Mini Chocolate Lava Cake

If you know me by now, you know I have a weakness for warm, melted chocolate. Honestly, half of the cookies and cakes I feature on this blog are dabbed with a little melted dark chocolate right after I snap a pretty, chocolate-free photo.

Or if there’s chocolate chips already in the recipe, it’s promptly melted and devoured. So I’ve always been drawn to the idea of a molten chocolate center.

Okay, I have to be a little honest here. I think chocolate lava cakes are a little hokey, a cliche fixture on every franchise restaurant menu, right? But I guess this just means I’m not alone. People love melted chocolate!

A few problems in my quest to find the perfect mini chocolate lava cake recipe: 1. They’re very complicated, and 2. they’re rarely healthified enough for my taste.

That’s why I was so jazzed when I came across this healthy, simple recipe from my new favorite site: Clean Eating. One tiny pediment though. I read this recipe as one of those where the center stays ooey gooey, making for a molten center without any additions. When I baked as directed, this molten center was not achieved.

This may be due to the fact that I adapted this from a four-serving recipe to a single-serving one. It may also be that the baking time they recommended was too long.

I wasn’t going to take a risk, the second time around. No, my solution was to pop a dark chocolate Ghiradelli square in the center before baking, folding it in the center of my batter.

Cheating? A little bit. But hey, I’m a busy grad student and teacher who needed a quick molten center.

I like to think I was resourceful.



  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 2T + 1 t unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 heaping t stevia or Sucanat
  • 1.5 t unsweetened applesauce
  • 1.5 t coconut oil
  • 1/4 of an egg (with a bit more egg white if you can manage it)
  • 2 T spelt or whole-wheat flour
  • dash of pure vanilla extract
  • strawberry slices, for garnish (optional)


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a 4-oz custard cup or a muffin tin slot.
  2. In a small bowl, combine cocoa and sweetener; then whisk in applesauce and oil.
  3. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk egg before adding to cocoa mixture. Once you combine, whisk all until smooth.
  4. Stir in flour and vanilla until well combined, but do not over mix.
  5. Pour into prepared baking dish and bake for 9 minutes.
  6. Ideally, you remove these when the centers are still soft, but sides have firmed up. But hey, if you want an extra chocolate-y center, you can always pop in some chocolate.
  7. Gently pop out cake onto a serving plate. Garnish each cake with fruit slices, if desired, and serve warm.

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