You don’t know it yet, but this gluten free red velvet cake with sinful French cream cheese buttercream will fast become one of your favorite cakes!!
I was at Walmart the other day checking out the Valentine’s area and saw all these sprinkles in their little jars. All of them were gluten free! Did you know that most of Wilton’s products are NOT gluten free? Well, they might be, but if you’re as sensitive as I am, they’re produced in the same facility as wheat so it’s a no go for me.
Anyway, those little sprinkle jars were so cute that I bought all of them and combined them into one jar. And this gluten free red velvet cake is where they went!! The moist red velvet cake with the smooth French cream cheese buttercream (TO DIE FOR!), and the crunch of the sprinkles makes one ridiculously tasty treat, just in time for Valentine’s Day!
Baking Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake
I never really got a hankerin’ (southern slang!) for red velvet cake until a few years back. Growing up I don’t recall it ever being a flavor of cake that even had a boxed mix on the grocery store shelf.
The first time I ever saw red velvet cake was on Steel Magnolias (the movie about southern ladies starring Julia Roberts). In the movie, the groom’s cake at the tackiest wedding ever was a red velvet armadillo cake.
I’ve come to really love red velvet cake in the past couple of years, mainly because it’s different than all the other cakes and has that slight tang to it, but still has a hint of a chocolate flavor. The ingredients in this gluten free red velvet cake are similar to any other red velvet cake:
- Kim’s gluten free flour blend — or any gf blend of your choice containing xanthan gum (other flour blends haven’t been tested, however).
- Neutral oil — canola or vegetable oil. Melted coconut oil would be fantastic here also.
- Cocoa powder — any unsweetened cocoa powder will do.
- Baking soda
- White vinegar
- Vanilla extract
- Red food coloring
Let’s Talk About This Killer Frosting!
It’s no secret that my favorite frosting ever is French buttercream. I’ve been making it for over 20 years and it never, EVER fails to impress and get rave reviews from anyone who tastes it.
I know I’m in the minority when I say that I’ve never been a real fan of cream cheese frosting. For some reason, it seems sickeningly sweet, even more so than an American buttercream.
So when I had the idea to put cream cheese into my French buttercream, another reader beat me to it and said it was amazing! I knew I had to revamp my gf red velvet cake and cover it with a whole new frosting. And lemme tell ya, this cream cheese buttercream is like none you’ve ever had! It’s so smooth, like French buttercream always is, and it’s not overly sweet and is very stable as well.
If you have yet to try my French buttercream, check it out here. There’s even a video that shows how easy it is to make. Once you go French (buttercream), you won’t go back, haha! And once you add cream cheese to it, forgeddaboutit!
How to Make a Heart Shape with Sprinkles
You don’t have to use any sprinkles on this cake and it’ll still be fabulous, but I love the crunch the sprinkles give and I think it looks pretty!
To make a sprinkle heart on top of your cake, there are two ways to do this. If you have a heart cookie cutter, this is the easiest. Simply put the cookie cutter on top of the frosted cake and add the sprinkles to the middle of it. When you carefully pull up the cookie cutter, there’s your heart in all its glory!
If you don’t have a heart-shaped cookie cutter, grab a small piece of waxed paper or parchment paper and fold it in half. Remember making a heart with a folded up piece of paper back in elementary school? Do the very same thing here–cut out a heart shape on the fold. Open it up and carefully place the piece of paper over the top of the cake (it’s best if the frosting is crusted slightly or cold). Use a spoon to place the sprinkles inside the heart and carefully lift the paper from the cake. Voila!
Sprinkles or no, this gluten free red velvet cake is sure to bring smiles to your significant other on Valentine’s Day, or any day of the year 🙂
Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake
- 1¾ cups (350 g) granulated sugar
- 1⅔ cups (400 ml) neutral oil (canola or vegetable) (or you could try melted coconut oil)
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 2¼ cups (315 g) Kim's gluten free flour blend (or any flour blend with xanthan gum)
- 4 tbsp (25 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1½ tsp baking soda
- 1½ tsp salt
- 1¼ cups (300 ml) buttermilk
- 2 tsp white vinegar
- red food coloring (3 tbsp liquid or a few squirts of gel)
Cream Cheese French Buttercream:
- 1 recipe French buttercream
- 1 8-oz pkg (226 g) cream cheese, softened
- 1 stick (113 g) additional butter, softened, if needed
For the Cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease and flour (or line with parchment) three 8-inch cake pans. Set aside.
- Combine the sugar and oil in a large bowl and blend. Add eggs, red food coloring, and vanilla and mix well.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together gluten free flour blend, cocoa, and salt. Add half the flour mixture, alternating with half the buttermilk, into the sugar and oil mixture. Continue alternating until the rest of each has been added.
- In a separate small bowl, stir vinegar into baking soda and pour into cake batter. It will bubble up so be quick about it. Mix just until combined.
- Divide the batter evenly into each pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cake springs back when lightly touched, or a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs.
- Remove from the oven and place cakes on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove from the cake pans and allow to cool completely.
For the Buttercream:
- In a medium bowl, mix together the butter called for in the recipe and the cream cheese. Follow the instructions for the French buttercream, adding this mixture in when the butter is supposed to be added in the recipe. If the mixture still looks curdled, add another stick of softened butter. Fill cakes with about 1/2 cup of buttercream in between the layers and then frost the outsides and top of the cake with the rest. Add sprinkles as desired.
- Refrigerate cake. Remove about 20-30 minutes before serving.
Cake recipe adapted from Julia Baker’s Red Velvet Cake