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Amazing Paleo Chocolate Cake (gluten-free, dairy-free)

This paleo chocolate cake recipe is fluffy, light and airy. It’s also unbelievably decadent, rich and moist. It’s the perfect dessert or birthday cake and has quickly become a reader favorite.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

I’m not one to use superfluous words in my recipe titles unless something is truly extraordinary. Case in point: this amazing paleo chocolate cake. And yes, it really is amazing.

So much so, that I even debated leaving off the word “paleo.” Because I think you could offer up this chocolate cake recipe to someone who eats gluten and grains and they’d have no idea that it was gluten-free, grain-free and dairy-free. You guys, it’s incredibly delicious!

Unlike most paleo cake recipes, this version is light and airy while still moist and spongy. I mean, just look at those crumbs. There’s the perfect amount of air pockets in the cake yet it holds together like a real deal chocolate cake. But it’s a paleo chocolate cake.

Watch this video of my Paleo Chocolate Cake recipe:

 And subscribe to my YouTube Channel for weekly cooking videos!

It’s also the perfect way to kick-off my birthday month – with a deliciously decadent chocolate birthday cake.

Now, it’s a birthday tradition of mine to always have a mint chocolate something on my actual birthday. Last year I made these Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream. But it’s quite involved. So I’m thinking something slightly easier this year. My birthday is the last day of the month, so I’ve still got a few weeks.

Until then, you’ve got this paleo chocolate cake to enjoy. And trust me, you will. I even whipped up a video (above), so make sure to watch that.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

It’s taken me several years to perfect my paleo baking and I think I’ve finally got it nailed. But I’m sure many of you will have questions regarding the ingredients, so let’s dive into those.

  • Are all three flours (almond, tapioca and coconut) necessary? Yes. For some reason, most paleo cake recipes only use almond flour or coconut flour. But I find those results less than stellar (i.e. dense and dry). If you think about it, gluten-free flour blends are always a combination of flours to achieve the right texture. Paleo baking should be no different. And this triumvirate of flours (my signature blend) is what I use on many of my recipes, including my reader favorite Paleo Pancakes.
  • Why is each flour important? Almond flour is the main nut flour providing most of the bulk. Tapioca flour provides the light, airy, fluffiness. And the coconut flour provides structure to the cake.
  • Can I swap honey or maple for the coconut sugar? Unfortunately no. The coconut sugar crystals are what helps to provide all those mini air pockets that make this cake so delicious. Honey or maple syrup would create a much more dense cake.
  • Why do you add espresso powder? To make this cake unbelievably rich and decadent. The espresso powder doesn’t make the cake taste like coffee or even mocha. In fact, you don’t taste it at all. But what you do taste is a depth of chocolate flavor that makes you go, “wow!” To give you an analogy, vanilla extract is added to most baked goods to enhance the flavor. Well, that’s what espresso powder does here. It takes this paleo chocolate cake recipe to the next level.
  • Can I use almond milk instead of coconut milk? You can, but it likely won’t be as moist. Full-fat coconut milk is thick and adds necessary fat, on par with dairy milk or buttermilk.
  • Why do you add vinegar? Well, speaking of buttermilk (which is frequently used in traditional cake recipes), my version of buttermilk is coconut milk plus vinegar. Voila! The vinegar also creates a chemical reaction with the baking soda, a la baking powder-style, to create fluffiness in the cake.

Hopefully that answers some of your questions, but if you have more, please feel free to ask them below in the comments.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

Now, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that the chocolate buttercream frosting is equally impressive. Like lick the bowl impressive. It’s also vegan, dairy-free and paleo, depending on how you make it.

I’ve separated that recipe into it’s own post, so that you can easily search for it and use on other cake or cupcake recipes in the future.

But together, I’m not kidding when I say that this is by far the best paleo chocolate cake recipe out there. It may even be the best chocolate cake recipe. Period. Serve it up with a cold glass of my Homemade Cashew Milk and you’ll be in heaven. Or serve leftovers up for breakfast (umm, I did) along with a glass of Chemex Coffee or Cold Brew Coffee.

Other gluten-free and paleo chocolate recipes you might like are my Flourless Chocolate Cake (also nut-free!), Chocolate Mug Cake, Paleo Chocolate Waffles, Chocolate Truffle Tart, Chocolate Avocado Pudding, Molten Chocolate Cake and Paleo Brownies. And if you’re looking for a non-chocolate cake recipe, I highly recommend my Gluten-Free Carrot Cake (that’s also paleo-ish).


(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free) This paleo chocolate cake recipe is unbelievably rich, decadent and moist. It's the perfect chocolate birthday cake.

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Amazing Paleo Chocolate Cake (gluten-free, dairy-free)

This paleo chocolate cake recipe is fluffy, light and airy. It’s also unbelievably decadent, rich and moist. Once you make it, you’ll see why it quickly became a reader favorite!


cake dry ingredients

  • 3 cups almond flour
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 2 cups coconut sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups raw cacao powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp espresso powder
  • 1 tsp salt

cake wet ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

chocolate frosting


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Grease three 8-inch cake pans and line the bottom with parchment paper. I prefer to grease my pans with ghee or organic palm shortening as coconut oil can leave a slight coconut taste. Set these aside.
  3. Add all of the dry ingredients to a very large mixing bowl and whisk together.
  4. Add all of the wet ingredients to a separate medium mixing bowl and whisk together. Then, pour the wet ingredients into the dry and whisk together for 1-2 minutes to create your cake batter.
  5. Evenly divide the batter between the three baking pans and cook for 28-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Once the cake has completely cooled, assemble the cake by adding the chocolate buttercream frosting between each layer and frosting the outside.

Lisa's Tips

My baking time of 28-30 minutes is based on a standard oven. I’d recommend checking the cakes earlier, at 23-24 minutes if your oven tends to cook fast or if you’re using a convection oven.

You can also use two 9-inch cake pans for a two-layer cake (the layers will be thicker). Bake them for approximately 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Remember to make sure your cake is 100% cool before frosting. Even the slightest amount of internal heat in the layers will cause the frosting to melt.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 1 chocolate cake with frosting, Serving Size: 1 slice (16 slices in cake)

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 749.9
  • Total Fat: 36.9g
  • Saturated Fat: 16.5g
  • Cholesterol: 46.5mg
  • Sodium: 335.2mg
  • Carbohydrates: 103g
  • Fiber: 5.2g
  • Sugar: 83.9g
  • Protein: 8.8g
All images and text ©Lisa Bryan for Downshiftology

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698 comments on “Amazing Paleo Chocolate Cake (gluten-free, dairy-free)”

  1. turns out i forgot to add coconut milk to the wet ingredients.. batter looked awesome, tasted awesome and cake turned out awesome! everyone loved it, even my BIL (7yo) who said ‘i don’t want dark chocolate cake! mom, can you get me a dairy queen cake?’ when he saw it 😅 i used frosting made of creamy coconut milk and chocolate. crazy that it worked! i’ll try again next week and will remember the coconut milk! 😁 

    what kind of coconut milk do you use? canned? both liquid and solid part?

  2. Omg, this was delish! Made it for Easter brunch, I’m gluten free and my friend is dairy free so this was a perfect dessert for all of us. All my non gf friends loved the cake, can’t believe how moist it was. I baked it in a bunt pan for longer and it turned out great!!

  3. Made this cake today as a Bundt cake just came out of the oven and hope it tastes as good as it looks.
    Will serve tonight with coconut milk salted caramel.
    I did replace the 2 cups of coconut sugar with 1 cup Swerve.

    • Wonderful! I’m thrilled you loved the recipe Irene. And thanks for sharing your substitutions as well. I’m sure that will be helpful for others. :)

      • I should say I did bake for 55 minutes at 350 for a bundt. I did make half the recipe last week and it was fantastic.
        I made your carrot cake also ( subbed the sugar for Swerve) and it was amazing.

      • Thanks for the details! And I’m happy you loved the carrot cake as well. That’s my personal favorite for this time of year. :)

  4. Best paleo chocolate cake ever!!!

  5. This cake is amazing… I baked two 8″ layers and one 6″ layer. The 6″ (for testing) was eaten before it had a chance to cool off! no frosting, no nothing…YUM ;o)

  6. Can I make the cake part 2 days in advance? How many days do you think it would still taste fresh?

  7. Hi, I was looking at making this and I was wondering if the flour ratios have to be exact? I use a store bought GF flour with success on most of my other GF recipes but I don’t know the proportions of the flours in it. Also it uses cornstarch instead of almond, would that make much of a difference?

    My kiddo turns 8 in a week and we have both Celiac and lactose intolerant guests coming so this seems like it’d be the best solution. Do you have a pipable plain buttercream icing or could the chocolate one handle colourings/substituting essences for the cocoa?

    • Hi Chris – I did tweak the ratios on several attempts to get the cake to turn out, so not sure how a GF flour blend may work. But it’s worth giving it a try! I don’t have a plain buttercream recipe but you can find many online. Just make sure to use vegetable shortening instead of butter to keep it dairy-free. And the buttercream should be fine with any colorings and essences. :)

  8. Hello – do you have a coconut cake version of this? (I will still use the vegan chocolate frosting) Looks so delicious!!

    • Hi Gemma – We don’t currently have a coconut version of this cake, unfortunately. We are working on a vanilla or white version of this cake, but this may still make some time to develop, so stand by. :)

  9. Hi there – can the measurements be halved to make a smaller cake? Trying to taste test a few cakes for my dad’s getting cake but don’t want to make a full cake. Thanks!

    • Hi Katelyn – Yes, the paleo chocolate cake is pretty versatile and can be cut in half or also baked as cupcakes. :)

  10. This recipe is amazing! I’ve tried a few other paleo cake recipes but the three different flours really make the texture of this cake stand out. The only adjustment I make is to use cold coffee in place of the water called for in the recipe. I’m planning to make this cake again tomorrow for my partner’s 40th birthday – it will be our second (maybe third?) year in a row celebrating his birthday with this cake and I love our new tasty tradition!

    • Hi Kate – Thank you for the kind words and I’m so happy you and your partner love this cake! Also, adding the coffee in place of the water is a great idea. I’ll have to try it sometime! :)

  11. Thank you for all your hard work. This looks amazing. Tapioca starch could sub for Tapioca Flour right?

    • Thanks for your find words! Yes, tapicoa starch and tapioca flour are actually the same thing. :)

  12. I often look for gluten and dairy free healthy recipes. I’ve opened many links that are listed as such to be dismayed. Since this contains dairy, can a substitute of either flaxseed or chia be used instead of eggs?

    • Hi Tea – This paleo chocolate cake is dairy-free. Dairy comes from the mammary glands of animals like cows, sheep, goats etc. Eggs wouldn’t fall into this category. However, if you have an egg sensitivity, you could try a flaxseed or chia seed substitute but I’ve personally never tried it for this recipe.

  13. I love your insight on the different gluten-free flours to use, However I would like to make the cake completely dairy free. What can I use to replace the four eggs, if possible?

    • Hi Amy – the cake is dairy-free as eggs are not dairy. Dairy is from the mammary glands of cows, goats and sheep and produces milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. Eggs are from chickens, which don’t have mammary glands.

