This delightfully dark and decadent Gluten Free Chocolate Cake uses roasted cocoa powder for a deliciously rich result.
“What you see before you, my friend, is the result of a lifetime of chocolate.” - Katherine Hepburn
Roasting may be one of the most basic methods of cooking, but it's also, in my mind, at least, the most wonderful. Roasting brings about rich complex flavours, which is a director result of the chemical reaction food undergoes when it is roasted. This reaction, called the maillard reaction, is responsible for that delicious crust on the outside of a loaf of bread and the caramelisation that happens when meats are roasted.
Roasting works wonderfully not only with savoury foods, but sweet too. If you've ever roasted strawberries, figs or peaches you will know this to be true. And the same principal can apply to chocolate, specifically white chocolate, which not only deepens in colour as it caramelises in the oven, but in flavour too.
If you're a regular reader you'll already know about my love affair with roasted, or caramelised white chocolate, so when I came across a recipe for chocolate gelato that suggested roasting the cocoa to bring out richer, more complex flavours in the cocoa, I knew I had to try roasting cocoa and making a chocolate cake.
The end result is this gorgeous roasted cocoa gluten free chocolate cake recipe, which is the ultimate rich and chocolatey cake. I've adapted Nigella Lawson's chocolate orange cake recipe for this chocolate cake, not only because it is gluten free cake, but it also happens to be one of my favourite cake recipes, not least because it involves simply throwing all the ingredients in the food processor and blitzing to form a smooth batter.
I suspect that roasted cocoa would be especially wonderful in cookies, where the flavour would be more pronounced. That's next on the list to try!
Roasted Cocoa Gluten Free Chocolate Cake recipe
- 70 g cocoa ½ cup plus 1 tbsp
- 6 large eggs
- 200 g almond meal 7 oz
- 220 g of caster sugar 1 cup
- 2 tsp baking powder
- tsp ½ bicarb soda
- SALTED CHOCOLATE GLAZE:
- 1 cup cream
- 200 g 70% cocoa chocolate chopped, 7 oz
- pinch of sea salt flakes such as [amazon_link id="B00017028M" target="_blank" ]Maldon Sea Salt Flakes[/amazon_link]
- Preheat the oven to 150 celsius (300 Fahrenheit) and line a [amazon_link id="B000G0KJG4" target="_blank" ]baking tray/sheet[/amazon_link] with baking paper. Add the cocoa powder and spread it into an even layer and roast for 2 hours, stirring every 20 minutes to ensure it doesn't catch and burn. Leave to cool completely before making the cake.
- Grease a 20cm (7 inch) springform pan and preheat the oven to 180 Celsius (350 Fahrenheit).
- Place the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Pour the batter into the springform pan and bake for 35 to 50 minutes. Check the cake after 30 minutes as you may need to cover it with foil to prevent burning before the cake is cooked through. Remove from the oven and let the cake cool completely in the tin before removing.
- To make the glaze place the cream in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over a medium heat. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate and leave to sit for a minute. Add the sea salt and whisk to combine. Leave to cool at room temperature until the glaze is a spreadable consistency and not too runny. Spread the glaze across the top of the cake and ease it down the sides with an offset spatula.
I just made this cake and I’m super happy with it! Thank you! FYI- I didn’t roast the cocoa beforehand, I’ll certainly try it next time though. I baked it in a 6 inch pan and the cake (to the top of the beautiful dome) is just about 3 inches. The texture is moist & dense. I don’t do much gluten free baking and I was surprised by the nice mouth feel as it isn’t crumbly or grainy at all. I’d be surprised if someone noticed this was a gluten free cake if you didn’t tell them. Thanks for a great recipe!
I'mm so glad you enjoyed it - thanks for letting me know!
Jill Roberts @ WellnessGeeky says
Absolutely love your creative idea with chocolate cake! Never seen something like this! Definitely i will try to make it too! Thx for sharing Nicole!
This looks soooooo yummy! I'm looking for a recipe to make for a friend for me, she's leaving for an half year soon. This one is on my list!!
