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  • Writer's pictureAmanda

Gluten Free King Cake

It’s a Mardi Gras must, y’all. King cake is something near and dear to my heart and until this one, I haven’t had a gluten-free one that met my standards and just really fulfilled and satisfied me. So I’m pretty excited to share this with you as I know it will bring you and your krewe a lot of joy. While I’d love to write something clever or give you more background, I’ll be completely honest in saying I’ve been dealing with some morning sickness and I’m short on time. So here it is.

If you want a little king cake history & tradition, check out my King Cake Cookies post. You can also find info about my favorite natural food colors and sugar alternatives there.

Photos with Step-by-Step tutorial to be added in future, okay?

Xx Happy Mardi Gras, Y’all!

Gluten Free King Cake

Yield: 18-20 slices



1 c warm water

3.5 t instant dry yeast

⅓ c + 2t of raw sugar

¾ c non-dairy unsweetened yogurt, like culina

2 large eggs

1 yolk

2 ½ t vanilla extract

5 ½ c Pamela’s gluten free bread mix

2 ½ t baking powder

4 t xanthan gum

½ t salt

⅓ c butter, cubed and softened


2 T + 1 T melted butter or ghee

1 c brown sugar or coconut sugar

2 T cinnamon

⅓ c chopped pecans, optional


½ c raw sugar or classic monkfruit sweetener, powdered

¼ c arrowroot powder

2 ½ T warm water

½ t vanilla, optional

¼ c of each color of colored sugar (purple, green, and gold) see this post for instructions


  • In the bowl of your stand mixer, stir 2 t sugar into warm water (ideal temperature of water is 110 degrees F). Next, sprinkle the yeast over this mixture and let it sit until it foams, about 8 minutes.

  • In a bowl, combine flour, ⅓ c sugar, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt, and set aside.

  • In a small bowl, combine filling ingredients and set aside.

  • In another small bowl, whisk together yogurt, eggs, vanilla and set aside.

  • Once the yeast mixture is foamy, gently add the yogurt, eggs, and vanilla. Beat on low, using the paddle attachment, until mixture is just combined.

  • Next, switch to the dough hook attachment on your mixer.

  • Add the dry ingredients to the bowl. Beat on low for 2 minutes, or until the mixture is just combined. You may need to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing.

  • Add softened butter to the dough and beat on low-medium until butter is well incorporated.

  • Transfer dough to an oiled bowl & allow it to rise in a warm, draft-free spot, for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until it has increased in size by nearly double. **If you are baking at altitude do a first rise of 30 minutes, punch the dough down, and do a second rise of 30 minutes.**

  • Transfer dough to floured parchment paper and roll it into a rectangle of 12’’ X 24’’.

  • Melt 2T of butter and brush it or spread it across the surface of the dough, leaving about a 1’’ border all around.

  • Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly across the surface. Sprinkle optional pecans across the surface.

  • Next gently roll the dough, starting with the longer side, into one roll. Use the parchment paper beneath the dough to lift and roll. Gently form the roll into a circle by joining the ends. Wet your fingertips and pinch & mold the two ends together so there is no gap left. Your circle should be about 11’’ in diameter.

  • Transfer the formed cake to a sheet pan by sliding the parchment paper with the dough cirlce on it gently onto a pan. Brush the top of the cake with remaining 1 T of butter.

  • Bake at 375 degrees F for 35 - 38 minutes, or until the cake becomes more firm and slightly golden brown. You are going for the consistency of a cinnamon roll.

  • Remove cake from the oven and allow it to cool completely before frosting.

  • To make the frosting, powder the sugar or monkfruit sweetener by running it through your food processor or blender until it’s a fine powder. Using a fork, whisk it together with arrowroot powder and then add the water, stirring quickly with a fork. It will be very thick and you will have to stir thoroughly for the mixture to loosen up a bit. You may need to add ½ teaspoons of water until desired consistency (similar to classic Elmer’s glue) is achieved.

  • Have your colored sugars ready to go as you will need to work quickly once the frosting is applied.

  • Drizzle the frosting across the top of the entire cake, allowing it to run down the sides.

  • Working quickly so your sugar can adhere before the frosting solidifies too much, apply the purple, green, and gold colored sugars alternating the colors as you go.

  • Allow icing to dry fully (this will happen within 10 minutes) before slicing the cake.

  • Don’t forget to warn your krewe if there’s a plastic baby hidden inside! Enjoy & Bon Appetit Y’all!

Notes: *To make this recipe dairy free, substitute ½ ghee & ½ palm shortening for the butter. *To make this recipe nut free, omit optional pecans.

About this Recipe:

dairy free* coconut free nut free* gluten free

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