  14. Very appetizing cake. I would like to repeat it. Tell me, how does a cup differ from a glass?

  15. My comment didn’t show up so, I’m sorry if this is a duplicate.

    Can you do this as a 3 layer cake using 6 inch pans? If so, any idea on baking time? Also, have you been able to figure the recipe using weight vs. cups etc.?

  16. Hi! Can this be done as 3 layers using 6 inch pans? If so, any idea on baking time? Also, have you been able to figure the recipe using weight vs. cups, etc.? I’m doing this as cute rainbow cake for a 4 year old’s birthday:)

    • HiChristina – That will probably work, they’ll just be thicker and need a little more time to bake. And I haven’t converted this to grams, but you could use an online calculator to do the conversion. :) Hope your rainbow cake turns out fab!

  17. Hi Lisa, 
    I was wondering how I could make this a vanilla cake? Looks so delicious making the chocolate one for my sons bday but want a vanilla version for my daughters bday that is soon after. 


    • Hi Kathleen – unfortunately, it’s not an easy conversion to a vanilla cake (I’ve tried and failed). But I’m still working on it! I hope to have a white version sometime soon! :)

      • Do you think that could have something to do with the ommission of the cocoa powder?
        Instead of vanilla, do you think that if you replace the cocoa powder with something like freeze dried fruit powder it could turn out? 🤔

      • Hmmm that’s not something I’ve tried. If it does work though, because the recipe has coconut sugar which is darker in color than refined white sugar, the cake will come out brown even if you’re trying to go for that true vanilla white cake look.

  18. This is my first time baking and the cake didn’t rise.  I noticed I made the mistake of using baking powder instead of baking soda, would that be the reason?

    • Hmmm, the baking powder would have actually made it rise more than the baking soda. You may want to double check the ingredients, ratios, and oven temperature.

    • Did you mix the vinegar and other wet ingredients first before adding to dry? This step is important.

  19. Hi! I accidentally just doubled the amount of coconut flour in the recipe! Any suggestions?

    • Ahhh, bummer! You would likely need to add more liquid to counter balance as coconut flour is highly absorbent. Hopefully you were able to salvage it, Mandy!

  20. I want to make this cake so badly for my nephew but he has a nut allergy. Do you have any suggestions on which flour to substitute ? 
    Thank you. 

    • Unfortunately, this cake would be hard to replicate without any nut flours. I’d recommend looking at some of my nut-free recipes (you can search on the recipe index) instead. :)

  21. Hi! I just mixed all of the dry ingredients so that I can mix in the wet ingredients tomorrow to bake this beautiful cake.  Then I just realized that I accidentally added 2 tsp of BAKING POWDER instead of baking soda. Yikes! Do you think it would still come out the same consistency or would you recommend that I start over with the dry ingredients? Thanks in adavance:)

  22. Can I just cut the recipe by 1/3 to make a two layer cake? And can I substitute granulated sugar for coconut sugar? 
    Thank you!!

    • Hi Erin – yes, you can divide the cake by half or a third. And no problem on the substitution as well. Just keep in mind that granulated sugar tastes quite a bit sweeter than coconut sugar, so you might want to reduce the amount a smidge. :)

      • Thank you so much. I ended up finding coconut sugar so I’m going to try half and half. :)

      • Ok I made it!! I will say, I won’t cut the recipe by 1/3 again (trying to calculate 2/3 of 4 eggs was a little goofy) only because it took so much time to try and be precise.  But it came out AMAZING!!!! My father in law is gluten and dairy free and this was for his birthday. The whole family raved over it. This is our new go-to. So grateful I found this! Thank you!

      • Yay! I’m so happy you loved the recipe. And yes, I’m sure its much easier to make the whole cake! :)

  23. Hi Lisa,
    It was my first time baking a whole real cake and I attempted it for my sister’s birthday. It was amazing and everyone compliment the cake, even with the non paleo/GF dieters. I ll be confident in making this again and again for future parties. Thank you Lisa, and btw loveee all your other recipes.

  24. Hi Lisa,

    Can I replace the coconut and tapioca flours with cassava flour?  Thanks.

  25. Silly question but do you melt the coconut oil or leave it room temperature? Thanks!

  26. What brand of powdered coconut sugar do you use? Can’t seem to find it online?

  27. Hello Lisa,
    I need to bake a (requested) rectangular cake for an event this Saturday.( I just found your recipe.)
    I know that the size of the cake pan can make a difference. Would a doubled recipe in an 11’x15″ cake pan have too much density in the middle, in your estimation? In other words, would the edges get done before the middle? If so, would a single recipe in a 9X12 pan be too small, so the batter would be too deep to bake and raise properly? ( If okay, I would then bake 2 and put them together. ) Obviously this is a fairly costly cake to make, so I don’t want to fail. Thanks so much!

  28. Can you please confirm the oven temperature as I am in Australia and have a normal oven that is not fan forced? Thank-you :)

  29. This was the best chocolate cake I’ve ever had. All my dinner guests couldn’t believe it was a paleo cake. It was super moist, very chocolately and had great texture (not crumbly or oily and dense like other gluten free versions I’ve tried). I’d like to make a marble cake with this batter but don’t see a recipe for vanilla cake on your website. Do you have one or a suggestion on how to make it? This chocolate cake is a game-changer for those of us embracing a grain-free lifestyle but still want delicious cake on our birthday!! Thank you so much for this recipe.

  30. These are the best cupcakes I’ve ever had, let alone made. I’m not even gluten free nor do I have dietary restrictions. Hands down just delicious as the recipe calls for. Highly recommend. 

  31. Looks amazing!

  32. Hello Lisa, we share a birthday, but I’m much older. My two daughters and one grandson and son in law are all gluten-free people and they are soooo much better off for that. So I need to jack myself up and have gluten free recipes in my repertoire. The gluten free box cakes don’t  do the trick. Too much sugar!!!! I am going to try your beautiful cake and surprise the family. I love the idea of celebrating all of the month of August. And another snap, I love chocolate mint anything!!!!!!! ❤️🐞❤️

    • Wonderful! It’s always fun to find a birthday twin! And yes, celebrating for the entire month is highly recommended. Haha. I hope you and your family enjoy this chocolate cake recipe Clarice. :)

  33. Hi, I just wanted to say a huge thank you for this recipe. I have an illness that makes me more and more sensitive to many different foods, to the point where I no longer get enjoyment from eating and it can in fact strike fear in me. Cake used to be one of my life essentials, I was the one that was asked to bake everyone’s birthday cakes. That changed when I developed a sensitivity to grains. Such a simple thing as finding a cake recipe that allows me to enjoy something I had given up on is such a simple joy. And what a cake this is. Even my Dad who isn’t a cake fan likes this. I think even if I could eat grains this would still be my favourite cake recipe. So thank you for giving me back one of life’s pleasures!!

  34. Hi, I made this cake for the first time 2 weeks ago and we all loved it, it’s so moisture and tasty! Thank you very much!

  35. I have made this cake many times as written. It comes out delish, but it does have a light coconut taste, which is not everyone’s cup of tea.
    I just tried a version of this, which basically “de-paleoizes” the recipe but it came out amazing: I replaced the coconut milk with regular milk, the coconut sugar with regular sugar, and the coconut oil with butter. OH MY GOD. Best cake I have ever made! 

  36. I have not baked this so I can’t comment on the actual cake. But I really would love to bake it. I am curious though as to how much it would cost to make.  The ingredients seem fairly expensive so I am afraid of making it and having an epic fail. 

    • The price of ingredients will vary depending on where you live. But with more than 600 positive reviews on this recipe I don’t think you have to worry about it not turning out. ;)

  37. The flavor of this cake is amazing! I made it for my daughter’s 28th bday and everyone wanted the recipe especially when they knew it was gluten free. I didn’t make the frosting but topped each piece with fresh whipped cream. I used a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. I did make 2 mistakes but the cake came out perfectly, regardless. I used coconut cream instead of the milk and I completely forgot to add the coconut oil. But since the cream is richer than the milk, I think it compensated. It was rich and so moist! Thank you for a great recipe! It’s a keeper! :-) 

  38. Can you use xylitol instead of coconut sugar?

  39. This is truly an incredible cake!  I had been struggling with finding something delicious to bake for special occasions for my family who are a mixture of dairy and gluten intolerant and the rest of us. 😊. I had been making two different desserts but no more!  Without exception all 11 of us loved the cake and no one believed it had no gluten nor dairy. My 90 year old Mom who is an incredible baker said it was the best chocolate cake she has ever had!   It’s moist and fluffy and just about perfect. I made it in a bundt pan which I had sprayed with olive oil and baked for about 35 minutes. I checked every two minutes from 30 mins on. I cut it in half so had two layers and made half the icing which was plenty to ice the middle, the top and the sides. Definitely a keeper. Good job! 

  40. How long can I keep the unfrosted cake in the fridge? Then I will frost it 1 day before, is it ok? Thanks

  41. Hi Lisa,
    Thanks for this beautiful cake recipe. Just a question if you wouldn’t mind- I made it for dads birthday and it tasted beautiful but the layers were quite flat with no air or crumb texture as it shows in your photos. Do you know what I could do?
    Also if I was to use normal white sugar in the cake how much would you recommend?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Emilia – unfortunately I don’t know what might have contributed to your flater layers, without watching you make it. :) Perhaps watch the video again above and see if you can pinpoint something that you did differently. For the sugar, I’d recommend a bit less white sugar as it’s sweeter than coconut sugar.

  42. This isn’t close to paleo. It is loaded with sugar and starch (tapioca flour). It is certainly healthier and allergy friendly but the title is very misleading!!!! 

    • The term paleo indicates that the recipe is free of gluten, grains, dairy, legumes and refined sugar, which this is. Paleo does not mean without sugar or starch. I think you’re confusing it with a low carb or keto diet.

    • You really should know what your talking about before you comment.   Research paleo.  Maple syrup, agave, honey, and coconut palm sugar are all paleo.  Keto and paleo are not the same thing.  

  43. I made this unbelievably delicious decadent rich tasting 3 layer chocolate cake for my pre birthday dinner dessert last night. My actual birthday is February 19th.
    You certainly did perfect it,!
    I used  2 8 inch and I 9 inch heart shape pans (I didn’t have 3 8 inch pans) .
    I took the 9 inch pan out of the oven aout 5 minutes earlier.
    For the layers I made a chocalate filling from avocados, cocoa, honey, maple syrup, vanilla, titch of salt and full fat coconut milk.
    It was thick which I wanted and I spread it between the layers. The 9 inch cake was just a tad bigger but it was fine. I could have trimmed it but opted out!
    I decided on a drizzle sort of chocolate ganache type frosting for the entire cake.
     I used your icing sugar combo of coconut and organic cane sugars, cocoa, coconut milk, a bit of avocado oil, ( I didn’t want too much of a coconut flavour) a titch of salt and vanilla.
    I put all those ingredients (eyeballed them) in my Vitamix and voila a very glossy yummy concoction resulted.
    I litterly poured right from the Vitamix Vessel over the cake letting it do its thing!
    A thing it certainly did!
    I called the cake “Chocolate Explosion”!
    My entire family (too bad our baby granddaughter is too young to indulge lol)  said OMG and then some when placing the first few  forkfuls into their mouths!  I did too!
    I love your site (videos)!

