Gluten Free Black Forest Cake

Gluten Free Black Forest Cake recipe #glutenfree via

A few months back I was asked to develop a recipe for the Gluten Free Scallywag Christmas 2012 magazine by the lovely Jas, author of the Gluten Free Scallywag. Being a fan of Jas’s beautiful blog, and her photography, I immediately said yes. And when I did I knew right away what I wanted to make – a Gluten Free Black Forest Cake.

I know I’ve already shared another black forest recipe with you in my 12 treats of Christmas series, namely my Black Forest Cheesecake Trifles, but if you are on a gluten free diet this one is for you. And if you’re not, well, it’s so delicious you will be wanting a piece too!

Australian cherries are at their prime at the moment, so, to make the most of I made a cherry curd which is generously slathered between the layers of sticky chocolate cake. Cherries are also baked into the cake batter, which is soaked with cherry brandy before being topped with fresh cherries which are sprinkled over the cherry curd. This is then topped with lashings of whipped cream. Finally, the cake is then smothered in a dark chocolate ganache and surrounded with chards of chocolate. I know it’s chocolate and cherry overkill, but isn’t that what any good black forest cake is about?

Give me a slice of Gluten Free Black Forest Cake in place of Christmas cake any day!

So if you are on a gluten free diet this is one delicious Christmas treat you can enjoy. And if you are looking for further gluten free festive fare recipes check out the Gluten Free Scallywag Christmas magazine as it’s full of delicious inspiration!

Gluten Free Black Forest Cake recipe #glutenfree via

12 Treats of Christmas

Don’t forget to check out the other delicious treats in my 12 Treats of Christmas series.


5.0 from 3 reviews

Gluten Free Black Forest Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A delicious gluten free black forest cake.
Recipe type: Dessert
  • 250g of cherries, pitted and roughly chopped
  • 5 large eggs
  • 100g of ground almonds
  • 100g of ground hazelnuts
  • 220g of caster sugar
  • 60g of cocoa
  • 2 tsp of baking powder
  • ½ tsp of bicarb soda
  • ⅓ cup of cherries, pitted
  • 1 tbs of water
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 80g of caster sugar
  • 50g of butter
  • 1 cup of cream
  • 200g of dark chocolate, chopped
  • 100g of chocolate, roughly chopped.
  • 200ml of cream
  • 1½ tbs of caster sugar
  • 1 tbs of cherry brandy
  • ½ cup of cherries, pitted and quartered
  1. Grease two 20cm springform pans and preheat the oven to 180 Celsius (350 fahrenheit).
  2. Place the cherries in a food processor and process until they are completely chopped. Add the remaining cake ingredients and process until combined. Divide the batter between the two pans and bake for 18 to 25 minutes. While the cake is hot and still in the pan sprinkle the cherry brandy over the cakes and leave to cool in the pan.
  3. To make the cherry curd place the cherries and water in a saucepan over a medium low heat and cook the cherries until they have cooked down and released their juices. Set aside to cool and puree and strain into a clean saucepan. Add the egg and egg yolk and caster sugar and whisk to combine. Place over a medium low heat and add the butter. Whisk until the curd thickens enough that you can see the trail of the whisk in the mixture. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  4. Place the cream in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sugar and whip until the cream forms medium peaks. Place in the refrigerator until you are ready to assemble the cake.
  5. Assemble the cake by spreading the cherry curd over the bottom layer of the cake and topping with the chopped cherries. Then top with the whipped cream and the top layer of cake. Refrigerate while you make the chocolate ganache and chocolate chards.
  6. To make the chocolate chards, line a baking tray with non stick baking paper. Place the chocolate pieces in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until melted. Pour the melted chocolate into the baking tray and refrigerate until set. Break into chards and refrigerate until you are ready to decorate the cake.
  7. To make the ganache place the cream in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Pour over the chopped chocolate and leave for 2 minutes to infuse. Take a small whisk, and starting at the centre, whisk in small circles. For a while it will look nothing is happening, but soon you will begin to see a thick mass of glossy chocolate from in the middle of the bowl. Slowly circle the whisk outwards, incorporating more cream as you go, until you have a smooth and glossy mixture.
  8. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and place on a baking tray and line underneath with baking paper. Pour the ganache over the top of the cake and use a flat spatula to ease the ganache down the sides of the cake. When the cake is coated place the chocolate chards all around the sides of the cake. Top with extra cherries and any remaining chocolate chards.


