Chocolate Chinchilla

Sally has made this desset in her cooking classes for more than thirty years, and she shared it with John when he helped teach at The Apple Farm, the orchards where Sally and her husband, Don, grow apples. There’s nobody quite like Sally, and no other dessert quite like a chinchilla. This soufflé has a really intriguing, almost sticky texture. Sally adds cinnamon to the batter, but we usually leave it out. She tops each slice of chinchilla with sherry-flavored whipped cream. She uses a ring mold or tube pan for a dramatic look, as the batter rises to the top of the mold and puffs over the top beautifully as it bakes.

Serves12 to 16

Cooking Methodbaking


Total Timeunder 2 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionBuffet, Casual Dinner Party

Recipe Coursedessert

Dietary Considerationlactose-free, low calorie, low cholesterol, low saturated fat, peanut free, tree nut free

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner, lunch, snack, tea


Taste and Texturechocolatey, light, sweet

Type of Dishchocolate cake


  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1¼ cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
  • 2 cups egg whites (about 12 large whites)
  • Whipped Cream 
  • Cacao nibs for sprinkling (optional)


  1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F Butter an 11-inch ring mold or a 12-cup (10-inch) Bundt pan, and place in a deep roasting pan.

  2. Sift together the sugar and cocoa into a medium bowl. Shift in cinnamon, if using.

  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the whites on medium speed until soft peaks form, 5 to 7 minutes. Do not overbeat.

  4. Meanwhile, bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil for the water bath.

  5. Remove the bowl from the mixer, and top the whites with the cocoa mixture. This will look like a lot to incorporate, but the batter will come together. Slowly and gently fold the ingredients together, reaching to the bottom of the bowl to incorporate all the whites.

  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Spread the batter into the corners with a rubber spatula.

  7. Pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to come 2 to 3 inches up the sides of the mold. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. The cake will puff up as it bakes, then shrink back as it cools.

  8. Carefully transfer the mold to a cooling rack, and cool completely in the pan. Run a knife around the edges of the pan and unmold the cake onto a serving plate. Serve with whipped cream and, if desired, a sprinkling of cacao nibs.



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