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Moist & Rich Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

The ultimate two-layer gluten-free chocolate cake! It’s incredibly rich, moist and best of all, easy to bake at home. The cake batter combines gluten-free all purpose flour with cocoa powder, avocado oil, milk (dairy free option below!) and brewed hot coffee. The 8-inch cake rounds are frosted with the creamiest chocolate buttercream frosting. A perfect gluten-free cake for celebrating a birthday, to serve a a dinner party, or to bake just because! Yields 12 slices.

Homemade chocolate cake made gluten free on a plate.

Watch the video below how to make the best gluten free chocolate cake ever!

Gluten Free Chocolate Cake

I’ve been making this gluten free chocolate cake recipe for years and I can’t believe I’ve never shared it here! I’ve shared versions of it, like my gluten free chocolate cookies and cream cake. And I made a half batch of it to make my gluten free chocolate peanut butter ice cream cake. I mean, who doesn’t love decadent chocolate recipes?!

A plain old, classic gluten free layer cake? NOPE. What was I thinking?!

Clearly I wasn’t and it’s definitely time to change that because this cake is EVERYTHING. It gets rave reviews every time I make it (which is pretty frequently for birthday cake) and nobody can tell it’s even gluten free! It’s definitely one of our favorite gluten-free dessert recipes in our household!

The great thing about a stellar chocolate cake recipe is that you can do a lot with it. The chocolate cake with cocoa powder is the perfect base for all different kinds of flavor combos you’d like.  It really has no limits so you can use your imagination! Topped with homemade chocolate frosting, it’s perfection!

I’ve made a Sourdough Chocolate Cake with the discard from my gluten free sourdough starter. I also turned it into a fall cake and made a Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting.

This cake recipe is one of those classic recipes that you’ll want to keep on hand, you’ll definitely be making it again and again.

This cake is made with regular milk but it’s easily adapted to be dairy free. Just use unsweetened coconut milk or your favorite dairy-free milk alternative!

Moist gluten free chocolate cake on stand

Key Ingredients for this GF Chocolate Cake Recipe

For the Cake:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose gluten free flour (try my Nightshade Free Mix or Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 gluten free baking flour)
  • 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit this if your blend contains it)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cups cocoa powder (not natural cocoa powder). I use Rodelle’s Dutch Processed Gourmet Baking Cocoa because I prefer the rich chocolate flavor. Regular cocoa or dark cocoa powder can also be used.
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup milk 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk or your choice of dairy-free milk
  • 1/2 cup avocado oil or canola oil
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup hot coffee

For the Frosting:

  • 1 cup butter softened (or 1 cup vegan butter)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Equipment Needed

How to make this Gluten Free Chocolate Cake from scratch

How to make the chocolate buttercream frosting

  1. First, add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until completely smooth.
  2. Next, add the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and mix on low to combine.
  3. Then, mix in the vanilla extract and heavy cream.
  4. Turn the mixer to a medium-high speed and beat for 1-2 minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy.
  5. Finally- frost the cake as desired!

What types of frosting can I use?

For frosting, I made a simple homemade chocolate frosting. If you’re making this dairy free, frost it with my vegan chocolate frosting.

Another great frosting option is Nutella Buttercream Frosting. As a result, it gives a wonderfully nutty flavor with a nice, smooth chocolate flavor. I promise you’ll love it! And I linked to my Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting above (which is fabulous).

I suggest making a double batch of frosting so you can do a proper crumb coat to lock in those cake crumbs and then frost it with a good thick layer of creamy, dreamy chocolate frosting. You’ll probably even have a little bit extra for piping if you want to get fancy.

Pro tips for this chocolate cake:

  1. First of all- Don’t skip the hot coffee!  The coffee really helps to enrich the chocolate-y flavor surprisingly.
  2. Secondly–You can make the chocolate cakes and freeze them until you’re ready to frost the cake.
  3. Make sure all of the wet ingredients are room temperature.
  4. I use Rodelle’s Dutch Processed Gourmet Baking Cocoa because I prefer the rich chocolate flavor. Regular cocoa or dark cocoa powder can also be use.
  5. The frosting makes enough to frost one cake. If you would like a thicker layer of frosting or if you want to pipe any details, I suggest making 1 1/2 batches or doubling the recipe for best results.
  6. If you freeze your cake layers before frosting, you can often get away with skipping the crumb coat.

Note– Feel free to skip the crumb coat and piping if you’re short on time, that step is totally up to you. The crumb coat just locks in the crumbs so they don’t get into the frosting when you’re trying to spread it.

This is the BEST gluten free chocolate cake recipe out there!

Which gluten free flour blends work best with this recipe?

I highly recommend to use my Nightshade Free Flour Mix in this recipe. This cake recipe also works well with both my White Rice Flour Blend and the Brown Rice Gluten Free Flour Mix.

I have also tested this recipe with Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Baking Flour with great results.

Measuring your gluten free flour blend- the right way!

I REALLY recommend you follow and sign up for this free guide on how to properly measure your flour blends. This is a step that is often overlooked but is super important!  If you follow this guide, it will increase the quality of the recipes that you bake.  I guarantee it!

How do I make this GF chocolate cake dairy-free?

Simple! First, be sure to use a dairy-free milk alternative, such as coconut milk. Secondly, make sure to use a vegan frosting.  I highly recommend you try my recipe for vegan chocolate frosting.  It’s delicious- and super easy to make!

A slice removed from GF chocolate cake

Can I freeze the chocolate cake safely?

Yes, absolutely!   Just be sure to follow these steps:

For freezing the unfrosted cakes:

  1. Firstly, wrap the chocolate cakes tightly in plastic wrap. 
  2. Next, freeze on a sheet pan 4-6 hours and then transfer to freezer safe bags.
  3. At last, when you’re ready to bake with them, make sure they are fully unthawed (4-6 hours) 

For freezing the finished chocolate cake (frosting included)

  1. Firstly, slice the the cake into individual pieces first. 
  2. Then, freeze individual slices on a sheet pan lined with wax paper. 
  3. After frozen solid (4-6 hours), wrap in plastic wrap and transfer to freezer safe bag(s). 
  4. Finally, thaw for at least 4 hours when you’re ready to enjoy the slice of heaven!

