Favorite Gluten & Dairy Free Chocolate Cake

A gluten & dairy free adaptation of my Nana’s incomparable chocolate cake recipe which results in an extra tender, one-bowl chocolate cake.  Makes two 9-inch round layers or one 9X13 cake.  Delicious with boiled icing, buttercream, or chocolate frosting.



For the Cake:
2 cups gluten free all purpose flour (such as King Arthur Measure for Measure flour blend)
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup HOT coffee (regular or decaf both work)
1 cup non-dairy milk
3 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
Dairy free mini chocolate chips, if desired

For the Chocolate Frosting:
3/4 cup cocoa powder (or use Hershey’s Special Dark for an extra chocolatey frosting)
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup vegan butter, softened (I like Country Crock Plant Butter with Olive Oil)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup evaporated coconut milk (see Notes)


For the Cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. If making two round layers, cut two pieces of parchment paper to fit on the bottom of each round pan.  Grease the inside of each pan with oil and then place the parchment paper at the bottom of the pan.
3. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and whisk together.
4. Add oil, coffee, and milk, mixing well.
5. Add eggs and vanilla and mix again until well combined.
6. Pour into prepared pans. Bake for 30 minutes.
7. Cool in pans for 5 minutes.  Run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen cake and invert it onto a rack to cool.  Carefully peel off parchment paper.

For the Frosting:
1. Whisk together sugar and cocoa.
2. Cream half of sugar mixture with vegan butter.  Add vanilla and half of milk.
3. Add remaining sugar mixture, mixing well, then the last of the milk.
4. Mix frosting on high for 2-3 minutes until smooth.

To Assemble:
1. Once cake layers are completely cool, place one layer on a large round plate.  Scoop half of frosting onto cake  layer and gently spread it out over the top of the cake, working your way from the center of the cake outward.
2. Place the second cake layer on top and cover with remaining frosting and sprinkle with mini chocolate chips, if you like.


– Evaporated coconut milk works best, but in a pinch, you can substitute any non-dairy milk.  I find that regular non-dairy milk makes the frosting a little runnier, so you may need to add an extra 1/2 cup of powdered sugar.

– We keep this cake in the refrigerator.

– I prefer two thicker layers of frosting, so I only frosted the inside and top of the cake, but you could use less frosting on the first layer and frost the entire cake with what remains.  If you want to frost the inside and outside of the cake and have extra left over to decorate the cake, I would make an extra 1/2 recipe of the frosting.

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