Wheat-Free Gluten-Free Coconut Flour Apple Cake Recipe

Gluten free apple cake recipe made with coconut flour
A lovely gluten-free apple cake with coconut flour.

Wheat-Free Apple Cake with Coconut Flour

The weather here has hula-hooped back into summer. I kid you not. It is ninety-seven degrees here in Little Russia, my West Hollywood neighborhood. As in 97. That's three shy of one hundred, Bubbe. In September. And what am I doing? Baking a cake. Heating up the kitchen. It figures.

As soon as I buy apples and start daydreaming about my favorite fall confections, imagining clear, cool evenings and Eva Cassidy's haunting rendition of Autumn Leaves, September turns sultry and sends me back into the closet, peeling off my straight legged jeans and Converse All Stars faster than Gordon Ramsay can mock sashimi.

So I may as well share my latest gluten-free cake recipe with you. I mean, I suffered extreme heat for it. I hot flashed till I was squishy for it. I panted and sweat until I resembled an over-ripe heirloom tomato. You know, dimpled and dented. Flabby. A little misshapen. And well. Squishy. Not a pretty sight.

Not that I'm trying to induce guilt or anything.

Not me.

So go ahead. Enjoy this new apple cake recipe. Share a slice or two amongst yourselves. Don't worry about me here in hot little WeHo. Really. Go. Bake. Discuss. Have some coffee.

And coffee tawk.


Apple cake batter in the pan, ready to bake, topped with sliced fresh apples
Golden Delicious apples make this delectable apple cake subtly sweet.

Karina's Wheat-Free Coconut Apple Cake Recipe

Recipe posted September 2010.

Coconut flour gives this elegant apple cake a moist and tender crumb with a subtle coconut flavor. For those of you not particularly fond of coconut flour, you could substitute almond or hazelnut flour.

Line the bottom of a 10-inch Springform cake pan (you'll need a deep pan for this cake) with parchment paper.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.


In a mixing bowl, whisk together:

1 cup sorghum flour (aka jowar flour)
1/2 cup organic coconut flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1 scant teaspoon xanthan gum
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/3 cup organic light brown sugar

Beat in:

1/2 cup organic coconut oil, melted, or vegetable oil
1 cup light coconut milk
2 beaten organic free-range eggs or use Ener-G Egg Replacer mixed
2 teaspoons bourbon vanilla extract


Beat the ingredients until the batter is silky and smooth. If the batter is stiff, add a little more coconut milk to thin. (This gluten-free cake batter should be a bit thinner than a gluten-free muffin batter, but not too thin.)

Let the batter rest while you prepare the apples.

You'll need:

4 medium organic apples- such as Golden Delicious and Macintosh.

Peel and core the apples. Slice into even slices- not too thin.

Add roughly three quarters of the sliced apples to the cake batter and stir by hand to distribute.

Using a silicone spatula, scoop the cake batter into the prepared Springform pan. Smooth and even out the batter as best you can.

Press the remaining apple slices into the top of the cake batter in a circular pattern as shown.

Gluten free dessert is solved with this apple coconut flour cake, perfect for Fall
Ready to bake, wheat-free apple cake.

Sprinkle the top of the cake batter and apple slices with organic cane sugar or turbinado sugar crystals for a crunchy sweet top crust.

Bake in the center of a preheated oven until golden and firm. The cake should bake in roughly an hour- anywhere from 55 to 60 minutes. Do a test for doneness by inserting a small thin knife or a wooden pick into the center- it should emerge clean.

Cool the cake on a wire rack for ten minutes. Using a very thin spatula, loosen the sides of the cake from the pan and unclasp the Springform pan. Continue cooling the cake.

Slice with a sharp cake knife and serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Wrap leftover pieces in foil, bag and freeze for best texture and taste.

Cook time: 1 hour

Yield: Serves 10

Recipe Source: glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com

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Kate said...

That sounds so good! I also did some baking in this crazy LA heat yesterday. True dedication.

I Am Gluten Free said...

I love all things coconut. This cake looks spectacular and perfectly autumnal! Hope things cool down soon:)

Rach said...

L'shana tova Karina :)

aimee said...

Your recipe sounds delicious and your pictures are stunning. Great writing as well!

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

I've never tried coconut flour. This cake looks so delicious -- and anyone who's ever lived in New England in autumn is powerless to resist apples at this time of year!

Marianne said...

This recipe has a lot of promise for me as it only requires two eggs (which I can easily replace). Cheers!

