Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes

audrey hepburn chocolate

Inspired by Audrey Hepburn's own flourless chocolate cake recipe, my Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes are decadent, elegant, & fool-proof.

Everyone loves Audrey Hepburn.

And everyone loves chocolate.

If you’re a die-hard Audrey fan, this won’t be new information, but did you know that Audrey Hepburn absolutely adored chocolate?

According to Audrey’s son Luca,

“Mum was crazy about chocolate, which she always kept within reach in a chest of drawers in the living room.  When it came to this sweet temptation, her dancers discipline always (well, almost always) raised the white flag of surrender.”

audrey hepburn chocolate

Audrey and Chocolate: A Lifelong Love

From the time she was a little girl, Audrey Hepburn loved chocolate.  It was her comfort food growing up, and became particularly important to Audrey during her teenaged years.

Audrey survived the Nazi occupation of Holland, though she came close to starving, surviving on the occasional turnip and flour Audrey and her mother made from tulip bulbs.  When the Allies liberated Holland, Audrey’s first meal was sweetened condensed milk and seven chocolate bars, given to her by an Allied soldier.

audrey hepburn chocolate
Young Audrey not long after the Allies liberated Holland.

From that time on, chocolate took on a special significance for Audrey Hepburn: it was the taste of freedom.  She’d forever associate this sweet treat with liberty.

Audrey In the Kitchen

In 2015, Audrey’s youngest son Luca published a beautiful book about his mother, Audrey at Home [aff. link].  The book shares many rare photos, and Luca’s sweet memories of his mother.

And as it turns out, Audrey Hepburn was an accomplished home chef.

In his book, Luca generously shares some recipes from Audrey’s kitchen, including her personal favorites, and the ones Luca grew up with.

audrey hepburn chocolate
Audrey baking in her kitchen, circa 1954.

My favorite recipe in the book is for Audrey’s Chocolate Cake.  According to Luca,

“Chocolate had a special place in her [Audrey’s] kitchen.  If this book could offer only a couple of recipes, they would be for pasta with tomato sauce and chocolate cake.  This was her pièce de résistance and she liked to make it herself…It was a cake for celebrations, for birthdays, and later, for my homecomings.”

audrey hepburn chocolate

It’s clear that chocolate remained a significant flavor and ingredient in Audrey’s life.  And I love that she passed the tradition along to her sons, using chocolate to celebrate and underscore important events in their lives.

Flourless Chocolate Cake to Mini Cakes

Now here’s the thing about Audrey’s Chocolate Cake: it’s flourless. 

And if you’ve ever baked flourless cakes before, you know that they can be a little tricky to make just right.

So, inspired by Audrey’s flourless chocolate cake, I created a nearly flourless chocolate cake recipe that is absolutely fool-proof.

With a mere 8 ingredients and a single saucepan, my recipe is not only quick and easy, it remains true to the taste of Audrey’s flourless recipe.

audrey hepburn chocolate

Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes

I decided to make this recipe even more Hepburn-esque by developing it to be baked in elegant little ramekins.  As you can probably guess just by looking at her, Audrey Hepburn was a master of portion control.  Audrey once said that

“I seem to have a sort of built-in leveler. I’ve a tremendously good appetite—I eat everything, everything—but as soon as I’m satisfied, a little hatch closes and I stop.”

Portion size control was Audrey's secret to keeping her famously trim figure.

For the rest of us who don’t have that little built-in leveler, these ramekins are the perfect way to emulate that famous Hepburn self-control ourselves.

You can find my favorite pink and Tiffany blue ramekins here on Amazon [aff. link], but any 8 oz ramekins you have on hand will work.

My favorite ramekin set, beautiful and practical. Click to view or purchase on Amazon [aff. link].

Make My Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes

So next time the chocolate craving hits, make my Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes.  I’m sure even Audrey, despite her dancer’s discipline and “built-in leveler,” would have a hard time enjoying just one.

audrey hepburn chocolate

For More About Audrey...

If you’re interested in learning more about Audrey, be sure to read my article on Sabrina (1954), and take a look at two of my favorite Audrey books below. 💗

One of my very favorite Audrey books by her son, Luca. Filled with personal anecdotes, stories, and Audrey's own recipes. Click to view on Amazon [aff. link].
A fun little book with lots of advice on how to be more like Audrey. Click to view on Amazon [aff. link].
audrey hepburn chocolate
5 from 4 votes

Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes

Inspired by Audrey Hepburn's own flourless chocolate cake recipe, my Audrey Hepburn Chocolate Mini Cakes are decadent, elegant, & fool-proof.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 6
Print Recipe

Ingredients

For the wet ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter
  • 4 oz baking chocolate, unsweetened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs

For the dry ingredients:

  • ¼ cup flour
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions

Prepare the butter and chocolate

  • In a medium-sized saucepan, melt the butter and the chocolate over medium heat. Stir with a spatula to incorporate the butter and chocolate into one, smooth mixture.
  • Once the butter and chocolate have melted and incorporated, take the saucepan off the heat. Let the mixture cool for 5 minutes.

