Soft gluten free red velvet cake covered in cream cheese frosting. This red velvet cake consists of two cake layers and is perfect for valentine's day!
What is Red Velvet Cake?
Red velvet cake is a vanilla cake with a little bit of cocoa, vinegar, and red food coloring. The cake does not taste like chocolate, as only a tiny amount of cocoa is added. Moreover, vinegar and buttermilk are added to the cake to create a velvety texture. The cake is covered with tangy cream cheese frosting that pairs perfectly with the cake!
The Secret to Soft Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake
A few ingredients play a significant role in how this gluten free red velvet cake turns out.
- Gluten-Free Flour Mix: The gluten free flour mix for this recipe consists of white rice flour, tapioca flour, corn starch, brown rice flour, and xanthan gum. If you are using a premade mix, I recommend using Bob's red mill gluten-free all-purpose baking flour or 1 to 1 Baking flour.
- Cocoa Powder: Even though this is not a chocolate cake, the cocoa powder does play a role in how this cake turns out. I suggest the use of unsweetened cocoa powder. I used Hershey's Unsweetened Cocoa Powder.
- Buttermilk & Apple Cider Vinegar: This gluten free red velvet cake would not be a red velvet cake without buttermilk and vinegar. The acidity that both provide contributes to the velvety texture of this cake. Therefore, do not omit these!
- Red Food Coloring: The red signature color of this cake comes from red food coloring. I recommend using paste/gel food coloring for best results.
Tips on Making Red Velvet Cake
Making this beautiful, layered gluten free red velvet cake is simple. All you need to do is the following:
- Preheat the oven to 170°C (338°F)
- Combine the dry ingredients: Before you add and combine the dry ingredients, make sure to sift the flour. This will ensure that the cake comes out moist. Add and combine the gluten-free flours, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set the dry ingredients aside for later.
- Prepare the buttermilk: In a cup or jar, add the buttermilk, vanilla extract, apple cider vinegar, red food coloring and mix to combine.
- Fluff the butter: Using a standalone mixer with the paddle attachment or handheld mixer, beat the butter and sugar at medium-high speed until light and fluffy. This takes about 2-3 minutes. Then, reduce the speed and add the eggs one at a time and beat until just combined.
- Create the batter: Now, add half of the dry ingredients followed by the buttermilk and beat until just combined, then add the remaining dry ingredients. Adding the dry ingredients in intervals allows the gluten-free flours to absorb the liquid, making the cake soft.
- Bake the cake: Divide the batter, and pour it into two greased 20 cm (8-inch) cake pans. Bake the gluten free red velvet cake layers for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean. Allow the cake layers to cool down in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool down to room temperature.
- Assemble the cake: Start decorating and assembling the cake only after the cake has completely cooled down to room temperature. To learn how to decorate a cake and achieve the look you see in the photos, watch this video by Sweet Bake Shop.
Dairy-Free Red Velvet Cake
This cake can easily be made dairy-free by making the following substitutions:
- Unsalted Butter: You can use vegan butter or vegetable oil instead of dairy butter. If you decide to use vegetable oil, substitute 250 grams of unsalted butter with 190 grams of vegetable oil.
- Buttermilk: Use any dairy-free buttermilk or simply make one at home. To make dairy-free buttermilk at home, add one tablespoon of white vinegar to 185 ml of almond milk or coconut milk. Allow the mixture to sit for 10 minutes before using it.
- Cream cheese: You can use vegan cream cheese to make dairy-free cream cheese frosting.
No, there is only a tiny amount of cocoa powder in a red velvet cake. Therefore, it is not really a chocolate cake.
No, the bright red color of red velvet cake is due to the cocoa powder, vinegar, buttermilk, and food coloring. Using food coloring alone will not achieve the desired results.
More Gluten-Free Dessert Recipes
- Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes
- Gluten Free Vanilla Bundt Cake
- Gluten Free Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes
- Gluten Free Lazy Cake
- Gluten Free Vanilla Cupcakes
- Gluten-Free Lemon Drizzle Cake
- Gluten Free Orange Bundt Cake
- Gluten Free Cinnamon Coffee Cake
- Gluten Free Gingerbread Cake
- Gluten Free Strawberry Jam Cake
- Gluten-Free Strawberry Cheesecake
Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake
Red Velvet Cake
- 110 grams of White Rice Flour
- 44 grams of Tapioca Flour
- 22 grams of Corn Starch
- 44 grams of Brown Rice Flour
- 14 grams of Cocoa Powder
- 1 ½ teaspoon of Xanthan Gum
- 1 teaspoon of Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon of Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon of Salt
- 185 ml of Buttermilk at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
- 1 teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon of Red Food Coloring Paste
- 250 grams of Unsalted Butter at room temperature
- 187 grams of Granulated White Sugar
- 2 Large Eggs
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 225 grams of Cream Cheese at room temperature
- 100 grams of Unsalted Butter at room temperature
- 450 grams of Powdered / Icing Sugar Sifted
- ⅛ teaspoon of Salt
- ½ teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
Red Velvet Cake
- Preheat the oven to 170°C (338°F)
- Mix and combine the white rice flour, tapioca flour, corn starch, brown rice flour, cocoa powder, xanthan gum, baking soda, and salt. Set the flour mixture aside.
- Whisk and combine the buttermilk, vanilla extract, apple cider vinegar, and red food coloring. Set the buttermilk mixture aside.
- Using a standalone mixer with the paddle attachment fitted or a handheld mixer, beat the unsalted butter and granulated sugar at medium-high speed until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Then, reduce the speed to low, add the eggs one at a time and beat until creamy. Now, add half of the flour mixture followed by the buttermilk mixture and beat until combined. Then add the remaining flour mixture and mix until combined.
- Divide the cake batter, and pour it into two greased 20 cm (8-inch) cake pans.
- Bake the gluten free red velvet cake layers for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean. Allow the cake layers to cool down in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool down to room temperature.
- Once the cake layers are completely cooled, decorate and frost the cake as you please.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Using a standalone mixer, with the paddle attachment fitted or handheld mixer, beat the cream cheese and unsalted butter until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Then, reduce the speed to low, and slowly add the powdered sugar. Do not add the powdered sugar all at once, as it will cause a mess.
- Now add the salt and vanilla extract and beat until just combined. The cream cheese frosting can be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to two days.
- Dairy-Free Option: See above*
- Make ahead: The cream cheese frosting can be made ahead of time. Simply store the cream cheese frosting in an air-tight container in the fridge. Before use, bring the frosting back to room temperature and use a handheld mixer or whisk to give it a quick mix and bring it back to pipping consistency. The cake layers can also be made ahead of time; simply wrap the baked layers in plastic wrap followed by foil and freeze them for up to two months.
- Storage Instruction: The baked gluten free red velvet cake can be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to five days and up to three days at room temperature.