Gluten free chocolate sponge cake with chocolate buttercream

Gluten free chocolate sponge cake

I’ve been wanting to get this delicious, gluten free chocolate sponge cake recipe on my blog for some time. It’s one of my favourite cakes. It’s quick and easy to make, so ideal if you’re new to baking or you want to whip up a fab cake in a hurry. 

This soft chocolate sponge cake is complimented wonderfully with the most irresistible chocolate buttercream, which is based on a Nigella Lawson recipe. I love this classic chocolate sponge cake and hope you do too! 


For the chocolate sponge
175g (6oz) gluten free self-raising flour, sifted (add ¼ teaspoon of xanthan gum if the flour doesn’t already contain this or guar gum) 
50g (2oz) good quality *cocoa powder, sifted 
225g (8oz) softened butter (I use full fat Lurpak spreadable)
225g (8oz) caster sugar 
1 teaspoon *vanilla extract 
4 large eggs, room temp 

Flatlay of ingredients for a chocolate cake

For the chocolate buttercream 
110g (4oz) *dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids
150g (5oz) unsalted butter, softened
175g (6oz) icing sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons *vanilla extract

Ingredients for chocolate buttercream


Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4/160C Fan.

Grease and line 2 x 20cm (8in) round sandwich tins.

two greased and lined sandwich tins

Add all the ingredients for the chocolate sponge cake to a large mixing bowl.

Ingredients for gluten-free chocolate cake in a stainless steel mixing bowl

Using an electric, hand or stand mixer whisk for a few minutes until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy and paler in colour than when you started mixing. 

Gluten free chocolate cake mixture in a stainless steel bowl

Divide the mixture evenly between the prepared tins and smooth out with a palette knife or the back of a spoon.

Gluten free chocolate cake prior to baking

Bake for 25 minutes or until the cakes are well risen and when gently pressed in the centre, they feel firm but springy.

Baked gluten free chocolate sponge cake

Remove the cakes from the oven. After about 10 minutes remove them from the tins and transfer upside down onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Gluten free chocolate sponge cakes on a cooling rack

To make the buttercream; slowly melt the chocolate in a heatproof dish over a pan of simmering water.

Melted chocolate in a pyrex bowl

In a large mixing bowl whisk/beat the softened butter for a moment or two, then slowly add the sifted icing sugar, stirring after each addition. Once all the icing sugar has been added whisk/beat for a few minutes until the buttercream becomes light in colour.

Butter and icing sugar creamed together

Add the vanilla extract and melted chocolate.

Buttercream with melted chocolate added

Whisk/beat again until it’s nice and smooth. Stop the moment you’re happy with it. 

Chocolate buttercream

To assemble the cake; peel the baking paper from the cakes and place one layer baked side down onto the serving plate you wish to use. Spoon half the buttercream onto the top and spread out.

A spoonful of chocolate buttercream on a layer of gluten free chocolate sponge

Pop the second layer on top. I tend to go baked side up, but if you want a super flat surface then place baked side down.

Gluten free chocolate sponge cake

Spread the remaining buttercream over the top and even it out with a palette knife.

Gluten-free chocolate sponge cake

Enjoy a nice slice with a cuppa!

Gluten free chocolate sponge cake

Recipe notes:

This yummy chocolate sponge cake is best stored in a cool place and enjoyed within 2-3 days.

Add 1 teaspoon of gluten free baking powder if using gluten free plain/all purpose flour instead of gf self-raising flour. And again, add ¼ teaspoon of xanthan gum if the flour doesn’t already contain this or guar gum.

Thanks for checking out this gluten free chocolate sponge recipe. I do hope you give it a whirl! I also have a quick demo of me rustling up one of these yummy chocolate cakes over on my YouTube channel, click here if you fancy watching.

Don’t forget to give me a shout if you have any questions.

For now,
Liz x

*Check this product to ensure there are no gluten containing ingredients or ‘may contain’ or ‘not suitable’ warnings on the pack. If in doubt leave it out.

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