31 Decadent Chocolate Desserts for Valentine's Day

Nothing Is More Romantic Than a Homemade Sweet Treat

Instant Pot chocolate molten lava cake with raspberry sauce.

The Spruce / Diana Rattray

Forget trite cards, cheap stuffed animals, and overpriced roses—this Valentine's Day, you can impress with a decadent homemade chocolate dessert. Nothing says "I love you" like spending some time in the kitchen. And best of all, you can enjoy it together to start a really "sweet" holiday tradition.

  • 01 of 31

    Chocolate Bread Pudding

    Chocolate Bread Pudding

    The Spruce / Anita Schecter

    Bread pudding is beautiful comfort food and this Valentine's-worthy double chocolate bread pudding version is worthy of a celebration. The recipe is wonderfully versatile and can even be made a day ahead and popped in the oven when you're ready to roll. Using both cocoa powder and chocolate chips levels up to the chocolate flavor and an ooey, gooey sauce on top completes the package.

  • 02 of 31

    Fudgy Chocolate Brownies

    Kruidnoten brownies

    Ruth Hornby Photography / Getty Images

    Brownies may seem more after-school snack than date night dessert, but don't discount these rich squares. They're dense and decadent, more like fudge than the bake sale standard. Feel free to freestyle and add chopped walnuts, chocolate chips, or even a caramel ribbon. Dust the fudgy chocolate brownies with a little powdered sugar before serving for a pretty presentation.

  • 03 of 31

    Instant Pot Chocolate Lava Cake

    Instant Pot chocolate molten lava cake with raspberry sauce.

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    If you've hopped on board the Instant Pot train, you may already know you can use it to make amazing desserts. And if you've never made chocolate lava cake in yours, are you ever missing out. This easy Instant Pot chocolate lava cake recipe comes together fairly quickly, especially if you break up the raspberry sauce and cakes into separate sessions. Not a raspberry fan? Try sprinkling them with a little powdered sugar before serving instead.

  • 04 of 31

    No-bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

    No bake chocolate peanut butter cookies

    The Spruce / Claire Cohen

    If you need a Valentine's Day dessert to send to school with your kids, bring to the snack table at work, or just grab and go, these no-bake chocolate peanut butter cookies are for you. The recipe lends itself wonderfully to experimentation. Substitute some of the oats for flaked coconut, add chopped nuts or chocolate chips, or roll them in melted chocolate after they're done. Get your little ones involved in a fun and tasty activity!

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  • 05 of 31

    Chocolate Pots de Creme

    Chocolate Pots de Creme

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    Silkier than pudding and thicker than mousse, chocolate pots de creme are just what the doctor ordered to end your dinner party or serve up some sweetness to that special someone. Espresso powder kicks the chocolate up a notch without adding too much coffee flavor and a few hours chilling in the fridge gives them time to set up wonderfully. Add a little flaky sea salt on top to accentuate the chocolate even further.

  • 06 of 31

    Flourless Chocolate Cake With Crème Anglaise

    gluten-free flourless chocolate cake

    Shilpa Harolikar / Getty Images

    Flourless chocolate cake is a dessert that's dressed to impress. You've probably seen it on the menu at your favorite restaurant and it's surprisingly simple to make at home. If you don't cook it just right, this recipe will end up nice and fudge-like, instead of getting soggy like a regular cake. Flourless chocolate cake with crème anglaise makes a lovely addition for a chocolate-cream contrast that will have you reaching for seconds.

  • 07 of 31

    Swiss Chocolate Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

    Chocolate Layer Cake

    Lauri Patterson / E+ / Getty Images

    If you've never stepped outside the cake mix box, this delicious, chocolatey Swiss chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting is a great place to start. It's easier than you might think to bake from scratch, but make sure you measure all ingredients carefully for the best results. Homemade cream cheese frosting tops it all off, but you can also use a tub of purchased frosting if short on time.

  • 08 of 31

    Hot Chocolate Mug Cake

    hot chocolate mug cake

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    At those times when you need a treat but don't want to fire up the oven, this hot chocolate mug cake saves the day. They're chock full of marshmallows, just like your favorite chilly weather drink. Best of all, they "bake" in the microwave in the same mug you eat them from, so there's just one dish to clean up. Make yourself one to celebrate.

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  • 09 of 31

    Spanish Chocolate Almond Cake

    Chocolate and Almond Cake

    Sarah Tolson/Getty Images

    Liqueur-soaked ladyfinger cookies and ground almonds give this special Spanish chocolate almond cake a unique texture that's still lighter than many holiday desserts. Licor 43 is a complex, herbal spirit that adds a lovely dimension, but rum would work just fine, too. Serve it with coffee or espresso for a beautiful end to your meal.

