If you think you can’t make a soufflé, think again, because these delicious beauties are completely doable and so impressive. Better still, this dream holiday dessert not only can be made ahead, it must be made ahead – and tucked into the freezer! Then when the special dinner night arrives, you simply pop them out of the freezer, heat the oven, and bake to serve warm just as you are finishing your main course.

Before starting, be sure to read all the tips and flavor variations in Baking Together #40: Chocolate Souffles to Make Ahead. You will need six 6-ounce ramekins for this.

Makes 6 servings


  • Unsalted butter, softened, and granulated sugar, for dusting
  • 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 3 tablespoons Grand Marnier (or 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice + 1 tablespoon water)
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted if lumpy
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar, divided
  • Double Raspberry Sauce (see below), for serving (optional)
  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for serving (optional)
  • Fresh orange segments, for serving (optional)


Make the soufflés

1. Lightly butter six, 6-ounce ramekins and dust them with granulated sugar, gently tapping out any excess sugar. Make room for them in the freezer so that they can be arranged in one layer.

2. Put the chocolate and butter in a large, heatproof bowl and melt in the microwave (or put in a large, heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water), stirring with a spatula until smooth. Remove from the heat and whisk in the Grand Marnier, cocoa, orange zest and salt until blended. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, whisking between additions. Add about half of the sugar and whisk until well blended.

3. Put the egg whites in a medium bowl and, using an electric handheld mixer fitted with wire beaters, beat on medium-high speed until they barely hold soft peaks. Increase the speed to high and gradually sprinkle in the remaining sugar. Continue beating until the peaks are firm and glossy. Spoon about one-quarter of the beaten whites into the chocolate mixture and gently stir until just blended. Add the remaining whites and, using a silicone spatula, gently fold the mixture until just blended. Pour evenly into prepared ramekins. The mixture will fill the ramekins about three-quarters of the way (maybe a bit more).

4. Arrange the ramekins in the freezer and chill for 1 to 2 hours or until firm to the touch. Wrap each ramekin in plastic (careful, they are slippery) and freeze for up to 2 weeks.


Bake the soufflés

1. Remove the soufflés from the freezer. Unwrap the ramekins and place them on a quarter sheet pan or small cookie sheet. (Let sit while heating oven.) Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F.

2. Bake the ramekins on the sheet for 18 minutes until puffed and risen about 1 inch above the ramekin. Serve immediately (see non-slip tong suggestion) with any of the serving suggestions above.


Double Raspberry Sauce

When you're not pairing this with chocolate souffles, use it on vanilla ice cream or with a fruit tart or custard.

  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen raspberries, thawed in the bag
  • 1/4 cup raspberry jam (I use seedless)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cups (1 to 2 ounces) confectioners’ sugar
  • Pinch of table salt


1. Combine the thawed raspberries and any accumulated juices, jam, about half of the confectioners’ sugar and the salt in a food processor or blender. Whiz until pureed and well blended. Taste and add more sugar, if needed.

2. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve over a small bowl or 2-cup measure, pressing firmly on the seeds to extract all the juices. Scrape the underside of the sieve into the bowl and discard the seeds.