Cheryl Harris said...

oh wow. That looks simply incredible!

adventuresomekitchen said...

I heard summer had revisited you all. It's a cool, autumny 55 tonight where I am as I write this- loving sweater weather. And will have to bake a cake to celebrate- I just happen to have coconut flour on hand. Hope you're enjoying that lovely apple-green stand mixer- mine's red and I love it!

Ali said...

Mmmm, beautiful! :)

Anonymous said...

Well here in Az., we got you beat, it was 105 today. And so, I couldn't keep from baking too. Banana cake and banana muffins. Over ripe bananas were just calling my name. I also sweltered from it....ah, the price we pay. The apple cake looks delish, I'll try that soon.

Marty said...

Well, it was 36 degrees here in Fairbanks, AK today, mowing the lawn for the last time, raking leaves, putting the screens away and bringing in the wood for the winter. Sounds like a perfect cake to make tomorrow for dessert or for my Thursday quilting group. Thank you for swelting in the heat to share it with us!

The InTolerant Chef said...

I know how you feel, here in Australia it can be over 40*C outside and I am stuck in a commercial kitchen with no airconditioning inside. The temperature can creep towards 47* or more and heat stroke is a very real concern. We have to keep an eye on each other and drink lots of water. At times I have had to be picked up from work as I wasn't up to driving home!
Do you find that coconut flour tends to make batter very thick? The taste is great though.

Tasty Eats At Home said...

This looks great! I just tried to bake an apple cake using coconut flour (and almond flour) yesterday, in fact! Yours turned out well. Mine? Not so much. Working on it. But I'm loving that we're on the same wavelength here!

Carrie said...

WOW!! A coconut flour recipe without a gazillion eggs! This is so exciting and perfect for fall! Thank you once again Karina!

Valerie @ City|Life|Eats said...

Beautiful cake. The temperatures went back up here in Washington, DC as well - and get this - forecast said low 80s for Saturday, and it hit 93. Total forecasting fail.

Sally JPA said...


Isn't this heat crazy? Not quite as hot in Santa Monica, but without a/c in our apartment (we never needed it till now!), it was toasty last night. Slept with all the windows open and our only fan blowing on high.

SLColman said...

I have this in the oven right now! Can't wait to try it :)

Devan Hambrock said...

Wow! So incredible! Thank you for posting, I will be making this in the next week or so for sure......
Love your blog!

Deanna said...

Mmmm- beautiful and yummy. And, since it was 38 here this morning, it's the perfect time for me to be baking. Now I just have to go pick some more apples....

Carolyn said...

Beautiful cake, so perfect for all. I quite like coconut flour so I am saving this one for future reference.

Dee said...

Eva Cassidy performing "Autumn Leaves" was both timely and thoughtful. I loved listening to that while I was reading your blog... Nice touch!

Jenn said...

Oh this looks just beautiful! Now I need to get my hands on some coconut flour so I can make it!

Kalyn said...

I heard about the heat there and it sounded pretty grueling. Your cake is beautiful as usual; I've never tried coconut flour but I like the sound of it!

Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete said...

I've never tried coconut flour, and this is the perfect opportunity! As always, beautiful pics!

Theresa said...

Thank you so much for introducing me to Eva's music. I was at your site to look up one of your eggplant recipes, but I found myself delightfully distracted by the music video first. I've been a big fan of your website for maybe four years now. I originally found you when I was searching for a good puttanesca sauce. The photo of the sauce and your writing style led me to try yours over rest. Now every time I make it I can practically hear you saying "put on some jazz and pour an Italian red", which I promptly do! Seriously though, I have loved everything I've tried from your site and although I'm not gluten intolerant it's been nice to be able to prepare some treats for friends who are. I pass your website on with confidence to friends who do need your help with dietary restrictions because I empathize with you all, I've been there. But mostly I love telling anyone who loves to cook, and has a passion for good food, that they have got to check you out! Thanks again, you're awesome!!

Fayinagirl (means Free One) said...

Karina, I love reading your blog. It is always delightful, always entertaining. Oh yes, and the food looks fabulous. ;-)

Diane said...

Hi Karina,

I just made this cake and fed it to my family (who are not gluten free) they were shocked when I sat down and ate a piece with them. They had no idea that I made it vegan (no eggs) and GF! What a wonderful moist recipe I think I will be making a few of these over the next few weeks. Thank you for this most fantastic recipe and site!

Karina Allrich said...

