Air Fryer Lava Mug Cake

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Satisfy your chocolate craving with this chocolate lover’s Air Fryer Lava Mug Cake. It is a fool-proof recipe that’s all about bringing a burst of sweet heaven and ooze of chocolate with every bite. The secret to this chocolate lava cake is the core of sumptuous chocolate ganache, ready to unleash a flood of molten with every bite. This isn’t your average mug cake; it is an extravagant chocolate lava cake with a gooey ganache center that will unleash a gush of chocolate.

Air fryer mug cake plated with chopped strawberries and dusted with powdered sugar.

Even if you overcook the cake, you will be ensured a molten center. The beauty of this air fryer mug cake lies in its ingenious use of chocolate ganache at its heart. This is the secret weapon that guarantees an oozing, molten lava center in every slice.

🍫 Why Make This Chocolate Mug Cake?

  • Gooey Chocolate Ganache Center: The unique twist and secret of this recipe is the molten chocolate ganache center. The ganache ensures a gooey, luscious center, elevating this treat from a simple cake to a sumptuous dessert that oozes with every bite.
  • Easy and Luxurious: This air fryer mug cake recipe is the epitome of effortless indulgence. It is quick and easy to make and the air fryer cooks them to perfection.
  • Foolproof for Anyone: No matter your proficiency in the kitchen, this recipe is impossible to mess up. The consistent heat of the air fryer and the genache center of the cake means you will end up with a delicious, molten cake every time.
  • Customizable and Versatile: Chocolate pairs well with so many things. Modify the recipe with toppings or mix-ins. Think about adding peanut butter to the ganache or sprinkling on crumbled candied nuts. A nice drizzle of raspberry sauce over the top would also be delicious!
Spoonful of chocolate lava cake with gooey ganache center.

🍽 Ingredients for Air Fryer Mug Cakes

This air fryer mug cake recipe uses easy-to-find ingredients. You need a lot of chocolate! Don’t forget to scroll down to the printable recipe card for all of the details, including quantities.

  • Butter. You’ll use butter in your air fryer lava cake batter and to prepare the mugs or ramekins.
  • Cocoa powder. I like using cocoa powder instead of flour to coat the ramekins. It will prevent them from sticking and add more intense chocolate flavor!
  • Heavy cream. The key ingredient needed for the melty ganache center.
  • Semi-sweet chocolate. Use it for the ganache and for the cake!
  • Powdered sugar. Powdered sugar gives the air fryer mug cake a smoother texture. 
  • Vanilla. For a touch of warm and earthy flavor.
  • All-purpose flour. The base for your lava cake batter!
  • Eggs. You’ll need 2 whole eggs and 2 egg whites. Make sure they are all at room temp.
  • Salt. Salt enhances the chocolate flavor.
Ingredients for air fryer mug cake.

👨‍🍳 How to Make Chocolate Mug Cake in Air Fryer

Here’s what you can expect when making lava cake in an air fryer. Be sure to refer to the printable recipe card for the step-by-step instructions for this recipe, including specific quantities and temperatures.

  1. Prepare the mugs or ramekins with butter and cocoa powder.
  2. Combine the chocolate and cream in a bowl.
  3. Melt the chocolate into the cream on the stovetop over a double boiler. You can also do short bursts in the microwave, stirring in between, until melted completely.
  4. Refrigerate the ganache filling while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
  5. Melt the remaining butter and chocolate for the batter. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt, then incorporate the eggs. Finally, add the flour.
  6. Fill the mugs half full with the batter, then add the ganache in the center. Cover the ganache with more cake batter until the mug is almost filled to the top.
  7. Bake your air fryer mug cakes in the air fryer. Allow them to cool before removing them from the mugs and serving!

