Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake

This Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake is THE STUFF OF DREAMS. Imagine a brownie but with mega sophistication. It has a light, fudgy, magical interior that gives way to a crispy, meringue top. You won't need to separate eggs for this (it's pretty fuss free; made just like brownies). Delicious with crème fraîche, perfectly-sweetened whipped cream, frosty vanilla-bean ice cream and/or homemade caramel sauce.
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Welcome to the magic that is this Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake!

What This Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake Is and Isn’t
(this is important)

First, let me tell you there is zero separating egg whites from yolks in this recipe. This feels important to say.

I have a meringue cake in The Cake Book (the Chocolate Horchata Meringue Cake and it is 🔥) that is made by separating your eggs. Most meringue cakes require this step, plus the whipping up of, yes, meringue.

For many meringue cakes, including mine from my book, you have to take the cake out of the oven mid-bake and add the meringue before you finish baking. Which is fine. But this cake isn’t that.

This also isn’t going to have a pile of meringue over the top of the cake, let’s just get that out of the way.

Now that we’ve talked about what it isn’t, let’s talk about what it is.

It’s a very simple cake batter that mixes up very similarly to my Fudgy, Crinkly, Shiny Brownies. You melt some chocolate (and other stuff) and then combine it with some very whipped and frothy eggs, add a little flour and shazam. You’ve got the most delicious brownies.

And if you love chocolate and espresso together (like I do!), check out: one-bowl Espresso Chocolate Chip Cookies (swoon), Chocolate Espresso Muffins and this Chocolate Espresso Cake!

And these Fudgy Brownie Cookies are BEYOND.

A fork taking a bite out of a slice of cake.

We’re going to create this cake in much the same fashion. The biggest difference is the quantity of eggs. We’re using a whopping six eggs plus one egg yolk.

The result: a very brownie-like cake texture that is fudgy in the middle and a bit more cake-like towards the edges.

The top of the brownie meringue cake puffs up quite tall and get’s all crispy in a way that’s similar to a crispy meringue cookie (like these crispy fabulous french meringues here) rather than soft and fluffy and toasty like a lemon meringue pie (or like the Toasted Marshmallow Meringue on these Pumpkin Bars).

I absolutely love chocolate everything! Check out more chocolate deliciousness such as Chocolate Guinness Cake  (that pairs perfectly with this creamy 5-Minute Chocolate Malt Buttercream), this super simple Chocolate Bundt Cake  and this dreamyyyy Chocolate Cake with Marshmallow Frosting!

This chocolate meringue cake is delicious with vanilla ice cream and homemade brown sugar caramel!

Chocolate cake fresh from the oven.

The Baker’s Guide to Measuring Flour

One of the biggest (and most common) mistakes in baking is how we measure flour. If you find yourself without a scale, see my top tips on how to properly measure flour for the perfect amount every time!

Step-by-Step Instructions for this Brownie Meringue Cake

Below are step-by-step photos (with captions) to make your Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake perfect every time! My biggest tips are:

  • Use a 9-inch (23-cm), 10-cup Springform pan. Springforms have nice, high sides (the one I use has 3-inch (8-cm) sides). The cake rises quite a bit during baking and you’ll need those high sides to keep it contained. *IF* you use a regular cake pan, make sure it has 10-cup capacity with at least 3-inch (8-cm) tall sides.
  • Let your chocolate cool before adding it to the whipped up eggs. If you add the warm chocolate to the frothed up eggs you run the risk of deflating them. Let the melted chocolate cool (stirring frequently) until it is close to room temperature before adding to your whipped eggs.
  • Make sure your eggs are at room temperature. Not only will room temperature eggs whip up to loftier heights than colder eggs, but you also don’t want the cold eggs mixing with slightly warm chocolate. You want both the frothy eggs and melted chocolate to be about the same temperature when you combine them.
  • Really whip up your eggs. Go big. Using a hand or stand mixer, really whip up your eggs. I want the mixture to have doubled in size and lightened in color. If you watch the video you’ll see the progression. We aren’t using any leavening (baking soda or baking powder) in this cake, the whipped up eggs are what will make it light and fabulous.
All of the ingredients that go in the cake.
STEP ONE: Gather your ingredients: Butter, cocoa powder, espresso (or coffee or hot water), eggs, egg yolk, granulated sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, espresso powder (optional), fine sea salt and flour.
The ingredients for go into the melted chocolate.
STEP TWO: Melt the butter, cocoa powder, espresso and chocolate and set aside to cool, stirring frequently.
A bowl with whipped up eggs.
STEP THREE: Whip the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, espresso powder and salt until double in volume and lightened in color.
A hand mixer mixing melted chocolate into whipped eggs.
STEP FOUR: Add the cooled chocolate to the whipped up eggs until well blended.
Chocolate cake batter in a glass bowl.
STEP FOUR: The mixture will look like this when done. Use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl so that everything is combined.
Chocolate cake batter with flour on top.
STEP FIVE: Fold in the flour until just combined. The mixture will be thick; make sure there aren’t any flour pockets.
STEP SIX: I don’t know if you can tell from this photo, but a piece of parchment paper lines the bottom of the greased pan.
A bowl pouring cake batter into a prepared pan.
STEP SIX: Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan and bake for 55 minutes.
Chocolate cake fresh from the oven on a white surface.
STEP SEVEN: The cake will be puffed up fresh from the oven.
A knife is releasing a cake from a springform pan.
STEP SEVEN: After 10 minutes run a knife along the edge of the pan and release the sides of the springform. The cake will deflate, crinkle and crack as it cools. Let the cake finish cooling before serving.
A piece of chocolate cake with a bite out of it.

