Gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe, anyone? Yep it’s a twist on a Christmas classic that I know everyone will enjoy. You can even make it dairy free and low FODMAP too.
My gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe is super easy to make and omg… the taste is out of this world!! If you miss eating Terry’s chocolate orange, you will absolutely love this one…
Is it just me, or does anything chocolate orange flavoured instantly feel Christmassy?!
I’m guessing it’s because Terry’s chocolate orange is such a big thing during the festive season – is that why?!
(it’s not gluten free btw – it has a may contain warning. A lot of people don’t seem to care but I personally would avoid!)
But whatever the reason, trust me – this is a real Christmas treat that you won’t want to miss! This is a twist on my classic gluten free yule log recipe which you can find here.
But before we get to the recipe… what is it exactly?
It’s an incredibly light, moist swiss roll-style sponge infused with orange extract, concealing a beautiful swirl of chocolate orange buttercream.
Then, it’s topped with fresh orange zest and my own homemade chocolate orange segments – yes that’s right, you can easily make your own!
(I used this chocolate mould I found here on Amazon)
And that’s it! It’s really easy to make because when you think about it, it’s just a sponge and icing at the end of the day. Doesn’t sound too tricky, does it?
Ok, so here’s your shopping list for my gluten free chocolate orange yule log…
For the sponge
- 100g caster sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 65g gluten free self raising flour
- 1/4 tsp xanthan gum (add this even if your flour already has it in it)
- 40g cocoa powder (ensure dairy free if necessary)
- 2 tsp orange extract
For the icing
- 675g icing sugar
- 45g cocoa powder (ensure dairy free if necessary)
- 65g butter, softened (dairy free alternative if necessary)
- 2 tsp orange extract
- 125ml milk (any milk should work here)
- Icing sugar (for dusting)
- Chocolate orange segments (I make my own)
- Orange zest
Optional chocolate orange segments
- 200g chocolate
- 2 tsp orange extract
Keep scrolling to the bottom of this post until you see the recipe card for the method 👇🏻
Aaaand here’s a few frequently asked questions and tips on how to make my gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe without a hitch…
Can I make this recipe gluten free?
It is gluten free!
Can I make your gluten chocolate orange yule log recipe dairy free?
Of course you can! This recipe is actually really simple to make dairy free.
All you’ve got to do is substitute butter for hard margarine (I use Stork) and milk for any dairy free milk.
You might need to add a little extra icing sugar for the buttercream icing just to bring it together, as hard margarine can be a little looser than when using butter.
Don’t forget some dairy free chocolate for your homemade orange segments. Also, just double-check that your cocoa powder is dairy free – it usually is!
Otherwise, you’re all good to go.
Is your gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe low FODMAP?
If you use lactose free milk and chocolate then it certainly is! Butter is incredibly low in lactose, so that makes it low FODMAP too.
Otherwise, you’re good to go and for once, there’s no scary, high FODMAP ingredients required!
Is your gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe nut free?
Yep, this is a nut-free recipe as far as ingredients go. But please, please make sure you check the ingredients label on ALL the products you use to bake this cake just to be safe.
Even if the products don’t contain nuts, they might have a ‘may contain nuts’ warning due to being produced in a factory that handles nuts.
You can never be too careful so always read the labels on everything first!
Can I make your gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe vegan?
Though egg replacement options are available, this recipe isn’t so easy to make vegan unfortunately.
The first stage of this recipe involves whisking eggs and sugar together so you can get lots of air into it. I definitely don’t see how that would be possible with egg replacer!
Since there’s no butter in the sponge, the eggs become even more important and especially how much air you can whisk into them.
If you’d like me to create a gf AND vegan version of this recipe then let me know in the comments below this post 👇🏻
Can I make your gluten free chocolate orange yule log in a food processor or standing mixer?
Of course you can! I don’t actually use a standing mixer or food processor to make the cake mixture for this recipe – I use an electric whisk. Just because I’m used to it.
When it comes to buttercream, I prefer to use my standing mixer as you have to mix it for a longer period of time (around 10 minutes). So it’s much easier to just let the mixer do the hard work!
Can I make your gluten free chocolate orange yule log without any kind of electric mixer at all?
Yep! But just make sure that when you whisk the sugar and eggs together, you use a hand whisk and gets lots and lots of air into the mixture until frothy. It’s super-important that the sponge mixture is really consistently mixed!
