Dark, Milk, or White Chocolate Ganache

The recipe for ganache has only two ingredients: cream and chocolate. For all its simplicity, the rich flavor and versatility of ganache makes it a great addition for many treats. You can use it as a glaze, in place of frosting, or whip cooled ganache into a light icing. Ganache can even be used to make truffles.

Dark Chocolate Ganache
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (about 1-1/3 cups)
8 ounces heavy cream
Milk Chocolate Ganache
8 ounces milk chocolate (about 1-1/3 cups)
4 ounces heavy cream
White Chocolate Ganache
8 ounces white chocolate, chopped (about 1-1/3 cups)
3 ounces heavy cream

Select a good quality chocolate. The quality of your ganache depends entirely on the quality of your chocolate since there are no other ingredients to mask or change the flavor. Cheap chocolate will not produce good results – this includes all store brands, and even name brands like Nestle, Hersheys, and Toll House. While these brands work well in many recipes, they will not work for perfect ganache. The wax content is too high, and the ganache turns out lumpy.

For best results, weigh your chocolate instead of measuring it. If you don't have a kitchen scale, 8 ounces of chocolate chips usually equals about 1 and 1/3 cups of chocolate chips. If you are not using chocolate chips, finely chop your chocolate into chip-sized pieces. Place the chips or chopped chocolate into a glass or metal bowl and set aside.

Pour the cream into a saucepan and bring it just to a boil. As soon as the cream starts to boil, remove it from the heat and pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for about 5 minutes, then carefully stir the ganache until it becomes smooth. It may take some time to stir, and you may feel that you have ruined it somehow. But it will eventually coalesce into a nice, smooth ganache. Don't stir the ganache too briskly, or you will introduce air bubbles into the mixture, and your finish will be bubbly instead of smooth. Allow the ganache to cool for a couple of hours until it is the consistency you want for pouring, frosting, or whipping into frosting.

For a quicker method of making ganache with a food processor, check out Rose Levy Beranbaum's Ganache video tutorial.

Melinda's Notes: You may need two or three recipes to glaze a cake. Leftover ganache can be refrigerated for several weeks, or even frozen. You can even use cold ganache as truffle centers, or heat it up for a hot fudge sundae. Warm up refrigerated ganache carefully by zapping it in the microwave for a few seconds, or better yet, using a double boiler. This makes a very rich brownie frosting as well. I like it on mint brownies.

Ganache is traditionally equal parts chocolate and cream, i.e. 8 ounces of chocolate by weight and 8 ounces of cream by measure. However, milk and white chocolate have higher amounts of cocoa butter than semi-sweet or dark chocolate, so the ratio of those chocolates to cream is altered in the recipes.


  1. Beautiful Melinda! I love your chocolate leaves and chocolate roses--just like grandma Wessman used to make. :) I wish I had been there to share that cake!

  2. So do I. It was delicious as well as beautiful!


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