Delicious and moist homemade gluten free chocolate cake with coffee

Let me know in the comments who you’ll be making this moist cake for and if it’s for any special occasions! And if you’re making it for yourself, I won’t judge! But if you ARE looking for a mini cake, I’ve got you covered with my mini chocolate layer cake. Enjoy!

be sure to follow me on instagram and hashtag #whattheforkfoodblog or tag @whattheforkfoodblog – i love seeing what you make!

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This is the BEST gluten free chocolate cake recipe out there! So moist, so rich, and so full of chocolate flavor! It's always the hit of the party! Recipe from @whattheforkblog | | gluten free dessert recipes | easy desserts | cake recipes from scratch | homemade chocolate cake | gluten free cakes | birthday cakes | gluten free birthday cake recipes | chocolate cake from scratch

Moist & Rich Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

4.60 from 988 ratings
The ultimate two-layer gluten-free chocolate cake! It’s incredibly rich, moist and best of all, easy to bake at home. The cake batter combines gluten-free all purpose flour with cocoa powder, avocado oil, milk (dairy free option below!) and brewed hot coffee. The 8-inch cake rounds are frosted with the creamiest chocolate buttercream frosting. A perfect gluten-free cake for celebrating a birthday, to serve a a dinner party, or to bake just because! Yields 12 slices.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 12 slices
Print Rate Pin


For the Cake

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum omit if your blend contains it
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cups cocoa powder*
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup milk 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk or your choice of dairy-free milk
  • 1/2 cup avocado oil or canola oil
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup hot coffee

For the Frosting

  • 1 cup butter softened (or 1 cup vegan butter)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream


To make the Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray 2 8-inch cake pans with non-stick spray. Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper and spray that parchment paper with non-stick spray.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, sift together the flour, xanthan gum, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Use the paddle attachment to mix the dry ingredients on low speed.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.
  • With the mixer running on low speed, slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix until completely combined.
  • Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and pour in the hot coffee. Mix on low until incorporated.
  • Pour the batter (it will be very thin and pretty liquidy) evenly between the two pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 - 40 minutes. (Mine take about 37 minutes.)
  • Cool the cakes on a wire rack (in the pan) for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the cakes from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack.
  • When the cakes are cool, prepare the buttercream.

To make the chocolate buttercream:

  • Add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until completely smooth. Add the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and mix on low to combine. Mix in the vanilla extract and heavy cream.
  • Turn the mixer to a medium-high speed and beat for 1-2 minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy.
  • Frost the cake as desired!



  1. I currently use my Nightshade Free Flour Mix in this recipe. It also works well with both my White Rice Flour Blend and the Brown Rice Gluten Free Flour Mix. I have also tested this recipe with Bob's Red Mill 1:1 Baking Mix with great results.
  2. *I use Rodelle's Dutch Processed Gourmet Baking Cocoa because I prefer the rich chocolate flavor. Regular cocoa or dark cocoa powder can also be used.The frosting makes enough to frost one cake. If you would like a thicker layer of frosting or if you want to pipe any details, I suggest making 1 1/2 batches or doubling the recipe.
  3. If making this dairy free, you can frost this cake with my favorite vegan chocolate frosting.
  4. Cake adapted from Ina Garten.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1g | Calories: 583kcal | Carbohydrates: 83g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 76mg | Sodium: 561mg | Potassium: 199mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 65g | Vitamin A: 618IU | Vitamin C: 0.03mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 2mg


As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Facts are estimated and aren't always accurate. Please consult a doctor or nutritionist if you have special dietary needs.

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4.60 from 988 votes (952 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating

  1. Leeann says:

    5 stars
    Stupendous! Made for my husband’s birthday and he loved it. Due to a strange issue with my round cake pans, wound up making this as 13×9 and it rose quite high and didn’t collapse. I had both King Arthur measure for measure and Pillsbury GF flour so I used some of both. Also had some superfine baking sugar so split the sugar with regular granulated. Before starting, I did see notes about buttermilk but since it’s usually my magic charm, I used half buttermilk and half leftover evaporated milk. Overall, the cake is not too complicated and this will now be my go to instead of boxed mixes.

  2. Sandy says:

    5 stars
    I have made this cake and shared this recipe countless times because EVERYBODY LOVES IT! I’ve never made anything that gets such rave reviews. I would ask if it’s possible to include a mention that the recipe used to call for buttermilk (and it can still be used of course) because bakers like me are afraid of changes that might alter the taste of the original. I appreciate your explaining to another reviewer why you did it though! Thank you for creating such a beloved cake recipe for our family and friends.

  3. Jessica Kierstead says:

    I’ve been searching for a cake like yours. I’m excited to try this but I’m wondering about tweeking the coffee? She wants a mocha cake so I’m wondering if I brew a dark blend or even espresso would it enhance the coffee flavor? I worry about creating too much “bitter” though. Perhaps, I’d need to pull back on the dark cocoa? Have you tried anything like this? I’m going to paruse the site, I haven’t looked too far yet, and this is the closest I’ve found. If ypu manage to see and answer my questions. Thank you in advance. 😊 I plan to give this a try if I can’t find another recipe I time, and I’ll be back.

    • You could use a dark blend coffee and it wouldn’t be too bitter. You could also try adding a teaspoon of coffee extract to the batter to enhance the coffee flavor. I don’t recommend reducing the cocoa powder.

  4. Lori Taylor says:

    5 stars
    Delicious, super-moist chocolate cake. Frosting looks light, but has a rich chocolate flavor. Next time I will make 1.5 batches of frosting for a crumb layer. So good!😋

  5. Hope says:

    5 stars
    Everyone, I mean EVERYONE loves this cake!! Thank you for such a delicious cake and so simple to make.

