An easy sourdough chocolate cake recipe made with sourdough discard. It’s a delicious way to reduce waste from your sourdough starter!
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This Sourdough Chocolate Cake recipe is based on my best gluten free chocolate cake recipe but it gets a little bit of a flavor boost from the sourdough starter discard.
Not only is the flavor unbelievably good, but the texture is superb! This is an incredibly moist chocolate cake recipe. It truly rivals any chocolate cake made with regular wheat flour.
I double-dog dare you to try it for yourself!
This cake is super easy to make and beats the pants off any boxed mix you’re tempted to make.
Did you make this recipe? Leave a star rating and let me know in the comments! You can also leave a photo/comment on this pin for others to see.
If you’re looking to convert other gluten free cake recipes to use with your sourdough discard, I used 2 cups of sourdough starter to replace 1 cup gluten free flour and 1/2 cup milk from my regular recipe.
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Sourdough Chocolate Cake Ingredients
- Sourdough Starter – the starter I used in this recipe is made with my Nightshade Free Gluten Free Flour
- Gluten Free Flour – I use my Nightshade Free Gluten Free Flour blend in this recipe with excellent results. It’s an ideal flour blend for cake recipes.
- Xanthan Gum – Omit if your flour blend contains it.
- Dry Ingredients – granulated sugar, Dutch-processed cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and fine sea salt.
- Wet Ingredients – milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract.
- I don’t use buttermilk in this recipe.
- Coffee – This is the secret ingredient that makes this cake amazing. I mix coffee into the batter at the end because coffee intensifies the chocolate flavor. You can’t taste the coffee in this cake recipe but if you don’t want to use coffee you can use hot water.
What is a Sourdough Starter?
A sourdough starter is a mixture of flour and water that’s used to cultivate “wild yeast”. As sourdough starter matures and ferments, it’s used to make sourdough bread. You can read all about it in my Gluten-Free Sourdough Starter post.
How to Make a Dairy Free Chocolate Cake
To make this a dairy free chocolate cake, I use unsweetened coconut milk beverage to replace the regular milk. For a dairy free chocolate frosting, use my vegan chocolate frosting recipe.
Equipment Needed to Make a Chocolate Cake Recipe from Scratch
- Mixing Bowls
- Baking Utensils
- Two 8-inch round cake pans
- Parchment paper – for best results, line the bottoms of your cake pans with
- Stand mixer – I use a stand mixer for the frosting but the cake can be mixed by hand.
- Cake decorating turntable – optional but makes frosting much easier!
How to Make Chocolate Cake
Step 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray 2 8-inch cake pans with non-stick spray. Then line the bottoms with parchment rounds.
Step 2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour, xanthan gum, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt while breaking up any clumps of cocoa powder. Then set aside.
Step 3. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Then whisk in the sourdough discard until combined.
Step 4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until incorporated. Pour the hot coffee into the batter and carefully mix until the coffee is completely combined. The batter will be very thin, almost liquidy and that’s totally fine and normal for this recipe.
Step 5. Divide the batter evenly between the 2 baking pans and bake on the center rack. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until done.
Step 6. Cool the cakes in the pans on top of a wire rack for 20-30 minutes. Then invert onto a wire rack and cool completely before frosting (see note 4).
Step 7. Frost with chocolate buttercream frosting or one of the frostings listed in the post. For a thicker layer of frosting with extra to decorated, make 1 1/2 batches or a double batch of my chocolate buttercream frosting.
Alternative Baking Pans
6-inch – cut the recipe in half and bake in 2 6-inch round pans. Baking time is 25-30 minutes. You can find the exact measurements for the 6-inch chocolate cake in my Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake recipe (minus the sourdough starter).
9-inch – 2 9-inch round cake pans can be used instead of 8-inch, just reduce the baking time.
9×13 – Bake this cake in a 9×13 pan for 30-35 minutes.
Tips for Making Homemade Chocolate Cake
- Use discard made with 100% hydration – which means the sourdough starter is made with equal parts gluten free flour and water by weight.
- Your sourdough discard should be mature, at least a week old.
- Halve the recipe to make a 2-layer 6-inch cake if you don’t want to make a full 8-inch cake.
Best Frosting for Chocolate Cake
For the frosting, I made a simple homemade chocolate frosting. Other great frosting options are Nutella Buttercream Frosting, Coconut Buttercream Frosting, Peanut Butter Frosting, Cream Cheese Frosting, or Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. Feel free to check out all the buttercream frosting recipe options on this site to make your own flavor combination.
Other Sourdough Discard Recipes To Try
- Banana Bread
- Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 4-Ingredient Gluten Free Sourdough Bread – I feed my starter 100g flour and 100g water the day before baking. The 200g starter called for in the recipe is technically the discard.
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- 3/4 cup (110g) gluten free flour (note 1)
- 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (note 2)
- 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup (70g) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons (11g) baking soda
- 1 teaspoon (4g) baking powder
- 1 teaspoon (6g) fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup milk, room temperature
- 1/2 cup avocado oil (or neutral oil of choice)
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups (530g) sourdough discard (note 3)
- 1 cup hot coffee
- 1 recipe Chocolate Buttercream Frosting (or more for extra decoration)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray 2 8-inch cake pans with non-stick spray, then line the bottoms with parchment rounds.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, xanthan gum, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt while breaking up any clumps of cocoa powder. Then set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Then whisk in the sourdough discard until combined.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until incorporated.
- Pour the hot coffee into the batter and carefully mix until the coffee is completely combined. The batter will be very thin, almost liquidy and that's totally fine and normal for this recipe.
- Divide the batter evenly between the 2 baking pans and bake on the center rack at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until done.
- Cool the cakes in the pans on top of a wire rack for 20-30 minutes. Then invert onto a wire rack and cool completely before frosting (see note 4).
- Frost with chocolate buttercream frosting or one of the frostings listed in the post. For a thicker layer of frosting with extra to decorated, make 1 1/2 batches or a double batch of my chocolate buttercream frosting.
- For best results, use my Nightshade Free Gluten Free Flour Blend.
- If your flour blend and sourdough starter both contain xanthan gum, omit what's called for in the recipe. If your flour blend contains xanthan gum but your sourdough starter doesn't, add 1/4-1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum.
- Use the discard from a mature sourdough starter, at least a week old.
- For best results, freeze cake layers that have been wrapped in plastic wrap on a sheet pan before frosting. Frozen cake layers are easier to crumb coat and frost. Once frosted, keep the cake at room temperature to defrost until ready to serve the same day. A completely frosted cake can be refrigerated a day before serving.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 174
Nutrition Facts are estimated and aren't always accurate. Please consult a doctor or nutritionist if you have special dietary needs. Calories are based on 12 servings and do not include the frosting.
Did you make this Sourdough Chocolate Cake recipe? Leave a star rating and let me know in the comments! You can also leave a photo/comment on this pin for others to see.