The call for a Vegan Ganache Recipe is now bigger than ever!
Those luscious Drip Cakes started trending several years ago and don’t show signs of stopping.
The good news is, a perfect vegan ganache recipe is not too much different that when we used to make it before being vegan!
It is still just two simple ingredients whisked together to perfect shiny perfection!
However when making a vegan ganache recipe, the plant milk alternatives we are using now are slightly thinner and way less fat than traditional cow cream from our past lives.
So we have to reduce the amount of milk by a small amount to compensate for that discrepancy.
Normally the ratio for a standard ganache is 1:1.
Meaning if you have a pound of chocolate you would use a pound (or a pint) of cream for a 1:1 ratio of cream to chocolate.
There are two ways to go about actually mixing those two ingredients together to form what is known as an emulsion.
An emulsion is a mixture of two or more liquids that are normally immiscible.
The idea of mixing 2 ingredients,while simple as it sounds, is not always so easy.
Mixing chocolate and liquid together is similar to mixing oil and water.
This is not something that is naturally occurring.
So the process of mixing two other wise UN-Mixable ingredients is called EMULSIFICATION.
Think Oil and Vinegar.
These two ingredients will just float on top of the other unless we shake it up and then pour it on our salad, right?
With a little help from heat and agitation we can achieve a beautiful emulsion.
So the ways to go about making your vegan ganache recipe is either:
#1- Boil the plant milk and pour it over the fine chopped chocolate in a bowl and whisk smooth until melted and emulsified
Or my preferred method:
#2- Combine the plant milk with the chocolate in a heavy bottom sauce pot and heat over low flame while stirring constantly with a whisk to melt the chocolate while creating the emulsion.
Keep in mind that chocolate is very temperature sensitive.
Anyone who has ever over heated chocolate during the melting process has learned this first hand when the lovely chocolate has seized into a solid grainy, unusable mess right before their eyes!
Not to mention chocolate and liquids are enemies which is why many people question the idea of this recipe in the first place!
Most people say, “But I thought you can’t add liquids to chocolate!”
This is true, however in the correct ratios liquid and chocolate are the best of friends!
But be forewarned, if you throw off the ratio of liquid to chocolate (typically it is on the side of not enough liquid to chocolate) you will also be met with a clumpy seized up mess!
So the moral of the story is to follow the recipe ratios below, pick your favorite mix method and then adjust the results as needed to suit your particular project!
I like a thinner ganache for covering cakes like here on my Almond Joy Cake.
And I can achieve this by adding just another tablespoon or two of plant milk to the ganache for a much better, pourable consistency.
I will note here that I always use soy milk for my vegan ganache recipe.
It is the thickest, the most most stable with the least amount of stablilizers (typically) and it has the most fat and protein of all the milks!
For a thicker (standard ratio as listed below) you will get the best consistency for those famous drips!
I will often times add just a teaspoon of melted coconut oil to the ganache for a shiny, no crack look actually keeps it looking fresh on the cake for days!
The Best Chocolate to Use for Making a Vegan Ganache Recipe
I can get Baker’s Brand Chocolate easily at my local supermarket and find this is really great for making ganache.
I’ve linked it here only so you can see the brand not so much as a requirement to buy it because Amazon is way more expensive than what I pay for the Baker’s brand in the supermarket which is usually just $2.59 and sometimes cheaper.
It really isn’t necessary to use an expensive chocolate here, and quite frankly in the bakery I would buy a grade of chocolate specifically labeled “Ganache Chocolate”.
It was definitely cheaper and who doesn’t love cheaper?
And don’t forget to look at the ingredients list for the chocolate to make sure there is not milk added into it!
We all know how they like to sneak milk into just about everything!
When it comes to making white chocolate ganache, this is a bit more delicate of a process.
Many people have a hard time working with white chocolate in the first place due to the fact that it is essentially all cocoa butter and a large amount of sugar without any cocoa liquor in it at all!
So is it even really chocolate?
We’ll leave that topic for another day!
You can make White Chocolate Ganache easily but it is necessary to reduce the plant milk amounts even more to compensate for the added fat content in that type of chocolate.
I usually start with 4 ounces of melted white chocolate and add 3 tablespoons of warmed almond milk to that, stirring more than heating since white chocolate is the ultimate in sensitive ingredients!
Before you know it you can burn your white chocolate beyond recognition!
So always stir and heat less!
It will take time but patience is the key to success in a beautiful vegan ganache!
For a softer setting ganache you will use more milk and for a firmer ganache you will use less milk.
See below for White Chocolate Ganache notes
- 12 ounces of semi sweet vegan chocolate
- 8 ounces (1 cup) of milk alternative.* I prefer soy, almond and oat milks for their highest fat content of all the milk alternatives
- Heat the chocolate and milk together in a small sauce pot and stir (whisk) constantly over medium heat - stir constantly to avoid scorching the chocolate!
- Alternatively you can bring the milk to a boil then pour over the chocolate in a bowl- whisk smooth as shown in the video tutorial.
Too much agitation will cause rapid cooling to below 90 degrees F which will produce an GRAINY ganache.
- Temperature is an important factor in emulsification of ganache. The optimal temperature is 90 degrees F to 110 degrees F.
- If the temperature rises above 110 degrees F, the cocoa butter in the chocolate gets too hot and the fats will pool together and separate. This is what causes a "broken" ganache.
Repairing a Broken Ganache:
Divide the entire portion of broken ganache into 2 parts.
Warm 1 part over a double boiler to about 130 degrees F.
This will cause the fats to re-melt making the mixture thinner.
Take the other portion of ganache and cool it to 60 degrees F over an Ice Bath causing the fats to solidify making the mixture thicker.
Once you have reached desired temperature with both portions, remove the 1 portion from the ice water bath (to avoid any water splashing) and slowly begin streaming the hot ganache mixture into the cold mixture while stirring gently.