The only way to understand the magic of this famous dark chocolate mousse recipe is to grab a whisk and take it for a whirl in your own kitchen. The technique was created by Hervé This, a French physical chemist known as the father of molecular gastronomy, and results in a perfectly creamy, naturally plant-based mousse that calls for only two ingredients (one ingredient, if you don’t count the water).
Because this recipe relies entirely on chocolate for its flavor, use the best-quality 75% or darker chocolate you can find—now is the time to break out the really good stuff. We’ve found that 82% strikes just the right balance of bitterness and sweetness that makes for an intensely satisfying chocolate dessert.
Now, back to molecular gastronomy. Since the “molecular” part is tied to the precise science of how chocolate melts under different conditions and holds onto the air bubbles that give this mousse its volume, there’s a reasonable likelihood you won’t get the hang of it on the first try. The mixture thickens quickly as it cools, so it’s very easy to over-whip. If that happens, don’t despair. Simply re-melt the mixture over a double boiler, transfer it back to the ice bath, and start again. That’s another thing to love about this recipe: It’s very forgiving. Once you’ve mastered the steps, you’ll make this sumptuous treat over and over.
If you’ve been looking for a chocolate canvas to customize, you’ve officially arrived. Create your own signature variation by adding a little orange zest, espresso powder, peppermint oil, or almond extract. The mousse is also delicious topped with flaky sea salt, and chopped nuts, fresh berries, sliced bananas, a drizzle of melted nut butter, or a spoonful of whipped coconut cream. Try different combinations until you find The One. You can also double or triple the batch for guests and prepare a healthy toppings bar so everyone can create their own perfect dessert.
2-Ingredient Dark Chocolate Mousse
Gluten-free, Vegetarian, Halal, Kosher, Metabolic Jumpstart Challenge
Active: 15 minutes
Total: 15 minutes (plus cooling time)
This recipe was created by Hervé This, a French physical chemist who is often considered the father of molecular gastronomy. The key is to use high-quality dark chocolate, which creates an intense, creamy mousse on its own with nothing more than a little hot water to help it along. The mixture thickens quickly as it cools, so you may over-whip it on your first try. If that happens, don’t despair. Simply remelt the mixture over a double boiler, transfer it back to the ice bath, and start again.
- Ice cubes, for the ice bath
- 4 ounces dark chocolate (at least 75%), finely chopped
- 3 ounces hot water
- Flaky sea salt or chopped pistachios, for serving
- Fill a large bowl with ice and set aside.
- Place the chocolate and hot water in a medium bowl and whisk until melted and smooth.
- Place the bowl over the ice bath and whisk until the mixture begins to thicken. This happens quickly—be careful not to let it get grainy. Remove the bowl from the ice bath and continue to whisk until the mixture becomes soft set.
- Divide the mousse between two small ramekins, let cool for a bit, and serve sprinkled with flaky salt or pistachios if desired.