Molten Chocolate Cakes Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Molten Chocolate Cakes

4 reviews / 4.5 average

It all started with a lazy Sunday afternoon. And when that inner 7th grader came out and started taking way too many self-takes in PhotoBooth, I knew that I needed to get in the kitchen and make this day worthwhile. I headed to the kitchen armed with a recipe for a light version of Chocolate Molten Cake and my lovely ramekins.

Molten Chocolate cake in a white dish with a spoon.

The recipe served eight. But I think you remember what happened the last time we had eight servings around this house. I was not about to let that happen again, so I halved the recipe to serve 4. Which I divided between 3 ramekins. Which was all eaten by 2 people.

They came out of the oven, and BAM. I fell in love with Molten at first bite. What exactly is Molten?

I give you... Molten.

Molten Chocolate cake in a white dish with a spoon.

Warm, fudgy Molten.

Dreamy Molten.

More Molten, please.

Molten Chocolate cake in a dish with oozing chocolate sauce.

Would it be weird to name our firstborn Molten?

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Molten Chocolate Cakes

Molten Chocolate Cakes


These Molten Chocolate cakes are made in ramekins and are oozing with hot molten chocolate sauce. Baked in minutes and perfect for chocolate lovers!


  • All Purpose Flour – 3/4 cup
  • Sugar – 2/3 cup
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – 1/2 cup
  • Baking Powder – 1 1/2 tsp
  • Salt – 1/2 tsp
  • Low Fat 1% Milk – 1/2 cup
  • Canola Oil – 3 tbsp
  • Brown Sugar – 2/3 cup
  • Semisweet Chocolate Chips – 1/4 cup
  • Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp
  • Boiling Water – 1 1/4 cups


  1. Grease ramekins or baking dish.
  2. In a shallow dish, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Stir until mixed. (If you are making this in a large dish, you can do it right in the greased baking dish!)
  3. Add milk and oil. Mix until well combined and spread out. If using ramekins, pour the batter into the ramekins.
  4. Sprinkle brown sugar on top. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.
  5. Add vanilla to hot water. Pour over the top of the batter and DO NOT MIX. It will look gross, but it will not taste gross when it’s all said and done. Trust me.
  6. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes if using a baking dish; about 15 if using ramekins.
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: molten chocolate cake, molten cake, chocolate cake

Fortunately, this story has a perfectly sweet and molten-y ending. After devouring all four servings between the two of us, I realized that although the recipe was light…the only ingredient that I had forgotten to half was...

the oil.

Serves me right for trying to make these light! Don’t mess with Molten.

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  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    These have great potential!… but something didn’t turn out quite right with mine. I cut the recipe in half and decided to use ramekins. However, my cakes were very cake-y and not very molten-y… at all. Maybe I didn’t put enough hot water on top? Or maybe 15 minutes is too long? Any suggestions?

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hmm. The water, brown sugar, and chocolate chips are what makes the molten as it bakes, so maybe adding more of those 3 things would help? Maybe adding another shot of oil to the batter would help, too? One last thing – maybe the size of your ramekins has something to do with it. Smaller ones don’t need as much bake time. Good luck Victoria! I hope it works out for you!

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hello there,
    My name is Ginger and i found a picture of your molten chocolate cake on tumblr and I would love to post your recipe on my wordpress. I would link and give credit of course to your lovely site. Let me know if I have your permission.

    Best and thank you.

    p.s. i tried to your contact form, but it was not working…

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        Hi Lindsay,

        I am cooking for about 80 people soon, and I was wondering if I make the batter could it stand for a while until its time for it to go into oven? I have to prep a lot of things and I would love to know whether its possible for it to stand for about an hour or 2. Thank you. remona

        1. Skillful Cook Logo

          Hi Remona, I don’t see why not… I would just adjust the cooking time slightly since the batter will be cool when you put it into the oven. Also, I would wait to put the water over the top until right before baking.

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hi! I was wondering if you could stick these in the fridge for later, and re-heat in the microwave… Will they still come out with the same molten-y texture?

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hi Lindsey,

      How much of batter do you pour into the ramekins? 1/2 or 3/4 before pour the hot water mixture on top? and how much of hot water mixture do you pour on top of each ramekin?


      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I just divided it evenly into the ramekins, but you don’t want to fill them more than 3/4 because they will overflow so use another ramekin if you need to. And same with the water: just divide it evenly amongst the ramekins. A few tablespoons should be plenty.

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    I’m not sure if I am reading something correctly, but if the cocoa powder is divided, where is the other half used?

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hm, it’s been a while since I made this but I think that’s a mistake. I took out the divided part in the recipe. 🙂 Sorry about that!

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made the recipe with whole wheat pastry flour to make it whole grain. I also halved the sugar and put half xylitol. 6 custard cups were used instead of ramekins. The water was divided among the 6 cups. I had water left over. I put all the custard cups on a cookie sheet. 5 extra minutes had to be added to the time. They came out wonderfully !!! My husband said they were delicious.

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hi. This looks great. Question: -the ingredient list says 1 1/4 cups water, but directions say boil 2 cups of water. Which amount is correct? Thanks.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Gosh, this one is so old it’s hard for me to remember but just looking at the recipe I’d guess the 1 1/4 cups is correct.

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    This is a question back to Victoria who wrote you on December 20, 2011. I would like to know if once she tried using your suggestions in your response to her, Did that correct your issue? Did your corrected recipe work? Also, what correction(s) did you use to make your molten treat turn out?
    Sorry for the LONG time span for the questions but I was fortunate to find this spot only recently.
    Thank you,

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hey Lindsay –
    love your website! – I was originally drawn to you and your husbands financial accounting series that you share…and I have do say – “you go”!!…its so awesome that you can live well off of producing fantastic food blogs!.
    So i though I’d try my first recipe and i chose the molten choco cake for some Sunday night Netflix binging.
    It didn’t quite turn out as planned – mainly the texture – molten gooey vs. batter vs. brownie like consistency. It definitely has to do with ramekin size, cooking length and maybe oven temp. It would be helpful if there was a little bit more info on ramekin size, amount to fill and what to look for to recognize “doneness”…since the hot water bit makes it a bit hard to tell.
    Also – was a little surprised by the water bit? I’m use to a molten cake that has a doughy outer shell with gooey inside – maybe that works better with cakes that are richer (heavier) made with egg and butter vs. oil??
    I also always struggle with the right amount of powdered cocoa to get the right chocolateyness… I almost always prefer incorporating melted semi sweet bars or chunks, as the cocoa powder level of chocolateyness wasn’t as much as i wanted. Also – separately i used “dark chocolate” Hershey’s cocoa and a mixture of coffee with the water … and it actually was a bit too bitter!…
    I’m wondering how the recipe would be with egg and butter and melted chocolate as opposed to cocoa powder and oil??? any thoughts?
    I don’t mean to be critical- i love testing out recipes and trying new methods… all that said, it was still a perfectly warm and gooeey and chocolately treat that was perfect with vanilla ice cream for my Stranger Things binge last night!

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made this today and I was confused. I used ramekins and i was not sure how much brown sugar and water to put in each dish. Could you please help?

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      For the brown sugar, you’re just doing a sprinkle on top of each ramekin. For the hot water / vanilla mix, it’ll work to just evenly distribute the mix over the top of each of the ramekins – it’ll end up being roughly 1/3 cup over each.

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    It would be really helpful if the size of ramekin that should be used was noted in the recipe. I used what I thought were “standard” size ramekins (??) and this didn’t fit in 4 of them; I had excess water + vanilla that didn’t get used, and my ramekins were completely full, and then of course some of the water flowed over during baking.