Easy Perfect Chocolate Ganache - Guide to Making Ganache
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Easy Perfect Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache uses two ingredients: chocolate and heavy whipping cream. This simple chocolate ganache recipe takes only 5 minutes to make and requires a range or microwave.

To develop this complete guide to making chocolate ganache, I used nearly $50 of chocolate and a half gallon of heavy whipping cream – so read up and save yourself some time and money as you learn how to make chocolate ganache like a pro.

Ganache dripping from a spoon
Use chocolate ganache for cake filling, a poured glaze, a spread or piped frosting, a decorative drizzle, as the base for truffles, or as a bonbon filling.

The key to making a ganache recipe that’s right for your particular use is knowing both the ratio of chocolate to cream to use and the temperature the mixture should be at.

What is Chocolate Ganache?

Chocolate ganache is chocolate mixed with cream to make it softer at room temperature. Depending on how much cream you use, it can be moist (like the filling for chocolate truffles) or stiff (like a cupcake frosting).

What are the Ingredients in Chocolate Ganache?

Overhead view of a bowl of dark chocolate chipsYou’ll need heavy whipping cream and chocolate to make a recipe of chocolate ganache.

Because there are only two ingredients, the quality of the chocolate really matters.

Choose the best semisweet, bittersweet, or dark chocolate that you can get your hands on. I suggest picking a chocolate that you love to eat all on its own (try to not eat it all before it goes into the recipe). If the chocolate isn’t already chips or thin discs, chop it finely so it will melt easily.

How to Make Chocolate Ganache

No matter what ratio of chocolate to cream you are using, the basic procedure for making chocolate ganache is consistent across most recipes:

  1. Bring heavy whipping cream just to boil either in the microwave or on the stove (I prefer the microwave).
  2. Pour it over a bowl of small pieces of chocolate.

Hot cream being poured over dark chocolate discs

  1. Let the cream sit on the chocolate for a minute.
  2. Stir the ganache until the cream and the chocolate are fully combined.

Overhead view of stirring chocolate with hot cream to make ganache

Chocolate to Cream Ratios in Chocolate Ganache

As I mentioned above, the ratio (by weight) of chocolate to cream is very important. I present three options below, but you can use these as loose guidelines and experiment to find a ratio that works best for you.

Equal Parts Chocolate and Cream

Ganache dripping off of a spoon to show the consistency of ganache made with equal amounts of chocolate and cream
One of the most popular ways to make ganache is to use equal parts chocolate and cream.

  • While still warm, this ganache is pourable and can be used to drizzle chocolate ribbons or to glaze cookies, cupcakes, or cakes. It can even be used as a filling between layers of a cake. (I always love pouring this glaze on my favorite chocolate cupcakes when I make them for true chocolate lovers, but it’s also fantastic on peanut butter cupcakes!)
  • As it starts to cool, it thickens and takes on more of a spreadable consistency.
  • At room temperature (after it sits in a covered bowl on the counter for 1-2 hours), the texture is like brownie batter and the ganache can be rolled into balls for truffles or whipped at high speed to make a light, airy ganache frosting. Eating this straight it up is right up there for me with eating molten chocolate mug cakes.

Overhead view of different desserts prepared using chocolate ganache

Two Parts Chocolate to One Part Cream

Ganache dripping off of a spoon to show the consistency of ganache made with two parts chocolate to one part cream

Increasing the percentage of chocolate makes for a much thicker ganache. Ganache that is two parts chocolate to one part cream is a typical ratio for truffles. Although you can make truffles with a 1:1 ratio (as shown above), the 2:1 truffles will have a more fudgey consistency. Take a look at Cookie Rookie’s truffles for an example.

I also use the 2:1 chocolate to cream ratio for bonbon fillings. The 2:1 ratio is also perfect for a chocolate ganache for macarons.

Whipped ganache stuck to a mixer's whisk attachment

This formulation can also be used as a glaze or piped frosting, as shown above. The glaze will have the consistency of the top of a Hostess cupcake (of course, it will taste much better!). The 2:1 piped frosting is one of my favorites – it is intensely chocolaty!

Two Parts Cream to One Part Chocolate

Ganache dripping off of a spoon to show the consistency of ganache made with one part chocolate to two parts creamA ganache with more cream than chocolate is very runny (like a soup) when warm and mousse-like at room temperature. While warm, this type of ganache can be poured over a cake to give it a beautiful chocolate glaze. Be sure to put something under the cake while you pour because the ganache will drip. It’s too thin for a truffle, but if you chill it first, you can whip it to create a pipeable frosting that tastes like chocolate whipped cream.