  6. Andi says:

    5 stars
    Found this recipe a few years ago and haven’t made another chocolate cake since! So good and very reminiscent of my mom’s “chocolate quick cake” from my growing up days. The original used buttermilk but it’s great either way! I have used coconut milk since my grandson is dairy free! Still perfect! And make my homemade frosting with coconut milk as well! Yum!

    My husband can’t tell the difference and I often make it in a brownie pan – basically square cupcakes with a dollop of icing on top and they look so elegant! I have served them SO MANY times at different events and they are gone so quickly!

  7. Laura says:

    5 stars
    This was the first gluten-free bake I attempted and I still come back to it because it never fails! I make it dairy-free also and would love to see more recipes like that.

  8. Linsie says:

    Has anyone tried this with a Bundt or 9” rounds? What changes were made to accommodate that if so?

  9. Matt Upton says:

    5 stars
    My wife and I thought this recipe had buttermilk in it rather than regular milk. Are we imagining that, or did you update the recipe? We get requests to make this cake with the Nutella Buttercream icing from all of our gluten free friends/family!

    • Hi Matt, you’re not imagining it! It did originally call for buttermilk but I updated it because I, and others, have had more success with the center not sinking when using regular milk or dairy free milk instead of buttermilk. If you prefer the buttermilk version, feel free to use it!

  10. Laura Levy says:

    4 stars
    I get lots of complements whenever I use this recipe for cake or cupcakes and people do not even realise it is dairy and gluten free. I am a bit nervous about stacking more than 2 layers as it is quite dense. Thank you for sharing!

  11. Lauren says:

    5 stars
    Literally THE best chocolate cake (gluten free or not). Will absolutely be my go-to gluten free cake recipe.

  12. Judy St John says:

    I’ve made this numerous times for family celebrations and it’s always a big hit. Do you have any time and temp recommendations, if I want to bake this in 6” pans? Thanks!

  13. Emily says:

    Hi, how do I update the recipe to make a larger rectangular cake?
    Can I just double the recipe? is there a specific cake tin size that you recommend?

  14. Cheri says:

    Love this cake and make it often for birthdays as well as shared it with others to make too. My son has a friend with an egg allergy so wondering if anyone has tried flax eggs as a sub in this recipe. Thanks!

  15. Ericka says:

    I have made this cake at least a dozen times and everyone loves it!!! Everything about it is amazing

  16. Valerie says:

    Hi how would I go about doubling this recipe ?

  17. K says:

    Can this recipe be used for cupcakes? I have a wedding rehearsal coming up and a few people there are celiac. If it can be used for cupcakes do you think about 20 mins should do it for baking time?

  18. Tiffany says:

    Sorry if you’ve been asked this already. Have you gotten any feedback on making this with regular flour. I have made it many times with GF flour and love it. But I’m making it for someone and don’t want to waste my expensive GF flour.

  19. Allie says:

    can I just remove the Gum indgredeient or will it ruin the cake?

    • Shay says:

      If you’re making this cake gluten free, you’ll need the xanthan gum. However, if the gluten free flour blend already contains xanthan gum, you can omit what I called for.

  20. Allie says:

    Do I have to use baking powder and the gum product for the cake?

  21. Kim says:

    My granddaughter and I made this today because she’s been asking for cake all week. It’s fantastic! It was loved by everyone including non gf family! Thanks for another delicious recipe, your recipes never let me down.

  22. Terri says:

    What do you do if you don’t like coffee or worse, have a coffee allergy?

  23. CounselorChick says:

    Seriously now this is the BEST chocolate cake gluten free or not! Thank you!

  24. Michael Eckert says:

    Hey! I know this is an old recipe, and I know this might sound like dumb question, but is it also almond free? I don’t see anything that WOULD include almonds, but I wanted to double check.

  25. Sherri Thompson says:

    Hands down the BEST GF Chocolate cake!!! I have made 7 different GF cakes and this one….wow!!!!! I skipped the frosting and did a simple powder sugar water glaze instead:)

  26. Brenda Rochefort says:

    Simply delicious! I used 1 cup of plain yoghurt instead of buttermilk since I did not have buttermilk.

  27. Sue says:

    We celebrated our daughters 50 birthday with your cake. It was delicious!! I have eaten other gluten free cakes that were dry and not very good. This was a hit and we all ate more than we should. It’s cake for breakfast now. Thank you so much

  28. Rileigh says:

    This cake is AMAZING! Best gluten free thing I’ve ever made. Period. Girl ily and im excited to try alll your recipes

  29. Darien says:

    Hey I followed the recipe exactly and am now stuck with the smell of burnt cake because my 2 8-inch cake pans were NOT big enough for this amount of batter, and I ended up having to put a pan under them to catch the uncooked cake as it spilled over the edges. Maybe put a note about this on the recipe? Otherwise enjoyed it. 🙂

    • Shay says:

      Are you baking at high altitude by chance? I’m on the east coast and never have issues with there being too much batter and I’ve baked this well over 100 times.

  30. Bradley says:

    This is a go to recipe! I was skeptical the first time I made the cake due to it being gluten free, but it is the absolute best chocolate cake I have ever had. I constantly get asked to make it by friends and coworkers. It’s a blessing and a curse because now I am always having to bake it!

  31. Justine H says:

    Wow! This is one of the best chocolate cakes I’ve ever had, period. And I’m a food snob. The cake was easy to make and a super rich moisture with a delicious buttercream frosting.

    Honestly, no one in my 15 person family gathering last night knew that it was gluten-free, in any shape, way or form.

    I am recently gluten-free. Therefore, when I want dessert at a family function, it’s up to me to make.

    THIS CAKE IS SO GOOD!!!! Don’t even hesitate to make this recipe if you like chocolate. I served it with cookies and cream ice cream for those who love ice cream with their cake, red wine with those who love wine with their cake and decaf coffee for those who love coffee with their cake. THANK YOU!

