Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake {gluten-free}

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel. Happy Valentine’s Day!

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

To me, Valentine’s Day is really just an excuse for being a bit fancy. Not just any old flowers will do, it should really be roses. Not just any old bottle of plonk will do, it should really be champagne. If you think a bar of Dairy Milk will suffice, even if Fruit and Nut is your favourite, then you are kidding yourself. Valentine’s Day surely means an assortment of Paul A Young chocolate individually selected. And if there is not a Salted Caramel in there then Valentine’s Day might as well be off.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

So, if nothing says romantic to you than chocolate cake, then for one you are in fine company, and for two, the chocolate cake really needs to be intimately involved with Salted Caramel to make it Valentine’s Day worthy.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

When I transitioned my cake stall over to gluten-free then this Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake was the first to make the transition as it’s an absolute favourite of mine and my customers. It looks beautiful and it really delivers on chocolate flavour with a hint of espresso. If you are not a coffee lover then you can easily leave it out, bar a couple of teaspoons which helps to amplify the chocolate flavour. With both cocoa for richness and 70% melted chocolate folded into the batter, the result is true luxury. Buttermilk gives the sponge a gentle tanginess and using a light olive oil instead of butter makes the cake light and moist.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

To make the cake gluten-free I swapped plain wheat flour for a combination of oat flour and white rice flour which is a great alternative, especially as oat flour gives the cake a toasted butterscotch flavour that sits so happily here.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream is the best way to finish this cake, it smoothes over the sponge like a dream with it’s buttery silky texture and is never too sweet. It is so much easier to whip up than you think and the generous pouring of salted caramel into the finished buttercream amps up the end result to 11 and then some.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

I recommend treating yourself to a generous slice of Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake over Valentine’s Day. It’s ideal for lovers, broken hearts and happy friendships. Plus it’s just a little bit more fancy than your regular chocolate cake.

This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.

Print Recipe
Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake {gluten-free}
A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.
This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.
Prep Time 1-2 hours
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
12 generous servings
Ingredients
  • 125 g 70% dark chocolate
  • 165 g white rice flour
  • 60 g oat flour
  • 90 g cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons espresso powder
  • teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 400 g buttermilk
  • 160 g caster sugar
  • 160 g soft light brown sugar
  • 170 ml light olive oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract
Salted Caramel
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 300 ml double cream
  • 40 g butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt I used Fleur de Sel
Salted Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  • 240 g egg whites around 8
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • 200 g light soft brown sugar
  • 500 g unsalted butter at room temperature, cubed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ quantity of salted caramel see recipe
Prep Time 1-2 hours
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
12 generous servings
Ingredients
  • 125 g 70% dark chocolate
  • 165 g white rice flour
  • 60 g oat flour
  • 90 g cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons espresso powder
  • teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 400 g buttermilk
  • 160 g caster sugar
  • 160 g soft light brown sugar
  • 170 ml light olive oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract
Salted Caramel
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 300 ml double cream
  • 40 g butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt I used Fleur de Sel
Salted Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  • 240 g egg whites around 8
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • 200 g light soft brown sugar
  • 500 g unsalted butter at room temperature, cubed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ quantity of salted caramel see recipe
This gluten-free Salted Caramel Chocolate Espresso Cake is one of my favourite cakes from the cake stall. A chocolate lover’s sponge sandwiched together with silky salted caramel swiss meringue buttercream and drizzled with thick luscious salted caramel.
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 170°C and line and grease 2 x 8 inch round cake tins.
  2. Melt the chocolate in a bain marie then set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl whisk together the flours, cocoa powder, espresso powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt until well mixed.
  4. In a separate bowl mix together the buttermilk, sugars, olive oil, eggs and vanilla then beat into the flour mixture.
  5. Finally mix in the melted chocolate until completely incorporated.
  6. Divide the mixture between the 2 cake tins and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
  7. Turn out the cakes and cool on wire racks before filling with buttercream.
Salted Caramel
  1. To make the Salted Caramel pour the caster sugar into a small saucepan into an even layer and heat on a medium temperature until the sugar melts. Do not touch with a spoon but you can encourage the melting by swirling the saucepan around occasionally if you like.
  2. Once melted, carefully stir in the double cream and butter, the caramel may harden slightly but just keep on stirring the bubbly mixture until the caramel is smooth. Remove from the heat then stir in the salt.
  3. Chill the caramel for a few hours until it has thickened up.
  4. Use half of the cold caramel in the buttercream, reserving the rest for drizzling over the cake.
Salted Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  1. To make the Salted Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  2. heat the egg whites and caster sugar in a bain marie, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved and the temperature has reached 71°C.
  3. Remove the egg whites and sugar from the heat and pour into a stand mixer with whisk attachment. Whisk until the mixture forms firm peaks.
  4. Change the attachment to a paddle attachment. On a low speed add the butter slowly cube by cube. When you have almost added all the butter the mixture will look curdled. Do not fret – this is supposed to happen and just means you are nearly done. Just continue to add all the butter. Once the butter is totally incorporated the buttercream will miraculously become a smooth velvety consistency.
  5. Add the salt, vanilla extract and half of the chilled salted caramel. Mix until thoroughly combined.
Assembly
  1. Spread the buttercream over one of the chocolate cakes, then place the second chocolate cake on top. Cover the cakes with a thin layer of buttercream as a crumb coat. This will ensure the first layer of buttercream catches all the loose crumbs of the cake. Place the cake in the fridge for an hour for the crumb coat to firm up.
  2. Once the crumb coat is firm then cover the cake with the rest of the buttercream. Place back in the fridge for an hour for the second coat of buttercream to firm up which will help form a solid base for the caramel drizzle.
  3. Warm up the reserved caramel in a saucepan for about 30-60 seconds until it is just at pouring consistency.
  4. Pour the caramel all over the top of the cake, starting at the centre and working out, encouraging some of the caramel to drip over the side.
  5. Serve the cake at room temperature.