Handle the Heat uses this ratio to fill her chocolate blackout cupcakes. It’s the perfect gooey cupcake filling!

While these are all guidelines, you can also be flexible and use something in between. For example, That Skinny Chick Can Bake uses 12 ounces of chocolate to 16 ounces of cream (a 3:4 ratio) for the topping on her amazing looking Chocolate Caramel Twix Cheesecake.

Cooled Ganache

Cooled ganache on spoons, made three different ways - 1:1, 2:1, and 1:2 ratios of chocolate to cream

Here’s how the three different types of ganache look after they have cooled in a bowl for two hours. The two parts cream version looks just like caramel in this photo, but I assure you that it’s made with the same bittersweet chocolate as the other ganaches! If any of the warm ganache varieties are poured on cupcakes, cakes, or cookies, they will look smooth and shiny when they cool – the difference will just be in the thickness of the chocolate.

Milk Chocolate and White Chocolate Ganache

Because there is a higher fat content in milk and white chocolate than in semisweet, bittersweet, or dark chocolate, use a higher percentage of chocolate to cream than you otherwise would for the thickness of ganache that you would like. For example, instead of a making ganache using a 2:1 chocolate to cream ratio, use a 3:1 chocolate to cream ratio.

How Much Ganache Do I Need?

Here are some general guidelines on how much chocolate to use in different applications:

  • To make 24 truffles: 12 ounces chocolate
  • To frost 24 cupcakes with a dipped or spread ganache: 16 ounces chocolate
  • To frost 24 cupcakes with a piped ganache: 20 ounces chocolate
  • To use to decorate a two-layer 9″ round cake: 20 ounces chocolate

Flavored Ganache

Red wine ganache on a cupcake
If you want to add other flavors to your ganache, you can mix in extracts, flavoring oils, or alcohol to the warm ganache. I’m a huge fan of red wine ganache. You can also add flavor by steeping the cream in tea or herbs and straining before heating and pouring over the chopped chocolate. Melting a little butter with the heavy whipping cream can give a richer flavor and add a little more shine to the finished product (if you want to get a little crazy, you can even make ganache with cheese).

How to Store Ganache

In general, ganache can be kept at room temperature for two days; the sugar in chocolate keeps bacteria from growing.

However, storage suggestions vary based on the percentage of cream you are using. I tend to refrigerate my ganache that’s made with twice as much cream to chocolate just to be on the safe side. I’ve been told that ganache can last in the refrigerator for a month, but it’s never lasted that long at my house.

Other Chocolate Inspiration

  • While you may be tempted to drink this ganache hot, I suggest that you instead use leftover chocolate chunks or discs to make my favorite hot chocolate. It has a similar preparation method – milk is poured over chocolate – but it’s even richer because it’s made with butter and a sugar syrup.
  • If you’re looking to decorate your confections after you’ve poured or piped ganache all over them, try making chocolate leaves. They’ll impress with their flavor and appearance.
  • Finally, if you’re still looking for something to do with all of the chocolate left over after making this recipe, try your hand at making edible chocolate cups. They’re a perfect serving vessel for berries, nuts, or other small desserts.
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Ganache dripping from a spoon
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4.64 from 25 votes

Chocolate Ganache Recipe

How to make perfect chocolate ganache using cream and chocolate
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword chocolate ganache, ganache recipe
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 24
Calories 222kcal
Author Stef

Ingredients

  • 20 ounces heavy whipping cream
  • 20 ounces dark chocolate chips, discs, or any chocolate chopped into small pieces

Instructions

  • Bring heavy whipping cream just to boil either in the microwave or on the stove (I prefer the microwave).
  • Pour it over a bowl of small pieces of chocolate.
  • Let the cream sit on the chocolate for a minute.
  • Stir the ganache until the cream and the chocolate are fully combined.

Notes

  • While still warm, this ganache is pourable and can be used to drizzle chocolate ribbons or to glaze cookies, cupcakes, or cakes. It can even be used as a filling between cake layers.
  • As it starts to cool, it thickens and takes on more of a spreadable consistency.
  • At room temperature (after it sits in a covered bowl on the counter for 1-2 hours), the texture is like brownie batter and the ganache can be rolled into balls for truffles or whipped at high speed to make a light, airy chocolate frosting.
 
