Fluffy layers of sweet honey cake speckled with rich chocolate chips, paired with a tart blackberry filling, and covered in the most amazing whipped blackberry buttercream frosting. This easy gluten-free honey blackberry cake is begging you to give it a bake this summer.
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The Best Gluten-Free Honey Layer Cake
Made from scratch with the most tender of layers, this gluten-free honey cake recipe is simple to make and a perfect way to showcase those fresh summer blackberries. Perfectly balanced between sweet and tart, you are going to fall in love with every fresh honey and blackberry bite.
What Makes Up A Dairy-Free Honey Cake
Honey Cake Layers – A soft and tender crumb, each honey cake layer is speckled deliciously with chocolate chips.
Blackberry Filling – Smooth, tart, and full of amazing blackberry flavor.
Blackberry Frosting – Light and not too sweet, this frosting pairs gorgeously with the warm notes of honey found in the cake layers.
Honey Blackberry Cake Ingredients & Substitutions
As always this recipe is gluten-free and dairy-free. That said, I do test each recipe with “regular” ingredients and make notes of alternatives or swaps so that everyone can enjoy it.
Here are a few key ingredients for this cake but make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom recipe card for the complete ingredient list.
Gluten-Free Flour: I made this cake with Kinnikinnick all-purpose baking mix. If you are not gluten-free, swap the flour with regular cake flour. Note that gluten-free flour blends can vary in weight so I recommend measuring by the cup.
Dairy-Free Milk: I love to bake with unsweetened almond milk but this recipe will work with any type of non-dairy, lactose-free, vegan, or regular dairy milk. The higher the fat content the better.
Oil: Use canola or vegetable oil for best results but any neutral-tasting oil will work.
Honey: Any form of raw or pasteurized honey will work. I used liquid BeeMaid honey as it’s my personal favorite.
Dairy-Free Butter: Becel plant-based bricks are my personal favorite for baking but any brick-style dairy-free, vegan, lactose-free, or regular butter will work.
Blackberries: Fresh or frozen, both blackberry varieties will do the job.
Dairy-Free Chocolate Chips: I used plant-based Pascha semi-sweet chocolate chips but any type/style of chocolate chips (vegan or non-vegan) will work. You can also omit the chocolate chips entirely.
Easy Step-By-Step Instructions
Here’s how to make this simple dairy-free and celiac-friendly honey layer cake recipe. You’ll need a large mixing bowl, a stand mixer or handheld electric one, two 8 or 9-inch round cake pans, a small pot, and a spatula.
1: Cream together the butter, honey, and oil.
2: Add in the eggs and vanilla extract and mix until combined.
3: Measure in the flour, baking powder, and salt and begin to mix on low.
4: With the mixer on low, slowly pour in the milk and mix until just combined.
5: Gently toss the chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon of flour to coat and fold into the cake batter.
6: Divide the cake batter into two 8-inch cake pans and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes. Cool cakes on a cooling rack.
7: Combine the blackberries, sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch, and salt in a pot and cook over medium until thick. Remove from the heat and allow to fully cool.
8: With the paddle attachment cream the butter on high until smooth and fluffy.
9: Add in the icing sugar, blackberry filling, lemon juice, and salt and mix until combined. Turn up to high and allow to cream until fluffy and smooth.
10: Stack, fill, and frost the cake. Enjoy!
Honey Blackberry Cake Assembly Success Tips
Stacking a layer cake can feel a bit scary. But, as they say, slow and steady wins the race. Let’s set you up for dazzling blackberry layer cake success with a few tips and tricks.
Fully Cooled Cake Layers: Even if a tiny bit warm, layers will slip when warm. Ensure that each cake layer is fully cooled if not even a bit chilled. I will even work with semi-frozen cake layers if I had to bake them a few days before stacking.
Leveled Cake Layers: Flat and level cake layers will sit far easier than crooked ones. I use this super easy cake tool to ensure each cake layer is perfectly level.
Create a Frosting Border: Pipe a frosting border between the cake layers. It acts as a dam to keep that delicious blackberry filling in.
Keep the Cake Chilled: If at any point you begin to feel the cake slip or the frosting is too soft to work with, pop the cake and the frosting back into the fridge to chill. Remember, don’t rush it. Take your time.
How To Decorate An Allergy-Friendly Honey Cake
“As you desire” is often how I refer to cake decoration. It’s not that I don’t want you to make the exact same cake as I did, it’s simply that I don’t want you to feel like you *have* to make the exact same cake.
We all have an inner cake artist and I always want to encourage you to let it shine. That said, I quickly break down this gluten-free and lactose-free honey cake decor for you.
First: Crumb-coat the cake and allow it to chill for 20 minutes. **See the above section for stacking tips and tricks.
Second: Put a final “beauty” coat of frosting on the cake and very roughly smooth the sides of the cake smoother or offset spatula. Leave the top edge of the cake rough.
Third: Top with buttercream swirls and fresh blackberries.
Fourth Chill the cake until ready to serve. *Allow the cake to come to room temperature for 20-30 minutes before slicing.
Storing & Freezing Instructions
This cake can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. It can also be stored in the freezer for up to 6 months. Note that fruit filling, after frozen, such as this amazing blackberry filling will sometimes thaw a bit runny.
Bakers Tip: If you want to bake the cake layers a few days in advance, you most certainly can. Allow the layers to cool, cover them tightly in plastic wrap, and freeze until you a ready to stack and decorate the cake.
Remove the cake layers from the freezer approximately 1 hour before you plan to stack and decorate and allow them to thaw slightly at room temperature.
Can this be made into cupcakes?
Yes, it absolutely can. The full recipe will make approximately 24 cupcakes or you could half it for 12 cupcakes.
What other pans can I use?
This can be baked in a 9×13 cake pan (it won’t need as much frosting though), three 6-inch rounds, or two 9-inch pans. Note that the baking time will change.
**Always look for light golden edges that are pulling away from the pan, the top should bounce bake to the touch, and a toothpick inserted in the center will come out with a few moist crumbs.
Can Blackberry Filling Be Made In Advance?
Absolutely. This easy blackberry filling is good in the fridge for up to 2 weeks although I highly doubt it will last that long seeing as how scrumptious it is.
What Other Frosting Would Work?
This cake would be phenomenally yummy with a plain vanilla frosting or even a blackberry cream cheese one. Follow the buttercream recipe found in my Raspberry Cake except use blackberry filling instead of raspberry filling. Scrumptious!
The Yummiest Gluten-Free Honey Blackberry Layer Cake
A slice of sensational summer berry, this fresh gluten-free dairy-free honey blackberry cake is a delicious combo of sweet and tart in every yummy bite.
Soft fluffy honey cake layers bursting with chocolate chips, tart blackberry filling, and gorgeous whipped blackberry frosting. This dazzling cake is a summer delight in every scrumptious spoonful.
Make sure you tag me on social media @cakedbykatie and leave me a star rating and review below if you make it. Can’t wait to see it!
More Berry-Inspired Dessert Recipes
Here are a few other fresh summer berry sweet treats that I know you’ll enjoy:
- Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes (GF & DF)
- Chantilly Cake (GF & DF)
- Raspberry Cake (GF & DF)
- Raspberry Blondies (GF & DF)
- Blueberry Cake (GF & DF)
- Strawberry Cake (GF & DF)
- Lemon Blueberry Layer Cake (GF & DF)
- Blueberry Lemon Cookies (GF & V)