Monday, November 8, 2021

Instant Chocolate Mousse, it's egg free and delicious

Chocolate Mousse is such a crowd favourite, and when we both had a yearning for a chocolate dessert,  I was intrigued to find this Express recipe by the iconic Nigella Lawson, which uses mini marshmallows instead of raw eggs as the setting agent. The secret ingredient is the gelatine in the marshmallow, and it works beautifully and is delicious without being too sweet. There's no stress involved with worrying whether or not this chocolate pudding will set, because it sets brilliantly in the refrigerator. I tweaked this recipe over a couple of days as there are a few versions of it out there in books and online, but this is my final rendition of this classic dessert. I am so pleased that I now have the perfect chocolate mousse recipe to offer, which I will be very happy to make repeatedly, and without using lots of valuable eggs along the way. 

The first two batches were still edible but very dense and chocolatey, is that a word? I can't tolerate very rich desserts anymore, although Mr. HRK still thought they were delicious as he was feeling a little unwell with a head cold, but I knew the texture I wanted, light and creamy and fluffy but still with delicious chocolate as the base, and not overly sweet. For the first batch I made, I tried chopping up normal marshmallows into small pieces as I couldn't find mini marshmallows at the first supermarket I shopped at. I don't suggest that you try this as an alternative, as chopping up marshmallows is an onerous job, and they took a long time to melt. That first batch almost became Rocky Road, which would have been a delicious outcome, but I persisted, and it was eaten anyway by our young neighbours, happy to be experimented on. As you can see, I had fun along the way and shared the love of chocolate. 

Do you derive a huge sense of satisfaction out of working with a recipe until you finally achieve the result you are after? To be honest, I don't do it that often, but with this recipe I enjoyed the process, so did Mr. HRK. Read on my friends, and I know you will enjoy making and eating this divine Chocolate Mousse. My Cook's tips will give you further insight into my cooking process.


150 grams mini marshmallows, pink and white is fine

50 grams (4 tablespoons) softened butter

250 grams good quality dark chocolate melts or dark chocolate chips (I used melts)

60 millimetres (1/4 cup) hot water (from a recently boiled kettle)

284 millimetres thickened or double cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


In a flat, wide heavy-based pan, place the marshmallows, butter, chocolate buttons and water. It's fine if the mini marshmallows are pink and white. 

Heat the saucepan over a gentle heat, to melt the contents. Stir often whilst hovering over the pan. The chocolate will melt first, the marshmallows will take longer.

The marshmallows are starting to melt while I stir. Marshmallow streaks are starting to appear.

The marshmallows are melting well.

When all the ingredients are melted and combined, remove the pan from the heat. It will be a smooth and silky chocolate sauce like mixture.

A smooth and silky chocolate sauce mixture, a few marshmallow streaks don't matter as cream will be added

Leave the chocolate mixture to cool off the stove top.  Meanwhile whip the cream with the vanilla extract until thick.

 Fold the cream by large spoonfuls into the cooled chocolate mixture until the mixture is smooth and well mixed.

Pour or spoon the chocolate mixture into 4 decorative glasses or ramekins, allowing about 175 ml/3/4 cup each in capacity, or 6 smaller ones (125 ml/1/2 cup), and chill until you are ready to eat dessert.

Decorate with swirls of cream and grated chocolate, or just grated white chocolate.

Cooks Notes:

  • This recipe doesn't use eggs. The gelatine in the marshmallow is the ingredient that sets the mousse and works it's magic.
  • Make them the day before and keep covered and chilled in the refrigerator. This makes life a lot easier on the day of eating as the work is already done. 
  • Take the mousse out of the refrigerator when the main course is being served, cover,  and allow the desserts to soften up slightly for eating while the main course is being eaten. The mousse may become quite solid in the refrigerator. It needs to be soft and fluffy and "mousse like" before being served.
  • If you like your mousse to be on the lighter chocolate side, use the dark chocolate buttons or dark chocolate chips. However if you like your mousse to be very dark chocolate, and rich and denser in texture, use a finely chopped dark chocolate block, at least 78 % cocoa. The ratio of cream to chocolate determines how light and fluffy the mousse will be. Some recipes only use 1 cup of cream, I like to use 284 millimetres of double cream for a lighter and fluffier mousse. It's a matter of personal taste, and the amount you need to serve to your guests. More cream will  stretch the quantity of the mousse, and take slightly longer to set. But it will set on the same day in a couple of hours.
  • If the mini marshmallows are taking a long time to melt in the pan, increase the heat slightly on the stove and keep stirring. My stove is electric and I did most of the melting at number 2, and raised it to 3 to melt the marshmallows.
This second Chocolate Mousse batch below was quite dense and very rich, using 78 % Lindt chocolate and only 1 cup of cream.

What is your preference for a chocolate dessert ? Do you prefer the the very rich and denser chocolate mousse, or are you like me and prefer a lighter and fluffier style of chocolate mousse. It's certainly easier to eat more of the latter, but both are achievable by altering the ratio of cream to chocolate sauce.

Best wishes,
- Pauline xx


  1. They look sinfully delicious and so tempting with all the chocolate!

    1. Angie thanks so much, yes certainly the original recipe was very sinful, this one just delicious.

  2. it's fun to try new recipes out and tweak them till they become our taste. i have made this one of nigella's before, but not being a huge fan of marshmallows (esp. gelatine) i prefer to make her choc pots that you just zap in a blender/processor. i make that one all the time :) oops sorry does this sound a bit negative? not meaning to ...

    1. I was actually tossing up between the choc pots and the mousse, and chose the mousse because they could be made in advance. The choc pots are still beckoning me though. Thanks Sherry

  3. I remember doing this recipe years ago when I first got a copy of Nigella Express. It was fun and very rich! :D

    1. Thanks Lorraine, it was a fun recipe to make, and the original was too rich for us, but that's Nigella's style.

  4. I’m very glad you played with the recipe until you got it exactly the way you wanted it! I bookmarked this for future dinner parties! And, yes, I do like to tinker with a recipe until I get it exactly the way I want it. :)

    1. This is a perfect dessert for a dinner party, make it the day before, and you can pretty it up as much as you like. Hope you get to make it.

  5. We're having trouble with rich desserts, too. So these days we just serve smaller portions (and usually make them only when we have company over, so we can send the leftovers home with them!). This looks great - thanks.

    1. Thanks KR, yes smaller portions are the way to go, but I needed to practice this one so we had our fair share of sampling it before the big event:) I served this edition to four of us and they ate it all even though the portions were ramekin size. It was quite light but very delicious. Take care, Pauline

  6. Woow looks fingerlickingly delicious.


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