This Chocolate Almond Flour Cake is my family’s new favorite! It’s inspired by my popular Almond Flour Cupcakes, and has a rich, moist texture you’ll love.
Ingredients You’ll Need
I love baking with almond flour, because you only need a handful of real food ingredients to make this cake batter come together.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Blanched almond flour (preferred over almond meal)
- Maple syrup
- Cacao powder
- Olive oil
- Baking powder
Almond flour is naturally gluten-free, so you do need eggs or starch as a binder for this recipe. I don’t recommend using flax eggs as a swap in recipes that call for more than 2 eggs, but check out my Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake for a tested egg-free recipe.
Do yourself a favor and only use recipes that have been thoroughly tested with almond flour, as making substitutions can be tricky in grain-free baking. I’d hate for you to waste any expensive ingredients.
Whatever you do, do NOT try to use coconut flour as a swap! Make one of my tested coconut flour recipes instead.
How to Make It
This chocolate almond flour cake comes together quickly, so prepare your cake pans first. This recipe works well with two 6-inch cake pans, or one 8-inch cake pan.
I like to lightly spray the pans with oil, then press a square of parchment paper into the bottom.
The oil keeps the parchment paper from wiggling around as your pour the cake batter in, and the parchment paper guarantees that your cake will release from the pan easily later.
Use a whisk to mix all the ingredients together, to help break up any clumps in the almond flour. As soon as the batter looks smooth, pour it into the prepared pan(s).
Bake at 350ºF until the center of the cake looks puffed-up and feels relatively firm to a light touch.
This takes about 28 to 30 minutes for the two 6-inch pans, or 35 to 38 minutes for the larger 8-inch pan.
When the cake cools, the top will flatten out on its own. If you didn’t let the cake bake quite long enough, it might dip in the center, but it will still be delicious!
Once the cake is completely cool, you can frost and decorate it.
Healthy Frostings to Try
If you’d like to use a naturally-sweetened frosting, try one of these options!
- Date-Sweetened Vegan Frosting
- 2-Ingredient Chocolate Ganache
- Sweet Potato Frosting
- Vegan “Cream Cheese” Frosting
Pictured here is my 2-ingredient Vegan Ganache, but I made it with 100% unsweetened chocolate chips (because that’s what I had on hand– poor planning on my part!) and then I added in a little organic powdered sugar for sweetness.
So, if you have random things on hand, like I do sometimes, you can still make it work!
I can’t guarantee any substitutions I haven’t tried myself, but here’s my best guess when it comes to making swaps in this recipe.
- Almond flour. Almond meal will most likely work, but it will create a slightly more dense cake. Do not substitute other flours and expect similar results. Instead, look for a recipe that already calls for the flour you want to use.
- Maple syrup. You can usually swap a little less honey for maple syrup. (Honey is sweeter and has a stronger flavor, so that’s why I would use a little less.) I don’t know how coconut sugar or another granulated sugar would work, but you’d probably need to use a little more in that case, since 1/2 cup of maple syrup is sweeter than 1/2 cup of coconut sugar.
- Olive oil. I call for olive oil in this recipe because it doesn’t solidify when it touches cold ingredients, like an egg from the fridge. I can’t taste it all, but you can use avocado oil, or melted coconut oil or butter, if you’d prefer.
- Need a vanilla cake? Check out my other Almond Flour Cake recipe.
I hope you’ll enjoy this grain-free chocolate cake soon!
Chocolate Almond Flour Cake
- 3/4 cup blanched almond flour (88 grams)
- 1/2 cup cacao powder (41 grams)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder (8 grams)
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (3 grams)
- 3/4 cup maple syrup (240 grams)
- 4 large eggs (200 grams)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (9 grams)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (23 grams; or other oil)
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF and prepare two 6-inch pans or one 8-inch pan. Lightly grease the pan with oil, then press a square of parchment paper in the bottom to ensure easy removal later. The oil will help hold the parchment paper in place, so it won't wiggle around.