Double the cream in this recipe for a ganache that can be poured over a cake to give it a beautiful chocolate glaze. Be sure to put something under the cake while you pour because the ganache will drip. It's too thin for a truffle, but if you chill it first, you can whip it to create a pipeable frosting that tastes like chocolate whipped cream.
Double the chocolate in this recipe for very fudgey truffles. This ganache can also be used as a glaze or piped frosting. The glaze will have the consistency of the top of a Hostess cupcake.
If you use milk chocolate or white chocolate, increase the amount of chocolate used for your particular application. You'll want to experiment to learn the ratio that works with your favorite chocolate. I'd start with 1.5:1 for the base 1:1 ratio.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Chocolate Ganache Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 222 Calories from Fat 162
% Daily Value*
Fat 18g28%
Saturated Fat 11g55%
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 13mg1%
Potassium 186mg5%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 355IU7%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 33mg3%
Iron 2.8mg16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Have you tried this recipe?Click here to leave a comment and rating!

Learn how to make this incredibly versatile chocolate ganache for a cake filling, glaze, a spread or piped frosting, a decorative drizzle, or the base for truffles! It is so easy, you only need chocolate and heavy whipping cream for this recipe! Try this on your next dessert adventure!
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24 comments on “Easy Perfect Chocolate Ganache”

  1. Amandasays:

    5 stars
    wow, this guide is soo handy! I am always struggling to remember which ganache I need for each occasion. And the tip about using the milk and white chocolate is a serious life saver!

  2. Gloriasays:

    5 stars
    LOL $50 of chocolate!! My daughter and husband would have found a way to eat it all (good or not). I am one of those weird people that really detests working with chocolate. These are some great tips….I have printed this out.

  3. Carmysays:

    5 stars
    Great guide! I’ve tried many times and more than once I’ve made a mistake and my ganache just wasn’t shiny at all ): I’ll have to pin this so I can have these tips on hand!

  4. Tinasays:

    This article was super helpful. I have made ganache before and just eyeballed it. The details make sense, thanks for doing this! Yes, it wouldn’t last a month in my fridge either.

  5. Annasays:

    5 stars
    Awesome tips! Ganache can be tricky but when done right, it’s pure heaven!

  6. Marisa Francasays:

    5 stars
    Great explanation!! I can’t believe you spent that much money on chocolate!! Wow! I’m pinning this guide so I have it as a reference when I need it.

  7. 5 stars
    Wow!! Thank you for your hard work and $ spent to make this easier for us! I’ve shyed away from making my own because I’ve always been sure I’d mess it up!!

  8. Heidisays:

    5 stars
    I’m really glad I read this before attempting milk chocolate ganache, thank you!! Great article!

  9. Danasays:

    5 stars
    First of all, I would like to lick those spoons. Thank you.
    Second of all, this is a super useful post. As someone who rarely bakes and has heard the term “ganache” more times than, well, thank I’ve baked, it’s nice to have a better understanding of it. It’s amazing what the different combinations do for texture! I should totally give this a shot when I bake sometime. I might just surprise myself, and I’ll owe all thanks to you, girl!

  10. Debrasays:

    5 stars
    Who knew it was this easy to make gnache? I’ve never attempted to make it, but I will now. Looks so creamy and dreamy and I love the options you give. Thank you.

  11. Patricia Godwinsays:

    Thanks for all your information. I will be making the chocolate ganache.

  12. Andreasays:

    Which ratio would you recommend for a fudgy layer in a turtle cheesecake?

  13. Monica Franzosays:

    Can I put in the refrigerator and use it the next day ? Would I leave it out until it gets to room temp,and would I just have to wisk it ,or what do you suggest?

  14. Ashleysays:

    5 stars
    An absolute amazing tutorial. Thank you so much for showing me the benefits of ganache. I was just looking for a drip, but it’s amazing to know this can become a frosting as well.

  15. chesasays:

    5 stars
    great article!very complete guide about making perfect chocolate ganache

  16. michelle y perrysays:

    5 stars
    am wanting to make ganache for donut topping. Would this work for that kind of thing?

  17. Cheriesays:

    5 stars
    Easy to follow and turned out perfect! Delicious!

  18. Hazel Baumsays:

    5 stars
    I have used equal amounts heavy cream and semi sweet chocolate chips. Just made cupcakes for a baby shower and after mixing the hot heavy cream with the semi sweet chocolate chips I let it sit for a while and cool then took a soup spoon (tablespoon), and frosted the cupcakes so the cupcake papers would not get messy. They were delicious however due to the strong taste of the semi sweet chocolate chips, I believe I will use half semi-sweet chocolate chips and half milk chocolate chips the next time and see how it works. I love chocolate ganache. Thank you for sharing this recipe even though I had already used equal parts before, this recipe is very informative. Thank you again for sharing your information. YUM

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