Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Gluten, dairy, egg and nut free chocolate cake, although you wouldnt know it!

I felt totally chuffed when a friend of mine asked if I would make her daughters 1st birthday cake recently!  What an honour.  Then she listed the provisos and I must say it stopped me in my tracks for a minute!!  As her daughter has been reacting to certain foods, it has restricted what she can feed her until she can get further tests done.

Being Coeliac myself, and for a time was fructose intolerant too, I am quite aware of the limitations and frustrations of living with food allergies and intolerances, however this challenge was a real eye opener for me to see just how difficult it must be for parents with kids on restrictive diets.

Thankfully in most cases these are not permanent restrictions and eventually the child either outgrows it or builds an immunity to it, however for the duration of the elimination diet, parents must be pulling their hair out at times to provide appropriate foods.

After a couple of attempts, I have come up with what I think (and a few big and small taste testers agreed) is a cake that can be enjoyed by those with and without allergies without really noticing any difference from a 'normal' chocolate cake!  This recipe was based on the 'Too easy chocolate cake' in the EDC Thermomix book, but obviously with quite a few ingredient changes.  It was made using Nuttelex (a dairy and soy free spread based on vegetable oils) however I also made one with canola oil and the texture was just as good if oil would be your preference (although not quite as much flavour as with the Nuttelex - perhaps adding 1/2 tsp salt would fix that although I didn't try it).  

This isnt a really high cake so if you were wanting more height, double the recipe (and expect the cooking time to blow out by 10-15 mins).   A lovely dairy free ganache could be made to put between two cake halves.  Slowly heat 150ml coconut cream in a small saucepan until just before boiling point.  Take off heat and stir through 300g dark, dairy free chocolate with a metal spoon until the chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth.  If more sweetness is desired add a couple of spoons of rapadura sugar or pure maple syrup to the coconut cream before heating.  Allow to cool to room temperature then spread on top of or between layers of cake. Mmmmmmmm ( :

This chocolate cake recipe is dedicated to all those kids out there wanting to have their birthday cake and eat it too!!

Gluten, dairy, egg and nut free chocolate cake


120g Nuttelex (or another dairy free spread of your preference, or vegetable oil)
2 tsp egg replacer (I used the Orgran brand)
4 tbs water
100g rice milk (I used the Vitasoy brand with is enriched with chickpeas for added protein)
1 tsp vanilla extract
120g sugar (I used rapadura however raw or raw castor sugar are suitable alternatives)
120g gluten free self-raising flour (I used the Orgran brand)
30g cocoa
1 tsp gluten free baking powder

Thermomix method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius.  Lightly grease a 20cm round or square tin.
  2. Place Nuttelex in TM bowl and melt for 2 minutes at 60 degrees on speed 4.  (If using oil, skip to next step)
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix for 30 seconds on speed 5.
  4. Pour into cake tin and bake for 25-35 minutes, until middle springs back when lightly touched.
  5. Leave to cool in tin for 10 minutes before turning out.

Conventional method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius.  Lightly grease a 20cm round or square tin.
  2. If using Nuttelex melt in a small saucepan over low heat. 
  3. Mix dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.  Add water, milk, vanilla and melted Nuttelex/oil and stir together with a wooden spoon until thoroughly combined.
  4. Follow steps 4 and 5 above.

Dairy free ganache


  1. Can't wait to try this Chocolate Cake. I've been checking out a lot of blogs with gluten-free recipes. Thank you so much!

    1. You're welcome and thanks for commenting! If you only need gluten free there are some beautiful choc cake recipes kicking around the net using almonds, real choc etc (try my fudgy choc beetroot cake) but this recipe is great for those with multiple allergies/intolerances.

  2. Made this again 4 years after the original was created - it was delicious! I don't need to make it dairy free anymore so I make it with butter and chocolate ganache. Thanks Mel! X

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