Exquisite and sophisticated, chocolate truffles are simpletons in disguise. They’re so ridiculously easy to make, I urge you to start a truffle tradition in your home!
But before we dive into my recipe below, I feel the need to explain a thing or two about the anatomy of the truffle and what makes them so special. In this post, I’m strictly referring to delicate chocolate truffles, not cake or cookie truffles.
How to make chocolate truffles
Truffles consist mostly of bittersweet chocolate and heavy cream. You can imagine that with primarily two ingredients, a high quality chocolate is essential.
I like using Ghirardelli chocolate because it is of high quality, and its bittersweet chocolate can be bought in bags of morsels, which allow us to skip the tedious task of chopping a bar of chocolate.
Chocolate truffles are typically coated with a dusting of high-quality cocoa powder. But that’s not your only option — don’t forget about ground nuts and powdered sugar! They make great coatings as well. In fact, I prefer nuts and powdered sugar over cocoa powder.
What about covering chocolate truffles with chocolate?
Here’s the inconvenient truth: It’s very inconvenient unless you have an enrobing machine that coats each piece perfectly.
To cover the truffles with chocolate, you’d need to temper high-quality chocolate so that it hardens nicely after coating. If the chocolate isn’t tempered, it won’t solidify at room temperature. In that case, you’d need to refrigerate the truffles just after dipping, and you run the risk of having unattractive “bloomed” truffles.
Candy coating is also out of the question, because it’s not a high enough quality. Using an inferior chocolate coating will defeat the purpose of making truffles of the high-quality stuff.
Liquors and flavors can be added to the chocolate mixture, and the cream can be infused with herbs and spices to give more flavor to the chocolate ball of goodness.
Chocolate truffles recipe
Makes 24 truffles
- 10 ounce bag of Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet chocolate baking chips
- 1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- Coating of choice (cocoa powder, powdered sugar or ground nuts)
Place baking chips and espresso powder in a medium metal or glass bowl.
In a small pot over medium-high heat, heat the cream until it begins to simmer. Turn the temperature down to medium and let simmer for one minute.
Pour the cream into the bowl containing the chocolate. Using a spatula, carefully stir the chocolate and cream together until it is fully incorporated and no large chunks remain. Do not use a whisk, as it will incorporate air into the mixture.
Once combined completely, let sit at room temperature for at least 1 hour.
Use a teaspoon measuring spoon like an ice cream scoop to make rounded portions. Drop them on a waxed paper–lined cookie sheet and refrigerate for 15 minutes. I find this to be the easiest way to shape them into nice balls.
Place each of your coatings on a separate plate or bowl. If using cocoa powder or powdered sugar, be sure to sift it.
Remove truffles from the fridge. You’ll notice that they’ve set and hardened. Wash your hands in very cold water to prep them for rolling.
Quickly roll each truffle into a ball using your palms. Then coat them with your favorite coating of choice! Rolling them in your palms once more after coating will get them to be more perfectly round.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2015 and was updated in January 2018.