This rich and moist almond flour chocolate cake recipe is topped with homemade chocolate buttercream and sweetened with maple syrup. The best gluten-free, dairy-free, and healthier dessert that doesn’t sacrifice flavor!
Super moist chocolate cake made 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. Personally, I love chocolate desserts like these rich gluten-free chocolate cupcakes and these flourless brownies. But this cake is NEXT LEVEL!
This chocolate cake is so rich, moist, and chocolatey that you’ll NEVER be able to tell it’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and made with almond flour. This recipe uses coconut oil instead of butter, maple syrup instead of sugar, almond flour instead of all-purpose flour, and real chocolate.
My favorite part is definitely the frosting. Unlike most online recipes, my famous homemade chocolate buttercream is made from real chocolate, not just cocoa powder. It’s so rich and indulgent while still being lightened up.
This almond flour chocolate cake is better than regular chocolate cake because we make it extra dense and moist. 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 almond flour cake recipe:
- Rich & Most: It’s light, soft, and extra moist.
- Almond Flour: The cake is made with almond flour, not all-purpose flour.
- Buttercream: It’s topped with a creamy buttercream made with real melted chocolate.
- Healthier Option: Sweetened with maple syrup and made with almond flour and coconut oil, this recipe is a healthier alternative to traditional chocolate cakes.
- Easy: Any level baker can make this delicious cake.
- Gluten-Free: Almond flour chocolate cake is naturally gluten-free.
- Dairy-Free: We use coconut oil instead of butter.
- No Compromise on Flavor: Despite being gluten-free and dairy-free, this cake doesn’t compromise on taste, making it a delicious treat for everyone.
- Try these extra fudgy and rich gluten-free chocolate cupcakes next!
This super rich and moist almond flour chocolate cake does not compromise on flavor! From almond flour to maple syrup, this healthy chocolate cake is sure to be your new favorite recipe. 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, we use almond flour instead of regular flour. Almond flour makes this chocolate cake light and moist.
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: This adds the perfect chocolate flavor and gives this cake its rich flavor.
- Baking Soda: Do not confuse baking soda 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: We use 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, which 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!
- Homemade Buttercream Frosting: You’ll need chocolate chips, butter (or vegan butter), almond milk, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.
How to make almond flour chocolate cake from scratch
This almond flour chocolate cake is so easy to make that any level baker can do it. Here are detailed step-by-step instructions with pictures for visual reference:
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.
Next, whisk almond flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Make sure there are NO clumps of almond flour. Set to the side. In another bowl mixing bowl, whisk eggs. Add maple syrup, melted coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla extract.
Then, add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients and stir with a spatula until thoroughly combined. Evenly divide the cake batter between the two greased and lined cake pans.
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 onto a wire cooling rack. Let them cool completely before frosting!
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.
Then, in a large mixing bowl with an electric hand or stand mixer, beat butter until creamy for 2 – 3 minutes. Add almond milk and beat until smooth for about 30 seconds; then add 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. Top with fresh berries and enjoy!
Expert recipe tips:
- Measuring Almond Flour: Don’t 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.
- Whisking Dry Ingredients: Whisk the dry ingredients together before adding them to the wet ingredients. Almond flour is notorious for clumping, so make sure to whisk them all out before making the batter.
- Melt the Chocolate in Intervals: My #1 tip for making homemade chocolate buttercream. Heat your chocolate in the microwave in 20- to 30-second intervals and stir frequently to prevent it from burning.
- Room Temperature Butter: Ensure the butter is at room temperature before making the buttercream. This helps achieve a smooth and creamy texture.
- Grease the Pans: Grease and line the bottoms of the cake pans with parchment paper. This prevents the cakes from sticking to the pans.
- Let the cakes cool before frosting: This is so important because if not, the icing will melt.
Easy ingredient substitutions
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 swaps so that the cake does not change too much from what I tested dozens of times.
- Chocolate Chips: Swap with chopped semi-sweet chocolate bars or dark chocolate chips.
- Coconut Oil: If unavailable, use 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter as an equivalent substitute.
- Sugar: Opt for coconut sugar instead of granulated sugar.
- Almond Milk: Substitute with oat milk, cashew milk, skim milk, or 2% regular milk.
- Butter: For a dairy-free option in the buttercream, use solid, room-temperature coconut oil or vegan butter.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use coconut flour?
No, do not substitute coconut flour for almond flour. Coconut flour is very absorbent and will make the cakes dry.
Can I use almond meal instead of almond flour?
No, almond meal is not a good substitute for super-fine almond flour. It is grainy, distorting the soft and moist cake texture.
How does almond flour affect the texture of the chocolate cake?
Almond flour creates a moister and denser texture than regular flour. It’s delicious!
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.
Why did my cake sink in the middle?
A cake can sink in the middle if it’s underbaked, the batter is overmixed, or the oven door is opened too early, causing a temperature drop. To prevent this, ensure accurate measurements, maintain proper oven temperature, and avoid overmixing the batter.
Can I use a 9-inch cake pan instead of 6-inch ones?
I used two 6-inch cake pans, but you can use one 9-inch cake pan if you don’t have these. Just keep an eye on the bake time, as you might need to add up to 4 – 6 minutes to ensure 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 chocolate cake ahead of time?
Absolutely! Bake the almond flour chocolate cake 1-2 days in advance, cool it, wrap it in plastic, and refrigerate it unfrosted for easy assembly. If preparing the buttercream ahead, ensure it reaches room temperature before icing. Store the frosted cake in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days, remembering to bring it to room temperature before serving.
Is almond flour gluten-free?
Yes! Almond flour is 100% gluten-free. This chocolate cake recipe is perfect for those who follow a gluten-free diet or have celiac disease.
Can you freeze chocolate cake with frosting?
Yes, you can freeze a frosted cake. Ensure it’s well-wrapped to prevent freezer burn, and it can be stored for up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator before serving.
How to store leftover almond flour 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 recipes next!
- Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes
- Strawberry Brownies
- Double Chocolate Zucchini Banana Bread
- Flourless Brownies
- Oat Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Dark Chocolate Almond Bark
- Molten Lava 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
Homemade Chocolate Buttercream (favorite option)
Dairy Free Chocolate Frosting (alternative option):
- 1 batch dairy-free chocolate frosting
- 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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