This easy Gluten-free Spice Cake is perfect for fall baking and the holidays! Moist and soft, flavored with lots of fall spices and topped with a generous layer of luscious cream cheese frosting, no one will believe it's gluten-free!
Gluten-Free Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Easy recipe for a crowd-pleasing Gluten-Free Spice Cake!
Like our carrot cake, the spice cake has great texture being incredibly moist and soft, has just the right amount of crumb and is topped with the same luscious cream cheese frosting. Like the apple cake, the spice cake is packed with comforting fall flavors. And like both recipes, the spice cake batter comes togethervery quickly!
The combination makes for a wonderful fall cake perfect for cold days!
But the spice cake has neither carrots nor apples. It gets its moistness from olive oil, apple sauce and buttermilk (easy directions to make your own with regular or dairy-free milk).
Here’s what you’ll need:
Do not be afraid of the long list of ingredients – it is mostly spices and it is one of the quickest cakes to assemble!
gluten-free all purpose flour (with xanthan gum) (we used GFJules, affiliate link)
olive oil or oil of choice
unsweetened apple sauce
buttermilk or dairy-free buttermilk (easy directions to make your own in 10 minutes)
chopped walnuts, optional
If you are new to our website, you should know we are huge fans of GF Jules flour because it was the first gluten-free flour we discovered when my son was first diagnosed with celiac disease (over 13 years ago) that allowed us to make our favorite gluten-based recipes by simply substituting the flour. We never looked back.
To learn more about why we love GFJules flour why we have used it for 13 years, and wanted to be an affiliate for the brand, click here. Bonus: at the bottom of that post is a one-time use affiliate Discount Code.
And importantly, purchasing through an affiliate link does not change your cost at all. It generates a small percentage of the sale for me, and purchasing through an affiliate link helps me fund this website and all the recipes I share, so thank you.
Back to the Gluten-Free Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting…
Step by Step How to Make the Gluten-Free Spice Cake
The cake batter comes together in about 10 minutes and 5 simple steps:
In a small bowl, add flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and all the spices and mix to combine with a pastry cutter or fork. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl (we used our stand mixer), add brown sugar, olive oil and apple sauce and mix to combine.
Then add in the eggs and vanilla mixing well to combine.
Alternately add in the dry ingredients and buttermilk until well combined.
Stir in walnuts if using
The batter will be smooth and thick but pourable.
Pour the batter into a prepared baking pan and bake!
I love to bake with parchment lined pan because I love to have the option to lift out the entire cake out of the pan to both frost it and slice it.
And you may have noticed, I chose to bake it in a 9×13 pan… I chose this rather than a layer cake to highlight the ease and simplicity of the cake.
It bakes into to a gorgeous deep brown color and your home will smell amazing while it bakes!
How to make the Cream Cheese Frosting
The slightly tangy cream cheese frosting is the perfect pairing to warm fall flavors of the cake.
The frosting is made with just 4 ingredients:
butter or dairy-free butter
All you do is mix the ingredients together and it is luscious!
The texture is smooth and super creamy, and the flavor is rich amazing– slightly tangy and just the right amount of sweet!
Let the cake cool fully, then frost the cake.
Because the frosting is so spreadable, it is easy to frost the cake without picking up any of the cake!
And you can frost it in the pan or take lift the parchment paper and cake out of the pan.
And just look at this texture!
The cake is so moist and soft, and has just the right amount of crumb.
The thick and creamy layer of frosting is the perfect pairing to the spiced cake.
This easy Gluten-free Spice Cake is perfect for fall baking and the holidays! Moist, soft, flavored with lots of cozy fall spices and topped with a generous layer of luscious cream cheese frosting, no one will believe it's gluten-free!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper or grease and flour. Set aside.
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, ginger and cloves in a bowl with a pastry cutter or fork. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, add brown sugar, olive oil and apple sauce and mix to combine. We used an electric stand mixer.
Add eggs and vanilla and mix to combine.
Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to the mixing bowl: Start with flour adding about 1/3 of it and mixing on low to combine, add buttermilk mixing to combine, then flour, then the remaining buttermilk and last of the flour; and mix until it is well combined.
Add nuts if using and mix to just combine.
Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake 40 minutes in total: 30 mins uncovered, 10 covered, or until a tooth pick comes out of the center clean. The edges will also pull away from the pan. Let cool completely before frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
Add all the frosting ingredients to a large mixing bowl and starting on low speed mix to combine. Once the powdered sugar is mixed in, increase speed to medium and mix for 1-2 minutes until well combined and creamy.
Spread evenly on baked and cooled cake. Enjoy!
Store in the refrigerator, covered with wax paper and/ or foil for several days. Let sit at room temperature before serving.
Hi! My name is Karen, and I’m the mom in our Healthy Gluten-Free Family. My posts and pictures here and on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter are labors of love that allow me to share a very personal journey with you, one our family has taken together — learning, experimenting and sharing how to raise a healthy happy gluten-free family. Read more ...