Add the vanilla extract, sugar, and eggs

  • Now add the vanilla extract to the saucepan with the butter/chocolate mixture, and whisk to combine.
  • Next, add the sugar and brown sugar. Whisk until combined.
  • Now add in the eggs. Whisk until the eggs are fully incorporated. The mixture will be thick and very smooth.

Add the flour and salt

  • Last, add the flour and salt to the saucepan, and whisk until just combined.

Pour the batter into the ramekins

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Oil six, eight ounce ramekins very well. To make the ramekins easy to put in and take out of the oven, place them on a baking sheet. (That way you just have to slide the baking sheet in and out of the oven.)
  • Evenly distribute the cake batter among the ramekins. Each ramekin will fill just about halfway with batter.
  • Gently shake each ramekin so that the batter spreads out pretty smoothly and evenly on top.

Bake the mini cakes

  • Bake the mini cakes at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. The tops will spring back when lightly pressed, and a toothpick inserted in the middle will come out mostly clean.
  • Let the mini cakes cool for 10-15 minutes.

Serve and think of Audrey!

  • Serve these chocolate mini cakes alone, or with a dollop of ice cream or fresh whipped cream.

Notes

You will need six, eight ounce ramekins for this recipe. Here are my favorite 8 oz ramekins on Amazon [aff. link].

© Copyright 2021 Vanguard of Hollywood

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. David @ Spiced

    5 stars
    Interesting! I admit that I don’t know much about Audrey’s background. I had no idea she lived through the Nazi invasion of Holland. And flour from tulip bulbs – say what!? I didn’t even know that was possible. I wonder how these cakes would taste with tulip flour? Hah! I can say they look amazing, and it’s really cool that they are a spin off of Audrey’s own recipe. Love the post, Shannon!

    1. Shannon

      Yes! Isn’t Audrey’s life story amazing?! An inspiration in every way. Oh so so true, it’s admirable what Audrey and her mother innovated to survive the war. Thanks so much for your kind comment David!

  2. Jeff the Chef

    Thanks for this recipe. These little cakes sound addictive!

    1. Shannon

      Thank you so much Jeff! Haha addictive is the perfect word. I have a hard time stopping at just one when I make these!

  3. Mimi

    What a lovely post. Audrey H was truly a beautiful person. I most respected her in her later years when she was the head of UNICEF. I think that’s the organization. And she was prettier than ever in her old age. I hadn’t heard about her son’s book – I’ll have to look into that! Your cakelets are beautiful. I’m not much of a baker of sweets, but I think I could even handle these!

    1. Shannon

      Thank you so much Mimi! I completely agree, Audrey was just an amazing human being. The fact that she gave back in her later years with her amazing work for UNICEF just raises her to sainthood in my book. And you are so right! Audrey was even more beautiful in her later years than she was as a young woman! Truly the evidence of a beautiful heart. 💗

  4. Katerina

    5 stars
    These look so good, Shannon! I wish I had a little hatch that closes when it comes to chocolate! Thanks for sharing that amazing history too – fascinating as usual!

    1. Shannon

      Haha I am so with you Katerina! Wish I had Audrey’s portion control skills! She is an inspiration in so many ways, isn’t she?

  5. Neil

    5 stars
    What a lovely easy to make chocolate dessert! I do wonder if I can make this delicious cake and also manage to watch my portion control to keep my figure as pristine as Audrey Hepburns was though! 😉

    1. Shannon

      Haha you said it Neil! I have such a hard time only eating one when I make these cakelettes! So not Audrey of me haha but hopefully one day I’ll improve! 😆 Hope your week is off to a great start!

  6. Michaela

    5 stars
    I love these little cakes! I got the ramekins you recommended and they’re the perfect size. The batter is fast to pull together in one pan and clean up is easy too. I’m not a great cook, but I made these when my boyfriend and I had some friends over and they keep asking when I’m making them again! If I can make these anyone can.

    1. Shannon

      Thanks Michaela! I’m so happy to hear these cakes were a hit!

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