Lava Brownies - Handle the Heat

Lava Brownies

January 22nd, 2018
4.41 from 5 votes
4.41 from 5 votes

Lava Brownies are ultimate chocolate decadence and one of my all-time favorite desserts. Rich, chewy, gooey, and luscious with tons of chocolate flavor.

Yield: 6 lava brownies

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook: 25 minutes

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Ultra chocolaty without being too intense. Texture: Every bite is pure heaven, no joke. The brownie itself is chewy, while the chocolate lava just oozes out into a rich, gooey, and luscious surprise. Ease: Easy, but requires a few dishes and patience (you've got to make the lava filling ahead of time). Appearance: Positively mouth watering. Pros: Romantic, totally doable, better than any dessert at any restaurant. Cons: None! Would I make this again? YES YES YES.

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There aren’t enough words in the English language to describe how perfect these lava brownies are. Beautiful, delectable, delicious, heavenly, indulgent, mouthwatering, scrumptious, and wonderful. Not quite sure all those words do it justice.

One of the BEST DESSERTS I've ever made!! INCREDIBLE. Warm, ooey, gooey, rich, chewy, and loaded with chocolate flavor.

One of my favorite things in life is lava… molten chocolate lava that is. As an admitted chocoholic and lover of all things rich, gooey, and ooey, chocolate lava cakes are MY JAM. That’s why when I recently had the idea to make a lava BROWNIES, which are even more rich, chewy, and delightful, I nearly lost it.

I hoped, prayed, and wished the lava brownies would turn out as good as I envisioned in my mind while they were baking and luckily my chocolate dreams came true. You have GOT TO MAKE THESE. Seriously. Make them for Valentine’s Day or just because.

They are not for the faint of heart. Serious chocoholics only! Watch the video below to see how they’re made. It’s actually easier than you might think, though they do dirty a few bowls.

Perfect Valentine's Day chocolate dessert recipe!

One of my favorite parts is that you can actually make these ahead of time! So they’re perfect for a dinner party or special occasion.

This post was originally published in 2015, and updated in 2018 with a new video and weight measurements.

4.41 from 5 votes

How to make
Lava Brownies

Yield: 6 lava brownies
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Lava Brownies are ultimate chocolate decadence and one of my all-time favorite desserts. Rich, chewy, gooey, and luscious with tons of chocolate flavor.


For the chocolate lava::

  • 1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the brownies::

  • 1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 ounces (113 grams) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (94 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Fresh raspberries, for serving


For the chocolate lava:

  1. In a small saucepan combine the lava ingredients. Stir over low heat until melted. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool for 15 minutes. Cover and freeze for 1 hour, or until fudge-like consistency. Divide into 6 equal portions and roll into balls. Place in the freezer until ready to use.

For the brownies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 6-cup jumbo muffin tin.
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine the chocolate chips, butter, and unsweetened chocolate. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute then stir. Continue heating in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted and smooth but not scorched. Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly.
  3. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and thick, about 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla extract. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula. Add the flour and salt, folding gently until combined.
  4. Divide the batter among the prepared cups. Place a ball of chocolate into the center of each cup, pressing down slightly to cover with batter.


  1. At this point the unbaked brownies can be covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours. Bring to room temperature before baking.

    Bake for about 25 minutes, or until the brownie is cooked through but the lava is still molten. Let cool 3 to 5 minutes before turning out onto a tray and serving on individual plates. Serve immediately, with raspberries. Brownies can be reheated in the microwave to serve later, but at best served just after baking.

Recipe Video

Course : Dessert
Cuisine : American
Tessa Arias
Author: Tessa Arias

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Find Tessa on  

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    Elizabeth — October 24, 2022 at 4:15 pm

    Pure perfection! And SO easy to make. Thank you for the recipe. I haven’t been disappointed in one of your recipes yet, and I highly doubt I will be.

    • #
      Emily — October 25, 2022 at 7:25 am

      So happy to hear that, Elizabeth! Thanks for sharing!