  44. Delicious!  I made the cake and the buttercream frosting. The cake is delicious. The buttercream frosting was good, but has flaws. It’s soft and runs off the cake if left at room temperature, but it tastes pretty good and was very pretty. I took it to a Valentines dinner party and everyone who would eat chocolate loved it. I’m on a food program with almost no sugar so had to scrape the frosting off my serving, which was ok because the cake is moist and flavorful. 

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the cake recipe Kathryn! And as the frosting is a traditional buttercream (with shortening as the fat) any temps that would melt shortening would definitely soften the frosting. In warmer climates I’d definitely recommend refrigerating it until needed. :)

  45. Hi
    This looks to be amazing recipe. Please suggest alternative tot try this cake without eggs.
    Also can we half the ingredients I am trying for first time.
    Can almond be powdered at home and used in place of almond meal?

  46. Hi can I replace almond Fluor with any other flour.. I just found out I can’t eat dairy or gluten and my husband is allergic to nuts.. this is so hard to get used to cooking like this as I am very new to this so any advice helps thnx

  47. One of THE best cakes. EVER! I just made it again, this time for our teachers at my son’s school, for Valentine’s Day….halved the recipe (successfully with 2 flax eggs!) and made as cupcakes. I beat some raspberry preserves in with the frosting. SO delicious!!

    • I’m so happy you love the recipe Susannah and thanks so much what you used for an egg replacer. I know many want to know that! And wow – raspberry preserves in the frosting sounds amazing! I’ll have to do that myself next time. ;) x

  48. Hello-
    Thank you for creating such a wonderful recipe. I’d like to use this recipe for a sheet cake. Do you know what dimension of a pan is best? How tall should the batter be before it bakes?
    Thank you

  49. I was wondering if it would be possible to give me ingredient measurements in weight please?

  50. Could I substitute the coconut sugar for maple syrup or honey? Or do you feel that would make the cake too liquidy?

  51. Have you used this recipe to make cupcakes?

  52. This chocolate cake is truly decadent and scrumptious! Can’t believe it’s paleo. I have baked it quite a number of times now. Every time I bring it somewhere, it just disappears. People hear that it’s paleo and they ask me what’s in it…….So funny how fast they run for a piece (or two). Thanks for sharing this recipe with us all !

  53. Oh. My. Gosh. This is probably the best chocolate cupcake I’ve ever eaten! I halved the recipe and made cupcakes, and I wish I could attach a picture here (not in IG) so everyone could see how MOIST this was. Literally, in just a cupcake you could see the layers of…perfect wetness? (I really don’t know another word to describe it!) and density of this recipe! Bravo to Lisa for coming up with this-it was the perfect reward to celebrate the end of my whole30!

    For anyone in the high altitude parts of the country- I did 375 for 19-20 minutes for 12 cupcakes and they were perfection. I didn’t have espresso powder so I did 1 tbsp of cold brewed coffee I had leftover (I halved the entire recipe above)

  54. Would this recipe work if I substituted monk fruit for the sugar? I’m trying to limit sugar/honey/maple syrup. In baking, I prefer monk fruit over stevia as stevia has a bit of an after taste.


    • I haven’t personally tried it, but I think it should still work fine. If you try it, let me know how it turns out! :)

    • Hi Rochelle, I made this recently and subbed 2/3 the total sugar for plain full fat yogurt and it was absolutely amazing! Not sure how it would work if you needed to take all sugar out, but this made it at least pretty low sugar (except that it was so good that I didn’t stop at one piece… :) ). I also made a buttercream with 1 c butter to 1/3 c powdered sugar (which is equivalent to 1/6 c regular sugar) and it tasted great to me (I’m used to eating lower sugar but my husband also likes it at least pretty well)!

  55. HI there! Is the coconut milk unsweetened or sweetened?

  56. Will the cake hold for 2 days? I’m baking it on Friday night but won’t be serving it until Sunday night :(

  57. My husband and I are paleo and his birthday is coming up. I’d like to try this but he has an almond allergy. Do you have an substitution recommendations?
    Definitely going to be trying the icing recipe.

  58. I didn’t look back at all the questions but has anyone tried this cake in a bundt pan?? Does it do ok as a bundt?

  59. WOW! This cake exceeded my expectations and was delicious. I halved the recipe and just made one layer. It was moist and light. I will definitely make it again. My husband and I enjoyed it very much for his birthday.

    Rating: 5
  60. Have made this recipe successfully twice. I halved the quantities and just made a single layer round cake.
    For the sake of other readers, I used Orgran Egg Replacer both times and it was fine. The cake was fudgey in texture like a flourless cake, not light and airy, probably due to not using real eggs. But it held together just fine, and was delicious, which is the main thing!
    Also, the second time I made it I used half the required amount of baking soda and half baking powder as I could taste the baking soda aftertaste the first time.
    Thanks for a great recipe!!

  61. I’ve made this cake more times than I can count now! It’s requested at every birthday and although I’m not a huge chocolate lover (I know, gasp) I always have a slice. I’d love a white/vanilla cake. Do you have one or is there a way to make this one white?

    Rating: 5
  62. I am going to try this for my boyfriend birthday

    Rating: 5
  63. Very moist! Was going to do the frosting but as soon as it cooled the family couldn’t wait. So instead, I just sprinkled powdered sugar on the top and it was great! Thank you

    Rating: 5
  64. This is the best cake I’ve ever eaten, and is definitely the best dessert I’ve ever made. I’ve been all over the food allergy map: dairy free and gluten free to paleo then keto, and now I’m back to just gluten free. This cake still wins best cake ever in my book! And I’m not all that into cake! This, however, I could eat every day. Thank you for this!

    Rating: 5
  65. Amazing cake! Had it made for my birthday and it tastes like my childhood dream cakes, thankyou so much for the recipe and the explanation! 

    Rating: 5
  66. This cake is amazing!I’ve made it numerous times now, and I sub out ingredients to suit us and it’s perfect every single time!I’ve subbed tapioca for arrowroot and it makes no difference.The coconut oil I sub for extra virgin olive oil, because I can’t be bothered melting coconut oil *shrug* Instead of coconut milk, I use water.And sometimes, I use cocoa instead of cacao depending on whether or not I can find the cacao in that mess which is my pantry!I do the three layers and spread St Dalfours raspberry jam in between the layers. Ermahgerddd it’s such a great cake. Everyone always loves it, so much so I’m making it again today for a New Years get together I’ve loved all your recipes thus far, thanks so much!

    Rating: 5
  67. Made this for Christmas! It turned out great! So moist and not so sweet! I am not a dessert person but even I couldn’t stop eating it. All the family was amazed when they found out that it was paleo! This is a keeper! 

    Rating: 5
  68. Absolutely delicious.  Everyone at our Christmas table was amazed that this decadent dessert was free of gluten, and dairy, and soy.  Made it for my daughter, but everyone loved it.  Thanks…..

    Rating: 5
  69. What can I substitute for eggs as I am allergic to eggs too

  70. This was a big hit at our early Christmas party. Hard to believe it has no refined flour or sugar! My husband is dairy and gluten intolerant so I am learning to bake differently.  Best chocolate cake ever!  And a super easy to follow recipe. Don’t skimp out on the vegan frosting either!  Got all my ingredients on Thrive market for much less BTW!!

    Rating: 5
  71. I’ve made this for two Birthday’s and now Christmas. Only a few of us are grain free but we all agree that it is the best cake (especially the frosting!) that we’ve ever had. Take the time to make the coconut powdered sugar, it makes the frosting have the most wonderful caramel chocolate flavor! 

    Rating: 5
  72. Is there a substitute for the coconut oil?  I’m concerned about the level of saturated fat. All the best. 

  73. Hello,

    I cannot have any nut flour as I am on the Aip regiment.  Can you tell me if I can substitute cassava flour for the almond?  

    Thank you

  74. This cake was so delicious and easy. Hands down the best paleo cake that I have made. It turned out beautifully and everyone enjoyed it.

    Rating: 5
  75. Amazing cake! Even people who have no dietary restrictions loved it!

    Rating: 5
  76. Have you ever substituted the vanilla extract for peppermint extract when making this cake? I am wondering if that will give it a mint flavor or if I should use both the vanilla extract and also the peppermint extract? I have had a request to make a choc mint cake this year.

  77. Do you have any replacement recommendations for an egg allergy?

  78. This cake is excellent.  I made another Paleo chocolate cake that had high ratings but it was dry and flat.  This cake is moist and delicious.  I added chopped hazelnuts to the filling to give it a Nutella-like flavor and it was great.

    Rating: 5
  79. I tried to send my email but it didn’t work.

  80. I’d love to make this for my daughters birthday but she has tree nut  allergies . Is there any substitute for the almond four? 

  81. This has become my go-to birthday cake recipe for the second year in a row and it is a treat I look forward to immensely! In my mind, you’ve perfected it and there’s no reason to bother with any other gluten free chocolate cakes out there! With the vegan buttercream frosting it is out of this world delicious! I never thought I would enjoy a gluten-free treat so much. This year I halved the cake recipe to just a single layer and saved some of the extra frosting which I just used to top off a slice of your banana bread that I baked earlier today. Thank you for providing treat options to rival their gluten-filled counterparts to those of us who avoid gluten and dairy! I wish I had found your site sooner!

    Rating: 5
  82. So I over-baked my own birthday cake. The edges are hard. I kept checking the cakes (used two round pans) but the toothpick NEVER came out clean. They must’ve been in there almost 45 minutes to an hour! I don’t understand what I did wrong. I triple-checked the ingredients and ratio. I didn’t know if I was supposed to pack in almond flour to the batter as it’s kind of puffy, and I tried to strain the dry ingredients through a mesh sieve because the almond flour and cocoa powder were lumpy. Otherwise, I followed the recipe to the letter. Normally regular chocolate cake cooks fast. but for some weird reason this took forever. I must’ve checked the cakes 15 times.That’s an awful lot of powdered sugar for the frosting. I made the powdered sugar with coconut sugar and tapioca flour in the Vitamix my first time out, one cup at a time, but the granules already scratched the mixer.

    Rating: 2
    • Sorry to hear this recipe didn’t work out for you Carol! It definitely sounds like you over-baked them and I don’t know why your toothpick didn’t come out clean. Next time I’d just bake them for the recommended time of 28-30 minutes. :)

  83. I was confused whether you meant coconut oil solid but softened or melt it then cool for the batter.

    Rating: 4
  84. Do you know the nutritional information without the frosting? 

  85. Am I reading it correctly … are there really 83 grams of sugar in each slice?

  86. Hi there!  I baked this for fun when I had a girlfriend over for dinner and we were both blown away.  What an incredibly delicious cake!!!  Neither of us could believe this was dairy- and gluten-free!  I cant imagine ever wanting to bake any other chocolate cake.  and the buttercream was divine.  Wow.  I can’t wait to make this again!!  Thank you so much for the recipe!

    Rating: 5
  87. My daughter can’t have sugar. Is coconut sugar really sugar?

