Flour Free Chocolate Cake

by Eddy Van Damme on August 3, 2010

To make certain bakery items gluten free it may be necessary to replace wheat flour with tapioca, rice, bean and or other flours, but at times, great results can also be obtained without using any of these at all. Case in point this featured chocolate hazelnut layer cake, which is moist, all natural and has a perfect texture.

Oftentimes we forget that cocoa powder contains a good amount of starch and fiber, ingredients which absorb moisture and are part of the cake building structure. Therefore making a cake without flour in case of a chocolate cake is not very complicated. In fact by simply manipulating the ingredients a perfect chocolate cake without flour can easily be obtained.

Getting it all together!

If you want to obtain sharply cut sides on the cake it is best to bake, fill and assemble the cake and then freeze it. Frost it the next day with room temperature ganache than freeze it, give it a second coat with heated ganache or cocoa gelée and cut while frozen.

Chocolate Cake without Flour

Yield: 1 full sheet pan

12 (8 oz) Egg yolks 240 g
1 tsp (1 tsp) Vanilla extract 5 ml
12 (12 oz) Egg whites 360 g
1 ½ Cups (12 oz) Extra fine granulated sugar 360 g
½ Cup (4 oz) Cocoa powder, sifted 120 g
1 Cup (4 oz) Toasted hazelnut or almond flour 120 g
  1. Whip the egg yolks to a mousse consistency, add the vanilla and set aside.
  2. Whip the egg whites and granulated sugar to stiff peaks
  3. Right before folding the egg yolks into the egg whites give the egg whites a good whip to make them “creamy” and make it easier for the remaining ingredients to be homogenized into the batter. Gently fold the yolks into the egg whites. It is not necessary to fold the mixture until all the yolk streaks are gone.
  4. Gently fold in the cocoa powder and nut flour.
  5. Spread the batter on a parchment lined full sheet pan and bake in a 350F (180C) oven until the cake bounces back when lightly pressed, about 25 minutes.


  1. Once cooled cut the cake crosswise in 4 equal strips. Spread low sugar raspberry jam (On Baking pg 620) on one layer and cover with another layer. Repeat until all used. Do not cover with jam on the top layer.
  2. Spread a thin layer of room temperature ganache (On Baking page 494) on the surface.
  3. If desired coat with a layer of heated Cocoa gelée (On Baking pg 560) for a brilliant finish.
  4. Cut into desired size.

36 comments on “Flour Free Chocolate Cake

  1. Very nice as always.

  2. This is very interesting and I will make this cake for sure.

  3. Jennifer on said:

    Chef Eddy,
    This chocolate cake looks very moist and delicious. We will make this cake this weekend.

  4. Patricia on said:

    Oh my, how scrumptious.

  5. Justin on said:

    One of my favorite combinations is chocolate and raspberry. I cannot wait to make this cake.

  6. Bonnie on said:

    How wonderful! Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  7. Oh my lord! Eddy you have my entire family drooling around the computer monitor! I feel like I gain pounds just looking at those pictures. But I would love to make that cake. Flourless chocolate cakes have always been a firm favourite of mine. The freezing steps are a fantastic idea .. going to make this cake 🙂 I have a question, what size is your sheet pan? Just want to make sure we are talking about the same thing.

  8. Flour Free Chocolate Cake, I want to eat one chef eddy… It is smooth and tasty…

  9. Hilary Adams on said:

    Looking forward to trying this at the bakery… we could use a pareve chocolate spongecake…

    Thanks, Chef Eddy!! ;0)

  10. That is sex on a plate!!! beautiful!!!!!

  11. Bravo Chef Eddy…this is truly inspiring!

    I’m thrilled to have discovered your site…it was by researching inverted sugar syrup that I was surprised with such an excellent culinary place…especially on sweets ;0)

    Flavourful wishes,

  12. Diana Wallace on said:

    This has a fabulous flavor! Moist and delicious everytime!