  2. #
    Elisabeth — June 12, 2022 at 10:14 am

    This recipe is fail proof! I made some changes due to what I had in the pantry and it turned out perfect still! I made the ganache with milk chocolate and the brownie with dark chocolate (cut back a bit on the sugar to compensate). I also only made a quarter of the recipe and baked it in two 4 inch spring form pans. After cooling, I enjoyed them at the pool. Thanks for the great recipe!!

    • #
      Kiersten @ Handle the Heat — June 13, 2022 at 9:07 am

      So wonderful to hear, Elisabeth!! So happy you love these lava brownies! 🙂

  3. #
    Samantha — February 27, 2022 at 6:18 pm

    Tried these lava brownies after falling in love with your french silk pie recipe… So disappointed that when I let them cool, they caved in and were filled with air instead of lava… Tried to keep them in one piece flipping them out of the pan, but they also were stuck to the bottom 🙁

    • #
      Emily — February 28, 2022 at 4:19 pm

      So sorry you experienced issues, Samantha! It’s definitely frustrating for a recipe to not turn out right the first time, especially when it’s something new! To confirm I’m understanding you properly, when you cut into the brownies, was there any chocolate lava that oozed out, or did it just look like a baked brownie inside? Also, what did you grease your ramekins with?

      • #
        Samantha — April 3, 2022 at 9:16 am

        Honestly I don’t remember what I used to grease the ramekins anymore, but not there was no lava and it was almost hollow in the middle!

        • #
          Emily — April 4, 2022 at 4:02 pm

          How long did you let your chocolate lava balls freeze for? It sounds like they may not have been frozen enough and absorbed into your brownies while baking. There will be a bit of hollowness with this recipe, it’s expected, but there should be lava too! I hope you give this recipe another try, please let us know how it goes if you do!

  4. #
    RTO — October 20, 2020 at 10:40 pm

    Cok guzel

  5. #
    Jack Skellington — September 12, 2020 at 3:32 pm

    Made it twice. The recipe makes way too much ganache and there is no way the brownie holds together if you divide it into 6. Tried with less ganache and no dice either – it falls through the top and bottom.

  6. #
    Jade — September 30, 2019 at 5:52 pm

    Can you use box brownie mix instead?

    • #
      Tessa — October 1, 2019 at 11:33 am

      I haven’t tried.

  7. #
    alba — September 2, 2019 at 8:46 pm

    Can these be frozen to be served later? And if so, how long can they stay frozen?

    • #
      Tessa — September 5, 2019 at 9:32 am

      Please see the make ahead instructions at the bottom of the recipe card 🙂

  8. #
    Audrey — August 4, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooh, dis looks good! XD

    • #
      au — August 4, 2019 at 3:21 pm


  9. #
    Angela — July 24, 2019 at 3:41 pm

    The brownies are a hit. But how do I keep them from sticking . What is best method of greasing pan/

  10. #
    Lorna — April 11, 2019 at 10:40 pm

    Hi Tessa,
    These look amazing. Could i make a big batch and freeze them uncooked?

  11. #
    Michelle — February 20, 2019 at 9:40 am

    I made these for Valentine’s Day and they tasted amazing!! Even shared some with my in laws and they loved it. However I had one big problem with this recipe. All 6 (I baked them as two sets of 3 a few hours apart) had the tops fall into the lava cake. So the first three I made when I flipped them on the tray I lost a lot of the filling. The other three I flipped straight onto a plate to avoid losing the “lava”.
    I tried baking the second set longer to see if that would help settle the tops of the cakes but that didn’t help too much.
    Should I add more flour or something?

  12. #
    Rachel — December 25, 2018 at 7:42 pm

    How big are the muffin cups you used? I have ramekins that are each 6 oz that I’d like to try this with.

  13. #
    Baylee — August 2, 2018 at 12:58 pm

    how many calories????

  14. #
    Jenni — June 26, 2018 at 5:09 pm

    Has anyone made these is mini muffin pans? How long did you make them?

