This rich and moist almond flour chocolate cake recipe with homemade chocolate buttercream is the BEST! It does not compromise on flavor and is perfect for any celebration. Made gluten free, healthier, and dairy free.
Super moist chocolate cake with almond flour
I have been told a handful of times that this is the best chocolate cake someone has ever eaten! I might be biased, but I 100% agree.
This chocolate cake made with almond flour is super rich, moist, and extra chocolatey. You will NEVER be able to tell is it gluten free or dairy free, and it is 10x better than a regular chocolate cake because we make it extra dense and moist with maple syrup and almond flour.
It’s topped with homemade chocolate buttercream made from real chocolate and fresh berries! Most recipes just use cocoa powder, so that is what makes this buttercream so good and special.
Once you try a bite of my famous almond flour chocolate cake with buttercream, you’ll never be able to look at regular cake the same way! Don’t forget the fresh berries on top, it’s a game changer!
Why you’ll love this recipe!
You are going to love this healthier gluten free chocolate cake for so many reasons, here are just a few:
- Extra rich & moist
- Creamy buttercream made with real melted chocolate
- Healthier and sweetened with maple syrup
- Any level baker can make this
- Gluten free & grain free
- Dairy free chocolate cake
From almond flour to maple syrup, this healthier chocolate cake is sure to be your new favorite recipe and does not compromise on that classic rich taste! The list of ingredients is short, and everything can be found at your local grocery store. Here is a list of ingredients, so you have everything prepared:
- Almond Flour: First up, we use almond flour in place of regular flour to make this chocolate cake extra dense and moist. You’ll need 1.5 cups to make this gluten free chocolate cake.
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: This adds the perfect chocolate flavor and gives this cake its rich flavor.
- Baking Soda: Not to be confused with baking powder! Baking soda helps give this cake a little rise while still being dense and rich.
- Salt: Just a dash of salt is needed for that sweet and salty combo.
- Eggs: Next up, 4 large eggs to help give this dense chocolate cake structure and help with its texture.
- Maple Syrup: Add in 1/2 cup of real maple syrup as a natural sweetener. It also makes this cake dense and super moist.
- Coconut Oil: Instead of butter, we use coconut oil with makes this chocolate cake dairy free!
- Sugar: Chocolate cake is meant to be sweet, so add 1/4 cup more of sugar. You can use granulated or coconut sugar.
- Vanilla Extract: 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract adds the best flavor to this gluten free chocolate cake!
- Chocolate Chips: Grab 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips as the main ingredients in the buttercream made with real chocolate!
- Butter: Next up grab 1 cup of butter! If you are dairy-free, you can use vegan butter.
- Almond Milk: Just 1 Tablespoon of milk to help make this homemade buttercream creamy. Feel free to use oat milk or 2% too.
- Vanilla Extract: Even though this is a chocolate buttercream, the vanilla extract adds a wonderful flavor.
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: We use this in combination with powdered sugar to give this buttercream structure.
- Powdered Sugar: Most recipes call for 4 cups of confectioners’ sugar, but this one only uses 1 1/2 cups, making it a healthier option!
Is this cake gluten free?
This almond flour chocolate cake is certainly gluten-free! Since it is made with almond flour that naturally contains no gluten, you can enjoy this cake with the piece of mind that there is zero gluten in it! In fact, this almond flour chocolate cake is also grain free.
How to make almond flour chocolate cake
This super rich and moist chocolate cake might be made healthier with almond flour, but it does not compromise on flavor! Plus, it is actually very easy to make in three steps: first, we bake the cakes, second, we make the homemade buttercream, third, we frost the cakes. Here are detailed step-by-step instructions for any level baker:
Step 1: First, preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease and line two 6-inch cake pans by adding a piece of parchment paper to the bottom of each.
Step 2: Next, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk almond flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together. Make sure there are NO clumps of almond flour. Set to the side. In another bowl mixing bowl, whisk eggs. Add in maple syrup, melted coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla extract.
Step 3: Then, add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients and stir with a spatula until fully combined. Evenly divide the cake batter between the two greased and lined cake pans.
Step 4: Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake the cakes or they will be dry – they will continue to cook a little as they cool. Let cakes cool for 10 minutes, then carefully flip them out onto a wire cooling rack. Let them cool completely before frosting!
Step 5: Meanwhile, make the buttercream by adding chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl and melt in 20-second intervals. Stir between each interval until completely smooth. Let cool for 10 minutes until lukewarm before adding to the whipped butter. Alternatively, you can use the double boiler method.
