I’ve been looking for a good, rich chocolate mousse filling that doesn’t involve egg yolks. I didn’t like any of the recipes here so I found an old recipe from Bon Appetit that was originally for Mocha and adapted it for chocolate. I used it to fill a Darn Good Chocolate Cake w/Chocolate Syrup Frosting and everyone said it was truly a death by chocolate combination. Be sure to use good quality chocolate! This is a very rich, creamy and intensely chocolate filling. You can also serve this separately as a mousse.


  • 12 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I use Lindt 70% bittersweet but 50% or 60% is ok too – do not recommend using the 85%)
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter cut into pieces
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons water
  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups chilled whipping cream (do not use heavy whipping cream)
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • Optional: Can add 1/4 teasp. cinnamon to whipping cream or for mocha flavor, dissolve 5 teasp. instant coffee powder with 1/4 cup of the whipping cream untoil dissolved


  1. Melt chocolate and butter over medium-low ehat until melted and smooth. Set aside
    Sitr 1/2 cup sugar and 3 Tbsp. water in small saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil syrup without stirring until candy thermometer registers 240 degreesF, tilting pan to submerge bulb – about 4 minutes.
    Using electric mixer, beat whites in large bowl to soft peaks. Gradually beat hot syrup into whites. Continue beating until medium stiff peaks form about 3 minutes. Fold 1/3 egg white/sugar mixture into lukewarm chocolate mixture to lighten. Fold in remaining egg whites with chocolate mixture. Set aside.
    Combine 1 1/2 cups whipping cream and powdered sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold into chocolate/egg white mixture to form mousse. Make sure ingredients are well blended by folding. Cover and refrigerate about 4 hours. If using as a filling, make sure to take mousse out of refrigerator for about 30 minutes so it is easier to spread. Can be made 2 days ahead.


durell87 Says... 2010-09-15 23:25:58

how thick is this? whats the difference i using heavy whipping cream and regular whipping cream? thank you!

AprilJ Says... 2010-09-16 07:36:43

I've actually tasted this. It is outstanding!!! It's a real crowd pleaser, indeed. As cheriej says in her recipe, it was beautifully intense and creamy. I couldn't get enough. In fact, I would eat it as a mousse separately myself. When I shared this with my finicky husband, he was instantly impressed and wanted more - and he doesn't usually eat chocolate. That says it all for me! The fact that the recipe doesn't use egg yolks is an added benefit. Keep this recipe for sure.

cheriej Says... 2010-09-16 11:20:17

Durell87: heavy whipping cream makes it too thick/heavy. Once you leave this in the refrigerator it will firm up and it is thick but spreadable.

ellentwn Says... 2010-09-16 17:20:31

can't wait to try this....thank you for posting

ktcake Says... 2010-09-16 17:39:14

Does this need to stay refridgerated? If I used this as a filling in a cake that I was covering with fondant-I would not want to have to put it in the fridge.

debutterfly Says... 2010-09-17 11:39:53

looks delish! What is the shelf life? do you use this filling with fondant covered cakes, is it stable enough? do you frig the cakes then? thanks for recipe! oh yeah, is this easy or tricky to make?

moralna Says... 2010-09-17 13:11:07

Not sure I understand - you said use chilled whipping cream but not heavy whipping cream - do you mean something like Cool Whip?

eperales0411 Says... 2010-09-17 15:12:41

This sounds delish, I will have to try it. To try and answer moralna's question, I think she means the regular kind of whipping cream, not CoolWhip. In the dairy isle of the grocery store you will find, in the same area, heavy whipping cream and whipping cream (without the "heavy" word). I hope this helps you and not confuse you.

cheriej Says... 2010-09-17 19:10:38

Regarding refrigeration: To firm the mousse you do need to refrigerate it. I've then used it as a filling, let it settle and frosted it and covered in fondant without putting it back into the refrigerator. I would personally not recommend leaving the filling out for days - it does not have stabilizers like a sleeve filling. I have stored it in my refrigerator before using for 4 days without any problems and I'm guessing you could store it a little longer - maybe 5 days. This is a bittersweet mousse so it is not super sweet - just fyi - I find a lot of adults prefer bittersweet versus semi or milk chocolate taste but you could easily substitute other chocolates if that is what you prefer.

