Gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe – yep, it’s a dessert and a cake, all-in-one! Best of all, nobody would know it’s Coeliac-friendly and wheat-free too. See the FAQ section for advice on making this dairy-free.
Gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe? Yep, that’s right – fresh, Kirsch-infused cream, topped with fresh cherries, grated chocolate, all sitting on top of a super moist, rich and indulgent chocolate cake. And it’s so incredibly easy to make!
A gluten-free black forest cake is probably rarer than spotting real, live unicorn. Which is strange, since it’s so incredibly easy to bake!
Simply whip up a chocolate loaf cake, top it with cherry compote, whipped cream, a few fresh cherries and that’s it. I’m not really sure how it could be any easier, if I’m honest.
So I decided to dedicate a recipe to this absolute classic that us gluten-free folks often go without.
Here’s a few reasons you need to make this if you weren’t convinced already:
Why make my gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe?
- Get all the wonderful flavours of a rich chocolate cake alongside the sweet, deep flavour of cherries with Kirsch-infused whipped cream.
- Getting that trademark ‘black forest’ flavour is incredibly easy just by having a jar of cherries soaked in Kirsch – I’ve linked exactly where to find it in the FAQ section.
- You’d never know it was gluten-free by tasting it or looking at it – it’s super light, moist, soft and NOT crumbly at all.
- Loaf cakes are incredibly easy to make – there’s no need to construct it once cooled. Just bake it, allow to cool and top it!
- Believe it or not, you can easily make this beauty dairy-free (without compromise) with a few simple swaps that I’ve listed in the FAQ section.
But what does my gluten-free Black Forest cake taste like, I hear you ask?
The chocolate sponge cake itself is incredibly moist thanks to the ground almonds, Kirsch syrup AND it’s packed with chocolate chips. It has an overall wonderful, rich chocolate flavour.
If that wasn’t good enough already, it’s then topped with cherry compote, whipped Kirsch-infused cream, grated chocolate and fresh cherries as a garnish.
Honestly, every bite is pure heaven and nothing else tastes quite like it!
Here’s everything you’ll need for my gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe – consider this your shopping list! Keep scrolling until you see the recipe card below if you’re looking for the full ingredients and method.
Gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe: Ingredients list
- caster sugar
- large eggs
- gluten-free self-raising flour
- gluten-free baking powder
- xanthan gum
- ground almonds
- cocoa powder
- jar of cherries soaked in Kirsch
- double cream
- icing sugar
- Bonne Maman Cherry Compote
- fresh cherries
- dark chocolate
So I thought I’d kick things off with a little frequently asked questions section – if you just want the recipe, then keep scrolling.
But I’ve thrown in some tips here that will be really helpful if this is your first time making this, or you want to adapt it. So here they are!
Gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe: Frequently Asked Questions
Can I make this recipe gluten free? Is it suitable for Coeliacs?
It is gluten free, though nobody would know just by tasting it – trust me!
Bear in mind that minimising cross-contamination is hugely important if you’re Coeliac or making this for someone who is. Here’s some tips from Coeliac UK on minimising the risk of cross contamination:
Also, make sure that all ingredients used don’t have any gluten-containing ingredients. Then make sure that they also don’t have a ‘may contain’ warning for gluten, wheat, rye, barley, oats (which aren’t gf), spelt and khorasan wheat (aka Kamut).
Here’s some more info from Coeliac UK on identifying safe gluten free products.
Can I make your gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe dairy free?
Of course you can! Here’s how…
To make the cake dairy-free:
- Use dairy-free margarine instead of butter.
- Use dairy-free milk instead of regular milk.
- Use dairy-free chocolate chips instead of regular chocolate chips, if using.
- Ensure your cocoa powder is dairy-free.
To make the cream dairy-free:
- Use Elmlea Plant Double Cream (has a ‘may contain’ warning for milk and easily found in supermarkets) or if you have a milk allergy, Flora Plant Professional Double Cream (no may contain warning for milk, but can only be bought online) instead of double cream.
- Use dairy-free chocolate instead of dark chocolate.
Can I make your gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe vegan?
Yep! If you follow the instructions above to make this recipe dairy free, then all you’ve got left to contend with is the eggs.
Here’s a few ideas you can use as egg replacements, so each of these = 1 egg.
- 3 tablespoons of aquafaba, pre-whisked until frothy. Aquafaba is simply the water from a can of chickpeas. Keep the chickpeas for a future dinner!
- Egg replacement powder – I’d recommend using Orgran as it’s gluten free.
- 1 tablespoon of chia/flax seeds mixed with 2 tablespoons of water and left for 10 minutes in the fridge.
- 3 tablespoons of applesauce.
So use one of those egg replacement options and you’ve got a gluten free AND vegan Black Forest cake! I haven’t tested all of these egg alternatives so let me know how you get on in the comments below.
Can I make this recipe low FODMAP?