  32. Moe says:

    Can I use coconut or almond flour?

  33. Francesca Todaro says:

    What kind of butter do you use in the frosting?

  34. Michele Badura says:

    Have you every made this recipe using ‘flax egg’ instead of egg, then making it vegan? Thanks

  35. Vivi says:

    This is the best chocolate cake I’ve ever had! Ever!
    I’ve searched far and wide for a cake recipe I could enjoy, (I’m allergic to gluten.), and this. is. it. It was fudgey AND fluffy – and the frosting was heavenly.
    I used 3 six-inch pans instead of 2 eight-inch pans and everything turned out fine.
    This recipe is the holy-grail of chocolate cake!!!

  36. Amanda Jones says:

    This looks so good, I can’t wait to try it!! Quick question – if I’m not worried about the height of the cake, will the cake still be moist enough if I use two 9 inch round pans? Should I decrease the cook time? I can’t find 8 inch pans anywhere so I would greatly appreciate any tips for using 9 inch pans. Thanks!!

    • Shay says:

      Yes, you can use two 9-inch pans. Baking time will likely be between 30-35 minutes. You can also bake this in a 9×13 pan for 30-35 minutes.

  37. Casey says:

    Hi! I’m wondering if I go the coconut milk route (I have a lot at home), will it make the cake taste like coconut? I’m thinking of making this for my husband’s birthday on Friday. We love coconut rice but I’m not a huge fan of it in desserts…especially since I was going to make your peanut butter frosting too. If we are better off tracking down some buttermilk, let me know. Thanks in advance!

    • Shay says:

      I use unsweetened coconut milk beverage all the time when baking and it doesn’t make baked goods taste like coconut. Canned coconut milk has a stronger flavor and can give a coconut taste to your baked goods. You can also use regular milk with vinegar instead of buttermilk.

  38. Susan says:

    I just made this cake last night .. had it today and was very happy .it was nice and moist love this recipe thanks for sharing .

  39. Tara Meyer says:

    OMG… Made this tonigh for my daughters 6th birthday because I’m gluten free. And OMG. Hot damnnnn this was good. Will be making again. 🥰💖

  40. Donna Mourtzakis says:

    I am the only one in Fam that has sensitivity to gluten. I just made this for my Birthday, I love chocolate.
    My Bobs flour did not have Xanthan gum, I searched for a substitute, used corn starch but could not find the ratio. Cake made 2 thinner rounds. Is that they way they should be? I hope it tastes good. Nice frosting.
    Should I refrigerate for tomorrow?

    • Shay says:

      If you used 9-inch pans instead of 8-inch, they’ll be thinner. If your cake is fully frosted, it can be refrigerated overnight. If it’s not frosted, wrap the cake layers tightly in plastic wrap and freeze overnight. Take them out the next morning, frost them frozen, and let the cake thaw at room temperature until ready to serve later in the day.

  41. Pea Morr says:

    Great cake. Substituted 1/2 cup Truvia for the sugar. Used LF milk with a stab of lime juice, to curdle it. Didnt make icing as we are trying to cut down on sugar consumption. Light. Fluffy. Moist. Ate with sugar free-lactose free ice cream tonight. BOOM! Cake for dessert. It was heaven in our mouths. Be doing this again…

  42. KS says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe! This is , hands down the best cake I’ve ever made . I’ve only begun my gluten free journey recently, so I’ve had many all purpose gluten full cakes, and this is so much better. It’s moist, chocolatey , rich and oooooh so yummy!

    • Shay says:

      You’re welcome, I’m so glad you enjoyed it as much as my family does! I hope you get a chance to check out some of my other gluten free cake recipes, they’re all amazing too!

  43. Carolyn says:

    OMG, I can’t believe how awesome this cake is (if I do say so myself 😉) made it for the first time today for hubby’s birthday shout at his office. First time I’ve made a from scratch GF cake that actually worked out. Even got a woah! from the teens. thankyou so much for the recipe. I used the nightshade free flour mix and made nutella buttercream for the frosting. Need to make another cake for home now as kids want one…

  44. Kyle says:

    I like alot of people was searching for a gluten free chocolate cake for my partner. This was so easy to make, I was skeptical of the coffee but you need it to make it pourable into the pans and I did research and the coffee brings out the Cocoa. I made the cake and froze it over night, let it defrost the next day for 3 hours and my partner couldn’t believe the taste. All she could say was “Oh My God!, Oh My God!” as she ate each bite. I found my go to recipe for GF Chocolate Cake. I used the Bob’s 1 to 1, Herseys Dark Cocoa powder and a chocolate/espresso ganache recipe from Bon Appetit.

  45. Adam Goldsmith says:

    My wife has Celiac but I do not but for my birthday I made this cake so she could eat it too. My only changes to the recipe were that I used Peanut oil (as that is what I had on hand) and I made my own buttermilk with whole milk and sour cream as I wasn’t going to buy a quart of buttermilk for one cup 🙂 I used Bobs Red Mill GF flour mixture and added an extra 1/2tspn of Xanthan gum. This cake was hands down the BEST GF chocolate cake I have ever tasted and I dare say it rivaled most regular non GF chocolate cake mixes. I will have to look, but I am hoping Shay has a white cake recipe that’s as good. I used my own chocolate fudge icing recipe. I had only planned on having a slice or 2 as it was my birthday. My wife only had 3 slices so it looks like I will be finishing it off myself 🙂 Happily I might add!

  46. Cathy Herms says:

    Can you use coconut oil instead of avocado or canola?

  47. Nan says:

    I made this cake for my daughter’s birthday as her BF is gluten-free.. He said it was the best cake he’d ever eaten, and all of us “gluten eaters” agreed. I used Cup 4 Cup flour. I might suggest, though, that the toothpick test is a little unreliable as the cake is so moist and fudgey. Just check that the sides have pulled away from the pan and give it a few extra minutes. SO GOOD!!!

