Amazing One-Ingredient Chocolate Mousse

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one-ingredient chocolate mousse

This Amazing One Ingredient Chocolate Mousse is not quite El Bulli territory, but it’s close.  Would you believe that pure chocolate and a little water whip up into a dense, unadulterated, magically spoon-able mousse?   And it’s probably the best mousse you’ve ever had.  Naturally vegan, too, and we already know that a little bit of dark chocolate each day is healthy for us.  I think I’ll take my daily dose in this form, thanks.

It was yesterday afternoon, I had no idea what I was going to post for today, I was feeling tired and glued to the tv for all the heartbreaking news unfolding out of Boston.  I kept walking away and then finding myself back on the couch a few minutes later.  I instinctively knew that the only way to pull myself away completely was to find something fun to do in the kitchen.  I’ve been reading about this mousse technique so I decided to give it a try.  After all, it’s just 4 ounces of chocolate and some tap water.  I didn’t have much to lose.

So what’s the bottom line?  The short version is that when you melt good quality chocolate with water, and then whip it over ice, it turns into mousse.  I think the process is distantly related to the frustrating phenomenon we’ve all experienced when chocolate suddenly ‘seizes’ when we’re trying to melt it. But in this case we’re harnessing that power for good.  Real good.

Yes you can eat it right away, and yes you can store it in the fridge and it will still be good. Yes you can flavor it if you want to, with vanilla, Amaretto, whatever.  Yes it’s rich, and yes, you should probably serve it in small bowls.  Yes, you could eat the whole thing yourself.  Any other questions?  Ok then, let’s get right to it.

The origins of this amazing one ingredient chocolate mousse is in dispute, I’ve read several conflicting stories, so I won’t repeat them, just assume it was some French food physicist, or chef or other who was tinkering around one day and figured this out.  The important thing is, it’s delicious.

What do you think?  I think it’s pretty cool, and if I’m ever sitting around with nothing sweet in the house I am definitely making this again.  I think I’ll try it with Amaretto next.  Without any cream or sugar, and lots of antioxidants in the dark chocolate, it’s actually not that bad for you, in moderation.

TIP: If you whip your mousse a little too long it will become stiff, but guess what?  You can actually re-melt the chocolate and whip it again!  Ain’t science wonderful?

 If you’re a serious dark chocolate lover and you’re willing to use a few more ingredients, I suggest you try my DEATH BY CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI BREAD, or my CHOCOLATE POUND CAKE.  And if you need more reassurance that dark chocolate is, indeed, good for you, read up on it in my 11 REASONS TO EAT MORE DARK CHOCOLATE post.

recipe adapted from Yummly

Amazing One-Ingredient Chocolate Mousse
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10 ratings

Servings: serves 2 - 4 depending on serving size. Double the recipe if you want more

one-ingredient chocolate mousse


  • 4 ounces (4 squares) good quality dark chocolate (I used Baker's Semi Sweet Baking Chocolate)
  • scant 1/3 cup water ( 3 ounces)


  1. Place ice in a large mixing bowl, and place a smaller bowl inside it.
  2. Put the chocolate and water in a sauce pan and heat gently on the stove until the chocolate melts and the water and chocolate are combined.
  3. Pour the chocolate into the small bowl, and whip with an electric beater until thickened. This will take anywhere from 3 to 5 minutes. The trick is to stop beating just as the mixture becomes thick and glossy, like frosting. The minute you stop beating it will firm up, so stop beating as soon as it starts to look thick. Quickly spoon it into serving bowls or cups.
  4. If you beat the mousse a little bit too long, it will have a grainy kind of stiff texture, like in the photo below. It will still taste good, though, so eat it as is, or remelt the chocolate in the saucepan and whip it again.
  5. Serve immediately, or refrigerate.


  • After finishing off the last of the mouse the next night, my husband and I both agree that this is one truly amazing recipe.  The mousse keeps perfectly in the fridge, no change in texture at all, and it doesn’t get hard when it’s cold like a truffle would.  I highly recommend you try this!!!
  • This mousse joins my Tangerine Sorbet on my growing list of ONE-INGREDIENT dishes.  Anybody got any more one-ingredient wonders?

Watch it being made here…

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    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    Cheryl Masters
    November 5, 2018 at 10:29 pm

    It’s dark and cold outside this high up in the Rocky Mountains. Rather hazy and foggy. You can smell that more snow is on the way. A figure lurking by the pantry. WHAT!!! No chocolate. Nooooo. Only cocoa. Hmmm? Pinch a small amount of powder and put in mouth. ARRGH!! Water, water,water. That idea quickly died. It’s like thinking the smell of vanilla signifies something that would taste sooo goood. Too cold to stay outside and unable to drive down the mountain. No streetlights on a dirt road with 12 switchbacks. Yells at the universe “Now what do I do?”. Well can I get here from there. I have cocoa. I have ice. I have water. I have huge hunger pangs for chocolate. help… Cheryl

  • Reply
    Adrija Mukherjee
    October 25, 2018 at 8:37 pm

    Ok, so can you give me some tips if I don’t have an ice bath and an electric whisk? (I can’t buy one)

    • Reply
      October 25, 2018 at 9:16 pm

      For this particular recipe an electric beater really helps, Adrija, I’m not sure you could manage it by hand with a whisk.