  88. After cooking the cake do I need to put it on the refrigerate or can I leave out over night?

    Rating: 5
  89. This is the best cake ever!!! I have tried so many other recipes only to be disappointed. No one can tell it is gluten and dairy free. Thank you for this great recipe!!!

    Rating: 5
  90. I just want to say thank you. I had a best friend’s birthday coming up and she said she made her own cake last year. I couldn’t let that happen again. The only issue was her family has a combination of allergies including corn, dairy, eggs, and gluten. I found your recipe and read all the reviews, the only thing I changed was using egg replacers.This is the first cake I have made in over a decade, so I was nervous. It was actually really easy and I always appreciate videos, since I am very visual.I made two layers, since I had to borrow pans from my mom and she only had two 9″ springforms. It took exactly 33 minutes in my regular oven.I am not a chocolate lover, so I can’t be an expert on this compared to everyone else. I thought it was super moist, even after I refrigerator it for two days before icing. The frosting was very good, not too sweet like others.Everyone loved the cake! One boy even threw the fork down and said he was going to “go to town”!So needless to say, thank you for making everyone’s day!

    Rating: 5
    • I’m so happy you enjoyed it Audra! Do you mind sharing what egg replacers you used? I know that’s always a top question with this recipe. Thanks!

      • I purchased the Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer, the one in the yellow/orange pouch. I made it exactly as written on back, it took a few to get the lumps out since I don’t have a stand mixer. I just used a wisk and fork. I figured I would loose half of it on the electric beaters. Very strange to say “I have to make the eggs”.

        Everyone raved about the cake so much, I want to make it again for my mom. She is always complaining that anything gluten free is too dense and tastes funny. So we will see if I can trick her!

      • Great – thanks for all the details! And I definitely think you should try tricking your mom. ;)

  91. Hi Lisa, this cake looks amazing! I’ve read through all the comments, and I didn’t find a comment from anyone who tried this… do you think I could directly substitute soft brown sugar for the coconut sugar? It’s the only ingredient I don’t have.

  92. Hi,

    I’m super excited about trying this! I’ve got the batter all mixed and put in the pans… two questions:
    It didn’t seem like there was enough batter to fill three pans so I’ve got it in 2. Do these rise a lot?? I’m just debating whether to transfer some batter into a third pan after all.
    Also, I ran out of time to bake tonight so I’ve got the pans (with batter in them ready to bake) in the fridge overnight. Am I doomed or should that be fine? 

    • These are three thin layers and you don’t have to flatten them at all. But you could do two thick layers as well. I also wouldn’t recommend the batter sitting overnight as that affects the chemicals that help with leavening (ie – the baking powder and acids). You’ll likely end up with a less fluffy cake. But fingers crossed it still worked out for you!

  93. Hi! I would love to make this Amazing Paleo Chocolate cake for my birthday but can’t find tapioca flour in grocery stores here in The Netherlands. Do you have any possible substitute ideas?

  94. Made this for my daughter’s 4th birthday cake without having had time to do a test cake. I made it in 2 layers as I didn’t have 3 matching sized tins for a triple later. The verdict: WOW! Just the most incredible, amazing cake. Thank you SO much for this recipe. Amazing doesn’t even come close!
    My husband gives it 10/10. This will be my “go to” chocolate cake recipe from now on. You make me look good!

  95. I made this for my Grandpa’s 90th birthday party since my sister is avoiding gluten and dairy. The cake turned out really well. The texture and density were perfect. A lot of people were surprised by how good it was. My one “complaint” is that the cake tasted a lot like coconut – fine for me, but since my husband hates coconut, I ended up having to bake a second cake 😂😂. I made the cake exactly as written but for the frosting I used soy milk instead of coconut milk – I probably used about 1 cup of milk. I also didn’t have palm shortening so I used regular vegetable shortening. The frosting was thick but spreadable. I baked the cake the day before and froze in Ziploc bags overnight, thawed for about an hour, then stacked and frosted. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    Rating: 5
  96. I just made this cake for a birthday. Everyone loved it. My only problem was that the cake fell apart. Not sure if I did something wrong. We devoured it anyway. 

  97. Made for my son’s 5th bday. It was awesome! Only the frosting wasnt coming along (maybe cause I dont have the big mixer?). It was super thick stuck and i had to add a cup of warm almond milk to get it right. Frosting too sweet for my taste so will replace some sugar woth tapioca flower next time.But holy moly! Everyone loved it and didnt want to believe me it was paleo! 

    Rating: 5
  98. I made this cake before and it was absolutely wonderful and well liked by everyone. Solid recipe. Could you tell me if I can make this into a thin sheetpan cake? or cupcakes? I’m taking it to a function that is super casual and would like to be able to serve smaller portions than a slice of cake? Thank you so much for your site and dedication to offer clean recipes. Grateful.

  99. Could this recipe also be used to make cupcakes?

  100. Hi! I’m making this later today and I don’t have the full fat coconut milk – is almond milk an okay substitute?

  101. Oops forgot to hit the stars.. 5 stars!!! ❤️

    Rating: 5
  102. I made this 2 times, wanted to share about it since I varied the elements both times. First time I made full recipe, no espresso. Reduced sugar by maybe 1/3 – 1/2 cup. Baked in 9×12.75 aluminum pan for about 25 min. Delicious! Slightly more of a bittersweet chocolate taste and consistency was cakey that became more dense & brownie-like after a couple of days (I ate it while traveling out of the pan). I had a lot of batter so had refrigerated some and baked it when I came back about a week later. Added some water since the batter looked dry, and A lil more  sugar to sweeten and it came out fluffier. It was great. Baked it in a 6 cup glass Pyrex. 

    2nd time I made a 1/4 recipe. Calculated 0.375 cup portion but I didn’t have coconut milk. Instead I got out a 1/2 cup measure n estimated the 0.375 cup amount with about 1/2 plain whole milk Greek yogurt and 1/2 applesauce. Filled the cup to top w water. Added a few more spoonfuls if water to estimate a 1/4 cup of H2O. Added and extra spoonful of oil too, to make up for the fat missing from the coconut milk. No espresso this time, either. I think I used a little less than 1/2 c sugar, too.  Also delicious, and consistency was like my refrigerated batter from 1st batch :) cakey, not too dense, but solid enough for a filling meal (I’m trying to gain weight after illness and food allergy limitations) Was a lil bittersweet again tho so I’d add more sugar to use full amt of 1/2 cup or maybe less cacao. I used Navitas organic cacao. I think the coconut milk sub list sweetness but figured applesauce would’ve made up for it? Anyway it turned out great baked for 24 min in a glass 4 cup Pyrex in an old gas oven. :)

    • Thanks for sharing your tweaks and substitutions Doreen! Happy you enjoyed the recipe!

    • Have you tried making it exactly like her recipe???? The results might be even better!

      • If I’m ever organized enough to have all the ingredients in place at one time, I just might! ;) I like this recipe so much as it is, I can’t imagine it being better tho! Since posting I’ve tried it without the cacao too, and enjoyed that variation quite a bit as well. 

  103. Hi!

    Can i sub the espresso for vanilla to give the flavour more oomph?

  104. Hey there, I made this cake for my sons cake smash and it turned out wonderful! I did try a different frosting and added in jam in between, as well as fresh strawberries onto the frosting between layers. It was absolutely yum! I am planning to make it for his first birthday this coming weekend, but I have come into a problem. Which coconut milk b and did you use? I used golden star but they discontinued it for some reason at my store….so I want to try either the organic Trader Joe’s coconut milk or the cream. Would the cream be my safest bet? I have tried working with their coconut milk, but after getting the fat to separate from the liquid it becomes very hard. So unless I leave it out to come to room temperature I feel maybe coconut cream would be safe. What do you think? And I’d love to know which brand you used. I appreciate you sharing this recipe. I struggled to find a cake for his birthday and this was perfect. He ate a bunch at his cake smash haha and I didn’t feel guilty about it.

    • I’d recommend sticking to coconut milk vs coconut cream for this recipe (it will add more weight to the layers given the extra fat). And that’s fine if it separates. All of my cans do that as well. Just use a spoon to break up the hardened coconut cream and mix it all back together. I use Native Forest coconut milk:

  105. Hi there!
    This recipe looks very promising. I am vegan so is there a comparable substitute for the eggs? REALLY missing chocolate cake!!

  106. Hi there! This cake was so easy to make and batter and frosting so yum! Unfortunately it was meant to be for a bday party tonight but it’s now been cancelled and I don’t want to bake again next weekend. Do u think I can freeze it?! 🤔

    Rating: 5
  107. I made this recently and wow!!! I will not be making another cake other than this EVER! I whipped up a chocolate avocado frosting which worked a treat (instead of your recommended frosting) and we all inhaled it! I have finally found my birthday cake go-to for everyone’s birthday haha. Thanks so much! Do you mind if I share it on my IG feed? I would obviously give you the credit/tag. xx

    Rating: 5
  108. Hi! I just made this cake as a trial for my sons birthday cake. It was a little dense but very moist. Now I made adjustments so I thought I would comment because I’m always curious.I unknowingly left out the coconut oil- oops (it happens when a 3 year old is helping not so patiently). I used cocoa instead of cacao (because it’s what I have). I used garbanzo flour instead of almond (my niece is allergic to all nuts) and I used aquafaba (3tbsp per egg) as an egg substitute. I also left out the espresso.  Now to be clear. It was dense but I may have over baked it. My phone timer wasn’t cooperating of course. But it wasn’t dry. The flavor was lacking though. It was just.. bland. I don’t know if almond flour (which I love) would make that much of a difference or if cacao is that different? I think I’m going to try once more adding the oil in. The only other flour I can think of would be quinoa but i don’t like the flavor. Someone recommended toasting it, so I may try. It was a great vessel for the frosting though! I made a vegan refined sugar free frosting I found on another site out of shortening, honey, and freeze dried strawberries. If anyone has other thoughts I would love to hear them!

    Rating: 4
    • Unfortunately when you make that many substitutions to the recipe it’s no longer the original recipe, but something entirely different. Garbanzo flour cooks completely different to almond flour and has a different texture as well, which is why your version was likely more dense (in addition to leaving out the coconut oil, the espresso and replacing the eggs with aquafaba). Those are all MAJOR changes and baking is an exact science. I can assure you this recipe is not bland when it’s made as directed. That’s why there’s nearly 500 comments with people raving about this recipe as the best paleo chocolate cake recipe. ;)

  109. I made the bundt cake yesterday for my daughter’s birthday party. I skipped the espresso powder because most of my guests were kids who don’t need extra zip. 😉 I cooked it for 50 minutes because of the pan I used. I made a simple glaze of melted dark chocolate chips and coconut oil. It turned out better than I imagined it would!!! Very very delicious!!! Thank you for the amazing recipe!!

    Rating: 5
    • Yay! Happy to hear that Meredith! And thanks for sharing how long you cooked the cake in the bundt pan. I know many have asked that questions in the comments below. Glad you enjoyed the recipe and hope your daughter’s party was wonderful! :) x

  110. Hi Lisa,
    I would like to try baking this cake for my 12 year old’s birthday party. Will it be big enough for 10 children plus a few adults? Also, would you recommend baking this cake the morning of (party at 1pm) or the day before? If the day before, how best to store it? Sorry I’m not much of a baker and it’s the first birthday cake I will bake!

