Basil Chocolate Cake Recipe | PBS Food

The recipe calls for a whole whopping cup of chopped basil! Sprinkle confectioner’s sugar and some fresh basil leaves as a garnish or drizzle on berries. Aube Giroux shares more about this dish in the Kitchen Vignettes blog.


Yield: Serves 8 to 10

Occasion: ,


  • 8 oz. dark bittersweet chocolate (I like to use 4 oz unsweetened and 4 oz bittersweet)
  • 1 1/2 stick unsalted butter (3/4 cup)
  • 1 cup finely minced fresh basil, loosely packed
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp. cane sugar
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 2 Tbsp. non-GMO cornstarch (or tapioca flour)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Optional garnish:
  • 1 tsp confectioner’s sugar for dusting
  • Fresh basil leaves


  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Grease an 8-inch cake pan and lightly dust it with flour. Gently heat the chocolate and butter in a double boiler, just until melted. Remove from heat and stir in the minced basil. Mix well and allow to cool slightly (not fully or it will harden).
  3. In a large bowl, beat the 4 egg yolks with 1/2 cup of the sugar until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture turns pale yellow and forms silky ribbons when the whisk is lifted. Whisk into melted chocolate until incorporated.
  4. Whisk together the ground almonds, cornstarch, and salt, and incorporate into chocolate mixture, mixing well.
  5. Beat the 4 egg whites with 1 Tbsp sugar to stiff peaks. Gently and gradually fold into chocolate mixture. Mix delicately so the whites don’t lose their spring, until fully incorporated. Immediately pour into prepared pan and bake in 350 F oven for about 35 minutes or until knife inserted in centre comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove and cool on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature. To garnish, dust with confectioners sugar, top with a few sprigs of fresh basil and serve.
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