My Gluten-Free Chocolate Sour Cream Cake will be one of the easiest cakes that you ever make. The texture is rich, moist and luxurious, in no way revealing how easy it is to make. It is a delicious cake that is certain to become a household favourite. Enjoy it with tea or coffee or dress it up with whipped cream and berries for special occasions.
Why we love this recipe:
This recipe is proof that a delicious cake can be made with no more effort than is required with a packet cake mix.
It is made with simple ingredients, many of which you may already have on hand, and all readily available in any supermarket.
You will have the satisfaction of knowing you made it yourself and being in control of the quality of all the ingredients. I prefer to make recipes from scratch, so I know exactly what I’m eating, thereby avoiding any unwanted additives.
It involves just one bowl so there is less washing up and that’s always a plus.
This Chocolate Sour Cream Cake is gluten-free which means that people with coeliac disease or gluten intolerance can also enjoy it.
Some gluten-free baked goods are best eaten on the day they are made as they tend to become dry fairly quickly. Not so with this one so you can confidently make it a day in advance if you wish.
Ingredients in this recipe:
Please see the recipe card further along in the post for exact quantities of ingredients and the full method.
Caster/superfine sugar – as the name implies, this is sugar which is finer than regular granulated sugar but not as fine as icing/confectioners’ sugar. I use it in baking as it dissolves easily. You can use regular granulated sugar if you wish.
Gluten-free plain/all-purpose flour – I have used a commercial gluten-free plain/all-purpose flour which is made from a blend of naturally occurring gluten-free flours. However, you can substitute regular plain/all-purpose flour if you don’t need the cake to be gluten-free. Our gluten-free flour blends contain either xanthan or guar gum to stabilise and provide structure to our recipes.
Sea salt – a small amount of salt boosts the flavour in baked goods.
Dutch Process cocoa powder – I use unsweetened cocoa powder. It gives a lovely rich, chocolatey colour and deep flavour to the Chocolate Sour Cream Cake.
Baking soda – also known as bicarbonate of soda and not to be confused with baking powder. The baking soda in this cake neutralizes the acidity of the sour cream, improving the flavour of the cake and assisting with the leavening.
Vanilla extract/essence – known by different names in different countries, I like to use vanilla which has been naturally extracted not one which is synthetically flavoured.
Egg – I use a large egg, preferably free range.
Sour Cream – for the best flavour, I use full-fat sour cream. The inclusion of sour cream means that the cake will stay deliciously moist for several days – although it’s unlikely to last that long.
Step by step instructions:
To begin, preheat your oven to 180 Degrees C (355 F), and prepare your baking tin.
- Add all the ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer or place them in a bowl and use a hand-held electric mixer.
- Mix them all together until the batter is smooth.
- Tip the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Place the tin on a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Remove the side of the cake tin, cool a further 10 minutes before carefully removing the cake to the rack to further cool. Dust with icing/confectioners’ sugar and serve as is or with whipped cream and berries.
Tips for success and FAQs:
As baking is a science, the best results are obtained by weighing ingredients. This is more accurate than volume measurements.
Always use good quality ingredients; you can taste the difference. For a deep, rich flavour, use a good quality, unsweetened cocoa powder.
Yes, you can. Put the cake on a serving plate and cover with cling wrap until ready to enjoy it. If you are going to top it with cream, do that just before serving.
More delicious recipes for you to try:
Here are some more of our favourite gluten-free cakes:
- Pear and Raspberry Cake
- Belgian Lemon Tea Cake
- Blueberry Cake
- Almond Cake
- Carrot Cake
- Four Ingredient Fruit Cake
- Banana Cake
- Or, if you’re after some more delicious chocolate recipes, you can find a fabulous collection of them here.
I’m all in favour of quick, easy recipes; after all, most of us are time-poor these days. However, I don’t want any saving of time to produce a disappointing result. I guess you could say I want to have my cake and eat it too!
This easy chocolate cake will not disappoint; you will love the rich flavour and moist texture. Serve it simply, with just a dusting of icing sugar but if you wish to dress it up a little to serve as dessert, serve with whipped cream, mascarpone or crème fraiche and some berries.
Please let me know if you try it!
This post was originally published in August 2018. It has been updated with new photos and more information. The recipe remains the same.
Gluten-Free Chocolate Sour Cream Cake
- 1 cup (220 g) caster/superfine sugar
- 1 cup (150 g) gluten-free plain/all-purpose flour See Note 1
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoon Dutch Process cocoa powder See Notes 2 and 3
- 1 teaspoon baking soda/bicarbonate of soda See Note 4
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract See Note 5
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup (240 g) full fat sour cream
For accuracy, we recommend weighing your ingredients. This will produce the best results.
- Preheat your oven to 180 Degrees C (355 F).
- Line the base of a 9” (23cm) round spring-form tin with baking paper, and grease the sides.