  111. It’s not vegan if you use eggs

  112. Hi there, how robust is this cake once cool? i need to make a large, 13 x 13 inch cake and want to make sure it doesn’t break coming out of the tin. Will it hold ok?

  113. Hi there,I used this recipe for my sons birthday cake and it was amazing! I feel it is a fail safe delicious recipe. My question is…….. It’s my daughters birthday coming up and she wants a rainbow cake. All the recipes I have found just don’t seem like a guarantee that they will turn out and have the correct density. Is there something I could use instead of the cocoa that won’t compromise the cake? I have natural food colours but they won’t show through the cocoa. I really appreciate any suggestion 😊

    Rating: 5
  114. Hi Lisa ;
    Can I use a gluten free pastry flour instead of the flour mix.
    If yes what is the quantity to be used .

  115. My Whole Foods didn’t have espresso powder so I made this without. Still came out great. I just ordered the espresso powder on amazon so I can’t wait to try this again. I don’t have an electric mixer so wasn’t able to make the frosting, but I still enjoyed the cake. Seems like a lot of sugar? Any alternatives to that?

    Rating: 5
    • Glad you enjoyed the recipe Claudia! And yes, there is quite a bit of sugar in this recipe. It’s definitely a dessert splurge. ;) Some have played around with sugar alternatives (in the comments below), but as I haven’t yet, I’m not exactly sure which would work best.

  116. This was the best cake I’ve ever baked and eaten. Thank you for the recipe. It was moist and delicious. I think I will cut back on the sugar next time on the frosting. It was a bit sweet for me. But overall the cake is to die for. Better than any Gluten Cake out there!

    Rating: 5
  117. Hello! Great recipe! Do you think I can use decaf instant coffee instead of espresso powder? Or should I just not add anything? I can’t eat caffeine. Thank you!

  118. I only made half the recipe because I didn’t want a tall cake. It was delicious! I sprinkled slivered almonds between the two layers and they added a nice crunch to the cake. Most and chocolatety! (Used Hershey special dark cocoa… added a couple more tbsp to make the icing rich, not sweet) 

    Rating: 5
  119. Hi, is there any substitute you’d recommend for the almond flour as I cannot use this?!

  120. awesome food blog you have placed here. I have read it and it was really nice and informative. Thanks for placing it here. I have bookmark this site for future visit. Your content was really resourceful reached. Thanks for such a nice creation.

    Rating: 5
  121. This is great! Made it as cupcakes and they were delicious! Any suggestion on making a vanilla version of this? I’m not sure what to replace the cocoa powder with

    Rating: 5
    • Glad you enjoyed them! Unfortunately, I’ve tried and it’s not as easy as removing the cocoa. They turn out a dark brown still, due to the coconut sugar and other ingredients. So I’ll have to come up with a new white/vanilla cake recipe from scratch. :)

  122. Can this recipe be used to make a bundt cake? Would there be any changes to make it that way? I like that this recipe uses cacao powder instead of cocoa. I need a bundt cake recipe for my daughter’s birthday party. My son is autistic and on a very strict paleo diet. I’m not happy with the other paleo bundt cake recipes I’ve found so far. Thank you for your help!

  123. Can I cut this recipe in half if I don’t want such a big cake?

  124. Hi just wondering how far ahead can you make this cake , my daughters birthday is Saturday could it be made Wednesday or Thursday night . Thank you for your fab recipes 

  125. Looks yum, thank you. Pretty shocked at the sugar content though – 83.9g per slice, that’s nearly 21 teaspoons per serving 😲 In the UK the the government recommends no more than 6 teaspoons/24g of added sugars a day, so just one serving of this cake is about 3 and a half times that. It was really helpful having the nutrition information with it, thank you,  and I appreciate coconut sugar isn’t as bad as the white refined stuff but it’s still an enormous amount in my opinion, I wonder if the recipe could come with some kind of caution about it, just a thought. Thanks. 

    • Yes, while it’s free of gluten, grains and dairy, it’s definitely a dessert and contains lots of sugar, so should be considered an indulgence or sweet treat. That sugar content is actually typical for a triple-layer chocolate cake you’d find in restaurants (most don’t realize). And while many food bloggers won’t post nutritional info on dessert recipes, I try to be transparent as possible.

  126. I’ve never posted a comment but these are so good! I found this recipe after purchasing some cupcakes at a gf/ df bakery. The cupcakes were so bad, that I got online and found this recipe. I used it for cupcakes and oh my goodness, I am addicted to them. I’ve been subbing some of the sugar with monkfruit to cut down on carbs. It doesn’t even need frosting. My kids call them chocolate muffins. Thank you so much for sharing.

    Rating: 5
  127. Hello! Can I substitute ghee for the 1/2 cup oil in frosting? Don’t like that much coconut flavor in cake

  128. WOW!Made this for my daughters bday party. Made a double 12×18 sheet cake. Filled with A raspberry filling I made. Was amazing.Couple Suggestions.I made two different cakes, each with a different almond flour and cacao powderSignificant difference in the twoalthough they were both VERY good, I found my new go to chocolate cake recipe, gluten free or not, this is the one. the crumb is fine, the cake is moist, the flavor is SPOT ON. It isnt too sweet, awesome cake1. I used liquid coconut oil2. I used Valrhona Cacao Powder, SO Dark and amazing.3. I used Wellbees SUPER FINE almond flour.Such a great cake. Thank you. will NEVER make another chocolate cake againFYI for anyone trying to find out the sheet cake for a large group. For a 12 x 18 2 inch deep cake pan, I made two cake batches. Each with 1.5 times the recipe. Basically just triple the recipe for a double layer half sheet cake.

    Rating: 5
  129. I would love to try this for my brothers birthday but I have a silly question… is almond meal the same as almond flour? I can only find almond meal. 

  130. Made this for my sister’s birthday, and it was delicious. I made a few modifications to make it vegan and because I didn’t have coconut milk or almond milk. For the eggs I used garbanzo bean/ chickpea flour (3 tablespoons with 3 tablespoons of water for each “egg”). I only had Bolthouse Farms plant protein milk (it’s the same as Ripple, I believe), but I also had a can of heavy coconut cream that was mostly solid and not being a baker I didn’t think that would work by itself so I used 1 cup of Bolthouse and a ½ cup of the cream. Turned out great.

    Rating: 5
  131. I tried this recipe for my husband’s bday and it came out amazing. The cake was super moist and delicious. Highly recommend this recipe to anyone who is looking for a healthier option!! Thank you so much for sharing Lisa :-)

    Rating: 5
  132. could I use almond milk instead of the canned coconut milk?and is there any other substitute for tapioca flour? could I use oat or buckwheat flour instead??

    Rating: 5
  133. Can I double the recipe for a kids birthday party which will have a round two with all the adults at night?

  134. I made this for the first time as my birthday cake (yes, it sounds silly to bake my own cake, but I’m picky), and, oh my goodness, it tasted SO GOOD. I made it using 9-inch rounds, and the suggested baking time of 35 minutes was just about right.It was everything I wanted: chocolate-y, light, moist, and tasted like a regular cake, if not better.I also made a batch of cupcakes using this recipe which took a bit of trial and error with the toothpick trick at the same baking temperature. I think it took 25 minutes to bake.Anyway, this is a fantastic recipe! I don’t even think I’ll even make a cake using wheat flour again now that I’ve stumbled upon this holy grail recipe. Thanks so much for sharing!

    Rating: 5
  135. Hi, can I check if there’s any replacement for the espresso as I’m baking for a toddler. So coffee is not exactly recommended. 

  136. This cake was absolutely amazing! I had never made cake (that wasnt boxed) before and this was super simple. And though its filled with chocolate and sugar, I felt better about eating it. Would hughly recommend!!!

    Rating: 5
  137. Love this cake recipe, btw!I do have one random question though. Do you use the same cooking time for the cake as you would making it as cupcakes?

    Rating: 5
  138. Hi!!My family is in love with this cake!! So much so that my daughter has requested it and vanilla cupcakes for her 5th birthday this Saturday. Is there a way to modify the cake to make a vanilla batter? I’m afraid just taking out the cocoa will leave the batter too wet for it to bake nicely (since there is a fair amount of cocoa in the recipe). I’d appreciate any insight!! Thanks!!

    Rating: 5
  139. Hi Lisa

    I want to split this cake batter up between 6 cake tins so I end up with 6 thinner layers,  would that be possible? Do I just half the baking time?

    Also how far in advance can I make this cake by storing it in the fridge, not freezing it?

    Do you think putting raspberries or strawberries between the layers will help with the richness of the cake/icing?


    • I would recommend keeping it as 3 cakes and then slicing those in half. If you do 6 pans they’ll likely dry out or overcook. You could store in the fridge a couple of days. Just wrap each layer in plastic wrap and/or aluminum foil to prevent drying out. And yes, berries in between the layers sounds delicious! :)

  140. Hi, I love this! Looking to attempt it but need Vegan substitute (recipe has dairy – eggs). Have you used, found any egg substitutes that work well for you – and/or this recipe??

    • Hi Jo – Just to clarify, eggs are not dairy. Dairy is from the mammary glands of cows, goats, etc. Eggs are from chickens. But if you’d like to make it vegan, I’ve heard several folks in the comments make it with an egg substitute. Unfortunately, they haven’t listed which one they used. So if you make it with success, please do let us know! Thanks! :)

  141. Hi Lisa,

    This cake looks really delicious! Is it possible to freeze the cake ( after it’s been baked and without frosting) for use at a latter time?  I’ve got two mini celebrations within two weeks of each other and thought to make one batter, split it, use some to of the batter to make cupcakes  and use the remainder to make a miniature b-day cake to be frozen for use two weeks latter.   Might this work?


  142. If someone is allergic to eggs what would be a good substitute? All other ingredients look good.

  143. Have you tried this recipe with cupcakes? 

  144. Hi LisaThe cake looks delicious.i am going t try this for my son’s bday! it is going to be my first time cake ever! i have a question could i try arrowroot powder instead of tapioca powder? what would be the difference?

    Rating: 5
  145. Hi Lisa,
    This recipe looks amazing. Can I use tinned coconut milk for this recipe? I’m in Australia and the coconut milk that comes in a carton is usually very watered down.
    Thanks :-)

  146. I substituted swerve granulated sugar in place of the coconut sugar and my cake came out fudgy no matter how long I baked it for what do you think went wrong

  147. How do you think this recipe will go made as cupcakes? 

  148. Fantastic recipe.  I substituted crushed pecans for the almond flour .  The cake was a huge hit, five stars all the way!!! The video is a perfect compliment .  Thank you for sharing .

    Rating: 5
  149. The cake looks amazing and cant wait to try it! We have switched to a low FODMAP diet which unfortunately means coconut flour is a no go. Could you recommend an alternative? Or could I make it up with a bit extra almond flour/tapioca flour?

  150. Do you bake this in light, silver-colored pans or dark pans?

  151. My 13 year old made this cake twice and we love it!! I want to know if we can make a vanilla version of this cake? What if we left out the Cacao and the espresso powders, how would that affect the texture of the cake? Thank you!