Best Baking Tools for This Meringue Cake

These are the tools I used to make this cake:

Electric Stand Mixer (I prefer the Artisan to the Professional)

Or Breville Handheld Mixer, this one has a bunch of speeds, dough hooks, whisks. I was never a fan of handhelds until I got this one!

A whisk and/or a spatula for making sure your chocolate is smooth and your flour is properly blended.

My, never-let-me-down Nordic Ware Springform.

My trusty scale for precision.

These heat-safe nesting glass bowls for melting the chocolate and that I really need everyone to own.

Knife, love this chef’s knife with the white handle.

For more fun shopping, check out my Shop (aka my favorite things!).

Half of a whole cake cut in slices on a white surface.

More Meringue Fun

As mentioned earlier, this isn’t your typical ‘meringue’ cake and I’m using the term loosely.

But if we want to dive more into whipping up eggs and churning out something beautiful, take a look at these recipes: Perfect French Meringues, Chocolate Orange Meringue Cookies (these are super fun to make!) or my favorite Chocolate French Macaron recipe (with Marshmallow Filling, love).

 A slice of half-eaten cake on a white surface.

The Inspiration for This Cake

One of my most favorite cookbooks is Nigella Lawson‘s How to Eat. If you don’t have it, get it! It was the book that made me fall in love with cookbooks. The first cookbook I read cover-to-cover.

And if I had to say the one person that inspires me about the kind of baker/recipe author I’d like to be, it would be her (and this book).

One of my favorite recipes is the Gooey Chocolate Puddings in How to Eat (I mention it in The Cake Book as well; I love it so much!). The recipe starts off:

“Before you’ve even taken your coat off, put the chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler above simmering water. Whisk every now and again until melted.”

Nigella Lawson, How to Eat

This might be my favorite start to any recipe, ever.

I want this recipe to have that same energy. You’ve just gotten home and you want a really delicious dessert and this is it. Start melting the chocolate, frothing up the eggs and shove it in the oven.

Then go change into something comfortable or sparkly, depends on who’s coming to dinner.

While the cake bakes and cools you can throw your dinner together. By dessert time it’s perfectly cool (but maybe still slightly warm) and ready to be topped with crème fraîche, barely-sweetened whipped cream, some frosty vanilla-bean ice cream and/or my favorite homemade caramel sauce.

Rebecca Firth

A quick note on safety! This cake has a fudge-like center. To ensure its safety, make sure the cake is baked to at least 160°F (71°C) when tested in the center with an instant-read thermometer. This is especially important for those with compromised immune systems or our pregnant friends.

Enjoy your fudgy chocolate brownie meringue cake!

Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake

This Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Meringue Cake is THE STUFF OF DREAMS. Imagine a brownie but with mega sophistication. It has a light, fudgy, magical interior that gives way to a crispy, meringue top. You won't need to separate eggs for this (it's pretty fuss free; made just like brownies). Delicious with crème fraîche, perfectly-sweetened whipped cream, frosty vanilla-bean ice cream and/or homemade caramel sauce.
5 from 5 reviews
Print Save Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Cake
Keyword: Chocolate, Cake, Meringue, Brownie, Dessert, Baking, Fudgy
Servings: 8 Servings

