How to Make the Perfect Ganache for Everything - Lessons Learned with $50 of Chocolate and a Half Gallon of Cream | Cupcake Project
MENU

Never miss a recipe!

Subscribe now

How to Make the Perfect Ganache for Everything – Lessons Learned with $50 of Chocolate and a Half Gallon of Cream


Share:
Home  »  Recipes  »  frostingsreviews  »  How to Make the Perfect Ganache for Everything – Lessons Learned with $50 of Chocolate and a Half Gallon of Cream

Chocolate ganache is incredibly versatile. By combining just two ingredients, chocolate and heavy whipping cream, you can create cake filling, poured glaze, a spread or piped frosting, a decorative drizzle, or the base for truffles. How do two ingredients come together to make so many different things? The key is knowing the percentage of each to use and what temperature the mixture should be for your application.

I’ve written about chocolate ganache before, but never fully explored it. Below, you’ll find the beginning of a guide written for Allrecipes where I share the ins and outs of ganache. I used nearly $50 of chocolate and a half gallon of heavy whipping cream to learn the lessons that I am sharing here – so read up and save yourself some time and money.

The Basics

The Ingredients

You’ll need heavy whipping cream and chocolate to make ganache. Because there are only two ingredients in ganache, the quality of the chocolate really matters. Choose the best semisweet, bittersweet, or dark chocolate 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 ganache). If the chocolate isn’t already chips or thin discs, chop it finely so it will melt easily.

The Procedure

No matter what ratio of chocolate to cream you are using, the basic procedure for making 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.
  3. Let the cream sit on the chocolate for a minute.
  4. Stir the ganache until the cream and the chocolate are fully combined.

Chocolate to Cream Ratio

As I mentioned above, the ratio 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

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 cake filling. 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.

Ganache

Two Parts Chocolate to One Part Cream

Ganache

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.

Ganache Frosting

This ganache 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

A 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.

Cooled Ganache

Here’s how the three different types of ganache look after they have cooled in a bowl for two hours. The two parts cream ganache 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 2:1 chocolate to cream ratio, I suggest a 3:1 chocolate to cream ratio.

Flavored Ganache

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).

Storing 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.

Love it? Share it!

11 comments on “How to Make the Perfect Ganache for Everything – Lessons Learned with $50 of Chocolate and a Half Gallon of Cream”

  1. Amandasays:

    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:

    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:

    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:

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

  6. Marisa Francasays:

    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. 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:

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

  9. Danasays:

    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:

    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. Paulinesays:

    I am making a veg garden with picket fence of wooden lolly sticks. Which gnache would be best to support my fence please

Show All Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected!

Join my mailing list - and receive a free eBook!

Sign me up!
Next Post