  48. MamaBear says:

    Thank you for the wonderful recipe. I made it today and it was better than expected! It’s super moist, light , and fluffy! My daughter wants a chocolate cake for her sweet sixteen party and this is going to be THE cake for her special day! I used King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Flour, it’s perfect! And it doesn’t have that sandy texture some GF flour blends have when you eat it.

  49. Lisa says:

    I’m making this cake ahead to use a couple of days from now. What is the best way to store it?

  50. Melanie Renee’ says:

    The best damn chocolate cake I have ever made or eaten! I have made it 3 times in the past 2 months. I use Raw Cacao in place of the Cocoa, in the batter and frosting. I also love the strong coffee addition. It is truly worth the calories and doesn’t make me ill like a glutinous cake would. Thank you for the recipe, and thanks for who you are and what you do.

  51. Vicki says:

    Awesome cake. Do you know how many carbs is in one serving?

  52. Lorka says:

    Can I use coconut sugar instead of cane sugar?
    And do u have these measurements in grams?
    Thank you

    • Shay says:

      I havne’t tried this recipe with coconut sugar so I can’t tell you for sure. In my experience, coconut sugar can make baked goods a little drier.

  53. Katie says:

    Best chocolate cake hands down!

  54. Jenny J says:

    This cake turned out so much better than I ever expected! Even after reading all of the wonderful comments-which is exactly why this is the recipe I chose when my daughter who has recently become gluten free for health reasons requested chocolate cake for her 20th birthday.
    Instead of frosting, she requested this poke cake and it turned out amazingly good! So happy and even her gluten loving dad enjoyed it.
    Thanks for sharing!

  55. Chris says:

    I was wondering if there is both baking soda and baking powder in this recipe because the video for it only says baking soda and it also shows it being hand mixed in a bowl instead of a mixer like the written recipe states. Is that a different recipe even though it shows the end result cake as the same as above? Thank you!

    • Shay says:

      Hi, looks like an editing issue on the video, sorry about that! Please follow the ingredients listed in the recipe itself 🙂
      You can use a hand mixer, stand mixer, or mix this cake by hand.

  56. Linda Green says:

    A very easy cake to make. I used it to make a 5 shaped cake for my Gran Daughters birthday’s party yesterday. It was good to cut and position the different parts into shape. Thanks you.

  57. I am almost 70 and have made many many chocolate cakes in my day!!! For my brother’s birthday last night, I went searching on the web for gluten free cake. I choose Shays cake. Not only did 6 old “farts” clean the platter, but not one of them believed it was Gluten free. Moist, wonderful texture and the buttercream smoothed on like never before with no crumbles rolling around. This recipe is a keeper! Book- marked, printed and inserted in Grams cookbook binder. Thank you.

    • Shay says:

      Thanks so much for your wonderful feedback! Happy belated birthday to your brother, so glad he got to celebrate with a tasty cake!

  58. Cathy says:

    Ok. I was sceptical about this being the best Gf chocolate cake ever….But IT Was!!.
    The texture was amazing, the flavour was excellent and I loved the frosting. I made the dairy free version with the coconut milk and I reduced the sugar to 1 1/2 cups for the cake recipe. Will definitely make this again!

  59. Lindsay says:

    This cake was absolutely delicious!!! Thank you 🙂

  60. luup says:

    absolutely loved this cake, baked it the night before and iced it the day of the event. i covered it in a chocolate ganache shell and made goat cheese icing as the filling. along with a cherry topping it was an absolute hit with my family!

    everyone loved it and there wasn’t a single slice left by the end of the night. my only issue is that it came out a little dry for my tastes so I might try experimenting with this recipie a little.

  61. Cindy Crosson says:

    I’m going to make this awesome cake for my husband and son for Fathers Day they both are chocolate nuts. My son is gluten free as I am.

  62. Hi! Do you have a replacement for the heavy cream? My daughter is allergic to lactose, (and gluten) I love everything else about this recipe! Thanks!

  63. Kristin says:

    Can this cake be frozen?

  64. Pamela says:

    I baked this cake and it was absolutely the best chocolate cake I’ve ever made either gluten feee or regular.! Everyone loved it! But have you ever made cupcakes with this ? If so how long should they be baked ? I want to carry to a party where only finger foods are being served .

  65. Rachael says:

    This is the second time I’ve made this. Once as the cake the second time as cupcakes. It’s delicious and I can have gluten! Awesome recipe! Thank you!

  66. Ramae Hamrin says:

    Made this cake last night using Bob’s 1-1 flour in a 9×13 pan, and it was literally the most amazing gluten-free cake I’ve ever had. We seriously couldn’t believe it was really this good. Thanks so much for the recipe.

  67. Christiana Reubert says:

    Hi there!
    Is the nutritional info listed at the end for the entire cake or just an individual slice?

  68. Nicki says:

    Thank you for the recipe! It looks amazing and I can’t wait to try it for my daughter’s birthday.

    Thing is, I only have one 10″ round cake pan. Could I bake the full recipe in the 10″ round pan and skip the layering? What would the cook time be?

    Thank you so much!!

  69. Jonny says:

    I don’t much like cake, I’m not a baker, and I’ve never found a GF bakery product that I care for… till now! This chocolate cake (which I made with Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 GF flour and baked in a 9″x13″ pan for about 43 minutes) was moist, fudgy and delicious. It was the hands-down favorite at a large party today. Even people who have no gluten sensitivity loved it and asked for the recipe. Oh, and it’s easy to make — even I couldn’t mess it up. I’m saving the recipe for sure! Thanks so much for a wonderful cake recipe.

  70. Kristie Hunter says:

    I made this cake for my non gluten free son’s birthday. My gluten free son wouldn’t eat it at the party because he was afraid people would not “like” it once they found out it was gluten free. Everyone loved it and never suspected a thing! It was absolutely amazing!!! I will never look for another gluten free cake recipe ever!!! Thank you so much for posting!!!

