picture of three different ways to prepare chocolate ganache

Chocolate Ganache-Three Ways

soft and medium chocolate sauces

I remembered when I first discovered ganache in my pursuit of baking. Originally, I thought it was this fancy stuff that required professional skills to make! Boy, that couldn’t be further from the truth, as I chuckle now looking back. No worries, its super simple!!!! Ganache is the fancy term used to a combination of chocolate and cream. Here I will show you the three ways in which you can make it that gives three different results and applications.

What is not to love about cream and chocolate right? When they come together to make ganache, it’s a chocolate/sweet tooth lovers dream come true. That silky and creamy mixture just gives not only a seriously amazing taste but creamy mouthfeel as well.

Applications and Uses

There are so many uses for ganache :

  • Icings
  • Glazes
  • Fillings
  • Mousses
  • Truffles
  • Dessert sauce

Hmmm, if I had to pick my favorite, that’s tough, but maybe I would pick icing as it makes a simple, quick, and beautiful addition to a cake. Especially, a chocolate one!

Three Ways

Ganache can be divided into three categories, soft, medium, and firm. Additionally, the exciting thing is they can be used for multiple applications in your baking and incredibly versatile.

Each version starts out with weighting chocolate as seen here. Soft and medium have the same amount of chocolate by weight, firm has double the chocolate. I’ll explain further…

chocolate chips in a bowl ready to make the chocolate sauces

Cream is the other component that has a similar duo as chocolate mentioned above in amounts for soft, medium, and firm. Same amounts are used in both medium and firm ganaches, more for soft ganache.


Ratios are the easiest way to remember in creating your different versions of ganache. I will use small amounts of chocolate and cream for the each examples below. You can easily adjust them to the amount you will use (increasing) by just keeping the same overall ratio. I can do this even though math was not my best subject in school! 🙂

Additionally, I always use a scale for both chocolate and cream to be precise. Why? If you were to measure a cup of chocolate and a cup of cream using measuring cups, they would both weight differently and affect your recipe. The scale ensures you have the same weight for both! I prefer to use ounces instead of grams. However, there are recipes that will use measuring cups for both chocolate and cream.

Side note: I still to this day have my very first scale I purchased in 2007 for my very first job working in fine dinning, and still use it today!!! It holds a special place in my kitchen!


Making ganache is super simple here are the quick easy steps:

  • Weigh your chocolate into a bowl
  • Weight your cream then heat the cream by stove top (just till simmer) or in microwave( do not boil)
  • Pour the hot cream into the chocolate
  • Allow it to sit 1 minute
  • Slowly whisk the cream and chocolate together to form a silky sauce
  • Cover with plastic wrap, allowing it to touch the top of the ganache

In the image below, when the chocolate and cream are combined for the soft, medium and firm ganaches, you can see how each version looks differently. The soft is much lighter due to having more cream, firm is much darker having more chocolate than cream.

three different versions of chocolate sauces in glass bowls
Soft, medium, and firm (bottom) ganache
comparing three versions of chocolate ganache after they have chilled
Soft, medium, and firm ganache consistency

Let me show you how easy it is to make all three.

Soft Ganache

First up is the soft version, this makes an incredibly wonderful filling for cakes. After its made, it is chilled for a few hours in the fridge till cold, then whipped in a mixer with a whisk attachment like fresh whipped cream. This is called a whipped chocolate ganache. Not only is is light and fluffy but super flavorful!

Super awesome for a chocolate cake. Also, you can use this a quick and light version of a chocolate mousse. It’s totally ready to eat and enjoy. Or, place in small cups, chilled to enjoy for later.

Ratio: 2:1 cream-chocolate

Example: 8 ounces cream to 4 ounces chocolate

soft whipped chocolate icing
Whipped Chocolate Ganache

Medium Ganache

Second up is the medium ganache, this one I use so VERY much as it makes a stunning icing and glaze for cakes, ice cream bombs, ice cream sauce, and even a spread or filling for breads. One of my favorite desserts shown below is a Triple Chocolate Threat, you can see how I make it here.

When glazing, make sure it is pourable consistency and hasn’t cooled too much. Always can be reheated in the microwave.

This is the easiest ration to remember.

Ratio: 1:1 cream-chocolate

Example: 4 ounces of cream to 4 ounces of chocolate

Firm Ganache

Hands down, I use this firm version to make truffles. Its beautiful and the consistency is perfect. Once made, I cover and chill this for an hour or so. Remove and then with a small scoop I scoop out and then shape into balls, roll in sprinkles, cocoa powder, chopped nuts, powdered sugar, coconut, and much more. Then place back in refrigerator to keep chilled till ready to serve.

hey make great additions to desserts or just enjoy all by themselves!

Just melts in your mouth delicious.

Additionally, the freeze very well!

Ratio: 1:2 cream-chocolate

Example: 4 ounces of cream to 8 ounces of chocolate

chocolate truffles on a plate 2
variations of chocolate truffles

Two simple ingredients that come together to make a multiple versions of chocolate for a variety of uses in your baking. Hope next time you hear the word ganache you’ll embrace it and find how super simple it is to make!

Other posts in my “Pastry 101” series:

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