Beetroot and Goats Cheese Tarts and champagne picks for your Christmas celebrations
White chocolate pots de creme with honey roasted figs & cherries

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    • Jennifer December 23, 2012  4:37 pm Reply

      Thanks Laura :) Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

  1. thelittleloaf December 22, 2012  7:13 pm Reply

    Gluten free chocolate cakes are so beautifully moist and yours looks no exception. Love the idea of cherry curd too!

  2. Rosa December 22, 2012  7:50 pm Reply

    A splendid cake! It looks divine.



  3. Sara @bellyrumbles December 22, 2012  10:18 pm Reply

    Gluten free cakes always sound so delicious due to the added ground nuts, who needs flour! Stunning looking Black Forest cake.

  4. Emma Galloway December 22, 2012  10:23 pm Reply

    Yumo, looks fab! Merry Christmas love xx

    • Jennifer December 23, 2012  4:37 pm Reply

      Thanks Emma :D Merry Christmas to you and your lovely family :)

  5. Lizzy (Good Things) December 23, 2012  2:12 am Reply

    Another lovely recipe, Jennifer. Love your work. And may I take this opportunity to wish you a very happy Christmas and much success in 2013. Thanks for all your support too ; )

    • Jennifer December 23, 2012  4:36 pm Reply

      Merry Christmas to you too Lizzy :D Sorry I haven't hopped on over to your lovely spot to say hello yet. We're on holiday at the moment and my time online is limited, but thanks for all of your support and Merry Christmas to you and your family :D I look forward to seeing what you have in store for the new year!

  6. My Kitchen Stories December 23, 2012  11:08 am Reply

    Yes this is much better than Chrismas cake and I dont think there is such a thing as chocolate overkill

  7. Katie January 4, 2013  10:53 am Reply

    Hi Jennifer,

    I just wanted to say a HUGE thank you. THANK YOU!!!!!! I made this cake to take to my friends Christmas dinner and WOW! The compliments I received were overwhelming. One attendee said that it tasted just like her German grandmothers black forest cake which she had as a child. Another couldn't thank me enough for producing something as indulgent as this and gluten-free to boot. I was stunned at how many compliments I received (even when I under-whipped the cream a little - whoops)

    This will be a regular go-to recipe for a party dessert. Even though there were many steps it didn't take long at all, the hardest part was waiting for the cherry curd to thicken.

    Yum... Thanks Jennifer. Please keep the gluten-free treats coming. As someone who is wheat intolerant, it's so agonising to drool over your lovely recipes and not eat them. I hope you had a lovely Christmas and a very prosperous New Year.

    • Jennifer January 8, 2013  2:14 pm Reply

      Hi Katie,

      Thank you so much for your wonderful comment and taking the time to leave feedback. I had the biggest smile while reading you comment. I'm so happy the cake turned out so well for you and that everyone enjoyed it. That's so wonderful that your friend said it tasted like her German grandmothers. My husbands family is German too, so it was important for me to get the taste right.

      You're right, there are a number of steps involved, but really it doesn't take long, and it is worth it in the end.

      I have to say you're comment, in part, inspired the recipe I shared today, a Gluten Free Carrot Cake Even though I don't have to eat gluten free for any dietary reason I really do love gluten free cakes. Hopefully you enjoy the carrot cake just as much :D

      Thank you again for your kind words. They really made my day. :D

      • Katie January 10, 2013  9:21 am

        Thank you so much for the carrot cake recipe. Seriously, how did you know carrot cake was my favourite cake? I'm stunned. Hehe.. I look forward to making it, and I will most definitely tell you how I go. I can't wait! I think I'll make it this weekend to take to my mothers for her 60th birthday - carrot cake is her favourite too. *hugs* Thanks again Jennifer. I'm really excited.

