Be prepared to fall in love with this heart-shaped gluten free chocolate brownie cake. If you are looking for that perfect Valentine’s day treat, this is it! Imagine the look on your kid's faces when they come home to see such a surprise!
My daughter has become interested in cake decorating, so we both thought this was the perfect opportunity to take advantage of our day.
Besides eating this Valentine’s Day cake yourself, it also makes a terrific gift for neighbors, teachers, and co-workers. Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be for lovebirds; you can show anyone how much you care with homemade goodies.
Not only will you be impressed with how adorable this gluten free chocolate brownie recipe is, but you will also want to devour every last morsel. This cake is made of two brownie cakes layered with sweet buttercream frosting.
If you love chocolate as much as we do, check out my best gluten free chocolate dessert recipes! I also have tons of fun flavors of gluten free brownies you can try.
Why Make This Brownie Cake:
This is the must-make cake for chocolate lovers. You can use brownies in many fun ways besides a Valentine's Day cake. This cake is based on my popular Gluten Free Brownies recipe.
- This gluten free chocolate brownie cake can also be made into a birthday cake, cupcakes, or decorated for any other holiday or occasion.
- My brownie cake is both gluten free and dairy-free.
- You can freeze the layers and assemble the cake at a later date.
- You can also make it as a sheet cake!
If you love gluten free baking, visit my Gluten Free Pantry Guide to see what our favorite gluten free baking supplies are in our kitchen!
Tips For Sucess:
- Always ensure your cakes are completely cooled before frosting them.
- You can use any flavor of frosting; I have some great Gluten Free Frosting recipes for you.
- Check my Gluten Free Sprinkles List if you use sprinkles to decorate your cake.
This is one of my favorite gluten-free flour blends for cookies, cakes, pie crust, biscuits, and muffins! (Do not use this flour blend for yeast recipes.)
- Gluten Free Flour Blend - I have tested two gluten free flour blends in this recipe. I liked King Arthur Gluten Free Measure for Measure and Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten Free Flour Blend. This doesn't mean other blends won't work, I just haven't tested any others. Try to avoid flour blends that are high in starch.
- Xanthan Gum - this is the stuff that holds your baked goods together. If your blend does not contain Xanthan Gum, you must add one teaspoon.
- Cocoa Powder - Most cocoa powders are gluten free but always check the ingredients label. I love Rodelle and Anthony's brands of cocoa powders.
- Butter - Use unsalted butter, plant-based butter, or coconut oil.
- Pure Vanilla Extract - do not use imitation vanilla.
You may also love making my Gluten Free Almond Joy Bars!
Recipe Step-By-Step Directions:
Step 1: Add your dry ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend. If you are using butter, you will want to melt it.
I recommend using the spoon or leveling method to measure your gluten-free flour.
Put the measuring scoop into the flour and fill. Do not pack the flour. Use a knife to scrape along the top to remove the extra flour.
You can also use a spoon to fill the measuring cup. Use a knife to level along the top to remove the extra flour.
Step 2: Add the wet ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend.
Step 3: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix until the batter is just barely mixed. This will help keep your brownies a bit fluffier for the cake.
Step 4: Mix the gluten free brownie batter well and pour it into greased mini heart cake pans. (Note the pans I used were discontinued, so I found similar pans.)
Step 5: Bake the brownies at 350º F for 20 minutes until done. Remove from the pans onto a cooling rack. When the brownies are cooling, whip up the frosting.
Step 6: Add the frosting ingredients to a standing mixer. Make the white buttercream frosting. Feel free to divide your frosting into two bowls and add red food coloring to one to make a pretty pink frosting as we did.
Step 7: Place the bottom on a dish and add frosting to the top of the cake. Place the next cake layer on top and frost.
You may also love these Gluten Free Brownie Cookies if you love brownies.
What is the best gluten free brownie mix?
