Best Ever Chocolate Torte: Gluten and Dairy Free (not Paleo)

Wheat free * Dairy free * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Parve * Passover

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This is my to-die-for Passover dessert.  It is dense and rich with a close-your-eyes-when-you-eat-it deliciousness.  So rich that when I have leftover cake (which is rarely) I cut it into small pieces and roll the pieces in unsweetened cocoa or chocolate sprinkles and serve them as truffles.

I got this recipe (sort of) as the result of a good deed, so it’s appropriate that it is the best chocolate torte I ever tasted.  Here’s what happened.  Every year I host a break fast for friends and family.  I found out there were 3 people I didn’t know, who had nowhere to go, so I invited them to join us.  In walked one of the unknowns and he brought a chocolate torte he had baked.  When I tasted it first I swooned and then I begged for the recipe.  It was a flourless chocolate torte (making it gluten-free) that he found in Gourmet Magazine (Nov. 1999) and then played with.  I have played with it even more to convert it to dairy-free.  I should let you know that this cake is soooo rich that I’ve had one of these small cakes serve 20 people, but I usually do serve multiple desserts.  I think you can easily serve 12 or 8 real chocoholics.

The BEST Chocolate Torte You’ve Ever Eaten and it’s Gluten and Dairy-Free

Update:  Manischewitz no longer produces any of these 3 wines.  You can get extra heavy Malaga from Kedem .

The recipe calls for wine.  I find the very sweet cherry or blackberry wines from Manischewitz to be perfect for this cake.  In a pinch, the extra heavy malaga or concord grape wines will do as well.  If you do not have access to these wines, or if you don’t want to use wine at all, you can substitute 6 tablespoons of pomegranate, or cherry, or grape juice with 2 tablespoons of sugar mixed in.

If you are not dairy-free, you can substitute butter for the coconut oil and reduce the cocoa to 1/2 cup.

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4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)
1/2 cup coconut oil
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup Manischewitz cherry, or blackberry, or extra heavy malaga wine or 6 tablespoons juice + 2 tablespoons sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
plus additional cocoa for sprinkling
Chocolate curls or raspberries for garnish, if desired

1. Preheat oven to 375°F and grease an 8-inch springform pan with coconut oil. Cut a piece of wax paper to fit the bottom of the pan and regrease.

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2. Chop chocolate into small pieces.

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3. In a double boiler or metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water melt chocolate with coconut oil, stirring, until smooth. Remove top of double boiler or bowl from heat.

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4. Stir the sugar into chocolate mixture.

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5. Add eggs and stir well; stir in the wine.

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6. Sift cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until smooth.

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7. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven 25 minutes, or until top puffed completely and has formed a thin crust. Cool cake in pan; then chill completely in the refrigerator.

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8. Remove from pan, but leave on metal tray and dust cake with additional cocoa powder


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9.  Place onto a serving plate and garnish with raspberries, if using.  (you can leave it on the metal bottom or take it off. I don’t bother to remove the wax paper, I just lift the slice off of it before transferring to individual plates.)

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Serve with sorbet or dairy-free whipped cream if desired. (Cake keeps, after being cooled completely, in an airtight container, 1 week or in the freezer for 2 months.)
Makes one 8-inch cake



  1. I actually own a springform pan (don’t faint). I may make this, though baking scares me as much as cooking does. 😉

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