  71. Amber says:

    Literally the BEST chocolate cake ever!!! I can’t think of another that I could compare it to, but it was delicious. AND it’s amazing that it’s gluten free!!! The frosting…ummmm, yum.
    I have a celiac kiddo and this satisfied our entire families’ chocolate cake desires.
    I never comment…EVER.
    That’s how incredible this was.
    By the way, I followed exactly and I used Namaste GF flour and milk w/ vinegar.

  72. Gayle says:

    I wish I had read the comments before I baked this cake. The recipe said two 8 inch pans and since the picture shows a round cake I naturally assumed that you meant round cake pans.
    If I had read the comments beforehand… One comment said the batter made enough for three 8 inch round pans. Another comment said that you used 8 X 8, 9 X 9, or 10 X 13 pans. I have a terrible mess on my oven racks, the bottom of my oven and the outsides of the two 8 inch cake pans. Maybe you should add the shape of the 8 inch pans on your recipe.

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Gayle, I bake this cake often and I only ever need 2 8-inch round pans. The batter only comes up about half way. Round vs. square will not matter when you’re using 8×8 or 9×9, it will only affect the shape of the cake. The 9×13 is a standard rectangle pan, not a round pan. You would use one 9×13 pan in place of 2 8-inch pans if you would prefer making a rectangular cake instead of a layer cake. This cake can also be baked in 2 9-inch pans if someone doesn’t have 8-inch pans. Are you by any chance baking at a high altitude?

  73. Shelby says:

    5 stars
    Thank you so much for sharing your baking notes on the different flours. I appreciate your test bakes so much. They save me cabinet space, money and frame of mind!!!

  74. Sara says:

    5 stars
    Is this cake sturdy enough for some sculpting? I am making a 60th Birthday cake for my Mum next weekend and looking for something I can carve into the shape of an open book.

  75. Karen says:

    5 stars
    Was wondering if you measure the cocoa before sifting it or after(3/4c). Also noticed none of your measurements are by weights. Do you not weigh your flours in particular?
    Thanks. So looking forward to making this for Xmas Eve.

  76. Alexa says:

    5 stars
    I am so excited to make this cake!
    I just wanted to make the cake in the one pan and skip the frosting in the middle. Will this still work?
    I’m planing to do kit Kats around the outside and put Ferrero Rocher on the top for Christmas!

    • Sharon says:

      If you bake it in a 9×13 pan it would work 🙂
      Kit Kats aren’t gluten free though so if you’re serving this to someone who has Celiac disease or gluten intolerance they wouldn’t be able to eat it.

  77. Linda Tenofsky says:

    5 stars
    This is truly an amazing gluten free cake. I followed the recipe, but did not have xanthan gum, but I used Bob’s Red Mill All purpose gluten free baking flour, and the cake came out amazing. The batter is thin, but as the recipe said, that’s OK! I made it in a bundt pan, and the cooking time was longer, but the finished cake was terrific! I did not frost it, I used a confectioner’s sugar on it, and it was so pretty.

  78. Susana says:

    5 stars
    I make it every week, today I am doubling the recipe because it only lasts two days! It is our family favorite.

    Thank you so much!

  79. Megan says:

    5 stars
    I made this cake this weekend for my boyfriends birthday (he has celiacs). I’ve got to say: this was THE BEST chcokate cake both of us have ever eaten — gluten or not gluten !!

    The only “sub” I made was that my coffee had some cream in it (bf came home with my coffee order instead of just black coffee), oh well. Aside from that everything was as accurate as possible.

    Paired the cake with a chocolate buttercream and ganache drip. Perfection.

    Flour: I used a bulk cup-for-cup from Bulk Barn (Canada)

  80. MaryEllen says:

    5 stars
    Do you think coconut oil can be substituted for the avocado oil?
    Making as a wedding cake and the groom can only have coconut oil.

    • Sharon says:

      Hi MaryEllen, I think coconut should work! Just make sure it’s melted when you measure it and a refined oil would be best for so it doesn’t have a coconut flavor but unrefined should work too.

  81. Korey says:

    5 stars
    I used your recipe for my brothers wedding cake and with the right gluten free flour we had excelent results!

    I tried two other flours and I couldn’t get consistent results with them but the one I listed works well with this recipe. ( I have never ever ever baked gluten free so this was a major learning experience)

  82. Jill says:

    5 stars
    Can you use almond milk or does it have to be coconut for dairy free? Thank you.

    • Sharon says:

      I prefer baking with unsweetened coconut milk beverage because it doesn’t leave a coconut taste. Personally, I find that baking with almond milk makes things taste too nutty for my own taste.

  83. Sara says:

    5 stars
    So delicious!! Thank you for this recipe- I have made several other gluten free cakes in the past, and this one was by far the best taste, texture, and consistency! I used Cup4Cup GF flour, and frosted with a different frosting (just because the guest of honor really wanted a peanut butter frosting), but the cake would taste amazing with almost any frosting. Will definitely use this recipe again!

  84. Edie says:

    5 stars
    Is there a way to test the doneness of this cake? Like the toothpick test? Thanks!

  85. Mano says:

    5 stars
    This is a great GF cake. I made this cake today, so easy to make, moist and very chocolaty. Instead of vanilla, I added a few drops of Almond extract to the icing, which gave a nice flavour. Next time I might add chopped almonds to the icing when sandwiching the two cakes and decorate the top with sliced Almonds. Thanks for this wonderful recipe.

  86. Alescia Brown says:

    5 stars
    The best gluten free chocolate cake recipe I have made. It will be my go to recipe from now on for gluten free chocolate cake. Thank you for this awesome recipe!

  87. Carly says:

    5 stars
    Can this recipe be used for cupcakes as well?

