Trader Joe’s Chocolate Lava Cakes

Hope you’re having a wonderful holiday! Looking forward to sharing photos of our trip (and hearing about yours), but first up: My dad made dinner on Christmas Eve, and afterward, he busted out individual chocolate lava cakes for everyone. His secret? Trader Joe’s! You buy them frozen and then just heat them up in the microwave. They were insanely good.

Have you ever tried them?

P.S. An ode to Trader Joe’s.

(Photo via)

  1. HI
    Very best articles, I happy to read it, Beautiful nice and useful!
    Thank you very much

  2. Took your suggestion and bought some! Eating them now. Soft, spongey cake. Gooey, YUMMY ganache! Delish! Thanks for the tip! : )

  3. Mmmmm! Looks heavenly! Unfortunally we don’t have them in Sweden :/ Maybe have to try to make my own recepie :D

  4. oh wow! this look so good!!

  5. good gosh, that looks yummy! another reason i wish we had a trader joe’s where i live! bummer.

  6. Oh TJ’s, how I miss you! We recently moved from being a block away from the original store to being 300 miles away from the nearest one. SO SAD! Those little chocolate babies are the best! I am counting the days until I am reunited with the best grocery store on earth!

  7. We LOVE TJ. ‘Nough said. :)

  8. oh goodness, these look so good. we’re getting a trader joes in rochester soon i’ve heard and i am just SO EXCITED. i’ve never been to one before, but the things i hear…

  9. Oh my gosh I was looking for a way to wow someone tomorrow night with little impact on my kitchen and this is it! Thanks :)

  10. I just moved to The City about 3 weeks ago. Leading up to my move, I read all through your NYC posts (but at a rate of speed that did not allow for commenting). I just wanted to let you know what an awesome job you did helping prepare and inspire me for the big move.

    I experienced TJ’s for the first time last week. I’m sucked in, and will most definitely become a die hard very quickly. I’m going there tomorrow and lava cakes??? They made the shopping list.

  11. Mmm … I’ve never had their lava cakes, but now I definitely want to try them. TJ’s also has a delicious pain au chocolat in the freezer section. You leave them out overnight to rise, and then pop them into the oven in the morning and they’re SOOO good!

  12. Trader Joes used to have French Macarons! They were insanely good and a much cheaper way to get my French pastry fix!

  13. I did try these a while ago and was very impatient waiting for them to come out of the oven (thought microwaving would make them soggy) and ended up burning my tongue haha. I love Trader Joe, but the last time I bought some frozen gluten free corn crust pizzas, that I later found out were recalled for containing gluten (my bf has Celiac). Because of this I’m currently annoyed at TJ.

  14. in the UK we have a brand called Gu that do amazing cakes like this and also cold chocolate desserts like nectar and lots of others- honestly even if I slave over a Nigella book for hours their stuff is often better!

    hope you’ve had a really super Christmas

  15. Anonymous says...

    Trader Joe’s chocolate truffled figs! They’re amazing… AMAZING!!! They’re actually from Rabitos Royale but they are seriously the bomb. Get them. So satisfying. You feel so indulgent but they’re 60 calories…. The best ever.

  16. Oh good heavens, it doesn’t get much better than Trader Joe’s. I could live in there.

  17. I baked individual sized lava cakes for my dad’s birthday but the mix and chocolate came it a box! It was super easy and tasty!

  18. DEEE-LISH! I wish chocolate wasn’t such a daily necessity. I just had a conversation with a friend discussing women’s “need” for a daily dose of the goodness. interesting to think about!

    hope the holidays were splendid!

  19. oh my! that would satisfy any chocolate cravings!

  20. I love Trader Joes ! I will def. be on
    The lookout for lava cake next time I go !

  21. Oh goodness, I want to bathe in that! Such mouth watering goodness!

  22. gemma says...

    looks amazing!

  23. Looks amazing! We don’t have TJ’s in Canada but my new neighbours from New Jersey told me about it and I’m so jealous.

  24. Trader Joe’s is the best. I’m a fan of the chocolate covered potato chips, the turkey meatloaf muffins, the decadently enrobed joe joe cookies, the spicy chai latte powder, the dark chocolate almond toffee, and if I had a dog, the peanut butter flavored dog treats.

  25. i can not believe you posted about these! I just had them over the holidays and well, we are obsessed.


    mikie and kristen

  26. I’ve never had the lava cakes, but Trader Joe’s apple blossoms are my favorite dessert ever! Highly recommend them, and I really want to try the chocolate lava cakes now. (:

  27. Anonymous says...

    I have no idea what trader joes is but if his pud is anything to go by i’m in!!!!

  28. That ode is perfect! I was trying to explain Trader Joe’s to the Australian family I spent Christmas with, and I just couldn’t encapsulate it. That video will take care of it :)

    That dessert looks heavenly!

