Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Gooey “Butter” Cake

GF DF Gooey -Butter- Cake slice

Have you ever heard of Wet Chocolate Cake? I didn’t think so. That is the weirdest name for any cake. “Wet” isn’t an appetizing word any way you slice it, especially when used in the same sentence as “cake”. It makes the cake sound soggy and mushy.

This cake is anything but soggy and mushy. It is ooey and gooey and moist, almost completely saturated with warm chocolate icing. Oh, that icing.

Anyway, I didn’t name it Wet Chocolate Cake. That’s what Aunt Suzie called it. She made it every time we had A Dinner, which was almost always held at her house. She was a matriarch of sorts in my mother’s side of the family, taking over all family functions and festivities after their father passed away. That’s how she inherited the role of hostess for all the Dinners, and that’s why we had her Wet Chocolate Cake.

Not that anyone complained. Anyone lucky enough to get a square before it was gobbled up was pleased as punch, not to mention we all loved going to Aunt Suzie’s house for a family gathering.

You’ve already figured out that’s what we Southerners call “A Dinner”, Lord only knows why, we’re quirky like that. All I know is that I always looked forward to things like family reunions, babies being born, out of town relatives visiting, and yes, even funerals, because in the South, all of the above (and then some) can constitute a good reason for having A Dinner, and that meant this cake.

I took the liberty of renaming it because I know you’re going to love it, and that means you’re going to make it often and maybe even take it to one of your Dinners and I don’t want you to have to tell somebody who asks for the recipe that it’s Wet Chocolate Cake. Gross. They might gag.

So, we’re now calling it Gooey “Butter” Cake. Don’t even tell them it’s gluten-free and dairy-free. Just serve it up with a smile and they’ll gobble it up and ask you to make it next time somebody’s born or somebody visits from far away or when somebody…goes away.

One last thing before the recipe – when I put a word like “gooey” in the recipe title, you better know I mean it. If you’re into textures like melty chocolate chip cookies and such, you’re likely going to fall in love with this cake. On the other hand, if you’re not so fond of the soft, gooey texture I’m describing, you may want to think it through before making this one. It. Is. Gooey.

OK, you’re sufficiently warned.

I should probably say something about the sugar content, but I won’t, especially since I’m recommending you drown the cake in my Cooked Chocolate Icing, which has as much sugar as the cake.

GF DF Gooey -Butter- Cake pouring icing

Oops, sorry if you’re avoiding sugar. I am, too. But that doesn’t mean everyone is. I try to offer a little taste for everyone here, I know you understand. And even if you’re not indulging often, when your sweet tooth does come calling, I assure you this will tame it!

GF DF Gooey -Butter- Cake pouring icing

If you’re not a fan of the super-sticky chocolate icing, try the cake with whipped cream (or whipped coconut cream if you’re dairy-free like me) and some in-season fruit – delish!

Either way, enjoy making and eating this indulgent treat!

Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Gooey “Butter” Cake

Total time:  45 mins

 This recipe is free from gluten, dairy, soy, peanuts, tree nuts.
  • 1 cup dairy-free butter substitute like Nutiva brand
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs, yolks and whites separated
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract (I use Neilsen Massey extracts.)
  • 2 cups all-purpose type GF flour blend without gums like Gigi’s Everyday GF Flour Blend or King Arthur Multipurpose GF Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar + enough dairy-free milk to equal 1 cup liquid (as a substitute for buttermilk)
  1. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a medium sized mixing bowl; whisk to blend. Set aside.
  2. Whisk egg whites with your mixer until soft peaks form. Set aside.
  3. Now it’s time to preheat your oven to 325F and lightly grease a 9x13-inch pan; set aside.
  4. In your stand mixer (or in a bowl using an electric hand mixer), cream butter substitute and sugar until light and fluffy. This takes several minutes with the Nutiva product, so turn your stand mixer on and let it go on low speed until the crumbly bits turn into thicker clumps (that will almost remind you of the consistency of play dough), then turn up the speed to medium and let the mixture go a few more minutes when you will see something that looks more like what you expect from butter and sugar when mixed in this manner. (Trust me, if will happen.)
  5. Add the egg yolks and vanilla extract to the butter/sugar; blend on medium low to incorporate.
  6. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk mixture in 3 parts to the butter/sugar mixture, beating on low at first, then on medium speed after each addition until all ingredients are incorporated.
  7. Use a spatula to folk in the beaten egg whites gently, until no obvious large bits of egg white remain. (Don’t stir, just fold.)
  8. Pour the batter into prepared pan and bake approximately 30 minutes, until edges of cake are golden brown and begin to pull away from the sides of the pan slightly.
  9. The cake may appear to sink just a bit in the center, but not a great deal. It will be more even and flat on top than domed.
  10. Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool while you make the icing, if using (or proceed as you wish with your cake, it is delicious on its own!).

GF DF Gooey -Butter- Cake pouring icing

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