This light and airy gluten free angel food cake is the perfect cake to serve with whipped cream and fresh berries. Every bite has the perfect soft fluffy texture that angel food cakes are famous for! This easy gluten free angel food cake recipe is a must-make!

A side view of the angel food cake. It is topped with sliced strawberries.

A traditional angel food cake is one of the more intimidating cakes to make normally, let alone a gluten free version. After much trial and error, I finally nailed the perfect spongy light texture in this gluten free angel food cake recipe!

This is by far the best angel food cake recipe. If you love cake as much as everyone here at the Fearless Dining household, you will want to check out all of my incredible gluten free cake recipes!

Why we love this gluten free angel food cake:

  1. It is so light and airy. It makes a beautiful light dessert.
  2. This cake has a nice amount of protein to balance out the sugar from using lots of egg whites.
  3. You can use store-bought egg whites so you don’t get stuck with many yolks.
  4. You can fancy this cake up for any party!

Allergen Information:

This homemade angel food cake is gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, oat-free, and soy-free.

Photos of the angel food cake ingredients.

Ingredient Notes:

  • Gluten free flour blend – I tested this recipe using King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten Free Blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work; I have not tested other flours, and I can not guarantee the recipe will work if you use other mixes. If you use another blend, you will want to compare your cake batter to the photos below in my step-by-step directions.
  • Xanthan Gum – If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
  • Egg Whites – IMPORTANT note about egg whites. It may be tempting to buy a carton of egg whites instead of breaking a lot of eggs, but using egg whites that come in the carton will affect the rise of your angel food cake. Use real room-temperature egg whites for the best, fluffiest, gluten-free angel food cake. Use all of your extra egg yolks to make this Yolk Only Lemon Curd recipe to serve over this angel food cake!
  • Vanilla Extract – Use pure vanilla extract. You can tell if you use imitation vanilla in a cake with these few ingredients.
  • White Sugar – Some recommend whipping the sugar in a food processor to make fine sugar. I didn’t do that for this recipe.

Step-By-Step Photos and Directions:

Photos of steps 1 and 2.

Step 1: Use an egg separator to separate your eggs and place the egg whites into a small bowl to warm to room temperature for 15 minutes. Add the egg whites, lemon extract, water, and cream of tartar to the large bowl of a standing mixer.

Note: You can also use a large mixing bowl with an electric hand mixer. Use a whisk attachment. Start on low speed and gradually increase the speed to high. Whip the egg whites until they are frothy (not stiff peaks).

Step 2: Add the sugar and salt and whip the egg white mixture on medium speed until the sugar is mixed in. You want to continue to mix on medium speed until soft peaks form.

Soft peaks are softer and not stiff. When you hold up your whisk with soft peaks, the top of the peaks wilts back down. You can see what a soft peak looks like in the photo below.

Photos of steps 3 and 4.

Step 3: Add the lemon zest and gluten free flour to the whipped eggs. I recommend adding the flour a little at a time or sifting the flour in a little at a time. This will help keep the egg mixture fluffy.

To measure your gluten free flour, I recommend using either the spoon method or leveling method.

Spoon Method: You can also use a spoon to fill the measuring cup. Use a knife to level along the top to remove the extra flour. Leveling Method: Fill the measuring scoop with flour, but do not pack it. Use a knife to scrape along the top to remove the extra flour.

Step 4: For best results, use a rubber spatula to gently fold the dry ingredients and zest into the fluffy whipped egg white mixture. Do not pop the air pockets; those bubbles make your cake light and fluffy. Stir slowly.

A photo of the cake batter in the angel food cake pan.

Step 5: Gently spoon the cake mixture into an ungreased 9-inch or 10-inch tube pan, an angel food cake pan. Be sure your tube pan has a removable bottom. Otherwise, removing your cake from the pan will be impossible after baking.

👀 Sandi Says: Do NOT grease your tube pan.

Step 6: Bake the angel food cake at 325º F. For best results, do not make the oven any hotter. Bake the cake for 40-45 minutes. The top will look golden.

To test and see if your cake is finished baking, insert a toothpick into the cake. If it comes back clean, your cake is finished baking. If you see batter or crumbs, the cake must be baked longer.

A baked angel food cake in the pan.

Step 7: Once you quickly determine the cake is finished baking. Invert the pan with the cake upside down on a wire cooling rack. I know tilting the cake upside down sounds odd, but it is the best way to prevent it from falling as it cools.

Step 8 When the cake is thoroughly cooled, carefully cut around the sides of the pan. Turn the cake back over upside down and gently tap the pan. The cake should come out easily. Cut around the bottom of the cake to remove it from the pan’s bottom tube. Move the cake to a serving plate.