Unfortunately, as cherries are high FODMAP in serving sizes above 20g, this recipe is not suitable for the elimination phase of the low FODMAP diet.
Where can I find cherries soaked in Kirsch? Or Kirsch syrup?
You can find both of these in one jar, which is easy to source in supermarkets. The syrup is simply the liquid that’s in the jar along with the cherries!
Simply use the syrup in the jar to infused the cake once baked, as well as for flavouring the cream. Then, use a few of the cherries in the jar to mix into the cherry compote for the ultimate black forest experience.
Here’s links to cherries soaked in Kirsch so you know what to look for:
Of course, if you fancy a non-alcoholic version or just don’t fancy using Kirsch, you can always skip using it entirely – though it’ll be more of a chocolate cherry loaf cake than a black forest cake!
Which cherry compote did you use?
I used Bonne Maman Cherry Compote which you can easily find stocked with all the jam in supermarkets.
I use this because it’s so much better for this recipe than just using any old cherry jam or conserve. It actually has lots of whole cherries in it (with the stones removed) and is the perfect consistency for topping this cake.
So I would definitely recommend sourcing this where possible – jam adds a totally different effect to what I was aiming for here.
How do I remove the stones from my fresh cherries?
I add fresh cherries as a garnish, complete with the stem and stone. But it might be more practical to remove the stones first.
You can do this by removing the stems and then pushing a chopstick right through the middle of them, so that the stone pops out of the bottom.
Or, if you feel fancy, you can always use a gadget like this to do the job too.
Can I make your gluten-free Black Forest cake in a food processor or standing mixer?
Of course you can – and it’ll save you on elbow grease! I don’t use a standing mixer or food processor to make the cake mixture personally – I use an electric hand whisk like this.
As this recipe doesn’t require longer periods of mixing, I find that an electric hand whisk is the quickest and easiest option.
Can I make your gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe by hand?
You can of course, bake this without any assistance from any appliance – just a good ol’ fashioned silicone spatula and a balloon whisk for the cream will do.
Just make sure you give it a lot of welly, otherwise your mixture won’t be consistent and might not bake properly otherwise.
Do I need any special equipment to bake your gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe?
Certainly not! You will need a good quality 2lb loaf tin though, so here’s a link to the one I use.
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.
As there’s more dry ingredients than with your average Victoria sponge-style cake, as well as milk too, I would always advise adding them gradually, instead of all at once.
Trust me, you’ll thank me when you cake comes out and it’s not a total disaster. So no, don’t use the all-in-one method for this one!
Does this recipe need xanthan gum?
You’ll see xanthan gum in a lot of my recipes as it’s an essential ingredient in gluten free baking. And that’s exactly the case here.
Though gluten-free self-raising flour has a little in it anyway, adding a little extra doesn’t hurt – especially when we’ve got ground almonds in there AND when factoring in that this is quite a tall sponge.
So yes, if you can tolerate xanthan gum, please ensure that you use it!
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 Black Forest cake recipe?
In short… yes, yes and yes! And I wouldn’t advise attempting any of my recipes without them.
A lot of work went into fine tuning ratios and quantities and for me, baking is all about consistency and precision. I want you to make this recipe and for it to turn out EXACTLY like mine did.
I’d recommending using digital cooking scales like these so you know you’re getting an accurate measurement and replicating my recipe as accurately as poss.
How long can I keep your gluten-free Black Forest cake for?
I’ve kept my gluten free Black Forest cake for 3-5 days in an air-tight container in the fridge with no problems.
If you need to keep it any longer than that, I’d highly recommend freezing it (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 Black Forest cake?
Of course! I’ve frozen it for up to 2-3 months no problem. Ideally, slice up the cake first before freezing. Then, you can easily defrost a few slices at a time instead of the entire thing.
When you want to eat it, each slice should take around 3 hours to defrost at room temperature.
How can I tell when my gluten free Black Forest cake is done?
Grab a skewer and give it a poke in the centre. If it comes out clean, then it’s done!
But if the skewer comes out moist and cake-like, it’s best to pop it back in for a bit longer.
Gluten-free Black Forest Cake Recipe: Method
Oh and here’s a printable version of my gluten-free Black Forest cake recipe. Please remember to give it 5 stars if you tried it and enjoyed it as it helps people know it’s worth trying too! ⭐️ Feel free to leave your written reviews in the comments below this post.
Gluten-free black forest cake recipe - the ultimate treat that nobody would ever know was Coeliac-friendly and wheat-free too. Nutritional info is estimated and not always accurate.
For the cake
For the cream
For the rest
For the cake:
For the cream:
Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 371Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 86mgSodium: 256mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 2gSugar: 24gProtein: 5g
Gluten-free black forest cake recipe - the ultimate treat that nobody would ever know was Coeliac-friendly and wheat-free too.
Nutritional info is estimated and not always accurate.
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