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Carly! While this makes an amazing cake, I don’t recommend it for cupcakes. This is my go-to chocolate cupcake recipe:
      It makes 1 dozen but can be doubled 🙂

  88. Heather says:

    5 stars
    I really want to make this cake for my son’s birthday this weekend… looks so good! I have Pamela’s GF All Purpose Flour and it has guar gum in it. Do you think I should leave out the xanthan gum? Also wondering how thick each layer is when baked? I only have 9 inch pans and don’t want the cake to be super thin!

    • Sharon says:

      Yes, if you’re using a blend with xanthan gum or guar gum you can omit the xanthan gum called for in a recipe. It won’t be super thick if you’re using 9 inch pans. What you can do is slice the cakes down the middle once they’re cooled to turn it into 4 layers. Just make extra frosting for the extra layers. That will give your cake a lot more height!

  89. Connie says:

    5 stars
    OMG! Made this tonight & used the Bobs Red Mill Egg replacer. Made a 9×13 & used Miss Jones (wal-mart) chocolate frosting. Even my husband, who is a picky eater loved it. This is a keeper!!

  90. Sarah says:

    5 stars
    Boy, I thought I had chocolate cake nailed until I tried this recipe. I was searching for something dairy free for a friend. This cake is amazing!!!

  91. ambria schneider says:

    5 stars
    WHOOOOA! I made this using bob’s red mill all purpose gf flour, and it was BEAUTIFUL and pERFECT and I and my husband ate it all by ourselves in under a week. No regrets. I tried a different frosting for fun, but the cake itself was the real star. Do yourself a favor and MAKE THIS. thanks SO much for your adaptation from the goddess herself, Ina Garten!

  92. Isabella says:

    5 stars
    Hi! I’m not vegan or anything, but we don’t have buttermilk where I live. I was just wondering if there is a better substitute rather than coconut milk seeing as I don’t want to have coconut flavor in the cake. If this is the best sub then I will use it but if there is something else please let me know! (I’ve heard of milk and vinegar or lemon juice but I don’t know if that’s any good). Thank you!!

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Isabella – the coconut milk + vinegar is the dairy free sub (and it doesn’t make it taste like coconut). If you don’t need dairy free, regular milk + white vinegar is is fine to use!

      • isabella says:

        5 stars
        I don’t necessarily need dairy free! which one is better for the cake though? texture wise? thanks and sorry for all the questions!

  93. Derricka says:

    5 stars
    Is there a way to make this without the coffee? @whatthefork

  94. Sarah Daugherty says:

    5 stars
    This turned out amazing! I hadn’t had cake in so long since I’ve had to give up gluten, dairy and eggs! I used Bobs Red Mill Egg Replacer and organic coconut sugar and coconut milk/vinegar. Turned out great! The vegan frosting was excellent!

  95. Rachel says:

    5 stars
    Does the coffee flavor stand out? I want to use this cake recipe for a black forest cake and wanted to find something with espresso to give it a depth of flavor but not so much that you taste coffee. Thanks so much. This recipe looks decadent!

  96. Helena says:

    5 stars
    Hi, thank you for this amazing cake recipe. It’s my go to cake recipe now…I have a lot of gluten free people in my life!!! I swap the milk for unsweetened almond milk and use sunflower oil and use a dairy free icing for my dairy free teen! Perfect every time. Thanks again for the recipe.

  97. Isabella says:

    What is the absolute best flour to use for this recipe? the nightshade mix, white rice, brown rice or bobs red bill flour?

    Thanks!! Will be making this for my boyfriend’s birthday 🙂

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Isabella, you could use any of those flours. If you use Bob’s Red Mill 1:1, omit the xanthan gum called for in the recipe. I make it most often with the nightshade free blend if that helps.

  98. Sita says:

    Any way to replace the egg. My child is allergic to eggs and gluten.

  99. Val says:

    5 stars
    First off, I don’t go onto sites and leave comment really ever. I want to but I forget and I am super busy. I was looking for a tasty gluten free and nut free chocolate recipe for my boyfriends bithday. This recipe came up and what caught my eye was it was supposed to taste like regular cake and not the typical gluten free taste. You could not tell it was gluten free. This cake exceeded my expectations. It was the most amazing chocolate cake I have ever eaten/made. I had 2 sclices at the party! I eat very healthy and usually don’t crave chocolate. But this cake is so moist, soft and decadent and i could not resist. I wish i could give this cake 10 stars. I used the Bob’s red mill 1:1 gf flour. And unsweetened coconut milk.

  100. Crystal says:

    Hi Sharon! Your recipe looks amazing, I’m going to try it tomorrow for my husband’s birthday! Our household has been GF for 6 yrs and I’ve not been able to redeem myself from the last few cakes I made for him – where he had to enjoy it in a bowl of milk! 😉 His favorite is a marble cake, can I alter this recipe? I know you add the cocoa powder at the beginning, would it matter if I added it at the end so I can separate the batter?

  101. Jordan says:

    Thank you for the recipe. I don’t make cakes often. Can I make this the night before and leave it out?

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Jordan – you probably could if you wrap them really tightly in plastic wrap. Usually if I make them ahead, I wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze them.

  102. Cathy says:

    Made this tonight for my son’s 16th birthday and it was delicious! My flour mix was 1 cup cassava and 3/4 white rice. Very successful.

  103. Sean says:

    Thank you for the chocolate cake recipe, I made it for my wife’s birthday Jan 10 . I diid make it with coconut milk and vinegar, it was delicious and very moist. How do you get it to not sag in the center? I used GF robin hood all purpose flour blend. Thanks again.

  104. Ashley says:

    Hi there, just to confirm: when you use Bob’s 1-to-1, you leave out the xanthan gum since it’s included in the Bob’s, correct? I’m going to use this for a friend’s birthday cake this weekend!

  105. Bree says:

    Any suggestion on making this cake without eggs? I am sensitive to them.

    • gloria says:

      I bet if you use Organic Eggs, where hens are not fed stimulants, antibiotics, hormones, etc. You will not have sensitivity. Try them! I can’t eat regular eggs either. My sensitivity means running to the bathroom all day!

