Chocolate Mousse
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
It’s a sin, wickedly rich and fattening, but every spoonful is glory, and that’s what chocolate mousse is supposed to be.
Julia Child, “From Julia Childs Kitchen”

This chocolate mousse recipe combines gently cooked egg yolks with melted semi-sweet chocolate and butter, then it’s lightened with whipped cream to create a luscious dessert.
Recipe type: Dessert | Cooked Custard
Serves: 4 to 6 servings
  • 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • 6 tablespoons (½ stick + 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whipping (heavy) cream
  1. Melt the chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler over hot water; stir occasionally with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until melted and smooth. Remove the bowl from the heat. Set aside. Tip: Create a double boiler by filling a saucepan with 2 inches of water and bringing it to a simmer. Turn the heat off and place a medium-sized heatproof bowl on top of the simmering water, the upper pan should not touch the water. See Melting Chocolate.
  2. Chocolate Mousse before egg yolks added
  3. In another medium-sized heatproof bowl, combine the egg yolks and 2 tablespoons sugar; place the bowl over a pan of barely simmering water (top of double boiler.) Using a wire whisk, whisk constantly until the mixture is thick and a pale-yellow color and the mixture reaches 150 degrees F using a candy or instant read thermometer to gauge the temperature. This will take from 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Tip: if need to scrape sides of bowl with rubber spatula while heating the eggs, first remove the bowl from the water, scrape the sides of the bowl, then replace the bowl over the water. Removing the bowl from the water will help ensure the eggs don’t have a chance to curdle.
  4. Chocolate Mousse Egg Yolks
  5. Add a small amount of the melted chocolate mixture to the egg yolk mixture and whisk to combine. Gradually add the remaining chocolate mixture to the egg yolk mixture, a little at a time, whisking after each addition to combine the ingredients. Add the vanilla with the last addition of chocolate and whisk to thoroughly combine.
  6. Chocolate Mousse after egg yolks added
  7. Pour the chocolate mixture into a clean large-sized bowl and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  8. Whipping Cream: In a medium-sized bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the whipping cream and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar to soft peaks.
  9. Stir about one-fourth of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Tip: Stir with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until mixture is smooth and combined. This could take 3 to 5 minutes. At first the chocolate may seem lumpy but additional stirring will smooth it out. Don’t be afraid to keep briskly stirring until the chocolate is smooth.
  10. Chocolate Mousse folding in cream
  11. Fold the remaining whipped cream into the chocolate mixture, folding until thoroughly combined and no dark or white streaks remain.
  12. Chocolate Mousse completed
  13. Spoon the mousse into 4 to 6 dessert dishes. Tip: swirl the top if desired with the back of a spoon or small offset spatula to make an attractive top. Once the mousse is set it will be too firm to make a swirled top.
  14. Cover dishes with plastic wrap and chill at least one hour before serving. Serve with Sweetened Whipped Cream and sprinkle with a bit of grated chocolate. Refrigerate leftovers.
Recipe Notes
Equipment: Heatproof Bowls Method: Double Boiler Yield: 4 to 6 servings Storage: Cover and Refrigerate

Help: Melting Chocolate

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