This drool-worthy gluten free chocolate pumpkin cake is two cakes in one! Swirled to a beautiful marble, the flavors work so well in this decadent fall cake. Topped with chocolate chips, you will love how easy this swirl cake is to make! There is also a dairy-free option!
If you love desserts with pumpkin as much as I do, give some of my other popular gluten free pumpkin desserts a try!
Fall is here and although I have no idea why we don't eat pumpkin all year round, I am happy to say this may be the cake that changes that unwritten rule!
Why you need to make this pumpkin chocolate cake:
- This is the cake, one of the moistest flavorful, fun to make cakes on my blog. This cake is the perfect marriage between my gluten free pumpkin bread and my gluten free chocolate cake...all swirled together into a beautiful gluten free marble cake! If you haven't made a swirl cake yet, you really need to make this cake!
- The texture of this cake is so smooth and not dense!
- It makes two loaf cakes, lots of cupcakes, or a two layer cake!
This cake is two cakes in one so there are more ingredients than usual. Note the bananas were on the counter and are slightly visible in the top corner of this photo. There is no banana in this cake.
- Gluten free flour blend - I used Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 GF Blend, but I have also made this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure. Starchier gluten free flour blends will work but you will need to adjust your moisture level! *Note if your blend doesn't contain Xanthan Gum, you will need this too.
- Pumpkin - Use plain pumpkin puree, do not use pumpkin pie puree!
- Non-dairy milk - I used almond milk but any non-dairy or regular milk should work.
- Yogurt - use plain whole fat yogurt or sour cream.
- Butter - you can use vegan butter if you prefer
How to make this cake:
First, we will make the pumpkin cake batter. Preheat the oven to 350º F.
Step 1: Add the pumpkin cake dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and whisk to blend them.
Step 2: Add your wet ingredients to the bowl and mix well.
Step 3: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix the two together and then set it aside while you make the chocolate cake batter.
HINT: Do not over-mix your cake batter! Your cake will be lighter and fluffier if you mix it until just barely mixed.
Step 4: Now we will repeat the above steps to make the chocolate cake. Add your chocolate cake dry ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend.
Step 5: Add the wet ingredients to a bowl and mix well.
Step 6: Pour your wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just barely mixed as I explained above.
This is what your gluten free chocolate cake batter will look like.
Step 7: Add a layer of chocolate cake batter to a greased loaf pan.
Step 8: Add a layer of the pumpkin cake batter. You can do this in any order you like if you prefer to start with the pumpkin layer. Repeat and another layer of chocolate and pumpkin cake batter.
Step 9: Now the fun part. It is easy to learn how to make a chocolate marble cake! Swirl the cake batters with a knife. Do not over-swirl because you won't have pretty swirls in the finished cake. Optional: Top with chocolate chips.
Step 10: Bake at 350º F for 35-40 minutes. This recipe will make two loaves, a layer cake, or you can make one big loaf and 6 swirled cupcakes.
Test to see if your cake is done by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. if your toothpick comes out clean, your cake is baked. If you see crumbs or batter, your cake will need to be baked a little longer.
If you love loaf-style cakes, you may want to try my gluten free honey cake recipe too!
- Add pecans or walnuts to the pumpkin cake batter.
- Drizzle with a pumpkin spice icing (¼ cup powdered sugar, ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and 1-2 teaspoons milk.)
- Frost with a vanilla cream cheese frosting or chocolate buttercream frosting.
Tips and Recipe FAQ:
You can make this cake ahead by making your cake batters the day before you bake it.
This cake will keep up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Store in an air-tight container.
You can definitely freeze this cake. Wrap it in plastic wrap, then wrap in aluminum foil. Place in a large freezer-safe Ziplock bag and freeze.
Yes, this cake is very easy to make dairy-free by using vegan butter and dairy-free yogurt.
I really like Anthony's cocoa powder best. It has a rich chocolate flavor and is gluten free and kosher. Other great gluten free cocoa brands include Rodelle, Kiva Cacao, Ghirardelli, and TerraSoul.
Want more easy gluten free cake recipes:
- Grandma's Homemade Gluten Free Devil's Food Cake
- Gluten Free Chocolate Mint Cake
- Gluten Free Vanilla Cake
- Delicious Gluten Free Pumpkin Bundt Cake
Gluten Free Chocolate Pumpkin Cake
For Pumpkin Cake
- 2 cups gluten free flour blend * see note
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup full fat yogurt
- ½ cup light oil
- ¼ cup almond milk
For Chocolate Cake
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¾ cup sugar
- ¾ cup cocoa powder
- ¾ cup gluten free flour blend
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- dash salt
- 2 eggs
- ⅓ cup butter melted
- ½ cup full-fat yogurt
- ½ cup almond milk
- ⅓ cup chocolate chips to top the cake
- Preheat the oven to 350º F.
- To make the pumpkin cake:
- Add the pumpkin cake dry ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend.
- In a second bowl, add the pumpkin cake wet ingredients and mix well.
- Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and mix. (*See note)
- To make the chocolate cake:
- Add your dry chocolate cake ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend.
- In a second bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix. (*See note)
- Grease a loaf pan and add a layer of chocolate cake batter.
- Add some pumpkin batter on top of the chocolate batter.
- Repeat so you have a total of 4 layers.
- Take a knife and insert it into the batter and swirl gently to slighly swirl the batters together.
- Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top and sightly press them into the batter.
- Bake the cake for 35 minutes. Remove the cake and test with a toothpick for doneness. (*See note)
- Remove from the oven and cool on a baking rack.
- 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 keep this cake light and fluffy, mix your wet and dry ingredients until it is just barely mixed. Over-mixing can make your cake a lot denser.
- To test to see if your cake is baked, insert a toothpick into the middle of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done baking. If you see batter or crumbs on the toothpick, it needs to bake a little longer.
- Optional: Top with a pumpkin spice icing by combining ¼ cup of powdered sugar, ½ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, and 1-2 teaspoons of milk (or non-dairy milk). Whisk to blend.
- Note actual bake time will vary depending on the pan you use to bake this cake. A loaf pan may take longer given the depth of the cake.
- This cake will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer.
If you love the recipes you are finding on my blog, I would love for you to sign up for my newsletter (and get my free chocolate e-cookbook!)