Ingredients

  • 12 tablespoons (170 g) unsalted butter, (cut into 24 pieces)
  • 3/4 cup (64 g) unsweetened dark (Dutch process) cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup (56 g) fresh hot espresso ((you can also use strong coffee or hot water))
  • 1 1/2 cups (255 g) dark chocolate, ( finely chopped)
  • 6 large eggs, (room temperature)
  • 1 large egg yolk, (room temperature)
  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (165 g) dark brown sugar, (packed)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons (19 g) real vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder ((optional))
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 cup (135 g) all-purpose flour (how to measure flour)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF (177ºC). Note that as soon as you put the cake in the oven, you'll reduce the heat to 325ºF (170ºC). Grease a 9×3-inch (23×8-cm) springform pan and place a piece of parchment across the bottom before securing the sides, so it lines just the bottom of the pan. See photo.
  • To a medium, heat-safe bowl add the butter, cocoa powder and hot espresso. Stir to coat. It won't be enough liquid to really do much, but nudge it around. Add the chocolate and set over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Do not let the bowl touch the water or let the water come to a boil. Stir frequently until melted and smooth and set aside to cool.
  • In an electric stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add the eggs, egg yolk, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, espresso and salt and whisk on medium-high for about 8 to 10 minutes or until thick, light in color and doubled in volume.
  • Slowly add in the cooled, melted chocolate with the mixer on medium-low. Then run the mixer for 30 seconds on low to combine. Take the bowl out of the mixer and fold in the flour until just combined. Gently run a whisk through to make sure there aren't any flour pockets. Be gentle as you don't want to deflate the cake batter.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and place in the center of the oven. Immediately lower the temperature to 325℉ (170ºC) and bake for 55 minutes. Once done, set on a cooling rack. After 10 minutes run a knife along the edge of the cake and carefully remove the outer edge of the pan. Let cool completely before serving (if you can). It will deflate and crack a bit as it cools.
    I like the cake best the same day it is bake as the top will still be crispy. The next day it is still delicious, but the crispy top will soften.

Notes

Electric-Stand Mixer or Hand-Held Mixer

The directions include using a stand mixer and in the photos + video I used a hand-held. Both work great when making this cake. Could you make this cake without either? If you have the stamina and arm strength I say go for it. It *might* not whip as high as when you use a mixer which may result in a denser cake. 

Dark Chocolate

Use a nice dark chocolate that’s made for melting. Chocolate chips will work in a pinch but they resist melting because of their ingredients (they’re meant to hold their shape). If you have options, pick chocolate bars, callets or discs as they’ll melt the easiest.
 I’m loving these baking chips and these are my most favorite Callebaut callets; I used the Callebaut when testing this recipe (delicious chocolate, melts beautifully — LOVE).
Whatever chocolate you use, make sure it’s good quality and can handle melting.

Dutch-Process Cocoa Powder

Double chocolate (both chips and unsweetened cocoa powder) mean this cake has mega flavor. I love this Hershey’s Dark as it’s easy to find and yields beautiful flavor + color; you can however use any unsweetened cocoa powder you have on hand. I also love this King Arthur Flour unsweetened cocoa powder which is a gorgeous color and flavor (and definitely a splurge!).

To Serve

This cake is great with crème fraîche, barely-sweet whipped cream, some good vanilla-bean ice cream and/or my favorite caramel sauce. I love it the day it is baked.
Note that overnight the crispy top will soften. It will still be delicious. If you don’t cut the cake the day it’s baked, the meringue top will soften and you’ll get cleaner, crisper cuts. If  you like the more rustic look (I do!), cut the cake the same day you bake it.
 

Want more cake tips/ideas/recipes?! Check out my 10 Favorite Easy Tips for Perfect Cakes! xx

Thanks for baking with me! Please rate + comment this recipe and tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your beautiful treats! xo

Comments

Leave a Comment & Rate this Recipe

I love your comments, reviews and questions! If you love this recipe, please rate it when you leave a comment. Star ratings 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 help people discover my recipes. Your support means a lot, I look forward to chatting with you!

Rebecca xox

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6 Comments

  • Daisy Tanner April 13, 2024 at 6:42 PM

    My top wasn’t dull and crackly like yours it was smooth and dark. Not sure what happened.

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth April 14, 2024 at 2:52 PM

      Hi Daisy!
      I’m thinking the eggs and sugar needed to be whipped more. The more they are whipped, the lighter in color the top will be and all of that air whipped into the batter will cause the cake to rise and then fall, causing the cracks. Let me know if you have any other questions!
      xo

      Reply
  • Anna April 13, 2023 at 3:33 PM

    5 stars
    Oh I have been so excited for this recipe, I can’t wait to make it! Looks decadent

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth April 13, 2023 at 3:41 PM

      Hi Anna! That makes me so happy to hear!! Enjoy and let me know if you have any questions!! xo

      Reply
  • Lorie K. April 3, 2023 at 8:13 PM

    5 stars
    I’ve been waiting for you to post this one. I can’t wait to try ❤️

    Reply