  8. Amy January 7, 2013  9:21 pm Reply

    Oh, oh, oh! I can eat this one! I haven't had black forest cake in forever, so this may have to feature as a dinner party dessert some time in the very near future :)

  9. Clare February 3, 2013  7:36 pm Reply

    Hi . Can you please let me know how many serves are in this cake?
    Thanks heaps

    • Jennifer February 4, 2013  3:45 pm Reply

      Hi Clare, this cake will serve 10 to 12, depending on how generous you want to be :D

  10. Amy June 17, 2013  10:01 pm Reply

    Oooo! I'm thinking about trying gluten free and black forest is my favourite flavour combination — thanks for sharing this, I'll have to try it out x

  11. Jennafer October 19, 2013  7:53 am Reply

    THANK YOU! I made this for my husband's birthday party, and I was very very impressed. I tried other gf chocolate cakes and tried to turn them into a black forest cake, but it just wasn't the same. It is so nice to be able to eat the same cake as everyone else, and not have them feel like they HAD to eat something not as good as what they are used to.

    • Jennifer October 19, 2013  8:37 am Reply

      I'm so glad you enjoyed it Jennafer. It's definitely one of my favourites, and I love that you can't tell it's gluten free. Happy birthday to your husband too! :)

  12. Monica November 20, 2013  11:33 pm Reply

    I'll be using this recipie for my daughter's 7th birthday. I have few questions:
    1. Can I replace the eggs with egg replacer?
    2. How can I replace the egg yolk with any vegetarian option?
    3. What is a non alcoholic option for cherry brandy?

    I hope and request that you are able to reply as soon as possible as I need to bake this cake tomorrow.

    • Jennifer November 21, 2013  1:03 pm Reply

      Hi Monica,

      Firstly, happy birthday to your daughter! I hope she has a wonderful day.

      In answer to your questions, I'm sorry, I haven't tried using egg replacer, so I can't say how it will affect the cake. As for the cherry brandy, you could try reducing the liquid from the tinned cherries into a syrup in a saucepan and using that instead. I'm sure it would taste just as good.

  13. Monica November 20, 2013  11:58 pm Reply

    Also, what is the best option frozen cherries or cherries in can, as it's not the fresh cherries season I am too confused as what would be best.

    And I am nervous too... As I am going to bake for the first time and do not want to disappoint my daughter on her birthday.

    • Jennifer November 21, 2013  1:04 pm Reply

      I used tinned cherries here. The bonus here is that you can use the liquid to replace the cherry brandy :D Good luck with the cake! I'd love to hear how it turns out.

  14. Monica November 21, 2013  1:46 pm Reply

    Now I am more nervous as I really hoped that you would have an answer for replacing eggs:(

    I am most worried about the curd as I have no clue how to work without eggs and egg yolk in that.

    • Jennifer November 21, 2013  2:50 pm Reply

      Hi Monica,

      I'm sorry I haven't had any experience making curd without eggs. I did a quick Google search and came across this video, which will hopefully help Good luck and let me know how it goes! :D

  15. Monica November 25, 2013  4:34 am Reply

    The cake turned out fabulous.... Without eggs...
    Thanks a lot for sending that video.... It really helped... The cherry curd turned out very yum...
    Thanks Jennifer...

    • Jennifer November 25, 2013  6:27 am Reply

      Wonderful news! I'm so pleased for you. I hope your daughter enjoyed it and that she had a wonderful birthday. Thank you for updating me! :)

  16. Tiana Gustafson December 13, 2013  2:54 pm Reply

    Thank you so much for this amazing looking recipe! I love healthy recipes and I will look forward to trying it out and sharing it with my followers at As Arnold says "I'll be back" :) Thanks again!


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