- Add all the ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer or place them in a bowl and use a hand held electric mixer. Mix them all together until the batter is smooth, but do not over beat.
- Tip the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. A few crumbs are okay but there should not be any batter.
- Place the tin on a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Remove the side of the cake tin. Cool a further 10 minutes before carefully removing the cake to the rack to further cool.
- Dust with icing sugar/confectioners’ sugar and serve as is or with whipped cream, mascarpone or crème fraiche and berries.
- Our gluten-free flour blends contain either xanthan or guar gum to stabilise and provide structure to our recipes. If your flour blend already contains either of these gums, there is no need to add more. If you don’t need to make these gluten-free, you can use regular plain/all-purpose flour.
- Use a good quality, unsweetened cocoa. I use Plaistowe Dutch Processed Cocoa, available in supermarkets. It gives the cake a lovely, rich, chocolatey colour.
- The Australian tablespoon is 20 ml or 4 teaspoons. In many other countries, the tablespoon is 15 ml or 3 teaspoons. You may have to adjust your measurements accordingly.
- This is not the same as baking powder. Be sure to use baking soda.
- For the best flavour, use vanilla extract/essence which has been naturally extracted from the vanilla bean and not one which is synthetically flavoured.
- Please note, the nutritional information is based on the cake being sliced into 8 pieces. It does not include what the cake is served with. The nutritional information is an estimate only.
The nutritional information is an estimate only, and is derived from online calculators. For accurate results, we recommend calculating the nutritional information based on the ingredients and brands you use.
How could I make the sour cream chocolate egg free?
Hi Patricia, we haven’t tried making this cake egg-free. It may work with a chia or flax egg substitute, but having not tried that, I couldn’t guarantee success. If you do try it, I’d be interested to know how it goes. We do have a Vegan Chocolate Cake (linked) which is delicious and may be suitable. Best wishes, Alex 🙂
Loved this cake. Made it for my Nan’s birthday this year and everyone enjoyed. Was great the next day too. Can’t report on any other days because it was absolutely demolished by then. Thanks for the yummy and very easy recipe!
Hi Cassie, thank you for your fantastic feedback on the Chocolate Sour Cream cake. I am delighted that you all enjoyed it and it was a success for your Nan’s birthday. 🙂
Is it okay to use chocolate chips if you do not have cocoa powder
Hi Bonnie, unfortunately, swapping the cocoa powder with chocolate chips won’t be successful. The cocoa plays an important role in the success of the cake as it contributes to the rising of the cake and the texture. I hope this helps. 🙂
is this cake ok to be sliced up & frozen ?
I have a Coeliac friend & like to have something on hand when she pops over …
That should be fine – just ensure each slice is wrapped well so it doesn’t suffer freezer burn or dry out.
Kind regards, Alex
I made this for my friend’s graduation party and everyone loved it! I served it with some fresh raspberries and whipped cream. I should have made two because it was gone in a second. Thank you so much!
Hello Emilia, I am delighted to hear that you and your friends enjoyed our Chocolate Sour Cream Cake. Thank you for letting me know. It would be especially delicious with whipped cream and raspberries! 🙂
Great, easy recipe. I loved the texture, which didn’t feel gluten-free at all. Thank you for sharing all the details within the recipe too.
Thank you so much, Izzah!
I am so pleased you enjoyed the cake!
After trying your Lemon Cake (amazing!) I was keen to test out some of your other GF recipes.
Let me just say, your blog will be my go-to from now on.
This is such an easy cake to make, and even easier to eat.
Thank you again! So happy I found your blog!!
Thank you so much, Sasha – your lovely comments have made my day! I am thrilled you have been enjoying the recipes, and I hope you’ll get to try more soon!
hi…wanna try your recipe….i do not see baking powder? do we add? if not added can the cake still be moist? thank you
Hi! This recipe uses baking soda, not powder.
(This is because of the use of sour cream – the soda is activated by this.)
You do not need to add baking powder.
Enjoy the cake – it’s delicious and has a great, moist texture.
My second time making this and it’s still my favorite!! I followed the recipe exactly as written and it turns out perfect every time!! I had never baked with dutch process cocoa before but I highly recommend it! The first time I made this in a cake pan and the second time, I made it in a muffin pan for cupcakes. Incredibly moist and chocolatey!!
Hi Cristina, thank you for the fabulous feedback concerning our Chocolate Sour Cream Cake. It really is a special cake and so easy to make. A great idea to use it for cupcakes! 🙂
I made this cake with a substitute of dairy free sour cream. I just wanted to try because I did some other recipes before and they never turned out good! With this recipe it worked very well, the cake was delicious! Thank you for this recipe and yes it is so easy to make that it will be our favourite chocolate cake! 😊
Hi Sandra! So happy you had success with the dairy free sour cream – thank you so much for letting us know!