🤔 Substitutions and Variations

  • Switch up the chocolate. Feel free to use any type of chocolate for this air fryer lava cake recipe. I’ve tested it with high-quality chocolate bars and simple chocolate chips — the fancy chocolate bars yield a slightly better result, but the chips also taste delicious!
  • That said, keep in mind that most chocolate chips are made with an additive called soy lecithin. It helps the chips keep their shape, but that means they won’t melt down quite as smoothly as chocolate bars.
  • You could even make them in a full-size baking dish to create one giant lava cake. As long as it fits in the air fryer (and you keep an eye on it), you can make this dessert any size you’d like. You will need to adjust the cooking time and use a toothpick or thermometer to ensure the cake is cooked properly.

😉 Tips For a Gooey Air Fryer Mug Cake

  • Use Room Temperature Ingredients: If you add cold eggs to the batter, it could cause it to curdle. If you don’t have time to leave your eggs out and curdling does occur, stop adding the eggs and quickly incorporate some flour into the batter until it smooths out. An electric hand mixer or stand mixer is also helpful!
  • Smaller or Larger Mug Cakes: No problem. This recipe works great with four 6oz mugs or six 4oz mugs. You can use any size ramekin or mug you have on hand, as long as it fits in the air fryer.
  • Use Quality Chocolate: Opt for high-quality chocolate for the ganache and cake batter. The better the chocolate, the richer and more decadent the cake will taste. Even though chocolate chips can work, a good quality chocolate bar tends to melt more smoothly and offers a superior flavor.
  • Don’t Overfill The Ramekins: Be careful not to overfill the ramekins. Fill them only about halfway with batter before adding the ganache. Then top the ganache with more batter, but leave some room for the cake to rise during cooking.
  • Monitor Cooking Time Closely: Air fryer temperatures can vary, so it’s crucial to monitor the cake closely towards the end of the cooking time. The perfect point is when the edges are set, but the center is still slightly soft.
Several air fryer lava cakes in ramekins and topped with chopped strawberries.

🥡 Storing and Reheating

Air fryer mug cake is best served fresh, but you can store leftover cake in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. The cake can be reheated in the air fryer at 300°F for 3-4 minutes or until warmed through and gooey in the center.

Air fryer mug cakes also freeze well! When they have fully cooled, wrap each ramekin or mug in plastic wrap or foil. They will keep for up to 3 months.

To reheat frozen air fryer mug cakes, simply throw them back in the air fryer! Set the temperature to 300°F and heat your lava cake in the air fryer for about 5-10 minutes. You can also microwave it in 30-second bursts until warm and gooey.


Can I bake in my air fryer?

Certainly! Yes, you can bake in an air fryer. It’s a versatile appliance that circulates hot air to bake foods evenly and quickly, making it ideal for small-batch baking and for those with limited kitchen space. Just remember to adjust the temperature and cooking time from conventional oven recipes. Use our air fryer calculator to convert cook time and temperature.

Can I use a mug in an air fryer?

Yes, you can put a mug in an air fryer as long as it is oven-safe and fits well inside the air fryer basket. Ensure the mug is made from a material like ceramic or glass that can withstand high temperatures without cracking.

What is the difference between molten cake and lava cake?

Molten cake is a broad term that encompasses any cake with a liquid center. Lava cakes are generally small individual cakes with a liquid chocolate center. This recipe for air fryer mug cakes is technically a molten lava cake – it has a liquid center made from chocolate ganache.

🍰 More Air Fryer Desserts

🥧 Unique Desserts

Air fryer mug cakes dusted with powdered sugar.

🎂 Cut the Cake – Final Words

This air fryer mug cake with its gooey chocolate ganache center is a game-changer for quick, luxurious desserts. It’s a perfect blend of convenience and indulgence, suitable for any level of baking expertise.

Whether you’re hosting a gathering or just treating yourself, this recipe promises a delicious, chocolatey experience with minimal effort. So, next time you’re in the mood for something sweet, remember that your air fryer and a few simple ingredients are all you need to whip up this delightful treat.