Favourite Gluten-Free Cakes

I sell my cakes at local farmers’ markets in London but lucky for those who don’t live nearby I also love sharing the recipes for all the cakes I sell and if you want to receive more of my cake stall recipes then I have a FREE mini e-book of the top 3 Favourite Gluten-Free Cakes which are on my stall including Fig, Almond and Salted Honey Cake, Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes and Minted Brownies. The recipes are really special to me and if you want a copy of them then just click the button below!

Download

Cinnamon Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

Cinnamon Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

In the run-up to re-launching my cake stall again next month I am currently embarking on the phase of what I like to call ‘recipe testing’ and what others might like to say is just baking and eating a ridiculous amount of cake.

I feel I owe it to my new pitch at Tottenham Green Market to burst forth from my maternity leave with a pantheon of new creations. I only really like to sell cakes whose recipes I have carefully honed to my idea of perfection; not too sweet, interesting flavour combinations and generally that are worth breaking your diet for. There is nothing worse than being seduced by a particularly ravishing looking lemon drizzle when you are supposedly disavowing sugar, carbs and joy, only to be disappointed by a bland, dry and tooth curlingly sugary affair. I aim for my cakes to not be like that. Cake should always be a celebration, whether it’s your birthday, Wednesday morning coffee with your fellow new mums or because you deserve it after a particularly trying day with an eight-month old gentleman, frustrated, as he can’t quite master crawling.

Spiced Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

This weekend’s recipe testing for my new Cinnamon Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream coincided with our February Women’s Institute meeting which was perfect as I love it when my cakes have a purpose rather than just for baking’s sake. Plus my fellow WI members quite rightly know their cake and are not afraid to hold back with honest feedback. I was rather chuffed then when the whole cake was devoured in record time and the appropriate yummy noises were made. This time I promise it wasn’t just me doing that.

apple puree

Apples and salted caramel are absolutely BFFs, as evidenced by yesteryear’s Salted Caramel Apple Pie. Throw cream cheese into the mix and you have a particularly splendid party right there. Also there is a lot of apple puree involved here which delights me no end – I am an apple puree fanatic. Is puree the right word – or does that just refer to baby food? Hmmm, you decide, I have complete baby-weaning brain. Oh, did I mention I have a baby? Sorry, checking that now at the door.