Oh and when it comes to the buttercream, it might take you a while! It can be a bit of a mission, but just make sure you don’t leave any dry mixture at the bottom of the bowl and you should be fine.
Do I need any special equipment to bake your gluten free chocolate orange yule log?
Certainly not! As I mentioned, a food processor, standing mixer or electric whisk will cut down on prep time, but they’re not mandatory.
What you will need however is a swiss roll tin – I use this one by Mary Berry and Lakeland, it’s 35cm by 25cm.
If you’re in a bit of a pinch and don’t have a swiss roll tin, you can easily use a baking tray instead as long as it’s roughly the same size and sides aren’t too low.
Oh and make sure you have some baking paper – I use Bacofoil. You’ll definitely need this to successfully roll up your sponge. Don’t forget this chocolate mould I found here on Amazon) if you plan on making the homemade choc orange segments.
Can I bake this using the all-in-one method?
In case you didn’t already know, the all-in-one method involves bunging all your sponge ingredients into a bowl at once and mixing them together. That’s instead of adding them gradually.
This isn’t a regular sponge recipe – there’s no butter! So definitely don’t throw all the sponge ingredients at once. Trust me, it won’t turn out ok and we need the sponge to be spot on so it can be rolled without breaking.
For example, the first stage, which involves whisking sugar and eggs, is really important to do separately so you get lots of air into the eggs so they go nice and frothy.
So no – definitely don’t throw everything in the bowl at once, please!
Can I make this recipe without xanthan gum?
In some of my recipes, yes, but I wouldn’t recommend leaving xanthan gum out of this one. You’ll see xanthan gum in a lot of my recipes as it’s an essential ingredient in gluten free baking.
Without gluten to bind the cake together, you can be left with a very loose and crumbly sponge texture which won’t work for this recipe. In other words, you won’t have a hope in hell of being able to roll it up without xanthan gum!
Some people have asked if they can use psyllium husk powder instead of xanthan gum, but I’ve found that it definitely results in a denser sponge so I wouldn’t overly recommend it.
So TLDR; definitely use xanthan gum if you can!!
Can I make this recipe using other gluten free flours like buckwheat flour or coconut flour?
There’s a big difference between ‘gluten free plain/self-raising flour’ and a *singular* type gluten free flour. When I say ‘gluten free plain or self-raising flour’ in a recipe, I mean a BLEND of gluten free flours, not just one, singular flour.
Most gluten free flour you buy in the supermarket typically contains a blend of rice flour, potato flour, maize flour, tapioca flour AND buckwheat flour. That’s a lot of different flours!
In gluten free self-raising flour, there’s usually even a little baking powder and xanthan gum in it too which always helps.
So to replace it with just one specific type of flour… that’s not going to cut it at all. Definitely go for a gluten free flour blend.
Do I need weighing scales to bake your gluten free chocolate orange yule log?
In short… yes, yes and yes! And I wouldn’t advise attempting any my recipes without them. One of the worst things you can do in any baking recipe is alter the quantities by mistake or on purpose.
(unless you know what you’re doing of course)
Why? Well, you’re sort of just gambling with the recipe and praying that it turns out ok, don’t you think? And I’ve generally already done the hard work there for you, so you don’t have to do the guesswork with measurements!
A lot of work went into fine tuning ratios and quantities so I wouldn’t mess around with them unless you really know your stuff. I’d recommending using digital cooking scales like these so you know you’re getting an accurate measurement.
Can I bake your gluten free chocolate orange yule log with less sugar?
I can definitely understand the need to reduce sugar in our foods, but this is one of the recipes where I wouldn’t advise it.
Of course, the sugar isn’t just for sweetness – it’s integral to the structure of the cake once baked and is sooo important.
If you wanted to tone things down a bit sugar-wise, you could use icing on the inside of the cake only, skipping the icing on the outside. Though obviously… it won’t look very yule log-like!
I’ll leave the choice up to you.
How long can I keep your gluten free chocolate orange yule log for?
I’ve kept my gluten free chocolate orange yule log for about 3-5 days in an air-tight container with no problems. If you need to keep it any longer than that, I’d highly recommend freezing it in slices (see advice below for doing that).
When the sponge starts getting a little dry, it’s probably starting to get past its best.
Can I freeze your gluten free chocolate orange yule log?
Of course! I’ve frozen it for up to 2-3 months no problem. I’d recommend slicing it up first – otherwise it’ll take an age to defrost! That way, you can also defrost a few slices at time instead of defrosting the whole cake, which you might not be able to eat all at once.
