Chocolate Mousse

Total Time:
1 hr 40 min
10 min
1 hr 30 min

6 to 8 servings

  • 1 3/4 cups whipping cream
  • 12 ounces quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3 ounces espresso or strong coffee
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon flavorless, granulated gelatin

Chill 1 1/2 cups whipping cream in refrigerator. Chill metal mixing bowl and mixer beaters in freezer.

In top of a double boiler, combine chocolate chips, coffee, rum and butter. Melt over barely simmering water, stirring constantly. Remove from heat while a couple of chunks are still visible. Cool, stirring occasionally to just above body temperature.

Pour remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream into a metal measuring cup and sprinkle in the gelatin. Allow gelatin to "bloom" for 10 minutes. Then carefully heat by swirling the measuring cup over a low gas flame or candle. Do not boil or gelatin will be damaged. Stir mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside.

In the chilled mixing bowl, beat cream to medium peaks. Stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining whipped cream in two doses. There may be streaks of whipped cream in the chocolate and that is fine. Do not over work the mousse.

Spoon into bowls or martini glasses and chill for at least 1 hour. Garnish with fruit and serve.

(If mousses are to be refrigerated overnight, chill for one hour and then cover each with plastic wrap)

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    74 Reviews
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    Fantastic! I made this mousse for a cake filling and everyone loved it! It was so smooth & creamy! It was such a hit! I just made it for the second time & can't wait to serve it again. I used my "Bullet" making my chocolate a powder, melted the butter with 2 T sugar, 2-3 T vanilla & then added my chocolate "powder". I did that while my gelatin was blooming. I also omitted the coffee and rum. It's so easy to make! Delicious!!
    Great recipe! My students have tried many mousse recipes and this is the first one to produce a great product for them!.
    Excellent! What's best is that the recipe doesn't call for additional sugar or egg yolks yet it is as decadent as can be. Good stuff, Alton, all we need now is for you to bring all your protein - gelatin - what not props to our house and cook us a dinner that goes with the the mousse. :)
    Great recipe, I served in chocolate bowls made from dipped balloons and added raspberry mousse with fresh raspberries on top. Kahlua instead of rum was our choice. Will use this as a base recipe for many many creative things in the future. Alton we love you!
    This recipe is a winner and comes out perfectly. I used Kahlua instead of rum and topped it with some whipped cream, crushed candy canes and a small candy cane to garnish! It was a great Holiday party dessert at a party with both adults and children, everyone was pleased. I doubled the recipe and the total finished volume was approximately 10 cups or 80 oz. Doubling the recipe did not seem to alter the product in any way. The prep time was accurate at 1 hr and 30 min. It took longer than expected to cool down the melted chocolate mixture but maybe that is because I had double the volume (I actually refrigerated it for a short time and used a wire whisk to stir it occasionally). I used a glass measuring cup in a double boiler method to warm the cream and gelatin to get it well combined, I did not have a metal measuring cup for this step. I have not made chocolate mousse for many years but with this recipe I am sure I will make it again sooner than later!
    I used this recipe for Thanksgiving dessert this year, and it was a huge success! Everybody loved it, and it was incredibly easy to make. Thanks Alton!
    THIS IS MY FAVORITE RECIPE EVER! Seriously, I take it to every party and even though it's a snap to make, it upstages any other recipe at the event. For the dark rum, I've always opted for the Bacardi Select Dark Rum and it's been great. For the espresso I've used both powdered and Starbucks and haven't noticed a real difference. I've done this recipe multiple times and never had overly liquid results. Just make sure to follow the recipe carefully, including blooming the gelatin over a candle. Enjoy!
    Mmmmm I love chocolate mousse! This is just a great recipe!
    Made this yummy mousse tonight. Used 6 oz of good dark chocolate. Bloomed the gelatin in 1/4 c caramel syrup. Added vanilla and a little powdered sugar to whipped cream before folding into chocolate. For vegans I think you could omit butter and use soy whip. This is a great treat for those watching cholesterol. It's actually very easy and can be changed up to suit anyone's tastes...less chocolate makes it lighter. A little powdered sugar makes it sweeter. Different extracts, syrups, or liquors result in yummy subtle flavor changes. Enjoy your imagination. I served my dark mousse scooped onto dark chocolate brownie squares topped with more whipped cream! Yum! !
    Extremely flavorful and it has a nice consistency.
    I happened to have gelatin in my pantry and I like that there is no added sugar in this recipe. It came out great with no problems! I made a wild honey whipped cream to garnish...This one is a keeper!
    Don't know what happened. I'm a trained and experienced chef and I ended up with glop. Spoon into glasses? I could more easily pour it. AB is a real go-to guy for many recipes and the science behind them but, this one, not so much.
    Our go-to mousse recipe and a good consideration for those concerned about pathogens from using uncooked egg whites, as this recipe does not need eggs. This recipe is very flexible and adapts well with the inclusion of:
     - White chocolate
     - Milk chocolate
     - Semi-Sweet chocolate
     - Bittersweet chocolate
     - Chocolate spreads, like Nutella
     So, the taste of the mousse will be as dark or light as you choose to make it. The texture of the mousse is very stable and we did not need to worry about it weeping out moisture or losing its form.
     You can serve this mousse as is or use it to compliment cakes/pies or other complex desserts. We have done both to good reactions from family and dinner guests.
    Oh, this is a fantastic idea for the holidays!
    Imagine adding peppermint and coloring to create festive colors!! fun :D 
    Ill try this
    Maybe for thanksgiving too? just adding a dash of cinnamon