- In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, cacao powder, baking powder, salt, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, and olive oil. Use a whisk to mix until smooth, breaking up any clumps.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan(s) then bake at 350ºF until the center puffs up and feels relatively firm to a light touch. This takes about 28 to 30 minutes for the 6-inch pans, and 35 to 38 minutes for the 8-inch pan, but you can start watching the cake about 5 minutes earlier, in case your oven is different than mine.
- Let the cake cool completely before frosting. If you need to frost the two-layer cake, you might want to make a double batch of frosting to have plenty for the sides and middle layer. This cake is very moist, so store it tightly covered in the fridge for up to 5 days. I like to bring it to room temperature for at least 1 hour before serving.
More Dessert Recipes
Need other cake ideas? Other than the ones I mentioned above, here are more to try:
- Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Chocolate Pots de Creme (a must-try!)
- Coconut Flour Carrot Cake
- Coconut Flour Cupcakes
- Vegan Cheesecake (Dairy-free)
- Chocolate Cheesecake
If you try this Chocolate Almond Flour Cake, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it. And if you make any modifications, I’d love to hear about those, too!
Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite type of cake?
Questions and Reviews
Would you recommend this one or the instant pot one made with oat flour for a gluten free birthday cake? I only have 7 inch pans, not 6 inch ones. Would this recipe work in two 7 inch pans? Thank you! I love all of your recipes so much and every one I have tried has been amazing!
It will be thinner if you use two 7-inch pans, so it will probably cook faster in that case. I like this cake a lot, but the Instant Pot one is good, too. I don’t think you can go wrong either way!
Can I bake this in a 8*8 cake pan. If so how long. Thank you for the recipe!
I would use the directions for the 8-inch cake pan– I bet it would be similar! If your square pan is glass or ceramic, it might need a couple extra minutes.
Can I use this recipe for cupcakes???
I would like to know if you test the cake for doneness like a normal cake ? (with a skewer and check if it comes out clean )
I don’t test it like that– I think you could get crumbs sticking to it, even when it’s done since this cake is so moist. I just lightly touch the center with my fingers to see if it collapses, or feels relatively firm. And you can also tell by smell! When my kitchen smells STRONGLY of chocolate cake, I know it’s probably done.
This cake is amazing! Fluffy and chocolaty. Megan’s recipes are like magic: you are not sure how she makes it happen, but it works every single time!
Aw, thank you! I’m so glad you enjoyed the cake!
SO GOOD! Great consistency and flavor. Was rich but not overwhelmingly sweet. I did a “regular” (non-healthy 🙂 ) chocolate buttercream frosting— was planning the sweet potato frosting but out of potatoes. Oh well— a great “excuse” to make again!
What egg substitute do you recommend?
I would use this egg-free cake recipe instead, which is already tested & perfected: https://detoxinista.com/vegan-gluten-free-chocolate-cake/
This was soooo good; it was moist and chocolates and didn’t taste gluten free!!!😍😊
I made it and it was amazing ! I used 3 eggs though instead of 4 and fr the frosting whipped coconut cream and dark chocolate chips , so good . Thank you !
Megan would you say this is a better recipe than the one in the No excuses cookbook? I’m like that one since it is with oat flour and I find almond flour has a very distinct flavor but I’m also looking to try another recipe 🙂
I really like the taste and texture of this one, but you can’t go wrong with either one!
I made this cake and frosted with the 2 ingredient vegan ganache and it was perfection. The whole process was much easier and faster than expected.
Is was super moist and rich. Because of the almond flour it is quite delicate, one of my layers broke in half while I was lifting it on (nothing some frosting couldn’t fix) so be careful!
There are so many more complicated recipes out there that are inferior in taste. I will never be buying a chocolate cake again.
Can I try this recipe with almond meal ?
I may have missed it but I don’t see the frosting recipe?
Sorry must have skimmed right over the frosting part. Looks delicious can’t wait to try!
This recipe looks great, do you think Allulose would work as a substitute for Maple Syrup?
Ooh, I’ve never worked with that so I have no idea how it turns out in recipes. Please let me know if you experiment with it!