  • 10 of 31

    Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons

    chocolate balls

    Sloniki / Getty Images

    Instead of spending an arm and a leg on a box of chocolates, make your own! These chocolate peanut butter bonbons taste like a peanut butter cup all grown up with the addition of chopped dates for extra sweetness and bittersweet cocoa for more dimension. They can be stored at room temperature or in the fridge but will harden up more firmly if refrigerated.

  • 11 of 31

    Black Forest Cheesecake

    Black Forest Cheesecake

    The Spruce Eats / Jessie Sheehan 

    A dessert that's meant to impress, black forest cheesecake is absolutely fabulous and relatively easy. The chocolate filling is baked inside a cookie crust, then the entire thing is covered with a lovely cherry whipped cream that includes cherry brandy. A cherry compote finishes it wonderfully and it can be made up to three days in advance.

  • 12 of 31

    Ding Dong Cake

    Ding Dong Cake

     Kristina Vanni

    The name of this cake may not be very romantic, but stirring up feelings of nostalgia can often warm the heart. This beautiful chocolate layer cake is basically a giant Hostess ding dong; moist chocolate cake is sandwiched around a cream filling and then covered in a glossy chocolate glaze. Just as good as the lunch box treat but without all of the preservatives.

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  • 13 of 31

    Instant Pot Brownies

    Instant Pot brownies sliced on a plate.
    Diana Rattray

    More like a cake than a batch of brownies, this Instant Pot recipe makes rich, chocolately brownies that are cooked in a round cake pan and coated with a glossy ganache. The sprinkling of pecans adds the perfect finishing touch to this simple but special dessert.

  • 14 of 31

    Nutella Cheesecake

    Nutella Cheesecake

    Kristina Vanni 

    Nutella lovers will rejoice when you serve them this decadent and creamy dessert. Nutella cheesecake doesn't require any baking, making it quick and easy to throw together. Assemble the chocolate cookie crust, and chocolate cream cheese filling ahead of time so it has time to chill.

  • 15 of 31

    Peanut Butter Chocolate Mousse

    Peanut Butter and Chocolate Mousse

     Elaine Lemm

    Treat the peanut butter lover in your life to this decadent chocolate mousse. Dark chocolate, peanut butter, and separated eggs combine to make a luxurious dessert. The homemade whipped cream and flakey sea salt on top are the perfect finishing touches.

  • 16 of 31

    Dairy-Free Chocolate Bundt Cake

    Dairy-Free Chocolate Bundt Cake

    csundahl / Getty Images

    Just because you avoid dairy doesn't mean you have to pass on Valentine's Day dessert. This gorgeous dairy-free chocolate bundt cake will make a pretty centerpiece as well as a delectable dessert. A word to the wise: Oil your cake pan thoroughly before pouring in the batter. Otherwise, the cake will stick and won't come out evenly.

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  • 17 of 31

    Nutella Pie

    Nutella Pie

    The Spruce Eats / Jessie Sheehan

    Chocolate and hazelnut is a classic flavor combo, and it comes together perfectly in this Nutella pie. A crisp cookie crust is topped with creamy chocolate custard and fluffy whipped cream. The no-bake dessert also happens to be quick and easy, using just one bowl. Make ahead of time so the pie has time to chill before serving.

  • 18 of 31

    German Chocolate Pie

    German Chocolate Pie

     Kristina Vanni

    German chocolate pie is a delicious combination of chocolate, coconut, and peans in a buttery pie crust. It's an easy but impressive dessert that can be made ahead and will satisfy your chocolate craving.

  • 19 of 31

    French Chocolate Soufflé

    French Chocolate Soufflé
    Getty Images

    There's a lot of mythology surrounding soufflé, but they're not as difficult as you've probably heard. These individual chocolate cakes are light, airy, and chocolatey and as impressive-looking as they are delicious. Serve them immediately after baking before the soufflé falls. A little fresh whipped cream completes the package of this French chocolate soufflé.

  • 20 of 31

    Chocolate Waffles

    Chocolate Waffles

    Kristina Vanni 

    For an easy but special dessert, whip up some chocolate waffles. The batter contains melted chocolate, making it rich and tender. Top with a scoop of ice cream while still warm and drizzle with chocolate sauce or hot fudge.

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  • 21 of 31

    Sugar-Free Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries

    strawberries dipped in chocolate fondant

    mvrgasphoto / Twenty20

    You don't have to load up on sugar to enjoy a treat on Valentine's Day. These sugar-free chocolate-dipped strawberries make a beautiful, indulgent dessert or gift for your favorite people. Decorate them with chopped nuts, unsweetened coconut, or miniature chocolate chips for an even prettier platter. Get big, juicy strawberries for the most impressive presentation.

