Friday, January 14, 2011

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake

Red Velvet Cake.   We all love Red Velvet Cake, but why?  It's basically a chocolate cake with red food coloring.   Perhaps it's the frosting, cream cheese and butter with vanilla and powdered sugar.  There is just something about the deep red color of the cake in contrast to the stark white frosting that makes us all salivate just a little.

Whatever our fascination with this unique cake, I decided to make one gluten free.  The results were mouth watering.  A must try.  If you have any issue with red food coloring, leave it out and up the cocoa to 1/2 cup and enjoy a delicious chocolate cake.


3/4 cup Sweet Rice Flour
3/4 cup Tapioca Flour
1/2 cup Arrowroot 
1/2 cup Potato Starch (not potato flour)
1 teaspoon Guar Gum
1 teaspoon Xanthan Gum
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 ounce red food coloring
2 tablespoons Cocoa (heaping)
1 stick of Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter (room temperature)
1 and 1/2 cups Sugar
1 cup Buttermilk
2 eggs

Begin by whisking the flours, gums, baking powder, soda, and salt together thoroughly in a bowl.  Take your time and blend together well.

Next, add the cocoa to the flour mixture.

Whisk the cocoa into the flour mixture thoroughly until it's barely a pastel brown.

Next, Cream the butter, sugar, vanilla, and eggs together in your stand mixer.

Next I added 1/3 of the buttermilk and all of the red food coloring, then mixed well.  A lot of recipes call for 2 ounces of red food coloring.  I used McCormick Red Food Coloring, it came in 1 ounce bottles and cost almost $4.00 and, as you can see, it was plenty red.  My decision is....  There is no need to put $8.00 worth of red food coloring (a synthetic ingredient) into this cake.  It doesn't change the flavor and half that, 1 fluid ounce, made it as red as any red velvet cake I have seen.

Next, add the flour mixture in 1/3 at a time and blend well between additions.  Add the buttermilk in between the thirds .  When all is thoroughly incorporated, it will be thick.

Baking time depends on the cake pan you use.  Be sure to butter and flour your pan choices.  I used my brownie pans because I wanted 4 even layers.  I divided the batter evenly between the four brownie pans and baked for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.  When done (test centers with a toothpick) turn pan over and cool upside down on wire racks.

While cooling let's prepare the frosting.

Frosting Ingredients

1 stick Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter at room temperature
1 package (8 ounce) Neufchatel Cheese at room temperature (cream cheese will do)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar

In your stand mixer, cream together the softened cheese and butter.  Add the vanilla.  Add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time.  Blending until smooth between each addition.

Now that the cake layers are cooled, we can begin frosting.  Place one cake layer and frost the top only with a thin layer of frosting.  Place a second layer and repeat.

Repeat with the remaining layers.  Once all 4 layers are stacked and frosted, begin applying frosting to the sides.  At this point use the remainder of the frosting and apply kind of thick to hide any of the red interior from showing through.

The better you cover the cake with the white frosting, the more dramatic the visuals when someone finally cuts into it.

All in all, this cake recipe was a huge success. (third times a charm)

Hint ~ This cake should be refrigerated if not eaten right away.  Refrigeration stiffens the cake texture slightly, but simply let it warm up a few minutes before eating and the texture returns to its pre-refrigerated state.



  1. all of these things look so yummy and yet they are still healthy i am going to try the red velvet cakesoon

  2. Mmmm, red velvet is my family's favorite cake. Your cake look so prettily decorated.

  3. I love this recipe. I've made it dozens of times and it is a huge hot among gf and non gf friends alike. Thank you so much for sharing this!!
    Have you ever adjusted to make it a spice cake? I'm going to give it a try this week.