As for chilled whipping cream. This is not dream whip. It means you buy the whipping cream in the carton at the grocery store. Do not let it come to room temp as many recipes call for you to bring all ingredients to room temp. Just leave it in the fridge until the recipe calls for it.

This recipe is not difficult in my opinion. It does require you to take a few steps versus just open a box and mix ingredients but I think if you try it you will find it worth it. If you already bake from scratch this may even seem easy for you.

Also, this recipe makes about 4 cups of mousse. It will easily fill two 9 or 10 inch rounds with some leftover. I used the leftover to sometimes scoop like ice cream on top of the cake slice. People went crazy over it.

Dunebuggy Says... 2010-09-24 18:31:51

Sounds amazing! Can't wait to try it. Going to my faves right now. Thanks for sharing!

ChrisJack1 Says... 2010-10-03 11:56:46

I'm a tad bit worried about my mousse (probably newbie nervousness) :) My syrup seems to have gathered and "solidified" in the bottom middle of my mixing bowl and now I'm worried that my egg whites didn't get enough warmth to "cook" them. (I'm assuming that this is the purpose of the syrup, but I could be wrong!) Has this happened to anyone else, and has their mousses turned out fine?

cheriej Says... 2010-10-04 12:53:53

ChrisJack1: You have to stream the syrup slowly into the eggwhites. If you poured it too fast that would cause the pooling. The syrup also acts as a sweetner - taste the whipped egg whites and see if it tastes sweet. If it does then you at least got some of the syrup into the egg whites.

jazbee Says... 2010-10-21 01:51:01

I made this today and I have a few questions: When you stream the syrup into the egg whites, does it have to be really hot? I think the same thing happened to me that happened to ChrisJack1. The syrup dropped in temperature that by the time I started to pour it in the egg whites, it hardened in the bowl. I didn't feel like it got mixed in very well. It was more of a taffy consistency. Also I used meringue powder to get the egg whites, I hope this is ok? Or would I get a better consistency/flavor using real egg whites? But with that substitution, the mousse was wonderful! Would it also be better to wait for the mousse to settle, like a few hours, before I fill a cake with it? Thank you for sharing such a wonderful recipe. Now I just have to get my technique down correctly.

iluvpeeks Says... 2010-10-23 21:20:49

I made this as a filling for Dawn's Chocolate Cake. It was amazingly delicious. Easy to make. Best thing is that the consistency is nice and thick, so I didn't have any filling leak out at all. I did make a dam, but you know how sometimes the filling still absorbs or leaks out? It held up perfectly. The flavor was really good, and I had quite a bit left over after filling a torted 8" barrel cake. Thank you very much.

iluvpeeks Says... 2010-10-23 21:31:40

jazbee cheriej suggested that you let the mousse firm up for about 4 hours in the refrigerator before using as a filling. I did that and it worked great. Also, regarding adding the syrup to the egg whites, you have to add the syrup the same way you do when making IMBC. I started whipping the egg whites before the syrup was finished cooking, so there was no delay in adding the syrup to the egg whites, so the syrup was super hot, and didn't have a chance to harden on the side of the bowl. HTH. Kathy

cheriej Says... 2010-10-25 22:13:54

You have to add the syrup once it reaches the required temp (meaning it is hot!) and you stream it while you whip it into the egg whites (which you've already beaten into soft peaks). If you let the syrup cool it will end up hardening in your bowl. It should not take long to whip the egg whites to the required stage before streaming the sugar. iluvpeeks is correct if this will be a problem just start whipping the egg whites before the syrup has reached the temp so there will be no delay. the mousse does firm up once you refrigerate it 4 hours. I still recommend that or you can even leave it overnight in the fridge to firm up.

amberlenee Says... 2010-11-04 13:08:02

Does this recipe work with white chocolate?

microbiology1 Says... 2010-11-19 06:12:24

Well, I whould have learned by now to read all comments before starting a recipe! :( I had the chocolate solidify and sink the bottom of the bowl too. But it was delicious so I will definetely try it again.

cheriej Says... 2010-12-14 23:18:37

amberlenee - I have never tried this with white chocolate and from what I know of how temperamental white chocolate is I would not recommend it.