If you make this recipe at home, be sure to tell me how you liked it in the comments below!


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Air fryer mug cake plated with chopped strawberries and dusted with powdered sugar.

Air Fryer Lava Mug Cake - Gooey Chocolate Lava Cake

Yield: 4 Servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 18 minutes

These fail-proof air fryer chocolate lava cakes bring extra lava to the party! Even if you accidentally overcook the cakes, you will always have a gooey center thanks to the chocolate ganache that is added to the center.

The cake cooks perfectly, just enough to hold its structure, and the ganache center melts and floods out as soon as you cut into the cake. Every bite features an ooze of chocolate lava that will be sure to impress and satisfy everyone. The gooey ganache in the center means you always have good results.


For the Mugs

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

For the Ganache

  • 6 tablespoons semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ¾ cup heavy cream

For the Cake

  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 whole eggs (room temperature)
  • 2 egg yolks (room temperature)
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour


  1. Prepare the ramekins or mugs by greasing them with butter and dusting them with cocoa powder.
  2. Heat the cream on the stove or in the microwave in a bowl until it is steaming and just shy of boiling. Add the chocolate chips for the ganache to a medium mixing bowl and pour the hot cream over them. Cover and let them sit for a few minutes.
  3. Once the chocolate chips have melted completely, mix the cream and chocolate together until smooth. If the hot cream doesn't melt the chocolate completely, use the microwave in 15-second increments to finish melting the chocolate.and refrigerate it until it is firm.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, add the butter and the remaining semi-sweet chocolate. Melt the chocolate and butter either over a double boiler or in the microwave. If you use a microwave, use low power and 30-second increments.
  5. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt to the batter and mix. Then, slowly add the eggs and egg yolks to the batter. Be sure to use room-temperature eggs. Otherwise, the cold eggs could cause the batter to curdle and break. If you notice the batter curdling, see the notes below to fix it.
  6. Mix in the flour until smooth.
  7. Fill four 6-ounce ramekins about ½ way with the cake batter (see the notes below for other size dishes). Then, add a dollop of the cooled, firm ganache to the center of the ramekin. Then, fill the ramekin the rest of the way with the batter. You will want to leave about 1 or 2 inches of space in the mugs because the cakes will rise when cooked.
  8. Bake the lava cakes in the air fryer at 360°F for 8-10 minutes or until the edges are firm and the center is still soft.
  9. Let the cakes cool for 1-2 minutes, and use a butter knife to loosen the cake from the ramekins. Flip the ramekins over on a plate. You may need to give them a tap to release the cake onto the plate. Serve the lava cakes with fresh berries, ice cream, or whipped cream.


  • When adding cold eggs to a batter with lots of butter, you may experience curdling of the cake batter. This is because the cold butter causes the emulsion of butter fat, milk solids, and water to break. If your batter begins to curdle, stop adding the eggs and quickly add some of the flour to the batter until it smooths out. If this doesn't work, use an electric mixer to smooth the batter out. Avoid this by using room-temperature eggs.
  • You can use any chocolate in this recipe. I tested it with chocolate chips and nice chocolate bars. Fancy chocolate bars yield a slightly better result, but the chocolate chips also taste delicious!
  • Chocolate chips have an additive called soy lecithin. This helps the chips to retain their shape and means that they are not quite as smooth as chocolate bars when they are melted.
  • This recipe size works well with four 6-ounce ramekins or six 4-ounce ramekins. You can use any size baking dish. Just be sure that the dishes fit in the air fryer and monitor the cakes while cooking.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 903Total Fat: 72gSaturated Fat: 43gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 312mgSodium: 553mgCarbohydrates: 67gFiber: 5gSugar: 55gProtein: 10g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

Did you make this recipe?

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About Joshua Boquist

Josh is an outdoor enthusiast and food fanatic. A License To Grill is his passion project where the outdoors intersects food - grilling, smoking, and all things tasty!

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