    Rating: 5
    • Unfortunately, I was hoping for the same and tried that….and it didn’t work out. It was a muddy brown color and not something I’d consider a white/vanilla cake. I think I’ll have to start from scratch for a vanilla cake. Though I’m up for the challenge. ;) Stay tuned!

  152. I made this cake in a 9×13, and it was aaaaaamazing.I made no adjustments for high altitude (5280′) and just baked it 20 minutes longer.Thank you!

    Rating: 5
  153. Hello. I can’t find espresso powder at my local store. I called starbucks and asked if they had any but they only have espresso beans and would be able to grind them up for me. Would grinding espresso beans suffice or do you have an alternative suggestion? 

  154. THIS cake is AMAZING! I just made it as a test for my baby’s First Birthday party. I halved the recipe and used 2 pans. I baked it on 325 (I think my oven is running a little high) for 18 min. I snuck a little bite since it was just a tester……. I ate 1/2 of one layer, no frosting, it’s amazing. And this was made one handed (baby needed hugs) with not exact dry ingredient mesausments(one hand), close though. If I could only find a healthy and yummy smash cake recipe.Thank you Lisa

    Rating: 5
  155. It truly is the best! Thanks so much.

    Rating: 5
  156. This cake is amazing. I’ve made it several times and it really is incredible. I didn’t use the coffee. And instead of frosting i made chocolate glaze with cacao, vanilla. heavy cream, water and Swerve powdered sugar. I poked holes all over the cake and spread the glaze all over the top and it goes down into cake through the holes. I also just did it in a rectangular pan. I’ve cut recipe in half and still perfect. Thank you Lisa for the most incredible sugar free low carb treat recipe ever. My husband wants carrot cake for his birthday Friday and he thinks he’s getting a sugar filled cake, but I’m going to try the carrot cake recipe you’ve posted. He loves you’re chocolate cake so I’m thinking he won’t even notice it’s not full of sugar and carbs. Thanks again.

    • So happy you enjoyed the recipe Gabby! But just to clarify, there is quite a bit of sugar in this cake so it’s definitely not sugar-free. It just doesn’t contained refined white sugar, but there’s a significant amount of coconut sugar (which is still sugar). ;)

  157. Great recipe. So delighted to find a Paleo chocolate cake that uses 9-inch pans and also has such a moist/delicate consistently. Very simple. Thank you

    Rating: 5
  158. Can you make as one cake? And add blueberries in the batter? I guess would take much longer to cook…

  159. Is the coconut oil the liquid kind or the solid kind? Or does it matter?

  160. Hi Lisa,  This is an amazing recipe – thanks for sharing it!  Quick question – I would like to make this cake just for 2 people.  If I simply third the ingredients, would this work to make a smaller cake, enough for 2 people?  Thanks Bron

  161. I have been searching for a cake recipe to make for my son who has tons of allergies. This seems so close, but he can’t have nuts. Do you have a recommendation for a flour I could use instead of almond? Thanks, Sara

  162. Hi Lisa- Can you use the recipe for cupcakes?

  163. Hi Lisa! Im very new to paleo baking, practicing this cake for my daughter’s 1st birthday due to her allergies. I followed the recipe to a T with ingredients, temperature and time and yet the batter when baked had harder matte edges and softer glossy middle, so that you could clearly see a circle within a circle. I wish I could post a picture of what I mean. Cakes are cooling at the moment. Any idea what went wrong?

  164. This recipe is truly incredible!!! I had over 7 people try once complete, and not one could believe it was paleo. Truly a masterpiece!!A question to the creator– have you made this recipe in advance/tried freezing the cake laters for later use? Or would you recommend using them ASAP and avoiding freezing altogether?thanks!

    Rating: 5
    • Thanks so much Crissy! And yes, you can absolutely freeze the layers ahead of time. I’ve done that as well as freeze the whole cake with frosting, then wrap in plastic and aluminum foil (of course waiting for the frosting to freeze first). Both approaches have thawed beautifully (and been devoured). :)

  165. I’ve made many paleo chocolate cakes over the past three years and this one is in my top two.. one the of best! Fudgey and delicious – I thought I took it out a little too early as it still looked a little moist o I popped it in the fridge to “set” and it worked a treat! Our non paleo friends went back for seconds! 

    Rating: 5
  166. hi is this us or metric cups?

  167. Does the cake taste like coconut because of the milk and oil? 
    Thanks :)

  168. I have a question :) does the cake taste like coconut bc of the milk and oil?
    Thanks :)

  169. This looks awesome. Any idea if the coconut sugar could be swapped for erythritol?

    Rating: 5
  170. OMG this cake is fabulous! It was my son’s birthday recently and instead of spending money at a bakery to make a paleo type cake due to his special diet, I found your recipe. Man oh man not only did I save myself money, but I now have a “keeper” chocolate cake recipe. The decadent and moist cake met with your creamy delicious chocolate frosting was a hit!! I made a special little 8 year old boy very happy!! My only variation was making it a two layer cake instead of three. Thank you so much for sharing Lisa!!!

    Rating: 5
  171. I rarely comment, but this recipe- made these as cupcakes for a friend’s son who is dairy and gluten free- is perfect.  A wonderful, moist, chocolatey cake- have tried other recipes and this one is heads above the rest.  Highly recommend.

    Rating: 5
  172. Made this cake yesterday. I will be making it many more times! NO substitutions – it’s perfect as is!

    Rating: 5
  173. Hey! Can I swipe coconut sugar for xylitol to make it sugar free?

    Rating: 5
  174. I made this (Vegan) but used everything else and it came out Super raw, flat, and denser than a brownie. From your memory do you remember what other people have tried and found success with making this vegan? I have gone through over 100 comments and I only see you say to read other comments when other people ask for vegan option but I can’t find those other comments. S.O.S also since there are a lot of vegan requests would you consider making a vegan cake for us faithful subbies? <3

    • Hi Brittany – that’s such a bummer to hear. I did just scroll through ALL of the comments and found a few at the very beginning that said they used an egg replacer with success, but unfortunately they never did state which egg replacer they used. I definitely plan on converting this cake recipe to a vegan version in the near future. And I’m thinking of topping it with a vegan salted caramel buttercream. Stay tuned! I definitely look out for my faithful subbies. ;) x

  175. Hi! So I just finished making this recipe, but made cupcakes instead of a layered cake. I followed the recipe exactly (with the exception of making my own espresso powder) and portioned the batter out with a 1/4c measuring cup. It yielded exactly 32 gorgeous cupcakes!I also iced them using the vegan chocolate buttercream recipe and filled them with raspberry filling. I used Emeril’s raspberry filling recipe but substituted the cornstarch with organic tapioca flour. They are beautiful. I’m so excited to serve these at my baby shower tomorrow and am sure they will be a huge hit! Thank you so much for this amazing recipe :-D

    Rating: 5
  176. Is the coconut oil in this recipe the more refined coconut oil that remains liquid? Or is melted unrefined coconut oil?

  177. I am making some of these cupcakes for my baby shower this weekend and have all the ingredients except for espresso powder…I do have ground espresso..and cold brew coffee. I would like to still have that flavor component, do you have any suggestions?

  178. I was goin to make this for a children’s birthday party, can I leave out espresso powder?

  179. The most amazing, best paleo cake out there!!!

    Rating: 5
  180. Can someone help me with the measurements? I would love to make this for Mother’s Day but I want to cut the recipe in half but I have no clue how to. 

  181. Could I use Bob’s Red Mill Paleo Baking Flour? It is Almond flour, tapioca flour, coconut flour and arrowroot starch. If so, would I just use 4 1/4 cups, or would I need to use some other measurement?

    • I haven’t tried that blend in this recipe and each blend has slightly different ratios. But I think it should come out pretty darn close if you use the 4 1/4 cups. Just make sure the batter consistency looks similar to the video. Let me know how it turns out!

      • I used the Bobs Paleo flour with good results – used 4-1/4 cups.  It passed the test with my teenage son – he felt the recipe as written was a bit “bitter” – I left the espresso powder out the second time and got rave reviews. I felt the cake tasted better on day 2 as well. This was my first foray into gluten free or paleo (this recipe was a request from my gym) and although it was not as light and fluffy as a “gluten” cake, I was still able to carve/shape and decorate into a gym themed design.

      • Glad you enjoyed the recipe Amy Jo and thanks for letting me know about the substitution on the flour. I’m sure that will help others! :)

  182. Hello! I’m making this cake for my boyfriend, but sadly my step mother is not much of a baker and only has one cake pan. Would this recipe work in a pan meant for bundt cakes? If so, would I change the temperature at which the oven is preheated? Thanks!

    • Hi Rachael – yes, it should. But unfortunately because I haven’t tried it yet, I’m not sure exactly of the temperature change. I’d probably lower the temperature a little but cook longer. If you try it, let me know how it turns out for you! :)

  183. I made this chocolate cake at Easter and it was AMAZING! I also used orgran egg replacer. So much nicer than ‘ordinary’ chocolate cake. It was lovely and moist. I couldn’t stop eating it!

    Rating: 5
  184. Hello
    Can we remove the white powdered sugar from the frosting recipe ?

  185. Hi, am I able to substitute all the flours and meals for a gluten free flour ?

  186. Hi,
    Do you think this cake could be made in a 9×13 cake pan? I can’t wait to try this!

  187. Can this cake be made as a sheet cake?

  188. My husband who eats grains and dairy said this is his favorite Chocolate Cake he has ever tasted! It’s a winner and since our boys don’t do dairy or gluten it’s a great Birthday Cake base. I love that it dosen’t have that dense coconut flour texture like most paleo cakes. Appreciate the blog and sharing great recipes.

    Rating: 5
  189. Have you ever added any flavoring extracts to the frosting?  My dietary-restricted son has requested a mint chocolate cake for his birthday.  Do you think the addition of mint extract would work with this cake or might it clash with any undertones of coconut?  Haven’t made it yet but looking forward to it.  Thanks for any info!

  190. Has anyone tried freezing this cake?

  191. I wonder if I could use real buttermilk for this, instead of coconut milk + vinegar, keeping everything else the same?

  192. Do you know if I could substitute eggs for flax eggs to make it fully vegan?  Just wanted to be sure the amount of “egg” wouldn’t change using flax vs real egg.  I can’t wait to make this for my little boy’s birthday.  He specifically asked for a chocolate cake this year and Momma wants to deliver on that request. :) 

  193. Reading the reviews, I am SOOO excited to make this cake for myself for my birthday LOL!! If I use regular, granulated sugar, will it change the texture or outcome of the cake at all? Keep rockin’ with good, and not just good-for-being-GF recipes!

  194. This cake is almost too good to be true!! I made it for a dinner party for 14 and the cake was more than enough – especially with a dollop of whipped coconut cream on the side to cut the richness. I was worried that it would dry out (as so much gluten free baking does), but two days later this cake is even better. Properly stored, you can feel comfortable making it a day in advance; in fact, on day 2 it lost all of that salty/powdery after-taste that so much g-free baking has (I think it’s the tapioca flour that does it). I also put brewed coffee into the icing and while you couldn’t taste it, it added a lot of depth to the flavor. A huge hit – each and every person at our party said they liked it more than “regular” cake! 

