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Chocolate Cherry Cake (Gluten-Free)

How to make the best chocolate cherry cake from scratch. This simple, quick, and easy recipe makes a beautiful layer cake with cherry pie filling in between all the layers. Homemade frosting too. Your friends will not believe that this cake is gluten-free! It is moist, rich, and delicious, and the cherries in the center make it amazing!

I almost didn’t post this amazing recipe, my friend.

My gluten-free chocolate cherry cake sounds delicious (and is!) but looks ugly. I mean, truly hideous. It’s so bad that I didn’t even take a picture of the whole thing. What I have above is as good as it gets.

As usual, my foibles make good learning experiences for you. I did some research after my regrettable mistake and found a way for you to make this cake Pinterest-worthy.

I have included those instructions in the recipe below.

Now, on with the post I wrote as the cake was baking (thus, before I learned how to prevent the cake from sticking):

This is a sponsored post.

Have you seen this? It’s making its way around Facebook:

a cartoon showing kids cooking and making a mess

I rolled the first time I saw it because it is oh so very true.

Even with the mess and inconvenience, I love baking with my kids.

By that, I mean that I make excuses to bake with my kids. I beg them to come into the kitchen and cook with me.

Allie still goes for my tricks; she likes to bake with me, too. She likes to stick her fingers in the batter and lick them off and stick them back in again, and she likes that I pretend not to notice. (We’re just feeding the family here. I guess I wouldn’t let her stick them back in the batter if we were feeding other people. But maybe I would, and that’s why nobody comes over.)

Grace has aged out of the baking fun and would prefer to read or watch Ruff Ruffman on the iPad.

But Allie still appeases me, and we have great fun baking together.

Like we did this weekend as we made this amazing gluten-free chocolate cherry cake. Allie was naked, freshly out of the bathtub, and she whisked and measured and I just stood alongside her and took pictures, trying to preserve her modesty as much as possible.


Anyway, this recipe is so easy that a 4-year-old can make it. You will have this put together in less than ten minutes, and you can spend the rest of your evening looking at poorly drawn cartoons on Facebook or reading through my cooking archives because your cake will be finished.

Spraying the pans with Crisco® 100% Original Oil makes recipe preparation a breeze!

I learned the hard way that the gluten-free version of this cake is super moist and sticky. It makes for a superlative eating experience, but if you don’t prepare for it ahead of time, that rich, dense goodness is going to stick to the pan.


So do this:

  • Cut a round of parchment paper to fit each cake pan.
  • Spray the pans thoroughly with Crisco® 100% Original Oil.
  • Lay the parchment on top of the spray, then spray the parchment again.

It sounds like you’re using a lot of oil, but it will prevent your cakes from sticking to the pans!

When the cakes come out of the oven, let them cool, then invert on a platter.

Peel the parchment off the top of the cake layer, and proceed with the instructions.

Simple, right?

Print Recipe
Gluten-Free Chocolate Cherry Cake
Course Dessert
Course Dessert
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Spray 2 or 3 8-inch cake pans with Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. (This recipe makes a lot.)
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a second, smaller bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, oil, vanilla, almond extract, and water together.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth. The batter will be very thin and runny.
  5. Distribute the batter between the cake pans. Bake for 30 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean. (If using 3 pans, check them after 20 or 25 minutes. They will cook more quickly than 2 pans.)
  6. To prepare the frosting, pour the melted butter into the cocoa powder and whisk until well blended. Add a scoop of sugar and whisk. Then add some milk and whisk. Alternate adding sugar and milk while mixing until the frosting is smooth and spreadable. You might want to use your mixer for this as it can take awhile. If your frosting seems too thick to be spread, add a little extra milk. If it seems too runny, add extra powdered sugar. Stir in the vanilla extract and almond extract.
  7. To assemble, place one of the cakes on a platter. Top with a generous layer of cherry pie filling. Add a second cake layer and more cherry pie filling. Top with the third cake layer and frost with the chocolate frosting.
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There are coupons on it, too!

Most of the ingredients for this cake came from our local grocery store, Giant.


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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of of The J.M. Smucker Company. The opinions and text are all mine.

© 2015 – 2018, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.