The easiest gluten free and vegan chocolate cake recipe. This delicious and simple cake is perfect for a birthday party, holiday, or any day that you want a sweet treat!
If you’re new to gluten free and allergy friendly baking, one of the first things you need is a great cake recipe. Chocolate cake, to be exact. Because you may have a birthday coming up, or you might just want to bake one afternoon. You need an easy recipe that’s no-fail and delicious. This is that chocolate cake recipe.
This gluten free and vegan chocolate cake uses basic ingredients and it is so easy to throw together. Mix it up and pop it in the oven, and 30 minutes later you have a fresh-baked chocolate cake ready to go. It can’t get any easier than that.
Don’t be afraid of this cake, non-vegan friends. The vinegar and the baking soda combine so nicely to give it a nice lift, you would never guess that this cake does not contain eggs. It is really, really marvelous. It is possible to bake a delicious chocolate cake without eggs or gluten.
And if don’t need to be gluten free, go right ahead and use all-purpose flour! It works very well in this recipe – the cake will be a little lighter and less dense. Whatever flour you choose to use, this vegan chocolate cake will be a big hit.
You can use coconut oil or another oil if you prefer – you can even use melted vegan buttery spread. You can also make this in a round pan, or use this recipe to bake cupcakes. If you need to make a two-layer cake, just double the recipe.
FAQ about this gluten free and vegan chocolate cake:
Can I use coconut flour instead of gluten free flour?
No, that won’t work – you generally need eggs in order for coconut flour to be light and fluffy. If you use it in this recipe, you will have a dense, flat cake.
How about using almond meal?
If you want to use some almond meal, you can try using half almond meal and half gluten free flour blend. The cake will be a bit denser, and possibly more moist. I would not recommend using ONLY almond meal.
Can I use maple syrup instead of sugar?
I haven’t tried that. I would expect that the texture of the cake may change, and you would also need to use less water.
What can I use instead of vinegar?
Try a little lemon juice, that should work just as well as vinegar.
Where can I find gluten free baking powder?
Featherweight Baking Powder is gluten free and you can find it at Whole Foods, in some health food stores, and on Amazon (affiliate link).
My gluten free cakes usually sink in the middle? What am I doing wrong?
If your cakes sink in the middle, it’s likely because the middle wasn’t quite done baking. Stick a toothpick in the middle of the cake to see if it’s done – it should come out clean or with just a few crumbs. It should not have wet batter on it.
My cakes always take less/more time to bake than the recipe suggests – why is this?
If you use a different gluten free flour blend, it could change the amount of time required for baking. You may also want to check your oven temperature to make sure that it’s accurate.
The Easiest Gluten Free and Vegan Chocolate Cake.
- 1 ½ cups gluten free flour blend regular flour works in this recipe, if you are not GF
- 1 cups organic cane sugar
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup organic canola oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1 cup cold water
- ¾ cup mini dairy free chocolate chips
- confectioner’s sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift together the dry ingredients. (This step is important, especially with gluten free flour. Otherwise you’ll have lumps!)
Add the organic canola oil, vanilla, vinegar and water. Mix together by hand, and don’t overmix. Stir in the dairy free chocolate chips.
Pour into an 8 inch square Pyrex dish and bake at 350 degrees for about 26-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Dust the top with confectioner’s sugar once cool.
I have tried this with Namaste Perfect Flour Blend, King Arthur Gluten Free Multi Purpose Flour, and Enjoy Life Foods All-Purpose Gluten Free Flour.
You can use this to make cupcakes - reduce the baking time to about 13-15 minutes. Makes about 12 cupcakes.
adapted slightly from All Recipes.
Find tips, tricks, and easy recipes to help you with your allergy friendly and gluten free baking in my ebook:
This gluten free and vegan chocolate cake is:
- light and fluffy
- perfect for a party
- delicious with frosting or without
Going to make this and use my donut pan. May use some coconut instead of chips just because I don’t have any chips in the house. My only question is what elevation are you at, I am at a high elevation so wondered if that would make a difference.
I am in Michigan, so not a high elevation. I don’t have any experience with higher elevation baking, I’m sorry!
Beautiful photo~looks divine! Can I substitute coconut oil for canola? Thanks!
Thank you! Yes, you sure can!
Hooray, I was just wondering the same.
I’ve made this cake a number of times as is, but today I only have coconut oil. Thrilled it will work!
How the cup of water should be ?hot water or cold?
The water should be cold. :)
would you share with me/us, what was in your gluten free flour blend … I know everyone has their own twist when it comes to the flour blend. Thanks a ton : )
I just use storebought blends…Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Flour blend works well here, as does King Arthur brand. Also Trader Joe’s, or Namaste.
What does the vinegar do in this recipe? Have you ever made this recipe without the vinegar – I am wonder if there is a detectible difference in either texture or flavor.
The vinegar reacts with the baking soda to help the cake rise. I have never made it without vinegar. My guess is that it would not rise as well.
This is the easiest and best chocolate cake I’ve made! I am so glad you posted this recipe. 32 minutes and its perfect, moist and stays that way even in the fridge. Highly recommended!
So glad you liked it! Thanks for letting me know!
Wonder if this is suppose to come very runny as mine did?
I just made this cake in the slow cooker (1 hour on high and substituted white vinegar with apple cider). Yummy
What a fantastic idea to use the slow cooker! Thanks for letting us know that’s an option that works! Love it!
I just made cupcakes using this recipe and they are really delicious! I didn’t like the taste of the batter so I was very happily surprised at the results. Thanks for sharing this recipe.
Glad they turned out! Sometimes GF batter can taste a little funky, isn’t that weird? :)
How long do you bake the cupcakes and how many did it make? Thank you.
It should make a dozen cupcakes – bake for about 12-14 minutes. :)
Can you use different sugar other then cane sugar?
Thank you for your prompt reply. I’m making these on the weekend!
so easy and delicious. I added dried cranberries but you could add any fruit and it would still work. blueberries?
Sure, I bet they would be good as well!
Is there xanthan gum added to the recipe?
I always use a mix that has it included, like Bob’s 1-to-1 Gluten Free Mix, or Pamela’s Artisan blend, or 123 Gluten Free Flour blend. Hope that helps!
I was so excited to try this!! For the most part, it turned out amazing! But it seems raw/underbaked to me. Is that normal? This is literally my 1st attempt at a cake like this. I do not have glass bake ware small enough for this, so I used a springform pan. I baked it an extra 10 minutes, yet still underbaked… any ideas?
Is 1 t. baking soda equal to 1 tsp.? You wrote out teaspoon for other ingredients so wasn’t sure…. Thx!
Yes, thank you for catching that, I will have to correct it! t = teaspoon
Where do you buy Vegan chocolate chips? thanks!
This looks soo good! Do you think i could just blend some oats and use that for the flour? :) I’m wanting to make this for my dad tonight as it’s his birthday :D xxx
You are definitely not the only one – chocolate cake calls out to me on a regular basis. :)
Kelly @ The Pretty Bee: Cooking + Creating
Glad to know it’s not just me!!
I only have one word for this…YUM!
Kelly @ The Pretty Bee: Cooking + Creating
Does this recipe work well as cupcakes?
This has been our go-to for my son’s birthday cake for the last several years. He has multiple food allergies. We almost always use Great Value (Wal-Mart brand) gf flour and it always comes out wonderful. Thank you for this awesome recipe!
So glad this recipe works for you!