      • Kayleigh says:

        Flax seed works as a great egg substitute. If you google there are measurements. I used it with flax seed and it turned out great!

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Bree, I have not tried any egg substitutes in this recipe so I can’t tell you for sure. If you end up experimenting, let me know how it works out for you.

  106. Jen says:

    I wanted to let you know that I made this cake for my daughter’s birthday. I have to say, it really is the *BEST* gf chocolate cake – and maybe just chocolate cake! I am the only one gluten free in my family, and we all LOVED it! I made your chocolate buttercream, as well, but added a raspberry filling in between the layers, as requested by the birthday girl. It didn’t last long! This will be my go-to chocolate cake recipe. Thank you!

  107. Andi says:

    I found this and have made it twice now – outstanding results! I have only been GF for about 8 months and have always done a lot of baking. This reminds me of a cake my mom would make with Nestle’s Chocolate Quik. SO moist and so NOT a typical GF cake! The first time I made it, I didn’t have enough cocoa, so I actually used about 1/4 cup of chocolate pudding mix. It was incredible! Second time, I had cocoa and it was just as good! This has been a real find. We have quite a few folks at church who are GF, and I always try to have something to offer them at our gatherings. They LOVED this! First time that every scrap of a GF cake has been devoured! My husband loves it too, and he has no gluten issues! Thanks for sharing this! Only other difference is that I made vanilla butter cream frosting one time and cream cheese frosting another. SO GOOD!

  108. Pam says:

    I just made a trial cake for my daughter’s first birthday and it is delicious! Trying to work out baking in the cupcake cake pan I got as that did not work out well. The pan itself is pretty deep, so if you have any suggestions, that would be much appreciated.


  109. Cate says:

    FYI, Ina Garten’s recipe is almost verbatim the cake from the back of the Hershey’s cocoa powder can. The only difference is buttermilk instead of milk. Both have a total of 3 tsp leavening, but Garten uses 2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp baking powder. Hershey’s use 1 1/2 tsp of each. The non-gluten recipe is every where and always attributed to Hershey’s.

  110. Bev Schindler says:

    Just a question regarding the cocoa powder. Does it need to be GF. Cocoa powder for cealiacs??
    I’m needing a cake to make for a friend of my sons, birthday tomorrow. He is cealiac, but not by choice??
    Can you advise?
    Also is the xantham gum GF, and readily available?

    • Sharon says:

      I’ve used Rodelle Gourmet Baking Cocoa (Dutch processed), regular Hershey’s Cocoa Powder, and Hershey’s Special Dark all with great results. Xanthan gum is usually available in the gluten free section at the grocery store. Hope that helps!

  111. mycatclaire says:

    Made this yesterday for a birthday party… two people there are gluten free, one by choice, the other has celiac’s… anyway, this cake was AH-MAZING! Everyone raved and asked for the recipe. The only other comment I have is that there was enough batter for (3) 8 inch cake pans.

  112. Belinda says:

    I made this recipe using the coconut milk method. It was absolutely amazing! So moist. I baked in 2 tins as suggested (but square). Then I sliced each cake in 2 so I created 4 layers. Whipped cream in between each layer. Then made a chocomate ganache and served a tall square piece of cake with choc ganache dripping down each piece. This is the first gluten free choc cake I have made because I had a GF friend coming for dinner (she comes over regular so I am aleays searching out good GF recipes. It eas a big hit!!!!

  113. Olivia says:

    I made this for my sister for her birthday cause she has problems with gluten and everyone loved it !! It really is the best gluten free chocolate cake. Thanks 🙂

  114. Victoria says:

    Does the frosted cake need to be refrigerated?

    • Sharon says:

      I sometimes refrigerate it if it’s really warm/humid out. In the winter, I usually leave it at room temperature. If you do refrigerate it, bring it to room temp before serving 🙂

  115. Claire says:

    I just had to comment because I made the cake and it is beautiful! I dont have a stand mixer and just used a hand mixer and it was fine. I also used slightly less in the cup measurements because I use AUS metric and I know US cups are that little bit less. I used Orgran all purpose plain flour and didnt need to add the xanthan gum. I used a different icing recipe so cant comment on that.

    I tested this cake out to see if I would make it for my daughters birthday that is coming up and I will be keeping this recipe for a long, long time. Even a few days later and the cake is still great to eat (eating some now) Thanks so much!

  116. Karen says:

    This looks amazing. What flour blend do you use? Is it your own blend or a store bought? I typically use Bob’s Red Mill but sometimes the garbanzo flour is too heavy for the recipe.

    • Sharon says:

      I’ve used Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 flour (not their flour blend with bean flour) and it works great. I almost always use my own flour blend though!

  117. Chelsi says:

    Just made this for a birthday, haven’t tried it yet, but it looks great and the crumbs I did try were delish ;)!! Icing is very yummy!!! Will be using again!!

  118. Tara says:

    Hi. Can I leave the cup of coffee out? Will it make a difference?

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Tara, the coffee is essential in this recipe. It brings out the flavor of the chocolate (without making it taste like coffee) and adds moisture to the cake. If you can’t have regular coffee because of the caffeine, you can use decaf coffee or just use 1 cup of hot water instead.

  119. Tara says:

    Can I leave out the cup of coffee? Will it effect the recipe?

  120. Linda Tanzini says:

    Could this be made in a 9x13pan and approx baking time? Thanks for all recipes Sharon, you’re the best, linda

    • Sharon says:

      Hi Linda – I just baked it in a 9×13 pan this morning – mine was done after 37 minutes. So depending on your oven, I would shoot for somewhere between 35-40 minutes 🙂

  121. Sharon says:

    Hi Susan, are you baking at a higher altitude by any chance?

  122. Susan says:

    I noticed someone said they made three layers. I used 2” deep pans and the side rose all the way to top. Maybe 3 layers would have been better?