Thank you ALL so much for your lovely comments and enthusiasm for this new recipe. I am going to experiment more with coconut flour. This is just the beginning. What to do next...?

And I'm so glad some of you have already made the recipe. And I love it that it was eaten by gluten-eaters who had no idea it was vegan and gluten-free. YAY! That's what I hope for. That's why I do what I do.

Thanks for sharing your feedback with me. I so appreciate it. xox


the blissful baker said...

what a lovely cake!

Julie said...

You make me want to go apple picking so I can make this cake! A trip to the farmer's market will have to do, I can't wait to make this! I love coconut and apples, never tried the two together...so excited. Thanks for sharing :-)

mira said...

This cake is awesome!! I just finished eating a piece hot out of the oven. All I can say is YUM!!! I used coconut oil in place of the canola & whole egg instead of the 2 egg whites. It is moist & decadent. Thank you so much for all your great recipes!

Anonymous said...

can I use coconut milk from a can the full fat version?

Karina Allrich said...

Thanks again- xox!

As for using full fat canned coconut milk- it may alter the stickiness/fat content of the batter. I can't vouch for the sub. I would thin the milk a bit to replicate the medium body thickness of the coconut milk I used (matches regular dairy milk). Or I'd use light coconut milk.


rtuts said...

This recipe inspired me to do something I've been meaning to do for a while--I went out and bought a set of three Springform pans!
The cake is now cooling in my kitchen and it smells amazing! The top came out a wee bit darker than yours, as it puffed up in the middle quite a bit.

Meghan (Making Love In The Kitchen) said...

Looks like just the perfect cake for afternoon tea time.

mira said...

I used full fat coconut milk when I made mine & it turned out nice & moist. I did have to bake it a bit longer..

Heavenly Housewife said...

What a delicious looking apple treat. I have so many apples this Fall from my trees and can't figure out what to do with all of them. A girl can only eat so much applesauce LOL. Thanks for sharing this recipe.
*kisses* HH

Monica said...

This is sooooo yummy!!!! But, but mine totally collapsed after it cooled...I'm somewhat new to baking gluten free, any idea what I did wrong?

Karina Allrich said...

Monica- One of two things can cause this- too much liquid (perhaps flours were already damp from humidity?) or not enough baking time. A third issue can be the oven temperature- maybe it is off? If you suspect this, try an oven thermometer to double check the baking temp. You may be surprised.

If the apples were cold or wet that will influence baking time as well and slow down the baking process.


Kendra (AquaMom) said...

I love this cake. My daughter and I make it regularly and I can't get enough. Thank you for making gluten free and dairy free so good.

Christine said...

Karina, this is delicious! So moist and with such a nice flavour, I'm excited to share it and show my family how tasty gluten/dairy-free can be! Thank you for another lovely recipe.

Tessa said...

Oh YUM!!! This cake was awesome...even my kids and all my friends at the Superbowl party loved it and asked for the recipe...no one could believe it was vegan and gluten free! Yet another keeper from your recipes!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful cake.... served it with warm caramel sauce and whipped cream.... Absolutely divine!! Could not tell it was gluten free.
Used 2 whole eggs, full fat coconut milk, and chopped the apples into smaller pieces to stir into the cake. Baking time was closer to 80 minutes. Just as good the next day.

Anonymous said...

Hey there... This was the first recipe I have ever made using Gluten-Free Flours.... and it came out wonderful! It tastes just like regular cake :D Do note though that I had to add some where between 1/4-1/3 cup of Coconut Milk, because the batter was stiff.... <3 thank you so much!

Karina Allrich said...

Thanks, Everyone, for the coconut cake love! xox

And yes, coconut flour absorbs liquid, so you may find you have to add some liquid (depending upon humidity/dryness).

xox Karina

Anonymous said...

This recipe is so versatile. I coarsely shredded the apples, have used regular milk, and 2 eggs. I serve it with a caramel sauce. My sister is gluten free and this is her favourite. The rest of the family also enjoys it, since no one can tell its gluten free. It also freezes well....

Candygirl said...

Thanks for the lovely baking recipes, unfortunately autumn is here very early in the UK, about 15 degrees here so full into baking!

mitochick said...

Loved it! Best baking attempt since embarking on my allergy-friendly diet. I used EVOO for the fat and rice milk. It was delicious!

Marie Ann... said...

Made this one, it was great!!! Did not have coconut milk so used regular, but did have coconut oil, and replaced the canola with it....so good!!! First GF cake I can say I actually ENJOYED! Thank you for the post!! Made my day...and my meal!!!

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