Fluffy chocolate icing


  • Prep Time8 mins
  • Total Time8 mins
  • Makes4 cups (1 L), for an 8-inch (20-cm) double-layer cake
*PLUS Cooking time: 7 minutes


  • 3 squares unsweetened chocolate

  • 2 egg whites, at room temperature

  • 1/3 cup water, at room temperature

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar


  • Fill a large saucepan with about 2 inches (5 cm) water. Bring to a boil. You also need a heatproof bowl with a sloping side that will fit in this pan (but not touch the water) to create a double boiler effect. Meanwhile, coarsely chop chocolate. Place in a medium-size microwave-safe bowl. Microwave, uncovered, on medium until almost melted, about 2 minutes. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Let stand, stirring occasionally, until cooled to room temperature.

  • Place egg whites in heatproof bowl. Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat in water, sugar, vanilla and cream of tartar until mixed, 1 minute. Reduce heat under saucepan so water is gently simmering. Set bowl in saucepan. The bottom should not touch water.

  • Beat constantly, scraping down side from time to time, 7 minutes. Occasionally lift up bowl, being careful of hot steam, to make sure water is gently simmering, not boiling. Reduce heat to medium-low, if necessary. After 7 minutes of beating, remove from heat. Beat until cooled to room temperature, about 4 more minutes. If necessary, transfer egg whites to a bowl large enough to fold in chocolate.

  • Gently stir in about one-quarter of room-temperature chocolate just until a few white streaks remain. Then gently fold in remaining chocolate until no white streaks remain. Icing is best used as soon as it's made. Spread over our Fudgy Chocolate Layer Cake (in Recipe File) and top with fresh berries and chocolate curls.

Nutrition (per serving)

Calories 78, Protein 1g, Carbohydrates 14g, Fat 2.9g, Fibre 0.8g, Sodium 8mg.

This fabulous lower-fat icing will fool even the most discerning taste buds -- you'll swear there's butter in it. It's perfect for our Fudgy Chocolate Layer Cake or for topping low-fat brownies or cupcakes. You need a hand-held mixer to make this recipe easily.