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Take the best gluten-free chocolate cake and make it even better by turning it into the most indulgent Black Forest Cake that is perfect for any special occasion, or a Tuesday because hello why not?
If you've been around awhile, then you know my love for chocolate runs deep. On most holidays and special occasions, there is something chocolate being made and enjoyed in my house. I mean, if you are a chocolate lover like me, then you just get it. That's why I had to perfect my totally grain-free chocolate cake recipe. I didn't stop there because a delicious chocolate cake is one thing, but taking that simple, delicious cake and taking it up a notch into something extraordinary is fun too. That's why I'm giving you my gluten-free Black Forest Cake because, trust me, you need it in your life.
What is Black Forest Cake?
Black Forest Cake is a traditional German cake. It is a combination of chocolate cake, a light and fluffy stabilized whipped cream, and a fresh cherry filling. This cake is often infused with kirsch (brandy)-infused cherries. I leave it out for this recipe but don't worry, that doesn't mean we are losing any delicious flavor by doing so. This also makes it not just a treat for the adults to enjoy, which makes everyone happy.
This is a must-make cake when all the fresh cherries are in season, aka NOW!
What do I need to make Black Forest Cake
For the Cake:
I use my Grain-free Chocolate Cake recipe, but you can feel free to use a gluten-free variety you prefer.
For the Stabilized Whipped Cream:
- Heavy Whipping Cream
- Powdered Sugar - I use Wholesome Brand because they are grain-free.
- Cold Water
- Unflavored Gelatin
For the Cherry Sauce/ Filling:
- Lemon Juice/ Lemon Zest
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Tips and Tricks
While stabilizing the whipped cream does make it hold its shape longer, it still does not hold up as long a traditional buttercream. For this reason, I tend to make the frosting and assemble the cake the day I plan to serve it.
I prefer to use fresh cherries, but frozen ones will work just fine if you don't have access to fresh cherries. I would not recommend maraschino cherry for this recipe.
Let's Make Some Black Forest Cake
- Bake the choclate cake, let it cool completely before assembling.
- Make the cherry filling and sauce and separate the sauce the from the cherry filling before thickening.
- Whip up the stabized whipped cream frosting.
- Assemble the cake by starting with a layer of chocolate cake. Then brush a layer of the cherry sauce over the cake. Top with the stabilized whipped cream and cherry filling. Repeate with the remaining layers of cake and filling.
- Top the whole cake with chocolate ganace if desired, more whipped cream and fresh cherries.
- Keep chilled until about 20 minutes till it is time to be served.
Take it up a notch!
If you want to make this cake even more decadent, feel free to drizzle the whole thing in an easy ganache before topping with more of the cherry goodness.
Take 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and bring it to a simmer on the stove. Once it's at a simmer, pour it over 8oz of semi-sweet chocolate chips in a bowl. Cover and let it sit for about five minutes undisturbed. After it has sat, slowly begin whisking it until it turns into a rich and velvety smooth ganache that you can pour over the top of your cake.
You could also add some freshly shaved chocolate to the outside of the cake if you want. You really can't go wrong no matter how you like it.
Storring Black Forest Cake
Because this cake uses a stabilized whipped cream frosting, it is best to keep it in the fridge until you are about to serve it. With that said, it will have the best texture if it is eaten with 1-3 days. I do not recommend freezing black forest cake.
Gluten-free Black Forest Cake
- 1 Batch Gluten-free Chocolate Cake
Cherry Sauce and Filling
- 3 C Fresh or Frozen Pitted Cherries
- 1 C Sugar
- 1 C Water
- 1 Whole Lemon (Zest + Juice)
- 3 TBS Tapioca or Corn Starch optional if you want your cherry filling thicker.
Stabilized Whipped Cream Frosting
- 2 c Heavy Whipping Cream
- ½ C Powdered Sugar
- 1 Packet Unflavored Gelatin
- 1 TSP Vanilla
- ¼ C Cold Water
- 8 OZ Semi-sweet Chocolate
- 1 C Heavy Whipping Cream
For the Cake
- Make and bake the gluten free chocolate cake into 2-3 layers in size of choice and allow them to fully cool before assembling the cake.
For the Cherry Sauce/ Filling
- Place the pitted cherries, sugar, water and lemon zest and juice into a pot over medi-low m heat.
- Allow the cherries start to soften and begin to release their juice, about 20 minutes or so.
- Drain about ½ to 1 C of the liquid from the cherry mixture and set it aside to cool. This will become the cherry sauce when assembiling the cake later.
- Let the remaining cherry sauce cook a little bit longer to allow it to thicken to desired thickness. If you want at this point you can add 2-3 tbs of tapioca starch or corn starch and whisk till combine to help the sauce thicken even more.
- Put the remaning cherry filling mixture aside to cool until you are ready to assemble the cake.
For the Stabilized Whipped Cream Frosting
- Place the gelatine into a small bowl with the cold water and stir till disolved and let it rest.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer slowly whip the heavy whipping cream until it starts to get frothy.
- With the mixer running slowly add the powdered sugar. Increase the speed and continue to whip until the mixture forms soft peaks.
- Place the bowl of gelatine into the microwave and heat it for about 15 seconds until it becomes liquid.
- With the mixer on low slowly add the heated gelatine to the whipped cream.
- Continue to whip the stabilized whipped cream until medium-stiff peaks are formed.
- Fold in the vanilla and chill until you are ready to assemble the cake.
Assemble the Cake
- Start with a layer of cake.
- Brush a bit of the cherry syrup over the cake to let the cherry flavor infuse the cake.
- Add a layer of the stabilized whipped cream on top of the cherry sauce.
- Top the stabilized whipped cream with a layer of the fresh cherry filling.
- Repeate as needed until all layers of cake have been added.
- Top the cake with chocolate ganache (if desired) more stabilized whipped cream and cerries for a finishing touch.
- Chill the cake until about 20 minutes before you plan to serve and enjoy.