Spiced Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

This is not just any run of the mill apple cake though, in case you were wondering. I have been experimenting with different flours recently and I added a few tablespoons of buckwheat flour to lend an earthy nutty chew to the sponge. This apple cake is wonderfully flavourful and the depth of the buckwheat rounds out the warmth of the cinnamon, allspice, cloves and nutmeg. I wonder even if next time I might like to be a little more daring with the buckwheat – if that happens I will be sure to add an update here. For now though, the amount here worked like gangbusters.

Spiced Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

I got the idea of the Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream from Ovenly, my new favourite baking book. Before Cole was born I was banned from buying any more recipe books; apparently we didn’t have the space and I couldn’t possibly have cooked all the recipes in the ones I already had. However, since ruining my body to give birth then henceforth devoting every waking and non-waking second to my precious firstborn, I now think that I deserve at least one new cookbook a week, nay, a day! Anyway, I have been buying them on the sly.

Spiced Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

I digress, the recipe in Ovenly pairs the buttercream with a Chocolate Stout sponge which sounds an absolutely sublime combination and something I must try. I can’t help but do something different though as I have always been contrary (actually that’s not true I’m very conformist, I just like pretend I invented the whole thing – look at me, aren’t I clever) and I have been craving apple cake for a few weeks now. Never being one to abstain from cravings the idea of combining the apple cake with the inspiration for the buttercream seemed like kismet. Plus the good thing with the salted caramel recipe I have included below is that it makes slightly more than you need for the buttercream which means finger dipping fun for all the family. Weeelllll… just me as I don’t think Luke’s yet clocked it’s there, probably because I have it hidden behind the broccoli and Cole has yet to be introduced to the wonder of sugar – so young, so innocent.

So after a tweak and a poke here and there this recipe has now been deemed fit for public consumption and lo I share it with you and in a few weeks I will also share it with Tottenham Green Market. Boom, here I come!

Spiced Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

(next post I promise there won’t be so much baby chat. Or maybe there will. See? Contrary.)

Cinnamon Apple Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

225g plain flour
50g buckwheat flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground allspice
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
pinch of nutmeg
170g unsalted butter
280g soft light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
300g apple puree (about 4-5 apples – I used cox’s)

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C and line and grease 2 x 20cm round baking tins.
  2. Sift together the flours, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and spices in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar for 5-10 minutes until light and fluffy.
  4. Drop the eggs, one at a time, into the creamed butter and sugar and mix in well. Then add the vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour mixture alternately with the apple puree, adding the flour in three additions and the apple puree in two (begin and end with the flour), scrape down the sides of the bowls as needed and mix until just combined.
  6. Divide between the two cake tins.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes, then remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack completely before covering with the buttercream.

Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Buttercream

To make the salted caramel:
125g caster sugar
150ml double cream
20g unsalted butter
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract

  1. Tip the sugar into a small saucepan and heat on a medium temperature until the sugar melts. Do not touch with a spoon but you can encourage the melting by swirling the actual saucepan around occasionally if you like.
  2. Once melted, carefully stir in the double cream and butter which will bubble up furiously, the caramel may harden slightly but just keep on stirring the bubbly mixture until the cream, butter and sugar are smooth.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and salt, stir in quickly and remove from the heat.
  4. Pour directly into a glass jar, seal and place in the fridge to chill thoroughly.

To make the buttercream:
500g unsalted butter
600g icing sugar
120ml salted caramel
380g cream cheese

  1. Cream the butter until soft then add the icing sugar and mix for about 10 minutes until very light and fluffy.
  2. Scoop in the cream cheese and chilled salted caramel mixing in thoroughly.
  3. Generously sandwich the buttercream between the two apple sponges and cover the sides and top, piping decoration if you wish.