Step 9: Allow the cake to cool before slicing it completely. Slice the cake with a serrated knife. Serve with a scoop of this homemade Pineapple Sorbet.

Topping Ideas:

  • Fresh berries like strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
  • Whipped cream
  • Powdered sugar
  • Chocolate drizzle
The top of an angel food cake with fresh strawberries on top.

Storage/Freezing Instructions:

This gluten-free angel food cake will stay fresh for up to four days. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can also freeze slices of this cake in a zipper freezer bag and thaw them on the counter.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can you make an angel food cake in a regular cake pan?

An angel food cake is hard to make in a different pan because you need a removable bottom, and heat flows up the middle of the cake. If you don’t have a tube pan, making angel food cupcakes may be worth it.

Why do you cool angel food cake upside down?

You cool an angel food cake upside down to prevent it from falling. It helps keep the cake tall and airy.

Why is my angel food cake not fluffy?

If your angel food cake is not fluffy, it can be for three reasons. First, if you overwhip the egg whites, you can whip out the air bubbles. The second cause is if you use container egg whites instead of breaking individual eggs and separating the whites. Those containers of egg whites are often pre-frozen, affecting how the eggs behave. Lastly, if you overmix the cake batter when mixing in the gluten free flour, it will pop the air bubbles, making your cake denser.

A slice of angel food cake with whipped cream.

More Gluten Free Cake Recipes:

Love This Recipe?

If you made and enjoyed this recipe, I would be incredibly grateful if you could leave a comment below. Please include which flour blend you used. This will help others know this recipe is delicious. Thank you!

A side view of the angel food cake. It is topped with sliced strawberries.

Easy Gluten Free Angel Food Cake

Sandi Gaertner
This homemade gluten free angel food cake is light and fluffy and has a nice flavor from lemon zest.
5 from 1 vote
dairy free allergen icon
gluten free allergy icon
nut free allergen icon
soy free allergy icon
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Cooling Upside Down 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Course Gluten Free Cake Recipes, Gluten Free Dessert Recipes
Cuisine American
Servings 8 slices
Calories 219 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 cup gluten free flour blend * see notes
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 12 egg whites * see notes
  • cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon extract Lemon or vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest Finely grated

Instructions
 

  • Use an egg separator to separate your eggs and place the egg whites into a small bowl to warm to room temperature for 15 minutes.
  • Add the egg whites, lemon extract, water, and cream of tartar to the large bowl of a standing mixer.
  • Use a whisk attachment. Start on low speed and gradually increase the speed to high. Whip the egg whites until they are frothy (not forming peaks).
  • Add the sugar and salt and continue to whip the egg white mixture on medium speed until the sugar is mixed in. You want to continue to mix on medium speed until soft peaks form.
  • Add the lemon zest and gluten free flour to the whipped eggs. I recommend either adding the flour a little at a time or sifting the flour in a little at a time. This will help keep the egg mixture fluffy.
  • For best results, use a rubber spatula to gently fold the dry ingredients and zest into the fluffy whipped egg white mixture. Be very careful not to pop the air pockets because those bubbles are what make your cake light and fluffy.
  • Gently spoon the cake mixture into an ungreased 9-inch or 10-inch tube pan aka angel food cake pan. Be sure your tube pan has a removable bottom, otherwise, it will be impossible to remove your cake from the pan after baking.
  • Bake the angel food cake at 325º F. Bake the cake for 40-45 minutes. The top will look golden when it is baked.
  • Once you quickly determine the cake is finished baking. Invert the pan with the cake upside down on a cooling rack. I know tilting the cake upside down sounds odd, but it is the best way to prevent the cake from falling as it cools.
  • When the cake is fully cooled, carefully cut around the sides of the pan with a knife. Turn the cake back over upside down and gently tap the pan. The cake should come out of the tube pan fairly easily. Cut around the bottom of the cake to remove it from the pan's bottom tube.

Notes

  1. I have tested this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure GF Blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work; I have not tested other flours.
  2. Xanthan Gum – If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
  3. I highly recommend using eggs and separating them for this recipe. The cartons of liquid egg whites will not rise as much.
  4. This cake will keep for up to 4 days in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.

SPECIAL NOTE

Please know that every gluten free flour blend has a different starch to grain ratio. If you use a blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust your moisture levels in your baked goods.

Nutrition

Serving: 1sliceCalories: 219kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 6gFat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 148mgPotassium: 137mgFiber: 2gSugar: 38gVitamin A: 1IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 15mgIron: 1mg
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Nutrition Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.

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