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This gluten free Almond Flour Cake is infused with bright lemon flavor and topped with fresh whipped cream and berries. It’s the perfect way to welcome warmer weather in the spring or bid it adieu at the end of summer.

Flourless Almond Flour Cake topped with cream, fresh Berries, and lemon

Lemon always reminds me of spring, because every year at Easter, my Grammy bakes a special lemon dessert for our meal (this Lemon Cream Pie is a specialty of hers).

This year, I stuck to my family’s tradition of lemon (this Lemon Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting was a hit a few years ago), but I wanted to see if I could come up with a signature dessert of my own.

Not only is this almond flour cake a recipe I’d be proud to bring to any gathering, but I’d go so far as to say it could hold its own beside my Grammy’s lemon pie!

Fluffy, gluten free Almond Flour Cake topped with whipped cream, mixed berries, almonds and lemons

5 Star Review

“Made this tonight for dessert with fresh strawberries. Very good!!! Cake was light, not too sweet and perfect to end dinner.”

— Kathy —

How to Make Almond Flour Cake

This Almond Flour Cake is special for so many reasons.

It is decidedly unfussy to prepare (like this Lemon Poke Cake), yet it tastes as if it came from a bakery case.

Its flavors are pure and bright, the texture is light and airy, and while it is sweet enough to serve for dessert, it would be equally pleasing alongside a cup of morning coffee.


The Ingredients

  • Almond Flour. Made completely of finely ground almonds, almond flour has a wonderful flavor, provides nutrients and protein, and is also an excellent option for those seeking low-carb, Paleo, and, of course, gluten-free options (this Gluten Free Carrot Cake is another favorite of mine).

Dietary Note

For another gluten free and airy, pillow-like dessert, try Chocolate Meringue Cookies.

  • Eggs. Provide structure to this cake as it bakes so it doesn’t fall flat.
  • Cream of Tartar. Stabilizes the eggs during mixing and baking.
  • Lemon Zest. Adds a happy hit of bright lemon flavor.
  • Vanilla and Almond Extract. A marriage of flavors that pair well with the lemon flavor of this gluten free flourless cake.
  • Sugar. Sweetens the cake and keeps it moist and tender.
  • Baking Powder. Acts as a leavener to give this cake just the right amount of lift in the oven.

Almond Flour Cake Toppings

Decorate your finished cake with any of the following garnishes:

  • Whipped Cream. A topping that’s always delicious!
  • Fresh Berries. Strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries would all be tasty.
  • Vanilla Ice Cream. Simple and an ideal match for fresh berries!
  • Almonds. Sprinkle a few sliced almonds on top for a beautiful and delicious touch.
Easy Flourless Lemon Almond Flour Cake topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit

The Directions

  1. Lightly grease an 8-inch round pan, line with parchment paper, and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  2. Combine the egg whites, 1/4 cup of sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, and cream of tartar. Beat to soft peaks, then gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the almond flour, baking powder, salt, and egg yolk.
  4. Using a gentle hand, gradually, fold the egg white mixture into the almond flour mixture. Fold in the lemon zest.
  5. Transfer the cake batter into the prepared cake pan, and bake until golden. Let cool slightly in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Garnish the cake with berries, almonds, and whipped cream, slice, and serve. ENJOY!

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Undecorated almond flour cake may be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days. Once decorated with fruit and whipped cream, the cake should be stored in the refrigerator.
  • To Freeze. Let it cool completely, then tightly wrap it in plastic and place in the freezer. Let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight before serving. Almond flour cake may be frozen for up to 2 months.
Overhead photo of a flourless lemon cake made with almond flour and topped with whipped cream and fruit

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it Necessary to Grease and Line the Pan with Parchment Paper?

Better safe than sorry! Cakes baked with almond flour at notorious for sticking to pans. Therefore, I don’t recommend skipping greasing the pan or lining it with parchment paper.

Why is My Almond Flour Cake is Dense, Rather than Fluffy?

The trick to working with almond flour and egg whites is a light hand. When mixing the two together, you want to work gradually to make sure you don’t completely deflate the egg whites with the heavy almond flour.

Is it Possible to Make this Almond Flour Cake into a Layer Cake?

Yes! Multiple readers have reported doubling the recipe to make this recipe into a beautiful gluten free layer cake. Add whatever filling you’d like between the layers. A Lemon curd of blueberry compote would be divine.