  • 22 of 31

    One-Bowl Brownies

    One-Bowl Cocoa Brownies

     Jessie Sheehan

    These brownies combine the familiar chewiness of a boxed mix with the sophisticated flavor of a homemade recipe. (And the fact everything is mixed in one bowl makes preparation really easy.) Oil and butter, cocoa and espresso powders, white and brown sugars, eggs, vanilla, and flour are mixed together, poured into a pan, and baked until set. Sprinkle on some flakey sea salt for a special finishing touch.

  • 23 of 31

    Better Than Sex Chocolate Cake

    Better Than Sex Cake

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    This Robert Redford cake—popularly known as "Better Than Sex" cake—is chock full of chopped chocolate toffee bars, caramel and fudge sauce, and whipped topping for a cake that lives up to its name. Make your favorite chocolate cake or even use a boxed cake mix and this Better Than Sex chocolate cake is officially an easier than anything dessert.

  • 24 of 31

    German Chocolate Upside-Down Cake

    German chocolate Upside-Down cake

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Chocolate, coconut, pecans, and cream cheese—what could be better? German chocolate upside-down cake has a lighter flavor than the traditional and the add-ins make it extra special. Once you try this amazing combination, you'll have to add this tender, flavorful cake to your regular rotation.

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  • 25 of 31

    Easy Slow Cooker Pudding Cake

    Slow Cooker Chocolate Pudding Cake

    William Reavell / Dorling Kindersley / Getty Images

    If you want a gooey chocolate dessert that's a real showstopper without spending a lot of time baking, you've got to try this easy slow cooker chocolate pudding cake. It uses cake and pudding mixes to bring it all together in a snap and cooks for 6 to 8 hours on low. Newer slow cookers may run hotter, so check it at 6 hours just in case. This cake also keeps in the fridge, so you can enjoy the leftovers all week long.

  • 26 of 31

    Chocolate Banana Cake

    Chocolate Banana Cake

    Dennis Gottlieb / Photodisc / Getty Images

    Mashed bananas give this amazingly moist chocolate banana cake its lovely texture and a sweet flavor that your Valentine will love. Frost it with your favorite chocolate or a cream cheese frosting and top with chocolate curls for an extra special look.

  • 27 of 31

    Sugar-Free, Low-Carb Chocolate Mousse

    Sugar-Free Chocolate Mousse Recipe

     The Spruce

    Those of us with diet restrictions don't have to miss out with this sugar-free, low-carb chocolate mousse. It uses Splenda for sweetener and has less than four net carbs per serving. Top it with a little whipped cream sweetened with a sugar substitute for a decadent dessert that doesn't blow your diet.

  • 28 of 31

    Chocolate and Orange Martini

    Easy Chocolate and Orange Martini Vodka Cocktail Recipe

    Willie Nash / StockFood Creative / Getty Images

    Chocolate and orange are a natural pairing and they taste just as great together in your glass as they do on your plate. This easy chocolate and orange martini uses just three ingredients for a sweet cocktail hour or a drinkable dessert. Decorate it with a melted chocolate rim for an extra special happy hour.

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  • 29 of 31

    Easiest Chocolate Fudge

    Chocolate fudge


    Geoff George / Design Pics / Getty Images

    Don't go out and buy chocolate fudge from a fancy chocolatier. Make your own with this couldn't-be-simpler easiest chocolate fudge recipe! It also takes under 10 minutes, so you can whip it up in a flash. Once you master the recipe, try adding chopped nuts or dried cranberries, using different flavors of chips instead of semisweet, or even layering several flavors in a pan to make a beautifully layered fudge. The sky's the limit.

  • 30 of 31

    Chocolate Silk Pie With Crumb Crust

    Chocolate Silk Pie

    KidItamae / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

    Pie fans, have we got a Valentine's Day dessert for you. This chocolate silk pie with crumb crust uses a pudding mix for easy assembly and a crumb crust that perfectly complements the smooth filling. Use a chocolate crumb crust for double the chocolate flavor, or try a pretzel pie crust for a hit of salty-sweet. Decorate it with crumbled chocolate bars if you like to get a little fancy.

  • 31 of 31

    Neapolitan Ice Cream Cake

    Neapolitan Ice Cream Cake

    Leah Maroney

    This stunning ice cream cake is a guaranteed show-stopper. With a homemade brownie base topped with store-bought ice creams, its impressive looks belie its ease of preparation, guaranteed to impress, while saving time to celebrate your loved one.