Happy New Year Cocoa Beantown fans! Over the holidays, I’m sure many folks indulged in more than a bit of chocolate. Whether it was left in your stockings, delivered to your doorstep, or placed front and center on your holiday table, as any chocoholic knows, it’s important to have cocoa be part of the show! I was very lucky over the Christmas break to be gifted with a a freshly baked chocolate dessert from a dear loved one, who wanted my take on this particular recipe since it is in fact vegan. Now, not being a vegan myself, I have never been against vegan desserts, but in my limited experience, I have not come across too many that were very memorable. This recipe changed that!

In general, flourless chocolate cakes are often noted for their richness. This is usually because they are made with about 5 cups of sugar, 8 eggs, and pounds of butter. While this recipe definitely had plenty of sweet ingredients (maple syrup and brown sugar), it obviously could not include the eggs and butter, but instead used pumpkin purée and coconut oil! The result was a deliciously dense, super chocolate-y, decadent holiday dessert that was perfect for the holidays–or any other time of year for a true chocolate lover! Here’s to a super chocolate-y 2018!

Recipe: Vegan Flourless Chocolate Cake


1/2 cup cocoa powder

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin purée

1 cup pure maple syrup

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

8 oz. unsweetened chocolate (2 baking bars, Ghirardelli 100% Cacao recommended)

1 cup coconut oil


Optional recommended toppings: powdered sugar, raspberries, coconut cream, or dairy-free ice cream



  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and prep your 8 inch spring form pan with parchment paper (cut out a circle of parchment and lay it on the bottom of the pan). Grease pan, including the sides, with cooking spray. Place the spring form pan onto a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat.
  2. Place the cocoa powder, brown sugar, pumpkin, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Melt the baking chocolate and coconut oil together in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until completely melted.
  4. Combine the melted chocolate/oil with the cocoa/sugar/pumpkin, etc. mixture.
  5. Whisk well until fully combined.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  7. Smooth the top with a spatula.
  8. Bake in a preheated oven for about 60 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then remove the sides of the springform, and allow to cook completely  before wrapping in plastic wrap and placing in the fridge overnight to firm up.
  10. Once firm, serve immediately with a dusting of powdered sugar, raspberries, coconut cream, etc.