  15. #
    Karen — February 14, 2018 at 3:15 pm

    Hi. I know it calls for unsweetened, but I’m making them tonight and realized I’m all out. Can I substitute dark chocolate and just lower the amount of white sugar? If so, by how much?

  16. #
    Nina — February 11, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    Try using a stainless steel melon baller to create lava balls and then roll them in cocoa powder, then, rechill. I use splash of.Grand Marinier liquor in the lava ball ganache mix but you could use cherry or raspberry liquor instead for Valentines Day.

  17. #
    Rachel — February 3, 2018 at 8:47 am

    How do you chop chocolate so it doesn’t get all static clingy and get all over the kitchen? I often avoid recipes that call for chopped chocolate because it drives me batty!

    • #
      Tessa — February 4, 2018 at 2:21 pm

      Hi Rachel, are you using a plastic cutting board to chop chocolate? I notice that can really create the annoying static. Try using wood instead!

  18. #
    Laura — January 27, 2018 at 11:29 am

    Can these be made in a regular sized muffin tin for smaller portions?

  19. #
    cookie — January 26, 2018 at 3:50 pm

    Hi Tessa,
    I found you on the Instagram. (thank you, Instagram)
    Can I say, I am 100% in love with your recipe because I am obsession with all kinds of lava cakes.
    Thank you and happy Friday.

  20. #
    Nichole — January 22, 2018 at 2:59 pm

    This look absolutely delicious! I was going to ask how these were as “leftovers” but I see you already mentioned that in the post. You’re so great about thinking of everything!

    • #
      Tessa — January 23, 2018 at 4:21 pm

      Awe thanks Nichole!! xo

  21. #
    Jamie — January 22, 2018 at 10:37 am

    Can this be made with Gluten Free flour?

    • #
      Tessa — January 23, 2018 at 4:21 pm

      I haven’t tried that yet, but if you give it a go let us know how it turns out!

  22. #
    Tim Miller — October 3, 2016 at 12:28 pm

    This reminds me of the movie Chef where Jon Favreau has a melt down over a food critic talking about his lava cake being under cooked. All kidding aside, this looks delicious!

  23. #
    Mitz — July 15, 2016 at 7:00 am

    I made these, looked great out of the oven, but the wire rack was a bad idea, when I inverted them the centers fell right out. Any ideas?

  24. #
    Cam — December 6, 2015 at 5:31 pm

    I just made these for my parents when they came to visit. AMAZING. They loved it so much

  25. #
    Josh — February 8, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    Thanks, i’ll try this one 🙂 thank you

  26. #
    Helen — February 4, 2015 at 6:40 am

    Josh- the white stuff is icing sugar, it can be sifted or sprinkled on top of the brownies for decoration. As for checking if they’re cooked, you can gently push a metal skewer through the top of the brownie, if the lava comes out molten and steaming you’re good to go!

  27. #
    Ashle | Spoonful of Flavor — February 2, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    There is no way that I would be able to resist one of these gooey lava brownies! I love that they are single serving too so I don’t have to share!

  28. #
    Josh — February 1, 2015 at 5:53 pm

    I have a small question, what is the white thing on top of the brownie, and how can i check if the brownie is cooked already and the lava is molten? 🙂 sorry for the newbie question 🙂

  29. #
    Marly — February 1, 2015 at 8:46 am

    Oh man, Tessa, those lava brownies look soo good! Look at that gooey chocolate lava. I can’t wait to give these a try!

  30. #
    Gaby — January 31, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    I am totally in love with these lava brownies! I am making these!!!

  31. #
    Ronja — January 31, 2015 at 4:13 am

    Oh, I want it! I waaaaaaaaaaaant it! Can’t wait till the chocolate is frozen!

  32. #
    Sarah | Broma Bakery — January 30, 2015 at 7:27 am

    I love that they’re lava brownies and not lava cake. Like, be still my heart! Can it be my Valentine?

  33. #
    Andrea @ Cooking with a Wallflower — January 30, 2015 at 6:58 am

    I thought nothing could be better than brownies. But these? Oh my god! I want some and it’s 6 in the morning. If only I didn’t have to go to work today.

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