Easy Ganache Recipes

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Delicious, rich and smooth, ganache (pronounced gah-nash) is a blend of chocolate and cream, resulting in a sweet confection used to glaze cake and pastries, as a filling for cakes or for making truffles. Used as a glaze, ganache forms a glossy, smooth coating that melts on the tongue, and looks elegant on tortes and cakes. When made as a filling for cake or candy, ganache is light, rich and filled with chocolate goodness.

Ganache is not difficult to make, and has only two main ingredients. There are many versions of ganache, however, depending on the preference of the cook and the intended use of the mixture. For the best results, always use gourmet quality chocolate when making ganache, and don’t replace the cream with milk or water.

Ganache Glaze Recipes

Basic Ganache Glaze Recipe (makes 2 cups of glaze)

This rich glaze is best over a decadent chocolate cake or torte. Have your cake ready and waiting while you make the ganache.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 9 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum (optional)
  1. Chop the chocolate into small pieces, and place in a large mixing bowl.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the cream over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Keep a very close eye on the cream, and as soon as it begins to boil, remove from heat.
  3. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate.
  4. Stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture smooth and glossy. Add rum if desired.
  5. Let the ganache cool slightly at room temperature to set, then pour over your cake. Use a spatula to spread evenly, or pour on top and allow it to run down the sides of the cake.

easy ganache recipes easy ganache recipes

White Chocolate Ganache Recipe (makes 1-1/2 cups of glaze)

Use this sweet alternative to regular ganache to glaze a chocolate cake, orange or lemon cake or on top of red velvet cake.

Ingredients:

  • 10 ounces white chocolate
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  1. Cut the chocolate into small pieces, and place in mixing bowl.
  2. Cut the butter into small cubes.
  3. Bring the heavy cream to just boiling, then remove immediately from heat.
  4. Pour the cream over the chocolate, stir together until smooth.
  5. Stir in the butter, mix until smooth and glossy.
  6. Let the ganache cool, then glaze your cake or pastry.

Lemon Ganache Recipe (makes 2 cups of glaze)

Add a splash of citrusy tartness to your ganache for a decadently delicious glaze.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  1. Chop chocolate into small pieces and place in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Pour cream into a saucepan, and heat over medium-high flame until the cream just begins to boil.
  3. Remove from heat, and pour cream over chocolate. Stir until chocolate melts.
  4. Stir in lemon zest and lemon juice.
  5. When ganache is smooth, let cool, then use as a glaze over chocolate cake, cheesecake or sponge cake.

Ganache as a Filling

If you prefer a lighter, fluffier texture that is perfect for a filling between cake layers, or as a creamy frosting on a cake, you can whip your ganache to an airy consistency. When using ganache as filling, allow it to chill overnight in the refrigerator before whipping. You want to use a hand mixer to whip the ganache until it is airy, but not granular, so pay close attention while you work. You won’t need to mix longer than five minutes.

You can whip any of the glaze recipes for use as filling, or add a flavoring or liqueur to the basic recipe for a new twist. If you want to add a liqueur, reduce the cream in the basic recipe by ¼ cup, then add ¼ cup of any of the following:

  • Tia Maria – coffee flavor
  • Frangelico – hazelnut flavor
  • Cointreau – orange flavor
  • Crème de menthe – mint flavor
  • Crème de framboise – raspberry flavor
  • Rum
  • Brandy

If you prefer to add flavor without alcohol, use a few drops of gourmet flavoring oils. Don’t use inexpensive or artificially flavored extracts; you want excellent quality flavors found in the gourmet section of the market. Try adding a few drops of any of these to your basic ganache recipe:

  • Amaretto
  • Almond
  • Clove
  • Cinnamon
  • Strawberry
  • Cherry

You can add fruit puree or nut butters for a lighter, fresh taste against the rich, dark chocolate. Reduce the cream in the basic recipe by ½ cup, then add ½ cup of any of the following:

  • Mango puree
  • Strawberry puree
  • Raspberry puree
  • Passionfruit puree
  • Hazelnut butter
  • Peanut butter
  • Almond butter

Ganache Truffle Recipes

Ganache can be chilled, then rolled into balls as exquisitely delicious truffles. When making ganache truffles, you will use a higher ratio of chocolate to cream than when making glaze.

Ganache Chocolate Truffle Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups milk chocolate chips
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup half and half
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon real vanilla extract
  • Powdered toppings
  1. Place chocolate in microwave-safe bowl, and heat on 50% power for 2 minutes. Remove and stir.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the heavy cream and half-and-half until bubbles appear at the edges of the pan. Do not let the mixture boil.
  3. Remove from heat and immediately pour over the chocolate chips. Stir until smooth
  4. Add vanilla extract, stir thoroughly.
  5. Cover and chill in the refrigerator until the ganache is thick, then use an electric mixer for a few minutes to lighten the consistency.
  6. Roll teaspoons of ganache into balls, then roll each ball in any of the following:
  • Confectioner’s sugar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Melted dark chocolate
  • Crushed nuts
  • Coconut flakes

Ganache is so easy to make, so versatile and so delicious, it is sure to become a staple of your baking repertoire. Whether you want to glaze a decadent chocolate torte, fill a cake with light frosting, or pop a truffle into your mouth, ganache will rise to the occasion with pure chocolate goodness.

Last Updated: June 7, 2012
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About Michelle Ullman Michelle Ullman has lived and gardened in Southern California since childhood. A freelance writer, she covers topics ranging from gardening and home improvement to health issues. She also has experience as a catalog copywriter and poet. Michelle has trained and worked as a respiratory therapist and surgical technologist, but prefers to spend her time gardening, and walking with her dog. Michelle holds a Bachelor's Degree from Redlands University in Business Management. 

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