    This mousse was fabulous! My boyfriend made this for me, and he is not very experienced in cooking desserts, but it still turned out great. I found the texture to be very smooth, and the chocolate flavor to be perfect. I was a little worried when I saw that there was no sugar in it, but the sweetness from the chocolate is adequate. We melted the chocolate (carefully in the microwave and then added the rum and coffee to it, instead of using a double boiler. We only have plastic measuring cups, so we very carefully heated the whipping cream and gelatin mixture over low heat in a small pan while stirring, and there were no problems with lumps.
    best chocolate mousse recipe on this website ( and i have tried several easy and tastes great!
    We watched you make this on your show in November 2012. I finally had a chance to make the mousse and it is light, chocolaty, heavenly bliss. The family loved it!
    Alton is such a genius. This is great chocolate mousse recipe. I followed it exactly and it came out great. People who hate coffee still adored it. Plus, it's a great naturally gluten free recipe so I can serve something sweet to friends who can't have gluten!
    This mousse is quite rich and is not particularly sweet. However, if it is eaten slowly with a nice glass of red wine, it is divine!
    This is my first time writing a review and thought I would share what I did to solve many of the problems mentioned by others (too dense, Not sweet enough First, I cut back on chocolate to 8 oz. to lighten the flavor. Next, instead of using coffee and rum I substituted 1/3 cup of simple syrup which is what I used to "bloom" the gelatin, then I warmed the gelatin mixture and made sure it was completely dissolved. When I was almost finished whipping the cream, I added the syple syrup/gelatin mixture in a slow stream to the whipping cream, then proceeded to fold the whipped cream into the melted chocolate in increments. Finally, I decided to spoon it into a crust made with crushed amaretti cookies- it was a hit and was perfectly sweet and fluffy with NO gelatin bits left behind!
    My family likes rich things, so we didn't have a problem with the intensity of this, but I can definitely see where some people would. Because there is no sugar, it is VERY chocolaty, but it is CHOCOLATE mousse... 
    But it isn't really the texture of a mousse; it is heavy, dense, and somewhat hard. 
    You really do need to strain the little chunks of gelatin out, because they almost ruin it; it is like trying to chew a piece of gristle. 
    For me, the tastiness of the flavor outweighed the negative little chunks and texture.
    I will definitely make again...but here's what I changed: I chopped 72% chocolate instead of chips and used triple sec in place of the rum.  
    It was really firm at refrigerator temperature, but if you take it out a few minutes before you serve, it's perfect. I made it for desserts at a tapas party (served in tiny bowls with whipped cream and blueberries and it was a total hit. But it was not for the faint of was massively chocolate. 
    My suggestions: strain the cream/gelatin mixture into the chocolate to make sure you don't have lumps, and pick chocolate that you'd want to eat out of hand, because the end product will taste pretty much exactly like whatever chocolate you use. I also suggest serving with a significant amount of whipping cream and some fruit to balance the intensity of the chocolate flavor.
    I didn't like this at all. It is way too dense and has way too much of a chocolate-to-whipped cream ratio. (Perhaps the coffee added too much to that effect. Plus, to my taste, it wasn't sweet enough -- as there is no sugar/sweetener in it whatsoever. I definitely prefer a much lighter and fluffier mousse. I obviously messed up the gelatin thing too (by either not mixing it enough and/or not heating it enough and ended up with coagulated pieces of gelatin througout the mousse. However, that was not the biggest problem with the recipe. The problem was that, once it was chilled, it was almost as hard as a rock. At first it was sort of OK -- kind of thick. But, after it chilled, it was really dense and heavy to eat, had way too intense of a chocolate flavor, and was not sweet at all. I will never make this again. Perhaps, you could change some things (like others suggested, but why do that, when I'm sure there is a better recipe somewhere else?
    I made this yesterday for a party and everyone loved it. It tasted divine. I added 1 tsp of orange zest to it and instead of the rum I added Orange Extract and it tasted amazing as Orange & chocolate is a great combination. I did feel that the mousse was a bit too thick so next time I will use less gelatin. Otherwise a great recipe and probably the easiest mousse recipe.
    This chocolate mousse was great! Big hit at the party, I did change a few things. Instead of using the espresso and rum, I had a bottle of Chocolate Whipped Vodka on hand so I used that( No kids at the party I also used a bag of milk chocolate instead of the dark. This recipe is def. a keeper.
    Oh my! I just made this and took a little taste and this exceeded my expectations. This was the first time I made a mousse and it tastes like a chocolate cloud. Yum! It was actually really easy to use and I already had all of the ingredients on hand. I used a 12 oz bag of Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate chips, 3 oz of brewed espresso, Kahlua in place of the dark rum, and I put in a dash of vanilla into the whipped heavy cream. I followed the instructions exactly, although I was confused by what Alton meant by the gelatin and cream "blossoming". After an hour in the refrigerator, the mousse was ready to be served. I will definitely make this again!
    I'm sure I did something wrong. I found it harsh and not at all sweet enough. I tossed it in the trash.
    I made this for the second time today - the first time it was REALLY thick and heavy... So today I beat an egg white till it was in soft peaks and folded it in with the whipped cream - what a HUGE difference! I think next time I'll even use TWO egg whites instead of one - I decreased the whipping cream to 1 and 1/3 instead of 1 and 1/2 as well.
    I was really hoping it would be like the light, velvety mousse I remember from my childhood. Something seemed missing or maybe it was just overpowered by chocolate and espresso of this application. Its not bad, but I think next time I'll try a more traditional recipe using eggs.
    I love this mousse! I modified the recipe by using raspberry gelatin instead of plain gelatin. I also substituted a semi-sweet raspberry wine for the rum. So many flavor possibilities with this wonderful recipe. Thank-you, Alton!
    Actually pretty disappointed in this. It comes out like a standard, overly-caloric, Americanized version of a French chocolate mousse. I found it far too heavy. It is much better with egg whites rather than whipped cream.
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