Flourless Chocolate Cake (GF & DF)
This healthy flourless chocolate cake is decadent, delicious, and deceptively easy to make! It is also gluten free, dairy free, grain free, and paleo-friendly. Its a perfectly romantic dessert for Valentine’s Day!
Truth be told, whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day or not, this fudgy gluten free Flourless Chocolate Cake is still an amazing recipe. I love how it feels so fancy and decadent, while its actually one of the most simple cake recipes you could make.
Most flourless chocolate cakes are already gluten free, given the lack of flour, but this one is also dairy free and refined sugar free. I haven’t quite figured out how to skip the eggs for a Vegan version, but if I do – you’ll be the first to know!
Eggs. The eggs work are super important in this recipe. They provide most of the volume, and act as binders and hold the cake together nicely. If you are a vegan or allergic to eggs, I’d suggest you opt for this Chocolate Cake Recipe instead – you can easily sub this with a Flax Egg! Just take 2 Tbsp of Ground Flax (I love this one), mix with 4 Tbsp water, and let it sit until it forms a gel.
Maple Syrup. I prefer to use Maple Syrup as a sweetener in my recipes (like my Healthy Carrot Cake), and it just so happens to work perfectly in this recipe. Liquid sweeteners tend to weigh down desserts, but that works well in the case of a flourless cake! If you wanted to, you could sub for Coconut Sugar or Cane sugar – though I would add a bit more, maybe 3/4 cup.
Cocoa Powder: For the rich, chocolatey taste, of course! You don’t *have to* use a Dark option, but I highly recommend it for the more intense chocolate flavor. I certainly do recommend using a high quality Cocoa Powder here though. There is no melted chocolate, so all of the chocolate flavor in your cake comes ftom the Cocoa Powder alone. Do not skimp here with a cheap brand! A few extra dollars makes a big difference. I used this brand.
Coconut Oil: This keeps the cake moist. You can sub for melted butter or ghee, if you are not dairy free.
Pure Vanilla Extract. This is essential is bringing out the chocolate flavor in this cake. Do not skip it! You will definitely feel like something is missing.
The “Ganache” Frosting & Fruit Topping
The frosting and fruit topping are totally optional in this cake recipe. The cake is so fudgy and moist (sorry!) on its own, it really does not need any topping.
That said, there is something to be said for a cake that is both a healthy flourless chocolate cake, and is beautifully decorated. Plus, it really is quite simple to make the “ganache”; simply microwave some chocolate chips and coconut oil in a bowl. It takes this recipe from a one-bowl to a two-bowl recipe, but I think its worth it. If you don’t, simply skip it!
As far as fruit goes, I topped mine with some strawberries because I love the strawberry + chocolate combination. Chocolate covered strawberries are such a classic and one of my all time favorite snacks. Rasperries, blackberries, or really any fruit could work as a topping. Just make sure whatever you use is fresh, juicy, and colorful!
If you don’t have any fruit or don’t want to top your cake with fruit, sprinkling the top with some shredded coconut or powdered sugar is also a great option. The white contrast on the brown chocolate cake is super visually appealing and makes for a beautiful gluten free cake!
More Valentine’s Day Dessert Ideas
Last year for Valentine’s Day, I made this Paleo Hazelnut Chocolate Layer Cake.
The year before I made these Healthy Valentine’s Day Brownies.
I am pretty amped about this flourless cake, but always looking towards the future too. What do you want to see here for Valentine’s Day 2021? Leave a comment and let me know!
Equipment Needed for Flourless Chocolate Cake
Hand Mixer. I don’t love to include “fancy” equipment in my recipes, but beating the eggs really well is really important here. You can always get a very basic Hand Mixer off Amazon – like this one – that will cost you less than $20. Its really not thaaaat fancy. I suppose if you don’t have one, you could try blending the eggs together in a blender for a few minutes. If you try that method, leave a comment and let me know how it went!
Springform Cake Pan. You could use a non-springform pan, but make sure you use parchment paper or grease that thing heavily. The last thing you’d want is to bake your cake only to have it stuck in the pan. I resisted a springform pan for a long time, but I am so glad I finally caved – it makes such a difference!
A silicone spatula. If you are a regular reader of The Granola Diaries, you will probably recall that I push Silicone Spatulas a lot. Whenever there is a recipe that requires bowl scraping or melted chocolate, silicone spatulas are the only way you will get all your batter out. Plus, it makes clean up so much easier! I love and recommend this 3 piece set you can get off Amazon. Its super affordable and comes in many pretty colors!
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Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Hand mixer – like this one
- Silicone Spatula – I love and recommend this 3 piece set
- 8 inch Cake Pan
- Mixing bowl
- 4 Large Eggs Room Temperature
- 1/3 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1½ Tsp Vanilla Extract
- ½ Cup Coconut Oil Melted and cooled
- ¾ Cup Cocoa Powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
Ganache Frosting (Optional)
- ¼ Cup Chocolate Chips
- 2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
- Fruit of your choice
- Preheat oven to 350 and grease an 8 inch cake pan well.
- Mix eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla together in a large bowl with a hand mixer. You should mix until the mixture almost doubles in size, about 2 – 4 minutes on medium speed.
- Add in the coconut oil, cocoa powder, and baking powder. Stir everything until just combined.
- Pour into the cake pan and bake for 30 minutes. Let the cake cool completely before removing from the pan and putting on a cooling rack or serving plate.
- Optional: For a chocolate "ganache" frosting, melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil in the microwave, or over a double boiler. Pour over the cooled cake, and put in the fridge to set for at least 15 minutes. Top with your favorite fruit, if desired, or a sprinkle or shedded coconut!
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