Cristan Says... 2011-01-02 15:57:39

Can't Wait to try this next month in my Husbands Birthday Cake !!! Thanks so much for sharing ... It sounds FAB!!!!! I will post back after I make it.... :-)

KerrieD Says... 2011-01-02 22:40:11

Is this filling suitable for the filling in a child's birthday cake? Should or could I use milk chocolate?

Cristan Says... 2011-01-18 21:47:26

can this be frozen and if so how long will it keep?

sarascakecreations Says... 2011-01-31 11:12:35

I would really like to try this as a white chocolate? I know you said you wouldn't recommend it :( but I was just wondering if anyone had tried it?

sarascakecreations Says... 2011-01-31 11:13:54

i would really like to try this as a white chocolate filling?

i know you said you wouldn't recommend it but I'd still love to try try it... as for switching, can I just substitue the same amount of chocolate?

has anyone tried it with white chocolate?

cheriej Says... 2011-02-17 15:56:19

KerrieD: YES you can use milk chocolate and I would recommend using milk vs bittersweet for a child's birthday cake (I just think kids like milk chocolate better or even semi sweet). Cristan: I have never tried to freeze this before so I don't know if that would work or not - I'm a little concerned it might cause the ingredients to separate but again i've not tried to freeze before. sarascakecreations: you can certainly give it a go with white chocolate. I would use the same amount of white chocolate as the substitute.

jburrow Says... 2011-03-31 12:12:32

I am having issues with the egg whites and sugar....I got the whites to soft peaks and streamed the hot syrup in and it turns my whites to a milk like consistancy. I beat it forever and still never got stiff peaks...Suggestions? Fixes? I'm in the middle of making it now..

mitzi229 Says... 2011-05-04 17:58:37

If I am going to use this as a filling on a layered cake, then covering it with fondant can it stay out overnight? I like to decorate my cakes the night before.. Please help...Thanks

Beccalisa Says... 2011-05-25 13:52:17

I can never find anything that is just called "whipping cream" at the store, only HEAVY "whipping cream" or "light cream". Is the "light cream" what you mean? If not any other suggestions?

cheriej Says... 2011-06-01 14:42:41

Beccalisa - I don't know what brand you are looking at but generally heavy whipping cream has a higher fat content than regular whipping cream. Here is my understanding of the difference: Light whipping cream has a butterfat content of 30% to 36% and heavy whipping cream has a butterfat content of 36% to 40%. If your light whipping cream has less than 30% it may not work because it may not hold its shape well enough. Check the label and see what it says on the butterfat content.

Mitzi - I do refrigerate this filling but I want the filling to be firm. There is no egg yolk in it so I suppose you could leave it out overnight if you want and your house is not too hot. Some people on cc say that the sugar acts as a preservative.

kathleen2098 Says... 2011-08-31 11:21:39

This recipe is beyond delicious! I used it as filling for a fondant covered cake I made which had to be kept out overnight, and it held up perfectly! I did use heavey whipping cream because I couldnt find just "whipping cream" anywhere, and I let it set for 4 hours in the refrigerator, and by the next day it was still just as thick and delicious! Excellent recipe! Thank you for sharing it!

chefjennalee Says... 2011-10-18 20:22:55

Holy mother of cake gods! This is outstanding! It may not make it into the cake...

kgorhan Says... 2012-09-13 16:07:30

I don't know how in the world you got this recipe to work. I have tried it twice and it still does not turn out. Both times my "syrup" got hard too fast and I had to fish some of it out because it had already solidified. It took two hours to get this stuff that just wasn't mousse. Sorry, but I'm just not feeling "third time's the charm" on this one.

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