This post first appeared on my other blog in 2015, but since I no longer maintain that one, I'm reposting some of my favorites here!
Recently, I’ve been making more gluten-free cakes for friends with special dietary needs.
When I first started, I simply picked up a box of gluten-free cake mix and made it as is. It was ok, but not spectacular.
Then I started to try other gluten-free brands and picked up a copy of The Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten-Free . If you’re starting to cook gluten-free for yourself or for someone else, I can’t recommend a better resource. It’s full of tips and tricks and includes a section titled “How to Bake Gluten-Free in a Gluten-Filled Kitchen” (note: I’m not being compensated in any way for my review, I’m just really impressed with the book. If you click the link, I may be credited through Amazon if you choose to purchase).
Once I got more comfortable baking gluten-free in my gluten-filled kitchen, and armed with a great resource, I started tweaking mixes to open up more flavor possibilities, such as the gluten-free lemon cake recipe I’m sharing below.
One more tip I have if you are cooking gluten-free, but aren’t gluten free yourself, (other than clean your kitchen and tools meticulously) when in doubt, send a quick text or picture to the person you’re baking for. If I’m ever adding something to a mix that I’m unsure of, I snap a picture of the ingredient label and send it to my friend. Then I know for sure that I’m not unknowingly exposing someone to gluten. There is some very sneaky packing out there and it never hurts to double check!
The cake pictured was made for a very special sweet 16 party! I used Gluten-Free Lemon Cake, MM Fondant & Basic Buttercream (both of which are naturally gluten-free, just be careful if you’re adding any flavor extracts, some may contain gluten).
Gluten-Free Lemon Cake
Inspired by the Cake Mix Doctor
2 (26.25 oz) packages Gluten-Free White Cake Mix
6 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup water
Zest & juice from 1 lemon (2 tbsp lemon juice)
1 (3.4 oz) package instant lemon pudding
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and spray two 8-inch and two 6-inch round pans with non stick spray, line them with parchment circles and spray again (this step in non-negotiable, the cakes will stick like crazy otherwise!)
Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix on low until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again on medium for 1-2 minutes or until very smooth.
Pour into the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool the cakes for 5 minutes in the pans, and invert to remove and cool completely on wire racks before frosting.
Note that the centers of the cake may sink slightly during baking. Simply trim the tall edges before frosting or add a filling.