If you don't want to make gluten-free brownies from scratch, you can use several delicious gluten-free brownie mix brands to make this brownie layer cake recipe. My favorites are:
- Krusteaz Gluten Free Brownie Mix
- King Arthur Gluten Free Brownie Mix
- Betty Crocker Gluten Free Brownie Mix
Expert Tips and Recipe FAQ:
Yes, gluten-free brownies taste good and are a fantastic texture too. Gluten free brownies differ from brownies made with wheat flour, but they taste just as moist, chocolaty, and delicious.
Gluten free baking is tricky! Wheat is like glue; when you bake gluten-free, getting your baked goods to hold together is a big deal. I use xanthan gum as a binder, but some people can't eat xanthan gum. Guar gum and psyllium husks can also work well as a binder in gluten free baking.
To test for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is done baking. If you see batter or crumbs, the cake needs to be baked longer.
These cake will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container or up to 4 months in the freezer.
Yes, you can freeze gluten free brownies. There are a couple of options on how to freeze them. Wrap each piece of cake or brownie individually with plastic wrap. You will want to wrap each on tightly, so no air gets to it. Then place it in an airtight container.
You can also freeze the entire cake using the same method. Either way, consume within four to six months to ensure flavors and textures.
More Gluten Free Valentine’s Day Recipes :
- Non-Slip Mixing Bowls - Having bowls that stay put helps your sanity when baking!
- A whisk to blend your gluten free dry ingredients.
- This simple oil mister sprays your cake pans, so the cake doesn't stick.
This post was updated from an old February 2019 post with more details and baking tips.
Gluten Free Chocolate Brownie Cake
- 1 cup gluten free flour blend * see note
- ½ cup cocoa powder * see note
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 6 ounces chocolate chips Optional
- ½ cup cooking oil You can also use unsalted butter.
- ½ cup non-dairy milk
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- Preheat the oven to 350º F. Spray oil in mini heart-shaped cake pans.
- In a large bowl, add the dry ingredients and whisk to blend.
- In a smaller bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix well.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix.
- Press the gluten free brownie batter into the heart pans.
- Bake the cakes for 20 minutes until done.
- Remove from the oven and allow the cakes to cool on a rack. Do not frost the cakes until they are completely cooled!
- Add the frosting ingredients to a stand mixer and whip them up.
- Place one cake on a plate and cover with frosting. Add the top layer, frost and decorate as you like.
- I have tested this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure GF and Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 GF blend. That doesn't mean others will not work, I just have not tested other flours.
- If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain Xanthan Gum or Guar Gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
- To make this recipe dairy-free, substitute the butter for vegan butter in the frosting.
- To test for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is done baking. If you see batter or crumbs, the cake needs to bake longer.
- Allow cooling before frosting so your cake holds together better!
- This cake will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer
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.
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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Our extended family does ice cream cake, on family night, for each persons birthday. This doesn't work for my gluten free, dairy free daughter. I made the chocolate brownie cake and it went down so well, WITH EVERYONE!!!!!!! The couldn't believe it was gluten free. So good.
I am thrilled everyone loved this brownie cake! Thank you so much for coming back to let me know. As for a birthday ice cream cake. I really love the So Delicious dairy-free ice cream brand.
I made this for valentines and my girls loved it. I would make it normal shaped for birthdays!
I am so glad your girls liked it, thank you so much for coming back to let us know 🙂
Just made this! Yum!!! A little more gummy than I would have hoped for, but that’s likely the gf flour blend I was using. Will definitely try it again with a different flour blend! So good! I loved that the ingredients are typical ones I always have in my pantry! Thank you!
I'm so glad you liked it Becky 🙂 Thank you for stopping back to let us know.
Really fun frosting on this! Thank you for sharing! I'm pinning this to my gluten-free Valentine's Day board!
Oh my gosh, this is so fun!!! Thanks for making it gluten free 🙂
You are so welcome Celeste 🙂
Margaret E Clegg
Love the idea of giving this to a teacher. My husband is a teacher and he'd LOVE to get a sweet gift like this from a student.
I am so glad you like this Margaret 🙂
We love brownies AND we love cake! What's not to love here!
I can't wait to hear how you like this recipe Jules 🙂