  • Reply
    August 9, 2015 at 9:15 am

    I am doing this as soon as I get back home from our trip… too bad the chalet here doesn’t have an electric beater or I would go for it here in Silverthorne…

  • Reply
    February 6, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    Wow! This absolutely worked! I admit, I had little faith that it would work, but I timed the whipping carefully and just a bit more than 5 minutes later, I got mousse! After all the recipes I’ve been scanning for a simple, delicious mousse, this turned out to be the simplest AND tasty as well! Thank you so much for sharing this!

    • Reply
      February 7, 2014 at 6:00 am

      I agree, and it is hard to believe until you try it. I’m so glad you love it too!

  • Reply
    Correen Hansen
    July 24, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Wow…. I can’t wait to try these yummie ideas..

  • Reply
    Myra Jones
    May 13, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    I made this a couple of weeks ago with an entire package of dark chocolate chunks. I was making my son’s birthday cake the other night and could not decide what I wanted to use for frosting. Cream Cheese was just too plain on a White Whipping Cream Cake and I didn’t want to make my elaborate chocolate frosting. While whipping the cream cheese (waiting for inspiration) I remembered the mousse. I added some mousse with the cream cheese and added powdered sugar to taste. OMG!! It ranks right up there with my elaborate chocolate frosting.

  • Reply
    shannon weber
    April 24, 2013 at 11:17 am

    GENIUS: and you know i love science, so i have to try this for myself. I think it goes without saying how much my mind is racing trying to determine how to use this in other things.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2013 at 11:35 pm

    One bowl, one ingredient this is good!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    YES, science is wonderful, and so is chocolate! amazing method, sue!

  • Reply
    April 22, 2013 at 12:22 am

    Really? Chocolate and ice water? Really? You know I’m going to check it out. I was also glued to the TV – and baked something chocolate as an antidote. This is way better.

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      April 22, 2013 at 1:04 am

      Let me know how it goes—and remember, if it gets over-whipped at first, don’t hesitate to remelt it, I did, and the taste and texture came out perfectly the second time around.

  • Reply
    tiffany rose
    April 22, 2013 at 4:14 am

    Love this one!

    One-ingredient recipes … sounds like a good cookbook idea. ;)

  • Reply
    April 21, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    I don’t think I have ever seen a ‘one ingredient’ recipe before. Looks amazing!

  • Reply
    April 21, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    I love your pictures and recipes, they are mouth watering. Would love for you to share them with us at Over at we are not photography expert snobs, we are just foodies.

  • Reply
    April 21, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    This looks divine.

  • Reply
    Liz Berg
    April 21, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    I made this years ago…and you’ve reminded me I’m WAY overdue to make it again! YUM!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      April 22, 2013 at 1:09 am

      The only thing that would hold me back from making this all the time would be the calories :) But what a great conversation piece dessert for guests.

  • Reply
    From Beyond My Kitchen Window
    April 21, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    I can’t stand it, I am making this one this afternoon. So easy!

  • Reply
    April 21, 2013 at 4:55 am

    Brilliant, Sue!!!!

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    April 21, 2013 at 12:06 am

    Now THIS is pretty ingenious! WOW!! I would have thought you’d have to add sugar or an egg or let the choc cool a bit; anything. But straight from being melted to mixer to puffy mousse. Incredible!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      April 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm

      It is incredible, and if you try it you’ll see that it has this finely aerated texture that is just crazy good.

  • Reply
    April 21, 2013 at 3:01 am

    This looks like the perfect dessert. Chocolate and water. Who Knew!! Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    the gardener's cottage
    April 21, 2013 at 2:25 am

    this looks fab sue. what chocolate did you use?

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      April 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm

      I actually just used Baker’s semi-sweet squares, I think I’ll update the post with that info, thanks. But I assume any good quality dark chocolate would work.

  • Reply
    Brigitta Huegel
    April 20, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    Wonderful, thank you! Here in Berlin a very, very fine Café serves this kind of mousse, together with hot milk on a tea warmer – and then you can celebrate making your own cup of cocoa – and all the other guests with ‘only’ cappuccino are staring :-)

  • Reply
    April 20, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    Only one ingredient, that is amazing Sue.

  • Reply
    The Café Sucré Farine
    April 20, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    What a fun and delicious looking mousse, Sue! I might not have believed it had it not come from you but I’ll HAVE to try this! Love your pretty glasses!

  • Reply
    Ginger Kline
    April 20, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    Oh Yeah! I can do this! I’m on a low carb diet, and I think this will do for my chocolate cravings. (in moderation, of course) Thank you.

  • Reply
    Mary Younkin
    April 20, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    I’ve seen this idea floating around too, but yours looks the best of any I’ve seen. What a gorgeous mousse!

    • Reply
      Mary Younkin
      April 20, 2013 at 3:15 pm

      P.S. Any chance you want to ship me one of those blackberry crumble squares? They look AMAZING and I totally want one for breakfast now!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      April 20, 2013 at 4:21 pm

      You know, the unappealing images online turned me off at first, and I’m glad I made it because now I can tell that most of the people who tried it over-whipped it.
      And those blackberry squares were so good, I wanted them again when I saw the link.