    Rating: 5
    • Glad you enjoyed the recipe and love that you added the dollop of coconut cream – yum! And yes, it can definitely be made in advance. And (bonus) it freezes well too! That means you can always have chocolate cake on the ready. ;) x

  195. Hiya

    This cake looks amazing! I’ve been searching high and low for a GF cake with a nice texture! I was just wondering if:

    1. it’s possible to sub out the coconut milk for regular buttermilk, and if so, would it require the same amount?
    2. can you use butter/other oil instead of coconut and if so, would it be 1/2 cup too?

    One family member is not a massive fan of coconut, so I’m trying to reduce it in the cake.


  196. Beautiful.  Please consider publishing a video without the “talking” as the written text does the explaining and it would be nice to have a more fluid piece focusing on the beauty of the food coming together. 

  197. Excellent! Made it this past weekend and it was delicious! Tasted it while it was still warm and decided it was perfect enough to serve without frosting. The combination of flours yields the perfect texture. Thank you for doing all the legwork and experimenting for us! I’d put this up against any other chocolate cake, Paleo or not. Thanks for a great recipe!

    Rating: 5
  198. Would unsweetened cocoa powder be the same as raw cacao powder?

  199. I didn’t have three cake tins, so used two square and adjusted the time in the oven.  It’s absolutely decandent and it lasted a week in an air tight container.  Very light, tasty and didn’t leave anyone feeling bloated.  The ages of our family are 10, 13, 15, 44 and 46.  The cake was enjoyed by every single one of us.  Have thrown out other cake recipes as this one will now be the only one we make.

    Rating: 5
  200. I made this cake yesterday and it is fantastic! My whole family loved it – those with dietary restrictions and those without!  It just a totally delicious chocolate cake.  It’s even really good the next day / which can be a problem with some gluten free recipes.  Thank you for the recipe!!

    Rating: 5
  201. Hi! First of all, I’d like to say that your website is amazing; not just the content, but the build as well!Secondly, I was wondering if this recipe is Soy-free as well?My better half is coeliac, and her sons are dairy and soy intolerant. I was really hoping to surprise her for her birthday by baking her a cake that they can all share (something they’ve never done before!!)

    Rating: 5
  202. I became gluten and dairy free a few months ago due to health reasons, and I was super devistated to find out since my birthday was coming up and cake is by far my favorite food group! I love to bake and knowing gluten free baking would be different and possibly a challenge, I searched long and hard to find a recipe that would hopefully resemble the ‘normal’ cake that I love so dear. When I stumbled upon this recipe and read all of the amazing reviews and details as to why certain ingredients were used, I knew I had to try it! I was so nervous not knowing what to expect but HOLY COW this cake blew every ‘normal’ cake I have ever eaten out of the water! It was so good several of my gluten/ dairy eating friends were sent home with the recipe. I found myself days later, after it got devoured, thinking about how I needed another slice. This will now forever be my birthday cake and most likely my normal “I could really go for some cake right now”, cake!

    Rating: 5
  203. Hi,

    just wondering if canned coconut milk is same as the one you used?

  204. I bought canned coconut milk. Is that the same as the coconut milk you describe?

  205. does coconut milk need to be room temp when mixing cake wet and dry ingredients?

  206. Hi, can I substitute the almond flour for something nut-free? My son has a peanut/tree nut allergy and I’m looking for a cake recipe for his birthday! Thanks. 

  207. I just baked this cake in mini cake pans for my baby’s 1 year old cake smash. It tastes AMAZING! I subbed carob powder for the coco powder and didn’t use any espresso powder… made it more suitable for a one year old. I am now wanting to make it for everyone at the party! I am a blogger over at Our Idaho Roots. I am planning on sharing my cake smash photoshoot on my blog. Are you okay with me linking this recipe to my blog post for my followers?

  208. Hi, I made your cake this weekend and it is by far the most amazing chocolate cake. I was really impressed … so was everyone else (they are all non paleo, non gluten-free, etc.). thanks for the recipe.

    Rating: 5
  209. Hi Lisa, Thanks for posting this delicious looking recipe. Do you think I can use arrowroot powder in place of the tapioca flour? Please forgive if this is a repeat question. Thanks! Kim

  210. Hello! This is my fav chocolate cake recipe for when I entertain! It’s always a hit. This weekend, I have to make them into cupcakes for a wedding, also need to make them vegan. Any tips? I plan on using flax eggs. Will the cupcakes cook quicker? and aprox. how many will they make? Thanks. 

    Rating: 5
    • Hi Michael – I’ve made this recipe into cupcakes before and you’ll end up with approximately 28. I haven’t made it yet with an egg replacer, but there are several comments below with folks who have. So I’d recommend scrolling through those. Best of luck on this and glad you love the recipe! :)

  211. I made this cake three times… I love it!!!!!!

    Rating: 5
  212. Oh my wow. Ah-maaazing cake!! So moist and fluffy. Wonderful texture. Made with the chocolate frosting recipe attached and then added raspberry pie filling in between the layers. Helped cut some of the rich chocolate and added a little tart zip. Couldn’t tell that it was GF/DF. People that do not have allergy issues were asking for the recipe. Definitely a keeper!! 

    Rating: 5
  213. Hi, how can I make this cake with no coconut? I have a coconut allergy and would really like to make this cake.

  214. Are you sure ??????? 1 slice of cake 103 gris of carbs?
    Imposible . And 83 gris of sugar? 1 slice? No you kidding!

  215. Hello! I have a question. When substituting for buttermilk in a cake recipe, do you use the same amount of coconut milk as you would buttermilk, plus a little vinegar? Not sure how it works. I’m new to being dairy free! Thank you in advance.

  216. This cake is amazing! Just what I was looking for. After making it according to your recipe (except I did cut the frosting sugar down by half – 4 c rather than 8) the first time, my sister and I played with the recipe just a little – not trying to improve because it’s awesome as it is, but to try something out because we like to play with recipes. ;) So we halved the cake recipe (I omitted the espresso powder in mine because my husband said he could taste the coffee and he doesn’t like coffee) and baked it as a sheet cake. Then we halved the frosting recipe and cooked it instead of whipping it. We poured the warm frosting over the warm cake and let it set. The cooked frosting cools & sets to a delicious fudgy icing. Perfect Texas Sheet Cake! Amazing!!

    • So happy you love the cake recipe Jennifer – and wow, I’m loving your alterations!! That melted frosting on a sheet cake sounds FAB! I’ll have to give that one a try myself. ;) x

      • It’s divine! I’m currently eating a piece right now. lol My sister made the Texas Sheet Cake version for her co-workers who do not eat paleo, and they could not believe it wasn’t “regular” cake. They were in love! I’m making it for our family Easter gathering this weekend. Thank you for a fantabulous recipe!!

      • It’s always such fun when you can “trick” other with this cake. Ha! So happy you guys love this recipe and have adapted to make it your own. :) x

  217. I was wondering if I could make this with all purpose flour instead because I am not gluten free and don’t have the special flours on hand but I am dairy free and would love to try this. If you could let me know how much flour would replace the 3, that would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  218. Made it and loved it! How could we tweak this to make a Paleo yellow or white cake?Thanks so much

    Rating: 5
    • Awesome – so happy you loved it Tarah! Unfortunately, I’ve been playing around with a white/yellow version and it’s not as easy as I’d hoped. I still need to play with it some more. But as soon as I have it perfected, I’ll post the recipe! :) x

  219. Ive given up coffee! So is it possible to replace the espresso powder with something else??

    It looks absolutely amazing!

  220. Have you ever tried this recipe as cupcakes? I’m interested in making this for a friend’s party, but would love to have an option other than a large cake. Thank you!

  221. Looking forward to trying out this recipe. The pics look amazing! Just the texture I’m looking for. Out of curiosity, though, is there a way to adapt this recipe to make a white/yellow cake instead of chocolate? I would assume there would be more to it than just leaving out the cacao & espresso powder. 😉

    • That’s a great question and one I’ve been playing with. At first, I thought it might as simple as removing those ingredients (wishful thinking), but of course nothing is ever that easy. ;) It didn’t come out close to white/yellow (due to the coconut sugar) and didn’t have the same texture as this cake. So instead of tweaking this recipe, I think I’ll have to create an entirely new recipe. Fingers crossed I can have it done soon though! :)

  222. I’m fairly new to using coconut oils.  Which coconut oil does this call for?  Is it the liquid form or the solid melted down?

  223. Dairy free? It has eggs!

    • Hi Bree – unfortunately, you mistake the meaning of “dairy-free.” Dairy refers to animal-based milk products (i.e. – from the mammary glands of animals, like cows, goats, etc). More specifically, it includes items that contain whey, lactose and casein. Eggs are not from the mammary glands of cows and goats and do not contain whey, lactose and casein. Eggs are from chickens. Therefore, eggs are suitable for people who are dairy-free, unless of course they have a separate egg allergy.

  224. Wow! I baked this cake the other day for a work event and it was AMAZING. Everyone loved it. It is super moist, so chocolatey, and rich. I haven’t had good luck baking allergen recipes before so I was so happy when this turned out. I would give it 6 stars if I could. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe!

    Rating: 5
  225. We will be busy all day on my daughters birthday and was wondering if I can bake the cake a few days in advance and ice it the day of. Would it hold up if I did so?

  226. I have now made this recipe twice (thought the first time might have been beginners luck)… It is pretty much “fool proof” and garners rave reviews. I don’t consider myself a “great cook” but I know a good recipe when I see one, and this is a good recipe. The Nutiva shortening (available at Whole Foods) works very well in the frosting, which you can mix with a hand mixer if that’s what you have. Baking time is right on, and the three pans make three perfect layers. Thanks!

    Rating: 5
  227. HI there

    I am unable to obtain palm shortening for the frosting.  Please can you advise what I can use as an alternative? Thank you. SAndar

  228. This is seriously one of the best cakes I’ve ever had. I made it today for a friend’s birthday (she’s gluten and dairy free) and about 10 people asked me for the recipe. As others have said, it’s incredibly moist and decadent. If you don’t like the taste of coconut this is probably not the cake for you, as the flavor is definitely there underneath all that chocolate. But to me that made it even better! I will be making this again for sure.

    Rating: 5
  229. Lisa,

    I am excited to make this for a friends 40th birthday.  I do plan on making a few cupcakes out of the third tier to freezer for Easter.  Just wondering if the cooked product will easily peel away from the paper.  Or do I need to spray the inside of the papers?

    Thanks in advance.

  230. Has anyone tried this recipe with an egg substitute? My son is gluten and egg free. I normally use the Ener-G egg replacer but it doesn’t always turn out that great.

  231. Can I use tapioca powder instead of tapioca flour? My friend highly recommended this… said it was the best cake she has ever tried… and that is saying a LOT!! So excited to try it!

  232. I love to bake but recently switched to a Paleo lifestyle and was worried I wouldn’t be able to find a Paleo cake recipe that my family would enjoy. I made this cake for my son’s birthday and everyone loved it! I didn’t tell them it was dairy-free/gluten-free until afterwards and they were all in disbelief. I couldn’t find cacao so I substituted organic cocoa powder & it was still delicious. I used a little more cocoa powder than what the recipe called for in the frosting and only about 6 cups of powdered sugar. It came out beautifully! Thanks for sharing!

