This 2-ingredient chocolate ganache is the easiest way to elevate your desserts. Made from cream and chocolate chips, it can be used as a glaze, as frosting, a filling, or even to make truffles with.
If I had to favourite out a single dessert element, it would be chocolate ganache. This staple recipe is incredibly smooth and silky, not to mention absolutely delicious. I love it so much I’ve put together a comprehensive guide about homemade chocolate ganache – everything from making it with its varying ratios, to using it, to storing it. It is so versatile, I guarantee it’ll become your go-to baking staple, too.
What is chocolate ganache?
Ganache is a dessert element made from a mixture of heated cream and chocolate that has been whisked well together. Chocolate ganache can be used as a dip, topping, glaze, filling, or frosting, it’s incredibly versatile. The quantity required for each ingredient will depend on how you plan to use it. See Ganache Ratios below for more information.
2 Ingredient Chocolate Ganache
- Thickened Cream or Heavy Cream: This type of cream has approximately 35% fat content. Do not use milk, half-and-half, or sour cream as the ganache won’t set up properly. For a dairy-free alternative, replace cream with an equal amount of full-fat canned coconut milk. Shake the can well before opening.
- Chocolate: I recommend using semi-sweet chocolate typically found in the baking aisle. You can also use dark, milk, or white chocolate. You may have been told not to use chocolate chips for making ganache – I challenge this statement! Whilst using pure chocolate from a bar yields an incredible ganache, making ganache from chocolate chips is perfectly fine for your home-baked goods. In fact, I’ve used them for this post to demonstrate just how great they are for ganache.
How is it made?
There are several methods you can choose from to make chocolate ganache.
- In a bain-marie: this is also known as a double boiler. Place cream and chocolate in a heat proof bowl. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, on low heat. The simmering water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. The steam will gently heat the cream and chocolate until melted. Mix with a metal spoon until well incorporated. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly before using.
- In the microwave: place cream and chocolate in a heat proof, microwave safe bowl and melt in short 20 second bursts, stirring between each burst. Mix until smooth before use.
- Pouring hot cream on chocolate: heat cream well in a saucepan or microwave but do not simmer. Pour cream over chocolate and mix until smooth. This method may require additional heating if the chocolate isn’t very finely chopped.
Chocolate Ganache Ratios
I hear you asking what are the ratios for different chocolate ganache? Well, the proportions of chocolate to cream differ based on its use. There are three main ratios, and below are the standard guidelines for each.
Note: the method for making ganache always remains the same. Ratios are based on weight, not volume.
1:2 Ratio — 1 part chocolate to 2 parts cream
This ganache is thin and pourable, for every one part chocolate, double the amount of cream is used. It is great for dipping, as a thin glaze, topping ice cream with, or used in a chocolate fondue (fountain). I use this type of ganache to moisten chocolate cake with instead of using syrup. This ganache does not set up hard, but will slightly thicken as it cools. You can whip this type of ganache (sometimes with a few tablespoons of butter) to form a pipeable frosting as pictured above.
1:1 Ratio — 1 part chocolate to 1 part cream
This is the most commonly made ganache and is used as a glaze, on drip cakes, cheesecakes, tarts, or on top of eclairs. This is my favourite type of ganache and the one I go-to the most. This ganache will slightly hold it’s shape when swirled over itself. It’s incredibly silky, with a custard-like consistency. It’s best to allow the ganache to remain warm for drip cakes, set it aside for 10-15 minutes at most before using.
2:1 Ratio — 2 parts chocolate to 1 part cream
This ganache is very thick. Whilst the the standard ratio is 2:1 I often increase it to 3:1 as pictured so it holds up better in humid climate. Stir this type of ganache very well to avoid it splitting. This type of ganache has to be carefully heated so the chocolate doesn’t seize. If using a microwave, heat in short 10 second zaps. If using a double boiler, ensure the saucepan is on the lowest heat possible, and the water is not touching the bowl. This type of ganache will thicken to a fudge-like consistency once cooled. Chilled ganache can be scooped and rolled into decadent chocolate truffles. Room temperature ganache can be used as a thick filling for macarons, cookies or tarts.