  29. Trader Joe’s rocks my world regularly. Their Peppermint Joe Joe’s? Oh boy.

  30. Looks delicious! A great party idea. Your father is brilliant. ;)

  31. MMMMMM, well we love sweet things here in Scotland and not deep fried Mars bars- but Clootie Dumpling, Christmas Pud, Italian Ice Cream from our amazing Italian friends here and sooo much more, Thank you Jo from another Jo for your fab blog. I look forward to sharing 2012 together, thank you, thank you, jo xxxx

  32. Kristina says...

    i opted for 6 of these with strawberries and ice cream to share on my birthday instead of cake. little tip, if you only want to cook one (in the oven) add a ramekin of water so it doesn’t dry out.

  33. i LOVE trader joe’s!

  34. LOVE Trader Joes!!

    This looks delicious too ~

  35. Yes! My husband and I devour an entire Trader Joe’s chocolate ganache torte each week… one slice in bed each night. It’s like a mini vacation taken together.
    Can’t wait to hear about your Christmas holidays. Bet you had a lovely one.

  36. GAH! Did you put ice cream or whipped cream on top? I must talk Trader Joes into building a store here in my world.

  37. I’ve never tried them from Trader Joe’s, but I did make them from scratch one time! It was pretty simple, and super delicious, except I didn’t cook them long enough (barely undercooked haha). So when I took them out of the ramekin they instantly “exploded”. Oh well. It was a good & tasty learning experience :)

    Their best eaten with strawberries! Here’s a link to the recipe I used in case anyone is interested:

  38. This looks beauuuutiful! Can’t imagine how good it tastes x

  39. are you fo’reals????
    I love TJ, now I must get them.

  40. My addiction this past month was the TJ eggnog almonds. Ridiculous, just ridiculous.

  41. ahhh I adore trader joes… now one more reason. I sometimes make individual melting chocolate cakes but it’s much more work than popping frozen ones into the micro. awesome!

  42. pws says...

    yes these are quite amazing and my husband is obsessed…he always asks me to buy them for dessert. i can barely finish one, it’s so rich…but it’s SO good :).

  43. jenny (of ‘jeneric generation’), who commented above, truly is TJ’s biggest fan. i have no doubt she will buy this cake per your recommendation. i would, too, if i lived anywhere near a TJ’s!

  44. these are delicious! the TJs apple blossoms (apple pie tartlets) are unbelievable as well-definitely worth a try.


  45. Oh YES! The TJ’s lava cakes are amazing. We have bought those for many a special occasion to eat with champagne after our kids are in bed :)

  46. I had one from Domino’s. Surprisingly amazing (for being from Domino’s anyway).

    Yes, you need one of those with a glass of milk though.

  47. sandra says...

    Our family loves Trader Joe’s! This year we discovered peppermint Joe Joe’s! They’re soooo good!

  48. This is making me sad. I love Trader Joe’s so much! I keep hoping they will open one in Austin!

  49. This post warms my heart. I like to think of myself as Trader Joe’s biggest fan…but I have never tried their lava cakes! That will change. Maybe today. Maybe in a few hours.

  50. Yes, I unfortunately know of these. When I was pregnant last time I had one every night with scoops of ice cream and whipped cream.

    – Sarah

  51. Ohmigosh, thanks for the heads-up. I tend to be on autopilot when I’m at TJ’s so this is good to know!

  52. have you tried their chocolate croissants?! they come frozen too, and you put them out overnight to proof, they are INSANELY good and that’s coming from someone who doesn’t even care much for chocolate (i know!). :)

  53. Love Trader Joe’s and I especially like hearing about what others discover that is good there. I will definitely look for these next trip there. Their Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake Mix is VERY good too!

  54. We almost got that for our dinner Sunday! We got the checkerboard mousse cake and the buche de noel instead! Those were good, too! My Mommy in Law works there :o)

  55. I could handle microwaving a few of those, although I have to say my favorite treat from Trader Joe’s is the mini biscotti.

  56. These look soooo good! I’d like mine with a little sea salt on top, please and thank you.

  57. That look delicious. I haven’t tried the Chocolate lava from Trader Jo’s, but now I must.

  58. Gosh I haven’t tried that cake but of course now need to. Love being back in Portland OR and shopping at Trader Joes once again.

  59. Yes these are delicious!!!!!!! I love TJ’S!!!

  60. OMG this looks incredible. Hot chocolate cake is one of my favorite desserts definitely buying this.

  61. TJ’s has the best dessert ever! Have you ever tried their Karat Cake? Yum!

  62. those look dangerously delicious! (dangerous to my hips)

  63. We had a super Christmas Jo… those cakes look good!x

  64. Trader Joe’s always has the best pre-made snacks. Have you tried the chocolate covered potato chips? Sinful.


  65. That looks so delicious! I love the little chocolate peanut butter cups at Trader Joes- so addictive! Why can’t there be a Trader Joes on the Upper East Side, whyyy?

  66. yes! this is totally my go-to dessert! or used to be before we moved to Amsterdam and far away from Trader Joe’s :( I always serve them with ice cream on top. SO GOOD.

  67. Oh goodness, those look good. I learned a little trick in culinary school to make sure you never overcook lava cakes – add a dollop of cooled ganach to the center of the batter – that way, even if the cake cooks through, there’s still a gooey center!