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Browned Butter Chocolate Cake

GF Browned Butter Chocolate Cake w/ Chocolate Meringue Buttercream

Browned butter and brown sugar add deep caramel flavors to a rich, yet light and fluffy chocolate cake. Watch a how-to video on making a not-too-sweet chocolate buttercream.
Course Cake
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 8


  • For the cake:
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tsp. sugar 78 grams
  • 1 cups and 1/2 brown sugar firmly packed (220 grams)
  • 9 Tbsp . butter 141 grams
  • 1 cup and 3/4 Gluten Free Flour w/ xanthan gum I use Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten Free Baking Flour, 225 grams
  • 2 tsp and 1/2 . baking powder 11 grams
  • 1/2 tsp . espresso powder 2 grams
  • 1 tsp . salt 6 grams
  • 1 cup warm water 215 grams
  • 2 tsp . vanilla 10 grams
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 and 1/2 Tbsp. cocoa 85 grams
  • For the Meringue:
  • 9 Tbsp . egg white powder 40 grams
  • 1/2 cup water 110 grams
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 Tbsp . plus 1 tsp. sugar 30 grams
  • 4 grams sticks butter softened (227 )
  • 2 cups powdered sugar 210 grams
  • For the Sugar Syrup:
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. sugar 175 grams
  • 2 Tbsp . corn syrup 45 grams
  • 2 Tbsp and 1/2 . water 45 grams


  • For the cake:
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  • Heat the 9 Tbsp. of butter in a medium saucepan over moderate heat. Cook until butter is golden brown and has a nutty fragrance. Remove from the heat and let cool for a few minutes.
  • Whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, and salt. Whisk in the browned butter until fully combined.
  • Whisk in the vanilla and eggs, one at a time.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, cocoa, baking powder, and espresso powder.
  • Incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  • Whisk in the warm water until fully incorporated.
  • Butter two 9-inch round cake pans. Cover the bottom of both pans in parchment paper rounds. Butter the top of the parchment.
  • Fill the pans with equal amounts of batter.
  • Bake in the middle rack until the cake is set and the edges begin to pull away from the pans, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Let cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, you can wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze. This will make it easier to frost the cakes.
  • For the Sugar Syrup:
  • In a small saucepan, heat the corn syrup, water, and sugar over medium to medium high heat. Do not stir. Insert a candy thermometer and simmer until it reaches 244 degrees. Remove from the heat.
  • For the meringue:
  • While the syrup is simmering, whisk the egg white powder, water, and salt in a standing mixer over medium high speed.
  • Once the syrup reaches 244 degrees, turn down the mixer to low speed. Pour in the syrup in between the whisk and bowl to keep it from sticking to the bowl. Once the syrup is incorporated, turn the speed up to medium high and whisk until you have firm peaks and the bottom of the bowl is cool to the touch, about 10-15 minutes.
  • Whisk in the softened butter in small pieces, a little at a time. The meringue might deflate a bit, but don't worry, keep whisking!
  • Turn the speed down to low and add the powdered sugar and cocoa, a little at a time, scraping down the bowl to incorporate.
  • Frost the cake and voila!