Does chocolate ganache set hard?
Chocolate ganache will always thicken as it cools but it will not set hard like melted, tempered chocolate. Using a 2:1 ratio of chocolate to cream, then chilling it, will create the most solid type of ganache, similar to the consistency of fudge. Avoid mixing cooled ganache as it will go lumpy.
How to fix split chocolate ganache?
The most common reason for chocolate ganache splitting is incorrect temperature. If the cream is too hot (or not hot enough), or if the chocolate seizes due to high heat, the ganache will break and become grainy. Thankfully, there are several easy fixes you can use to save your ganache.
- Whisk vigorously – this fix usually works on very warm ganache that looks grainy. Simply whisk the ganache really well until it smooths out again, this technique emulsifies the fat and water components of ganache. This should be the first step to fix a broken ganache before adding anything to it to maintain its ratio.
- Warm and stir – if your ganache has cooled and is looking broken, warm it slightly in the microwave or in a saucepan on the lowest heat setting. Stir it gently until the ganache looks smooth again.
- Add more cream – heat 1/8 cup cream until steaming but not simmering. Pour into broken ganache and whisk until smooth. I like this method as it doesn’t thin out the ganache as much as adding milk might.
- Add a splash of mix – warm your ganache slightly. In a separate bowl, heat up a 1/4 cup of milk and add a teaspoon at a time to the ganache while whisking well. This fix works best for ganache that will be used as a glaze.
- Add more chocolate – if you’re aiming for a stiffer ganache, adding more chocolate might help fix any splitting. The ganache needs to be warmed up for this method to allow the chocolate to melt into it. Add about a tablespoon at a time and whisk in well.
What is the difference between chocolate frosting and chocolate ganache?
Traditional frosting, called buttercream, is made by whipping butter and sugar until it’s light and fluffy. This type of frosting is usually cloyingly sweet! Ganache on the other hand can be whipped into a frosting consistency and used instead of traditional buttercream. To make whipped ganache, you need to use the 1:2 ratio of chocolate to cream. Allow it to cool completely, then beat with an electric beater on medium speed until fluffy and light in colour. If making whipped ganache to frost a cake with, I prefer to stabilise it first. To do this, whip 2 tablespoons of softened butter with an electric mixer until pale in colour. Add the cooled ganache and continue to whip on medium speed until light and fluffy.
How to Store Chocolate Ganache
Due to its high fat and sugar content, chocolate ganache can be safely left covered at room temperate for several days. It can also be stored in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. Refrigerating the ganache will harden it, but it can be heated up or brought back to room temperature before using. Ganache can also be safely stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow it to thaw in the fridge overnight, then bring back to room temperature before using. If the ganache splits for any reason, check my best fixes for broken/oily/grainy ganache above.
How to Make Chocolate Ganache
1:2 Ratio Chocolate to Cream
- 255 g chocolate chips
- 2 cups thickened cream
1:1 Ratio Chocolate to Cream
- 255 g chocolate chips
- 1 cup thickened cream
2:1 Ratio Chocolate to Cream
- 255 g chocolate chips
- ½ cup thickened cream
- Place chocolate and cream in a heat proof bowl. Set aside.
- Place a small saucepan on the stove on low heat, add water to fill ¼ of the saucepan, let it come to a simmer.
- Place bowl over the simmering water and gently stir until chocolate melts and incorporates into the cream completely.
- Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly before using.
- Alternatively, place cream and chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and heat in short 20 second bursts until chocolate melts. Mix until well combined.
- Another method is to heat cream until steaming and pour directly over chocolate chips. Mix until well combined.
- For a non-dairy ganache, replace cream with one cup of full fat coconut milk from a can. Shake the can well before using.
- When making ganache, use a metal spoon and glass bowl for best results.
Tried it? Let me know if you liked it!
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