  13. I made this flour free chocolate cake last night as my grown daughters are gluten free. The lovely cake like texture pleasantly surprised me as I thought it would be more like dacquoise and crunchy. The cocoa did just what you said – gave it starch and fiber. I used a 17 1/2 x 11 1/2 baking sheet and got about 1/2 inch thick layers. I might try to make thinner layers next time. Freezing the cake seemed to help ease off the parchment. Looking forward to making this for Passover. Delightful!

  14. Eddy Van Damme on said:

    It is great to hear that this flour free chocolate cake worked for you! It is one of my favorites.
    All the best,

  15. Joanne on said:

    Hello! Chef Eddy:
    I am so so happy to find your website!! I will try to make this flour free cakes for my kids . Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  16. Made this yesterday and got rave reviews!!! This recipe truly ROCKS!!!!!

  17. Savanna Cunningham on said:

    I have heard of flour free cakes before but my question does the cake not rise?

    i love your pictures :]

  18. Ben Davenport on said:

    Chef Eddy,

    This cake is light and delicious. The almond flour adds a little extra flavor.

    Ben Davenport

  19. Amy Anglin on said:

    This recipe I used to make with ganache liquid center with French vanilla gelato with raspberry sauce. It’s one of my favorite plated dessert and very very very delicious! Will absolutely make one for me again and again.

  20. hai vonguyen on said:

    Gluten free and deliciously light…what a combination. Thank you chef

  21. Mayra Bernabe on said:

    This is a fabulous recipe, many places do not have a true gluten free cake and to make it moist and able to hold it’s structure is even more difficult to find. In my experience this recipe beats any gluten free cake by a heart beat and I hear using all natural cocoa gives it’s a light rich color to go with the dark ganache and velvety cocoa gelee.

  22. Jennifer Contreras on said:

    Yum! Chocolate and raspberries delish! I love the idea of using hazelnut flour I am sure it will well complement to the deliciousness of the chocolate and raspberries. Thank you for sharing a true gluten free chocolate cake this recipe is a must try! 🙂

  23. roberta bos on said:

    eccezzionale ! farò tesoro delle vostre idee 🙂

  24. Raina Cardona on said:

    Chef Eddy,
    you said that cocoa powder makes it a little easier to make a flourless cake. Can you make a vanilla cake without having to use tapioca or rice flour? Also, what is the difference between the Chocolate ganache and Cocoa Gelee?

    Thank you

  25. Trish on said:

    This is beautiful. I love flourless chocolate cake.

  26. Trish on said:

    Is this recipe in On Baking?

  27. Yvonne Davis on said:

    That look so good Chef

  28. Nicholas Pringle on said:

    I will have to try it. I am so use to added a starch that I didn’t think of the natural starch that can be in certain ingredients.

  29. sandra martinez on said:

    Chef Eddy,
    I never would thought making cake without flour possible but you have proven me wrong. This cake looks super moist, what is key when making any type of cake moist? As well as preventing the sides from burning or drying out?

    Sandra M.

  30. valerie alexander on said:

    a chocolate cake without flour is more healthier

  31. Holly Josey on said:

    this is perfect ive been looking for a flour free cake recipe

  32. Anthony on said:

    this is perfect. I had only recently found out about flourless cakes when I had started my current job and always wondered how it works. Flourless cakes sell very well also so I wanted to use them in my bakery for an alternative for some people and now i have an insight as to how to make them. Thanks Chef!

  33. Meghan Abarca on said:

    This is amazing! My aunt is totally for flour free sweets! I can not wait to try this!

  34. Nhu Ta on said:

    This cake give it a very smooth textures, by any chance it is extra moist on the inside? I love a moist cake, but most of the cake I have made after the fridge it become really dry.. If this cake doesn’t dry out, I would definitely love to try to make it…

  35. Hello chef,

    What would be the measurements of a full sheet pan? I have been checking online but there are different answers. I want to try this and want to get it right.

  36. Katerina Kyriazis on said:

    This seems a delicious version of gluten-free offering without adding an undesired substitute. I would like to try this recipe with the hazelnut flour which would pair nicely with the chocolates.

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