RECIPE: Delicious Chocolate and Orange, Gluten-free Cake for the Holidays!

Published on: December 03, 2017

Looking to make something easy, delicious, and healthy? Follow the recipe for a chocolate cake loaded with vitamin C and free from wheat, gluten, dairy and refined sugar! By Amelia Stewart    This cake is easy to make and is a fabulously creative way to use leftover rice. It has an extremely delicious brownie-like texture, despite being free from wheat, gluten, dairy, and refined sugar. In terms of trying to minimize food waste, this is the ultimate cake – using the whole orange (pith and all) gives the cake a gorgeous fragrance and the fibers assist in binding it. It’s also a great way to sneak some extra vitamin C into your child’s diet in disguise of a chocolate cake. Raw cacao is packed with antioxidants, consumption of which is essential to help maintain a healthy immune system as well as shield the body from Bangkok’s heavy pollution. I like to use desiccated coconut for the interesting texture it creates, but if you’re not a fan of coconut, you can easily replace this with rice flour. Regarding the best kind of rice to use, I have used steamed short-grain white rice, but any steamed rice will do – and perhaps using something like red rice would give a nuttier texture.


(makes 1x 8-inch cake or 9 large cupcakes)
  • 1 cup of cooked rice (cooled)
  • ½ cup of coconut palm sugar
  • 2 oranges (seedless if possible)
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup of desiccated coconut (can replace with ½ cup rice flour)
  • ½ cup raw cacao powder (+ 1 extra tbsp for dusting)
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • coconut oil for greasing


  • Pre-heat your oven to 180C/350F and line a cake tin with baking paper or grease it well with coconut oil.
  • Simmer the whole oranges in a pot of water, (or microwave) until soft enough to slide a knife through. Drain the water and set to one side. When they have cooled down, cut them in half, remove any pips, and then blitz the entire fruit in a blender – the pith and everything.
  • Next, put the cooked rice, vanilla extract and coconut palm sugar in a food processor and blend until you have a smooth paste.
  • Measure the dry ingredients (desiccated coconut/rice flour, cacao powder, and baking powder) in a bowl and stir well to combine.
  • Place the wet mixture in another bowl and beat in the eggs one at a time 
  • Fold in the dry ingredients.
  •  Once well combined, pour into the cake tin and place in the oven to bake for about 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
  •  Remove from the oven and set aside to cool for around 10 minutes; then dust with some cacao powder and enjoy!
Extra topping tip: You could also make a ganache with melted dark chocolate, cacao powder and coconut cream — have a play around and see what you like best.  

About the Author

Amelia, founder of Cook First ( is a cooking teacher, food writer, and consultant. Amelia specializes in — amongst other things — gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free and vegan cuisine, and has extensive experience working with all types of food allergies.
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