Step 6: In a large mixing bowl with an electric hand mixer or in a stand mixer, beat butter until creamy for 2 – 3 minutes. Add in almond milk and beat until smooth for about 30 seconds; then add in melted chocolate and vanilla extract and beat until smooth for 1 – 2 minutes. Add in cocoa powder and powdered sugar and mix on LOW speed until creamy.
Step 7: Wait until the cakes are completely cooled before frosting. Frost the top of the first cake, add the second cake on top, then frost the top and sides. Top with fresh berries and enjoy!
Tips for healthy chocolate cake
- Do not pack the almond flour or cocoa powder. Make sure you spoon and level both; if not, you will add too much, and the cakes can get dry.
- Whisk the dry ingredients together first before adding to the wet ingredients. Almond flour is notorious for having clumps in it, so make sure to whisk them all out before making the batter.
- Grease and line the bottoms on the cake pans with parchment paper. This prevents the cakes from sticking to the pans.
- Let the cakes COMPLETELY cool before frosting. This is so important because if not, the icing will melt.
Ingredient substitution suggestions
If you are out of an ingredient or two, here is a list of the very best substitutions. I only recommend making 1 or 2 subs so that the cake does not change too much from what I tested ten times.
- Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips: If you are out, then use a cut of a semi-sweet chocolate bar! You can also use dark chocolate chips.
- Coconut Oil: If you are out of coconut oil, use 1/4 melted unsalted butter. It will be the same!
- Sugar: Instead of granulated sugar, use coconut sugar!
- Almond Milk: Use oat milk, cashew milk, skim milk, or 2% regular milk instead.
- Butter: If you are dairy-free but want to make this delicious buttercream, use room temperature coconut oil (solid) or vegan butter!
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do cakes sink in the middle?
If you open the oven door too soon before the cakes have risen, they can sink in the middle. I never open the door to check on the cakes until the 25-minute mark.
Can I use an 9-inch cake pan?
I used two 6-inch cake pans, but you can use one 9-inch cake pan if you don’t have these. Just make sure to keep an eye on the bake time, as you might need to add up to 4 – 6 minutes to make sure the center is cooked through.
Can I make them into cupcakes?
You can easily make this deliciously rich chocolate cake made with almond flour into cupcakes! Just line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners, evenly fill each until 2/3 full, then bake for 16 – 20 minutes.
Can I make ahead of time?
Yes! You can make this almond flour chocolate cake 1 – 2 days ahead of time to serve at a birthday party or special event. Personally, I like to bake the cakes, let them cool, wrap them in plastic and store them unfrosted in the fridge for easy assembly. If you make the buttercream ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator, make sure to let it come to room temperature before trying to ice the cake. You can also keep the frosted cake in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge; again, let it come to room temp before serving.
Is this chocolate cake dairy free?
Yes, this chocolate cake is dairy free since we use coconut oil.
Can I make the chocolate buttercream dairy free?
To make the buttercream dairy free, use vegan butter or room temperature (solid) coconut oil. Also, replace the semi-sweet chocolate chips with a dairy free alternative – I love this brand.
How to store leftover chocolate cake
Store leftover chocolate cake in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 – 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
If you loved this chocolate cake, try these almond flour recipes next!
- Peanut Butter Almond Flour Cookies
- Almond Flour Banana Muffins
- Healthy Apple Pie Oatmeal Cookies
- Lemon Poppy Seed Crumb Cake
- Healthy Coffee Cake
Did you make this recipe?
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!
Best Almond Flour Chocolate Cake
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease and line two 6-inch cake pans by adding a piece of parchment paper to the bottom of each.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk almond flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together. Make sure there are NO clumps of almond flour. Set to the side.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk eggs. Add in maple syrup, melted coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla extract.
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients and stir with a spatula until fully combined.
- Evenly divide the cake batter between the two greased and lined cake tins.
- Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake the cakes or they will be dry - they will continue to cook a little as they cool. Let cakes cool for 10 minutes, then carefully flip them out onto a wire cooling rack. Let them cool completely before frosting!
- Make the buttercream by adding chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl and melt in 20-second intervals. Stir between each interval until completely smooth. Let cool for 10 minutes until lukewarm before adding to the whipped butter. Alternatively, you can use the double boiler method.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl with an electric hand mixer or in a stand mixer, beat butter until creamy for 2 - 3 minutes. Add in almond milk and beat until smooth for about 30 seconds. Add in melted chocolate and vanilla extract and beat until smooth for 1 - 2 minutes. Add in cocoa powder and powdered sugar and mix on LOW speed until creamy.
- Wait until the cakes are completely cooled before frosting. Frost the top of the first cake, add the second cake on top, then frost the top and sides. Enjoy!
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