Triple Layer Chocolate Mousse

This cake works wonderfully for any occasion. It’s light enough to follow the heaviest of dinners.

The recipe is time-consuming but easy to make and well worth the effort. My only cautions when making this cake: Do not to rush and use real white chocolate.

I have found that making the cake layer one day and the mousse layers the next helps for this to “set up” beautifully.

If you rush the cake by not letting each layer cool completely, the layers might separate when you remove the spring form pan. If white chocolate chips are used — which I’ve done — instead of white chocolate, the chips won’t melt with the same consistency and the mousse won’t hold.


First layer
Chocolate cake
1 stick of unsalted butter (1/2 cup)
¼ cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
½ cup of boiling water
1 cup of gluten free flour
½ teaspoon of xantham gum
1 cup of sugar
½ teaspoon of baking soda
¼ teaspoon of salt
¼ cup of whole milk
1 teaspoon of white vinegar
1 extra large egg
1 teaspoon of almond extract

Second layer
Chocolate Mousse
5 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
5 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup coffee
4 eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons sugar

Third layer
White Chocolate Mousse
8 ounces of white chocolate
2 cups of whipping cream


First Layer
Bring the butter, egg and milk to room temperature. Pour milk in measuring cup and add the white vinegar. This will create buttermilk. (No need to buy a quart when you only need a quarter-cup.) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and dust with flour a 9-inch spring form cake pan and tap out any excess flour. 

Place the butter and cocoa powder in mixing bowl and pour in the boiling water and stir. Let stand for a couple of minutes and then with whisk until blended. (I use the whisk attachment on my mixer stand on a medium speed)

Sift the flour, xantham gum, sugar, baking soda, and salt into another medium bowl. Add the egg and almond extract to the buttermilk and whisk together in measuring cup. Gradually whisk buttermilk mixture into cocoa mixture; whisk on medium speed until smooth. Then add flour mixture in four additions, whisking to blend between additions. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake the cake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Run knife around pan edges to release cake. Cool completely and then remove from cake pan. 

Clean the cake pan and then place the cake back in the pan. Create a collar for the second and third layers. To do this, measure out 20 inches of waxed paper. Fold the paper in half and then carefully place it in the cake pan so that it raise the rim by maybe 6 inches. You might need to tape the ends together.

Second Layer
Whip 1¾ cups of cream to form light peaks then chill in the refrigerator. Finely chop the two chocolates in food processor and then melt the chocolate with ¼ cup of cream in a large mixing bowl set over simmering water. While the chocolate is melting, whip the eggs with the sugar until very fluffy and thick, about 10 minutes. Add the coffee to the melted chocolate. As the mixture thickens, quickly stir in the beaten eggs, and then let cool. Once the mixture is cool fold in the whipped cream. You can use the whisk attachment with speed on medium-high. Once blended pour mixture into spring form pan on top of the chocolate cake and chill until firm, about 2 to 3 hours.

Third Layer
In a food processor grind the chocolate into a course mealy consistency. Then place the chocolate and 1/3 cup of cream in a bowl and mix. Either in the microwave or over a double boiler, melt the chocolate. If you choose to do it in the microwave it takes two minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. If you choose to do it in a bowl over boiling water it might take four minutes, stirring constantly.

Let the chocolate mixture cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.

Once the chocolate is cooled, whip the cream to form peaks and then spoon in the chocolate with the mixer set on high and blend completely. Once it is blended pour over the chocolate layer of mouse and chill for four hours.

Ellen's Tips

Use real white chocolate and don’t rush the work. As I said above, if white chocolate chips are used — which I’ve done — instead of white chocolate, the chips won’t melt with the same consistency and the mousse won’t hold.