Pistachio Moelleux

Pistachio Moelleux

After a few bakes that have been pretty labour intensive (Blackcurrant Mousse, Jaffa Cake Entremet), I really fancied making something that looked and tasted delicious, but wasn’t an elaborate 2-3 day process. As much as I love baking all of these wonderful things, some evenings when it’s 11.00pm, the sink is full of dishes, the kitchen floor needs mopping (from spilt mixture and glazing/piping based disasters) and the cake that I envisioned completing an hour earlier, is still staring at me, nowhere near finished, it doesn’t always still feel like harmless fun!

When I was thinking of what to bake this week, I remembered that I had some Lindt Creation Pistachio Delight which I had been sent, to experiment with in the kitchen. I had a browse through my patisserie book collection, which took a little while (I must stop buying books) and I returned to my old favourite, the very reason I started this blog, I’m of course talking about ‘the book‘.

I found a recipe called Pistachio Moelleux. I found this intriguing because a while ago, I had the most delicious Chocolate Moelleux at Jason Atherton’s Little Social, it was like a chocolate fondant with a molten, gooey centre. After reading the recipe I couldn’t understand how these little pistachio cakes would have a soft centre like the chocolate moelleux. The translation of the name is ‘Melt in the mouth pistachio cakes’, so I checked with the lovely French blogger Mathilde for a better understanding of the word moelleux.

It appears the French are just as guilty as us for using the same word for multiple meanings (unsurprising as the English language is heavily influenced by French as a result of the Norman Conquest), in short, moelleux can mean soft or melting heart/centre.

The original recipe used raspberries in the centre of the cakes, but I decided to substitute these with a square of Lindt Creation Pistachio Delight. These cakes are gluten free, however this Lindt chocolate is not. There are a lot of variations you could make with these cakes to keep them gluten free, you could use the original suggestion of raspberries, or Lindt Lindor, a dollop of salted caramel, or a square of your favourite dark chocolate.

The cake is more of a thick batter made using ground almonds and icing sugar, this keeps them really soft and moist. After you’ve mixed this in a food mixer, you can pipe/spoon or pour it into greased silicone muffin moulds. Then gently slide in a square of Lindt chocolate and sprinkle with chopped pistachios. These cakes are so light they only need 20 minutes cooking time, which means this whole recipe can be done in just under an hour.

Pistachio Moelleux These cakes also use pistachio paste to give them a stronger pistachio flavour, this can be expensive or difficult to get hold of. You can however substitute the pistachio paste with any smooth nut butter (i.e. peanut, hazelnut, almond), but if you do this, I would change the chopped nuts on top to be the same as the paste/butter you have used. If you’d like an even more chocolatey hit, you can swap the pistachio paste for Nutella, or the delicious Lotus Biscuit spread!

As you can see these cakes are really versatile and after all the talk of substitutions, I had better give you the recipe:


Patisserie Makes Perfect
This is a delicate moelleux or 'melt in the mouth' cake that is completely gluten free thanks to the inclusion of ground almonds, instead of flour, you will need to substitute the Pistachio Delight for another type of Lindt chocolate as this isn't gluten free. Inside each cake is a square of Lindt Creation Pistachio Delight. If eaten when the cakes are still warm, the chocolate centre is still formed but gooey. Or you can wait until the cakes have cooled and the chocolate will form a chewy centre. You can try lots of variations with these cakes, you could add a lindor chocolate in the middle and substitute the pistachio paste for nutella or smooth peanut butter, or add fruit such as raspberries to the centre.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Cake
Cuisine French
Servings 12


  • 165 g Ground Almonds
  • 125 g Icing Sugar
  • 125 g Unsalted Butter
  • 20 g Pistachio Paste
  • 4 Eggs
  • 2 Bars of Lindt Creation Pistachio Delight
  • 50 g Unsalted Pistachios


  • Preheat the oven to 180C and grease a 12 hole muffin pan.
  • Sieve the icing sugar and the ground almonds into the bowl of a food mixer.
  • Melt the butter over a low heat and cool to lukewarm.
  • Add the pistachio paste to the icing sugar and ground almonds. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing with the paddle attachment until fully incorporated. You may need to scrape the bowl down between adding the eggs so that this is all mixed in.
  • Pour in the melted butter and mix until incorporated, this will take a few seconds.
  • Spoon the batter into a disposable piping bag and fill the mould 3/4s full, or use a spoon.
  • Gently place the square of chocolate in the middle of each cake.
  • Coarsely chop the pistachios in a food processor or with a large knife.
  • Scatter them over the small cakes.
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and a cocktail stick comes out clean.
  • You can eat the cakes slightly warm, or wait until they are cool and because of the ground almonds they will stay really moist.

The texture inside these cakes is a lot like a frangipane, or the soft centre of a macaron, they are quite dense, but very soft and gooey. As these cakes have such a short cooking time, you could prepare them in advance and serve them warm as a dessert with some vanilla ice-cream, the centres will be very gooey from the chocolate. Or you can let them cool and eat them on their own, they’d be perfect in lunchboxes or as part of an afternoon tea at home.

Pistachio Moelleux

Pistachio Moelleux

Do you have any gluten free recipes that you always use? Or any fail safe recipes that you can rely on when you need to bake something in a hurry? Let me know in the comments.

Thanks for reading.


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14 Responses

  1. Jodie Dodd

    I really want to try these, minus the pistachio though. I love small cakes like this you can just pop into your mouth. They look a bit like Christmas trees with the corner of the chocolate square sticking out. A bit of green glitter could make the stem. 😀

    • PatisserieMakesPerfect

      You don’t like pistachio? Wow, it’s one of my favourite flavours. These cakes are really customisable though, they can feature pretty much any flavour you like. The the ground almonds – I think you call this almond flour – are the essential ingredients to keep the cake really moist.

      I see what you mean about the trees, you really are in the festive spirit aren’t you. x

  2. Olivia Kirby

    I think this is a lovely recipe! I love looking in the ‘Lindt aisle’ when we are in France! Can you get this chocolate in England ? – I shop online so never browse!

    • PatisserieMakesPerfect

      This was given to me by a UK PR company and you can buy the lindt chocolate either on their website (link is in the blog post), or from Ocado and Waitrose. I’m not sure who you shop online with, I use Ocado, hope that helps Olivia. You’re right, i it is a lovely recipe. x

  3. Le Coin de Mel

    I love ground almonds and pistachios! I have the same chocolate at home (my mum brought it with her last month when she came from France for a visit). I will be trying your recipe! Pinning now.

  4. Charlotte Oates

    I love anything with ground almonds in. These sound yummy (and they look good too).

    I complete agree with you that sometimes when you’ve been making a huge effort with cooking it’s nice to do something simple. Gives you a bit of time to recharge and then start again.

    • PatisserieMakesPerfect

      Oh Charlotte, I love ground almonds too. I could eat so much marzipan! I have no idea what I’ll be doing for my next bake. I better get the recipe books out 🙂

      • Charlotte Oates

        My next little project is to make my own marzipan as I always buy ready made but I’ve heard homemade tastes much better. Have you ever made your own? If you have, can you recommend a recipe?

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