Rich Chocolate Mousse

Recipe by Sarah Jampel

Of all the million ways to make chocolate mousse, this is our go-to method. It is streamlined (as in, fewer dirty dishes) and difficult to mess up, plus it skips the raw egg. Most importantly, it produces a rich yet airy mousse with an intense chocolate flavor. It’s delicious straight up, no adornments necessary, but don’t let that stop you from adding one more dollop of whipped cream on top before serving. 

20 mins
3 hrs 20 mins
3 1/2 cups (6 to 8 servings)
Rich Chocolate Mousse - select to zoom
Rich Chocolate Mousse - select to zoom
Rich Chocolate Mousse - select to zoom
Rich Chocolate Mousse - select to zoom


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  1. To make the chocolate mousse: Place the chopped chocolate in a large heatproof bowl. Position a fine mesh sieve over the top. 

  2. In a medium saucepan off the heat, whisk the egg yolks. Add the sugar and salt and whisk until well combined. Gradually add 1/2 cup (113g) of the heavy cream and whisk until fully incorporated, being sure to reach the creases of the pan. Set over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture reaches 160°F when measured with a digital thermometer (it will be thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon). Pour the mixture through the sieve into the bowl with the chocolate. Add the vanilla and espresso powder. Discard any of the solids that collect in the sieve.  

  3. Gently whisk the chocolate mixture until smooth, then let it cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally to promote even cooling, 20 to 30 minutes. 

  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk, beat the remaining 3/4 cups (170g) of the heavy cream until you reach stiff peaks (a peak should support itself without drooping over). Whisk 1/3 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it, then add the remaining whipped cream and gently fold until no white streaks remain. 

  5. Transfer the chocolate mousse to a large serving bowl or to individual ramekins, small glasses, or jars. Cover and chill the chocolate mousse until set, at least 6 hours. 

  6. To make the topping: When ready to serve, whip the cream to soft peaks using your favorite method: beating with an electric hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the whisk, shaking a Mason jar, or whipping by hand with a whisk. Serve the chocolate mousse with a dollop of whipped cream on top, garnished with a sprinkling of mini chocolate chips or shavings from a chocolate bar.  

  7. Storage information: Store covered chocolate mousse, without any toppings, in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Freeze for longer storage and enjoy as a frozen treat. 

Tips from our Bakers

  • The percentage of the chocolate you use will affect how firmly the mousse sets; we’ve found that the best results are made with chocolate with a cocoa content between 60 and 66%. Chocolate with a higher percentage will make mousse that we consider too firm, whereas milk chocolate produces mousse that’s too soft to properly set. Use a blend of higher and darker percentages at your discretion, being sure to keep the average cocoa content close to 60% for best results.