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Dessert

Gluten-Free Chocolate Zucchini Cake

MAKES ONE 9-INCH CAKE

Here's a delicious way to use the abundance of summer zucchini. When grated, zucchini adds moisture and nutrients to this flavorful gluten-free, dairy-free cake that's sweetened with honey. Top this cake with your favorite chocolate frosting. This cake can be made with egg replacement; see instructions below.

½ cup white rice flour
¾ cup sorghum flour
½ cup tapioca starch/flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
1 pinch ground cloves, optional
¼ teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
½ cup honey or agavé nectar
⅓ cup non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening
    or coconut oil
½ tablespoon pure vanilla extract
¾ cup milk of choice (vanilla-flavored rice, soy or almond) or fruit juice
1½ cups (5.3 ounces) chocolate chips or chopped semisweet chocolate
Grated zest of 1 orange or 1 teaspoon dried orange zest
1¼ cups grated zucchini

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a 9-inch cake pan.

2. Combine flours, tapioca starch, baking powder, xanthan gum, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

3. Add eggs, honey, shortening and vanilla. Blend well. Set aside

4. In a medium saucepan, heat milk to just under a boil. Pour it over chocolate and stir until melted and smooth.

5. Add chocolate and egg mixture to flour mixture. Add orange zest and stir well to form a smooth batter. Stir in grated zucchini.

6. Pour batter into prepared cake pan. Bake in preheated oven for about 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

7. Allow cake to cool for 30 minutes before removing from pan. Turn cake onto a large plate and frost.

For Egg-Free Chocolate Zucchini Cake, omit 2 eggs. Mix 2½ tablespoons ground flaxseed with ½ cup warm apple juice or white grape juice. Let sit 10 minutes until thickened. Use this mixture to replace 2 eggs.

Each serving contains 457 calories, 22g total fat, 8g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 53mg cholesterol, 65g carbohydrate, 323mg sodium, 4g fiber, 6g protein.

Rachel Albert (thehealthycookingcoach.com) is author of The Ice Dream Cookbook: Dairy Free Ice Cream Alternatives with Gluten Free Cookies, Compotes & Sauces (Planetary Press).

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