I just did your recipe with allulose instead of maple syrup, it’s heavenly I absolutely love it! Doesn’t have any aftertaste and it turned out great! For the frosting I was too lazy to make one from scratch so used a sugar free store bought one, baked this for my husband birthday and he loved it, he couldn’t believe it was sugar free, said it was a mix between cake and fudge and was really moist and delicious! Thanks! Just wanted to let you know that the allulose is as dense as the maple syrup and the 3/4 cup weighted the same because I used the scale and it turned out great! Once again Thanks!
This is officially my new favorite chocolate cake! Easy to make, only one bowl, and pretty nutritious, as far as cakes go! Made it in a heart shaped pan for Valentine’s day and iced with white chocolate icing. Thanks for the note about how to store leftovers and for how long (I always worry when baking with eggs)
Are the ingredient measurements per pan or for both pans? I am using an 8 inch cake tin and there didnt seem to be enough when I made it it almost seemed like it was just enough for one layer. Do I double the amount for the 8 inch?
Yes, this recipe fills two 6-inch pans or one 8-inch pan, so you’ll need to double it to fill two 8-inch pans.
I can’t wait to try this. Quick question – Can I use ground almonds instead or will that affect the texture of the cake?
Thanks for sharing 😊
I love love love this cake. I can’t eat wheat but my family can. I make this cake for a family dinner and everyone loved it. I used a 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract and it gave it a great flavor. THANK YOU
I have made this cake two weeks in a row using two ingredient frosting.
Everyone loves it.
Follow recipe exactly. Megan has done all the research no changes necessary.
It’s decadent, a little goes a long way.
I will make two next time as I want leftovers!
So easy my kids make it! And SO delicious!
I made this for a family dinner dessert and everyone approved. It did seem like the syrup was sinking to the lower half of the cake. Could that be from the type of syrup or almond flour?
Where do I find the frosting Recipe?
This is my go-to chocolate frosting: https://detoxinista.com/easy-vegan-chocolate-frosting/ but if you search “frosting” in the search bar, you’ll find a few other options here on my website, too!
AH-MAZING!!! I made this 5 days ago and had a slice every night before bed with vegan vanilla bean ice cream. Heavenly!! The date chocolate frosting is incredible too. My kids didn’t even realize it wasn’t loaded with sugar!!
This cake was soooo good, I love it. It was very rich in chocolate, but not bitter. It did crumble, but very very minimal, probably because we didn’t put enough oil.
Great recipe, easy. Love it!
That was the simplest and most delicious chocolate heaven I have ever had.I added a teaspoon of coffee grounds ( ground to an extremely fine size). Amazing (and addictive). Thank you.
I made this for me and my best friend. We both gave up refined sugar for Lent. Oh my goodness! This was SO good! I ended up making it again, one day later. I used the sweet potato frosting recipe, which was more of a pudding constancy than frosting, but still tasted amazing and no one could believe there was no refined sugar in it. I also used Jersey sweet potatoes and cacao powder to make it a chocolate frosting! My kids and everyone loved it! I also used a little less coconut oil in the frosting the second go around and liked it even better with just a hint of the coconut! Thanks for creating such a great recipe! Will definitely make this again and again!
Where is the recipe for the frosting?
This is the 2-ingredient chocolate frosting recipe I use most often: https://detoxinista.com/easy-vegan-chocolate-frosting/
thanks for a great recipe, it’s our go to dessert this passover!
Hi, wondering if this will work in a 9×13 pan. Thanks!
This cake is delicious! It is nice and moist and tastes great.I used Megan’s Vegan Chocolate Frosting, and the combination was fantastic. Sweet but not too sweet. I’ll definitely be making it again. Thanks, Megan!
This cake is so easy to make and it’s so delicious! I made it for my husband’s birthday and he loved it. I made it several times since then and aways turns out great.
Can I use oat flour instead?
This is the best almond flour cake I ever made! Can I double the recipe to make a larger cake?
This was perfect in every way