I used this recipe for cupcakes (it made 15 perfect slightly rounded little domes, 180 degrees for 32 minutes). I used a dark chocolate ganache as the icing and they are divine. Not too sweet, not crumbly like most GF recipes, rich, moist and chocolatey. I was short on time so I didn't roast the cocoa but I will absolutely make this again. Perfect company for a chilly, rainy day in Auckland 🙂 Thank you! (I may try a whiskey drizzle next time 😉 )
Oh that's wonderful to hear they turned out so well as cupcakes! I was actually thinking of making this cake into cupcakes the other day, but you beat me to it 😀 And the drizzle of whiskey sounds like a fabulous idea! Although roasting the cocoa is time consuming I do find it adds more depth to the flavour of the cake. Just use regular cocoa, not dutched, if you do decide to try roasting it. Thanks again for taking the time to leave feedback. 🙂
Sounded delicious but maybe something wrong with flour measurement. Have make it twice and flopped both times. Remains liquidy 🙁
I'm sorry to hear about the problems you've had Linda 🙁 The measurement for the almond meal and cocoa is correct. Without being in the kitchen with you it's hard to know the cause, but here are some ideas as to what make cause this: 1. perhaps the eggs you used are larger than the eggs I used, therefore there was more liquid in the batter. I use large eggs which are between 50 to 58g in size. Egg classification sizes vary slightly in each country (I'm not quite sure where you are located). Hopefully this chart might help http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_egg_sizes. 2. The other potential issue could be the size of the tin. I use a 20cm (8 inch) springform tin. 3. Have you tried cooking the cake for longer? Depending on the age of your oven your thermostat might be out. Placing an oven thermometer in your oven is a great way to confirm that the temperature on the dial is the actual temperature inside the oven.
You mention the cake remained liquidy. Did the edges of the cake cook?
Oh I could eat the entire thing myself it looks so tasty!
Christie @ Fig & Cherry says
Salted chocolate glaze is genius!
Jessica @ Sweet Menu says
Wow, this has to be one of the nicest looking gluten free cakes I have ever seen! So moist but not undercooked and flat.
Thanks Jessica 😀 It's my favourite gluten free cake because you can't really tell it's gluten free, or different from a normal cake, which is important when it comes to my husband who doesn't like anything "different" 😉
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
What a gorgeous cake! I roast often but have not roasted cocoa - you are inspiring me yet again :).
Melanie @ Nutritious Eats says
No, I meant to say almond flour. I do have a big bag of coconut flour too but have only used it in pancakes. 😉
I would love to try this using regular cake flour, do you think I'll still need 6 eggs? Thanks!
I've never tried making this recipe with regular flour so I can't say how it would turn out. If you'd prefer to make a cake with regular flour I'd suggest instead is using your favourite chocolate cake recipe and adding the roasted cocoa to that. 🙂
Martine @ Chompchomp says
One can never have enough GF chocolate cake options! I love the salted chocolate glaze.
Tania @ The Cook's Pyjamas says
I will be very interested to see whether there are any differences between the two. Look forward to the results.
Oh my goodness, the roasting cocoa smelled absolutely divine, and now the cake is ready for the glaze:)
I hope you enjoy the cake Jenny 😀
Melanie @ Nutritious Eats says
This looks amazing! Must try- just bought a huge bag of coconut flour.
Are you planning on using coconut flour in place of the almond meal Melanie? Please let me know how it turns out as I'm still relatively new to coconut flour.
Looks amazing Jennifer. As you say everything else tastes great roasted, so why not chocolate. I'll definitely be adding this to the list.
It's so true Anne! Most things do taste great roasted, but I have to say I honestly was surprised at the idea of roasting cocoa, I guess as much as I was surprised at the idea of roasting white chocolate at first 😀
Tania @ The Cook's Pyjamas says
I have never heard of this technique before. Amazing idea. Did you use Dutched or undutched cocoa? Or doesn't it matter? Looks sensational (as always).
I used regular undutched cocoa for this recipe, but I did buy some Dutch cocoa the other day to try. I've only come across two recipes for roasting cocoa (the one I mentioned in my post and this one from Dan Lepard for roasted cocoa cookies) and neither recipe specified a type of cocoa. I'll report back when I've tried it with Dutch cocoa.
This cake looks wonderfully dark and rich. Yum.
This cake looks irresistible and divine! Roasted cocoa is just so fragrant...
Thanks Rosa 😀
Amanda (@lambsearshoney) says
Wow- I've not heard of roasting cocoa either, but I can't wait to give it a go. I'm also especially fond of cakes that I can just throw in a processor, however your mention of chocolate cake tasting better the next day is not an experience I've had - or am likely to. 😉
I don't know what it says about us that we have chocolate cake that lasts a couple of days beyond baking. Clearly we're not trying hard enough 😉
Maureen | Orgasmic Chef says
Roasted cocoa? That's genius. I made granola bars yesterday and roasted all the ingredients but the fruit and I'll never make them any other way. Who knew you could roast cocoa? I think I love you.
It's such a great idea isn't it. I can't wait to try it out with some cookies. 😀
Lizzy (Good Things) says
Wow Jennifer, this really does sound like s superb cake! I have never heard of roasting cocoa! Definitely going to try your cake, pinning it now too! : )