    Rating: 5
  233. This cake is SO FREAKING GOOD. I bake a lot and switched over to a paleo diet 6 months ago because of my health and I’ve baked a bunch of stuff that has turned out very well but have yet to try a chocolate cake. I made just the cake and not the frosting from this recipe because my friends and I made a space mirror glaze cake. This recipe is divine. Probably even one of the best chocolate cakes I’ve had in general.

    Rating: 5
  234. I made this cake and brought it to a birthday party!  THe adults all loved it while the kids ate the store bought one.  I found the espresso powder at Market Basket after searching a few stores.  I am now getting calls for the recipe.  So yummy.  For the powered sugar I used your idea about making m own coconut powered sugar which worked out great.  

    Rating: 5
    • I think the adults definitely got the better cake. Haha. ;) And that’s awesome you made your own coconut powdered sugar. I definitely think it tastes better with that as it cuts some of the sweetness (from regular powdered sugar). So happy you enjoyed it Eileen! :) x

  235. Hi there, I want to make this cake for a friends birthday but I have ordered an edible photo cake topper and only just realised it’s A4 in size and rectangular!!! How would you recommend I make this cake to that size? Maybe just one layer? 

  236. This was the first time i ever made a chocolate cake, let alone a paleo one, and i must say i was very impressed by the texture amd and the flavor. I used tofutti cream cheese and coconut sugar for my icing which turned out well also. I used it bcuz I accidentally got cream cheese instead on butter cream from the grocery store.😊Thanx for the recipe bcuz I live the paleo lifestyle and have a sweet tooth which this cake satisfies. Oh , and I also used cashew milk not almond milk instead.1LUV 😎

    Rating: 5
  237. Looks amazing! Need to make this for a friend that’s diabetic. Would a whipped ganache hold on top of this cake? 

    Rating: 5
  238. I made this recipe for my mother’s birthday party because my sister is wheat and dairy free. We discussed a few different recipes but this one looked the most straightforward and it was quick (which turned out to be important!!). It turned out beautifully and we were so excited to have my mother blow out the candles so we could eat it that we forgot to take a photo. It really is moist and delicious and easy. It cooked thoroughly without overcooking or getting dried out or tough. The buttercream frosting too, turned out well and a very good consistency, though a bit sweet (with 8 cups of confectioners sugar…) I added (at my sister’s suggestion) a packet of the Starbuck’s decaf italian roast instant coffee, which is what we added to the cake batter in lieu of espresso powder. That cut the sweetness well. The Nutiva palm oil shortening did the trick in the frosting as you mentioned. Looking forward to making (and eating) it again!!

    Rating: 5
  239. Can you freeze this?

  240. THANK YOU!!! Recently my chocolate loving, 20yo son had to change his diet to eliminate gluten and dairy.  What a difficult thing for all of us.  This chocolate cake Hits the spot and is a regularly requested dessert. 

    Rating: 5
  241. Best chocolate cake yet! 

    Rating: 5
  242. Can you replace the coconut sugar with monk fruit or Swerve?

  243. This recipe looks amazing but I think the nutritional information is off.  It looks like the numbers are for the full cake, not per serving.  Can you please confirm?

    Carb count is importa for our family w type 1 diabetes.

    Also, you are right on w the flower blend—makes all the difference.  I like your tested & scientific approach :)

    • Hi Kate – I wish it were wrong, but it’s not. There’s 3 cups of almond flour, 1 cup of tapioca flour and 2 full cups of coconut sugar. That’s all carbs and sugar. The nutritional info also includes the frosting, which has 8 cups of powdered sugar as well. The cake is gluten-free, grain-free and dairy-free, but it’s most definitely not sugar free. A splurge for sure! :) x

  244. I absolutely LOVE this recipe. I made it for my daughter’s 1 year birthday and she really enjoyed it. I also have a nephew who doesn’t eat sugar and they stay away from grains often as well. I told my sister-in-law about it and that this was a cupcake he could have. Once she bit into it, she was convinced it was a regular cupcake and wanted to double check. All of the people who were also at the party to eat a SAD loved it as well. I made 48 cupcakes (can’t remembered if I doubled or not) and stuck half in the freezer for later. Pulled them out for guests later and 12 of them were gone almost instantaneously. THANK YOU for making this recipe so that I can feel much better about eating a treat now and then that actually tastes good!

    • Glad you enjoyed the recipe Natalie! I’m actually going to convert this cake recipe into a cupcake recipe (a 12-cupcake recipe) on the website here shortly. I do want to clarify though that while this cake is gluten-free, grain-free and dairy-free, it does still have quite a bit of sugar (in regards to your nephew). It’s definitely a sweet treat. :)

  245. Hi Lisa,
    I am going to bake this cake for my triplets birthday this weekend. I know it’s cake and its ok to indulge every once in a while. Just looking at the nutritional info, are there really 749.9 calories in one slice? I’m hoping maybe its the whole cake but reading the reviews I will still be making and eating it :-)

    • Hi Kristi – I wish I could say different, but there are 750 calories in one slice. Which is similar to most restaurant chocolate cakes that average 800-1000 calories a slice. Because it’s a triple layer cake there’s quite a bit of sugar, so it’s definitely a splurge. But I’d say it’s a splurge worth having for special occasions! ;) x

  246. I don’t usually post anything but I needed to tell you that this is by far the best chocolate cake I’ve ever tried. Super moist and so balanced. Thank you so much for your video and recipe. 

    Rating: 5
  247. Hands down the best cake I’ve ever had. Paleo or not!!

    Rating: 5
  248. Made this cake for dessert last night. Our guests were so impressed with this cake that when I told them it was gluten and dairy free they said I must have baked with magic if I baked something that good without gluten or dairy! Ha!! This one is a keeper for sure! Thank you for sharing your recipe!

    Rating: 5
  249. I have a daughter who needs gluten free and a son who is allergic to almonds and coconut. What can I substitute for the coconut products – flour, sugar and milk? Also an almond flour substitute? Thanks

    • Hi Susan – unfortunately, it sounds like this may not be the recipe for you. Replacing all of those ingredients would result in an entirely different recipe. And as I’m sure you read on the post, they are all critical to the success of this chocolate cake recipe. But I have lots more dessert recipes on my website, so give those a look! :)

  250. Hello! This could be a silly question, but wondering if the coconut oil is melted??

    I would assume yet but not sure.

    Thanks so much!

  251. Hi, can I use cassava flour instead of the tapioca starch in this recipe?  I know that the two are same but different.  I’m looking forward to trying this recipe.  It looks amazing!

    • Cassava flour and tapioca starch behave differently in baking, so they’re not an exact replacement. As I haven’t tried this recipe with cassava flour, I’m not sure how the results would be. But if you try it, make sure to let us all know how it turns out! :)

  252. Hi – sorecently learned I’m allergic to tree nuts – anything u can suggest to replace the almond flour – my s1 son is gluten and fairy sensitive and I am a chocoholic and dairy sensitive – this cake sounds great I hope I do it justice as I am an baker myself – thank u – jen 

    • Hi Jennifer, unfortunately I haven’t tried this recipe with any other flours. If it’s just almond flour you’re sensitive to, I’d recommend hazelnut flour. But if it’s all tree nuts, you’ll likely have to use a GF flour blend and play around with some of the ratios. Hope you can find success with it! :) x

  253. We have an almond allergy in my home. What can I substitute the almond flour with?  In some baked goods I use strictly coconut flour and add more liquid as it is quick absorbent. Can I do the same with your recipe. Fingers crossed it looks absolutely delicious and my 9 year old would be over the moon. Thank you in advance! 

    • Hi Diana – could you use hazelnut flour? That would likely give it a similar texture to the almond flour. Using only coconut flour would definitely change the density/texture of the cake. As a second alternative, I’d suggest a GF flour blend that’s almond free. :)

  254. THE BEST CHOCOLATE CAKE I HAVE HAD IN MY LIFE. I ate six pieces in one day because it was so good. 168/10 would reccomend. 

    Rating: 5
  255. Just made this and it’s cooling now. It looks and smells just like normal chocolate cake, and the batter was delicious! Instead of coconut sugar I subbed Erythritol, and I didn’t have tapioca starch so used buckwheat flour. Can’t wait to eat the finished product!

  256. You are a culinary genius! This was absolutely decadent and I am a picky one! My four children even loved it and said it is the best cake they have ever had. Thank you! I had resigned myself to not ever eating cake again for nutritional reasons, because all of the other Paleo type cakes I have had were awful! I’m sharing your website and recipe with friends now. Again, thank you Lisa:)

    • I’m thrilled to hear you and your kids loved the cake Wendy! Yay! And I hear you on most paleo cakes. I always found them to be super dense and not at all fluffy. So of course, I had to change that. ;) And thanks so much for sharing my website. I greatly appreciate that! :) x

  257. I know making substitutions may drastically change a recipe, but using what I had in the house I substituted potato starch for the tapioca starch and avocado oil for the coconut oil using the same measurements. I also baked these as cupcakes for 18 minutes. Seriously beautiful. Thank you for the inspiration. This is my new go-to recipe for a gluten free cake. I love that it uses no xantham or guar gum, and is totally grain free. Thank you!

    Rating: 5
  258. I’m allergic to nuts. Is there any other flour I can substitute that will give the same results?

  259. Oh my, oh my. Ive been making birthday cakes for 15 years, many birthday cakes a year. This beats every single cake ive made. Even the normal cakes. This cake is better than the ones at the allergy free bakers as well. Im in love!!! The buttercream frosting was a little to sweet for me, but the sponge is so good, you dont need frosting. I am making these into cupcakes for my sons Valentine party at school. I would love to know how many cupcakes this makes.

    Rating: 5
    • Woot! I’m so happy to hear you love the recipe Samantha! The buttercream frosting is definitely sweet, though I find it’s a little less sweet if you use powdered coconut sugar. But you’re right, the cake itself is delicious enough on it’s own. As luck would have it, I actually tested this as a cupcake recipe this weekend and it made 28! Haha. I’ll have to repost it as a proper cupcake recipe that makes 12 in the future. ;) x

  260. I’d love to make this but around our house and my sons home we can’t have anything nutty. Nothing. So I would love to know if the Bobs Red Mill gluten free All Purpose flour might work in place of your flour mixture.×630/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/1/6/1600c224_glutenfree_allpurposeflour_f_1800_1.jpg

    Rating: 5
    • Hi Kary – Unfortunately, all flour blends behave a bit differently (ie – some absorb liquid more than others). So I’m not quite sure how it would turn out with this blend. You could give it a try, but you may have to tweak some of the liquids as well. :)

  261. Ive just tried this receipt, Im vegan so i made it with Egg replacer and it turn out amazing! fluffy, tall and super rich in flavor. 
    I also use rice vinegar, it doesn’t matter which vinegar u use. 
    Thanks Lisa for answer me and sharing all this recipes!! I wanna try every recipe now as this one turned out soon goooooood haha