When you want to eat them, a couple of slices should take around 3 hours to defrost at room temperature.
How can I tell when my sponge is done?
The sponge should start to come away from the edges of the swiss roll tin and have a nice, smooth-looking finish on the outside.
You can also poke a skewer into the middle to check if it comes out clean if you fancy.
Can I top these cupcakes with Terry’s chocolate orange segments instead of making my own?
I always make this very clear just in case – Terry’s chocolate orange is not gluten free!
Though it has no gluten-containing ingredients, it has a ‘may contain wheat’ warning which isn’t safe for Coeliacs.
I’m intolerant to gluten and I personally wouldn’t risk it – especially not when you can make your own little chocolate orange segments so easily.
I used this orange segment chocolate mould to make mine.
Why did my sponge break when I tried to roll it?
Rolling your sponge is the tricky part, which if you do it successfully, the rest is a walk in the park – promise! Here’s a few tips on how to make sure your sponge doesn’t ever break when you roll it up…
- Once you’ve trimmed off the edges (if needed), score a line across the sponge along the long side of the sponge about 2cm in with a knife. And by score, I mean just use a sharp knife to create a clearly visible line that doesn’t go more than 1-2mm deep into the sponge. This will help the sponge to coil up at its tightest point without breaking.
- Then, make sure that you roll your sponge AND the baking paper into a swirl. The baking paper is really important as it’ll support the sponge whilst you roll it into shape. It’ll be a little sticky too, so baking paper will help the whole process massively.
- Do this whilst the sponge has only just come out the oven and still nice and warm. Trust me when I say that you won’t have a hope in hell of rolling this sponge once it’s cooled. I’ve tried – and failed!
- Whilst rolling it up, don’t be too heavy handed and don’t try and roll it too tightly. Gentle is the correct word! Just imagine you’re trying to loosely roll up a sheet of A4 paper into a tube without folding or bending it. Remember, you never want to bend the sponge at a 90 degree angle or anything close – it will break!
- You MUST leave the sponge in this rolled up position whilst it cools. Once I’ve rolled up my sponge, I just put a weighty object either side to keep it that way. By this point, you should be happy as the hard part is over!
- It doesn’t even need to be rolled particularly tight either so don’t try and roll it up incredibly compact and put the sponge under more strain than it needs to be.
When I sliced my yule log, it’s more of an angular swirl in the middle than a nice, smooth, rounded swirl like yours. What happened?
The nice, smooth swirl comes from following all of the advise I listed above in the previous question 👆🏻
An angular swirl in the middle means the sponge was folded at some point during the rolling process. That most likely comes from the sponge breaking because you might have tried to roll it too tightly at first.
A nice, curved swirl comes from rolling the sponge quite loosely (not tightly rolled) and very gently!
The swirl in my sponge looks a little flat, what happened?
If you don’t spread enough icing onto your sponge when you roll it, you’ll end up with a swirl that’s mostly sponge, with not a lot of icing. This can look a little flat and squashed.
Without a decent amount of icing in the swirl, you might see the sponge part of the swirl, touching another part of the sponge which we don’t want!
I spread a nice, thick layer of icing on my sponge before I roll it for the final time – with a little extra along where you scored a line, That should give you a nice, plump swirl of icing in the very middle.
Why is my swiss roll sponge dry with a tough outer crust?
If the sponge comes out feeling dry, hard with a tough outer crust, it’s probably over-baked.
That either means it had too long in the oven, or the oven temperature was too hot. It’s very unlikely that you’ll be able to successfully roll an over-done sponge as it won’t be flexible enough to roll without breaking.
Can I print your gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe?
Of course! Just hit the print button located on the recipe below 👇🏻 (otherwise you might end up printing this entire post which would probably make your printer go into early retirement)
My gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe is my best ever twist on a Christmas classic. You can easily make it dairy free too! Nutrition info is estimated.
For the sponge
For the icing
Optional chocolate orange segments
For the chocolate orange segments:
Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 342Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 106mgCarbohydrates: 69gFiber: 1gSugar: 60gProtein: 4g
My gluten free chocolate orange yule log recipe is my best ever twist on a Christmas classic. You can easily make it dairy free too!
Nutrition info is estimated.
Any questions about the recipe? Please do let me know by following me on Instagram and leaving me a comment on a recent photo!
Thanks for reading,
Oh and don’t forget to pin this for later!