Here’s a delightful treat that is so easy to make! Torta Caprese (Flourless Italian 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!
Are you in the mood to serve a full meal from the Italian region of Campania?
Then you can start with polpette di melanzane (Neapolitan eggplant balls) as an appetizer, pasta alla Sorrentina as the main dish, and a slice (or two) of this traditional torta Caprese to wrap it up. 🙂
So, what is torta Caprese?
It’s also known as flourless Italian chocolate cake.
It originated from an island in southern Italy called ‘Capri’ but is now served in all major cities in Italy — even in the northern parts.
There is no need to travel to an Italian city to try an authentic Torta Caprese, though; you can easily make this delicious cake in your kitchen!
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- Chocolate chips – I always use dark chocolate chips for this torta Caprese recipe.
- Eggs – medium-sized (63 to 73 grams per piece) and at room temperature.
- Sugar – regular granulated white sugar will work nicely.
- Salt – just use your favorite brand.
- Butter – I typically use unsalted butter for making flourless Italian chocolate cake.
- Powdered sugar – you only need this for serving.
- Amaretto – my choice of liquor to add because it’s almond-based.
- Almonds – there is no need to blanch the almonds before grounding.
Start making torta Caprese by preheating your oven to 180°C (350°F).
Grease an 8-inch cake pan with butter or line it with parchment paper.
Use a food processor or a blender to grind the almonds — aim for a coarse texture.
Combine half of the sugar with the softened, unsalted butter using a large bowl.
Beat until it gets creamy, then add the egg yolks one at a time.
Add Amaretto and continue mixing.
Add the melted chocolate.
Mix to combine everything.
Add the ground almonds.
Mix to combine the almonds with the rest of the flourless Italian chocolate ingredients.
Add a pinch of salt to the egg whites in a separate bowl.
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.
Add a third of the beaten egg whites into the torta Caprese batter.
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 Caprese cake batter into your prepared pan and use an angled spatula to level the top.
Place the pan on the lower part of the oven for fifty-five to sixty minutes or when a toothpick comes out clean when inserted.
Set aside to cool.
Once ready, sprinkle your 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 before adding it to the creamed butter mixture.
- Keep scraping the sides of your mixing bowl with a rubber spatula (or wooden spoon) between adding and mixing all the ingredients.
- Halfway through cooking time, if you think the top of your Caprese cake is getting too dark, cover it with aluminum foil.
Remove the foil during the last ten minutes of the cooking time.
- Milk chocolate. I use dark chocolate for this torta Caprese recipe, but if you only have milk chocolate available, you can use that as well — make sure you use less sugar (only about ½ cup).
- Other liquor. Rum or limoncello are common alternatives.
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 flourless chocolate cake.
What to serve with torta Caprese?
I always enjoy my flourless Italian chocolate 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 a slice of the cake for a few seconds and then top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Yum!
Looks absolutely tempting, right? So, give this torta Caprese recipe a try this week!
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Torta Caprese Recipe (Flourless Italian 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 parchment paper.
- 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. (Note: It would help if you used 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 combine.
- Pour your torta caprese batter into the 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 the pan from the oven and set aside to cool down.
- Dust 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 flourless Italian chocolate cake.
- Cook’s Tip #3: Use a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to scrape the mixing bowl’s sides while adding and mixing all the ingredients.
- Cook’s Tip #4: 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.
This sounds so good. Can’t wait to try it!
Thank you Amanda. Enjoy! 🙂
Is there a reason not to use already made almond flour?
Sorry, but I’m not sure about using almond flour for this recipe, because I have not tried it. But almond meal, yes, that will definitely work; I’ve done that numerous times myself.
I wrote the recipe following the traditional way the locals prepare it in Capri (and how my mother-in-law prepares it in Emilia-Romagna region) 🙂
Worked a treat.
Thank you Tals, I’m glad you liked it. 🙂