Gluten free chocolate pan cake that actually tastes like cake

A couple of weeks ago, I posted that I was going to try to bake with King Arthur measure for measure flour.  Well, today I took the plunge- I made their chocolate pan cake with this flour substitute.

I have to admit I was skeptical-I have seen many cup for cup flour substitutes, and have read rave reviews on them but I tend to take them with a grain of, er salt.  Th quest for a gluten free cake that actually looks and tastes like cake is one worthy of Don Quixote himself.   Let’s face it- most gluten free baked goods leave a lot to be desired.  But when I commented on a Facebook post by King Arthur that I wished they posted mor gluten free recipes, they recommended their measure for measure flour.  So I though, what have I got to lose?

The cake recipe is a very simple one:

1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or Organic All-Purpose Flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa or natural cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder, optional
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon vinegar, cider or white
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup cold water


Preheat your oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8″ square or 9″ round pan that’s at least 2″ deep. If you don’t have a 2″-deep pan in either of those sizes, use a 9″ square pan.

Traditional method: Measure all the dry ingredients into the prepared pan. Blend the ingredients together thoroughly with a fork or whisk and scoop out three holes, or indentations. Pour the vanilla into the first hole, the vinegar into the second, and the vegetable oil into the third. Take the cup of water and pour it directly over everything in the pan. Stir all the ingredients together with your fork until well blended.

Updated method: Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk the vanilla, vinegar, vegetable oil, and water in a separate bowl. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients, stirring until thoroughly combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake the cake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs clinging to it.

Serve the cake right from the pan; warm from the oven, it’s wonderful with a big glass of milk.

Or, once cool, frost the cake with this simple chocolate frosting: Heat 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips with 1/2 cup half & half until the chips melt. Stir until smooth, and pour/spread over the cake. For a non-dairy icing, substitute 1/3 cup cold brewed coffee (or water) for the half & half.

I used the updated method in a 9 inch square pan.  I left out the espresso powder.  I baked the cake for 30 minutes.

I had to skip the icing part- I did order Enjoy life chocolate chips but alas, thy have not arrived yet.

Th verdict-the cake is moist with a good crumb-in other words, it looks and tastes like cake!   I think I have found a really good substitute flour.  King Arthur is one of the best baking sites online,  in my opinion.  They also have a hotline you can call with any baking questions.  I have found their staff to be very knowledgable.

I will be trying other recipes with this flour.  You cannot use it for yeast breads however.  It’s best to use a dedicated gluten free mix for those.

If any of you  do decide to try out this or any other recipe using the measure for measure flour, please comment on your experience.


The cake held up well in the fridge overnight with just a short warm up in the microwave.

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