretto and continue mixing.
Add melted chocolate and mix (photo 3).
Add ground almonds and continue mixing until evenly combined (photo 4).
Using a separate bowl, add a pinch of salt to the egg whites (photo 5).
Using clean beaters, mix egg whites on medium speed until you see soft peaks.
Slowly add the remaining sugar while mixing continuously. Switch the speed to high and continue beating the egg whites until you see stiff peaks (photo 6).
Add a third of the beaten egg whites into the almond mixture (photo 7).
Fold to combine and repeat until you have added all the egg whites. Use a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon for folding.
Pour the cake mixture into your greased pan and use an angled spatula to level the top (photo 8).
Place the cake pan on the lower part of the oven for fifty-five to sixty minutes, then set the cake aside to cool completely.
Once ready, sprinkle torta Caprese with powdered sugar and serve.
- This torta Caprese recipe works well with an 8-inch or 9-inch cake pan. Anything bigger than that will result in a cake that is too thin. If you have a springform cake pan, that is even better.
- You can also use a stand mixer instead of a hand mixer.
- Make sure the melted chocolate has cooled down before adding it to the creamed butter mixture.
- Keep scraping the sides of your mixing bowl with a rubber spatula (or wooden spoon) in between adding and mixing all the ingredients.
- Half-way through cooking time, if you think the top of your Caprese cake is getting too dark, cover it with an aluminum foil. Remove the foil during the last 10 minutes of the cooking time.
- SHOULD I REMOVE THE SKIN OF THE ALMONDS?
No, there is no need to blanch the almonds. The bitterness of the skin helps in balancing the sweetness of the cake.
- WHAT TYPE OF CHOCOLATE TO USE?
Always use dark chocolate for this recipe. If you only have milk chocolate available, you should use less sugar (only about ½ cup).
- CAN I USE OTHER LIQUOR?
I know some people use rum or limoncello; I prefer to use Amaretto to add to the almond flavor.
- WHAT TO SERVE WITH IT?
I always pair Caprese cake with an espresso – be it for a snack or dessert.
Some of my friends serve it with whipped cream on top.
But for me, when it gets warm here in Stockholm, I heat-up a slice of the cake for a few seconds and then top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Yum!
Torta Caprese Recipe (Italian Flourless Chocolate Cake)
- 1 & 2/3 cups almonds, (250 grams)
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips, heaping (226 grams)
- 1 cup butter, unsalted and softened (226 grams)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 5 large eggs, separated
- 2 tbsp Amaretto
- pinch salt
- 2 tbsp powdered sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Prepare an 8-inch cake pan by greasing it with butter and lining it with a baking sheet.
- Use a food processor (or a blender) to grind the almonds until you get a coarse texture.
- Using a large bowl, combine the softened, unsalted butter with half of the sugar. Use a hand mixer to beat the mixture until it gets creamy.
- Add the egg yolks one at a time.
- Add Amaretto and continue mixing.
- Add cooled, melted chocolate, and mix.
- Add ground almonds and mix. You can also use a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to mix the chocolate mixture at this point.
- Using a medium-sized bowl, combine the egg whites and a pinch of salt.
- Clean the mixer's beaters and, using a low speed, beat the egg whites into soft peaks.
- Switch the mixer into high-speed and slowly add the remaining sugar while beating the egg whites continuously – until you see stiff peaks.
- Add a third of the beaten egg whites into the chocolate mixture and fold to combine. You should use a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to do this.
- Continue adding and folding until you've used all the beaten egg whites. Do not overmix, just enough to evenly combine.
- Pour the cake mixture into your prepared pan. Use a spatula to level the top of the cake.
- Place your cake pan in the lower part of your oven for 55 to 60 minutes.
- Remove cake pan from the oven and set aside to cool down.
- Top your Caprese cake with powdered sugar and serve.
- Cook’s Tip #1: You can use a stand mixer if you don’t have a hand mixer. Just remember to clean the blades before beating the egg whites.
- Cook’s Tip #2: Do not worry about using the whole almonds, skin included. It helps in balancing the sweetness of this Italian chocolate cake.
- Cook’s Tip #3: Let the melted chocolate cool down before adding it to the creamed butter mixture.
- Cook’s Tip #4: Use a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to scrape the mixing bowl’s sides while adding and mixing all the ingredients.
- Cook’s Tip #5: This authentic torta Caprese recipe is excellent for any 8-inch or 9-inch cake pan, but a 10-inch pan will result in a thin cake.
- Cook’s Tip #6: During cooking, if you noticed that the top of the cake is getting too dark too quickly, cover it with aluminum foil. Remove the foil in the last 10 minutes of cooking.
- Recipe Variation #1: If you are using milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate, use only ½ cup of sugar for this recipe.
- Recipe Variation #2: You can substitute rum or any coffee-flavored liquor for the Amaretto for this flourless chocolate cake recipe.