Almond Flour Cake

4.78 from 18 votes
A light, fluffy, and gluten free almond flour cake with lemon. Try this flourless cake for your next birthday or holiday celebration.

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 55 minutes

Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 4 large eggs whites and yolks separated
  • 1/2 cup sugar plus 2 tablespoons, divided
  • 1 teaspoon  pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 cups  almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder I recommend aluminum-free
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest about 2 medium lemons
  • Sliced berries, toasted slivered almonds, whipped cream for serving

Instructions
 

  • Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8-inch round pan with butter or coconut oil, coating the bottom and up the sides. Line the bottom with parchment paper, then coat again. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar into the bottom of the pan.
  • In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a large mixing bowl, place the egg whites, 1/4 cup sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, and cream of tartar. With an electric mixer (or stand mixer) beat the egg whites on low speed until they become foamy, then increase the speed to high and continue to beat until they form soft peaks. Reduce the mixer speed to low, then gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Continue mixing on low until combined. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, stir together the almond flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the egg yolks, then stir to combine. The dough will be very thick, dry, and crumbly.
  • Working 1/2 cup at a time, gently fold in the egg whites, completely incorporating them between each addition. The batter will be very thick at first but will lighten as you progress. Fold in the lemon zest.
  • Scrape the cake batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake on the center rack for 28 to 32 minutes, until it is light golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven, place on a wire rack, and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Run a sharp knife along the edge of the cake to loosen it, then gently turn the cake out onto a serving plate and let cool completely. Serve with berries, almonds, and whipped cream, as desired.

Notes

  • TO STORE: Undecorated cake may be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days. Once decorated with fruit and whipped cream, the cake should be stored in the refrigerator.
  • TO FREEZE: Let it cool completely, then tightly wrap it in plastic and place in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight before serving. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 12), without toppingsCalories: 223kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 8gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 55mgPotassium: 77mgFiber: 3gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 80IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 86mgIron: 1mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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63 Comments

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  1. Hey Erin! I am looking for a low-carb dessert option to make for a family member with dietary restrictions and am wondering if you think it would still turn out if I used a sugar supplement like Splenda instead of the sugar? Either way, I’m excited to try making this!

    1. Hi Kelsey! To be honest, I’ve never baked with Splenda, so I’m afraid I can’t say for certain. You could definitely use a few tablespoons less sugar than the recipe calls for, or try swapping part of the sugar for a Splenda baking blend, but you would be experimenting. I’m sorry I can’t give you an exact answer—I’ve only tested the recipe as written. If you do decide to play around, I’d love to hear how it turns out!

  2. This cake looks delicious and is absolutely stunning! I would love to make this for Easter, but I don’t use sugar at all. Do you think I could sub honey instead? Not sure how this would affect the texture of the cake. Any thoughts?

    1. Hi Kay! I hate to say it, but I don’t think that would work. Granulated sugar and honey have very different textures, and while swaps work fairly well in some more dense baked goods (like blondies), and I fear the cake would be too heavy or even sticky. You can certainly experiment, but to be safe, you might want to look for a dessert in the naturally sweetened section of my recipe index instead.

  3. I’m sure we will! One quick question: do you think this would bake well in a cast iron skillet? We don’t have a round pan, but if I need to get one, I will. :) Also, I think I now need to get an electric mixer. This recipe is a great reason to do so!

    1. Hi Kori, I’d be a little wary of using a cast-iron skillet since it retains heat more than a cake pan and might make the cake edges darker. Cast iron is generally better for things you want to be lightly crispy on the outside but gooey inside, and this cake is meant to more consistent throughout. If you do give the recipe a try, I hope you love it!

        1. I really think you’ll be happy you did! Plus, then you’ll have them forever and ever amen :) I hope you guys LOVE the cake. Happy Friday!

  4. I’d love to make this for tomorrow.  I’m corn free and I only have vanilla extract.  Could I omit the almond extract?  Thank you!

    1. Absolutely! You can just swap the almond extract for about twice the amount of vanilla. I hope you love the recipe!

  5. I did make this cake for Easter and it was a huge hit. We had 8 for dinner so it was the perfect size for us. I had never worked with almond flour before and was very easy to use I think. I followed the directions exactly and it turned out perfectly. The only thing I added to the top was a few thin slices of kiwi – my husbands suggestion for color in addition to the berries. I also made your recipe for Broccoli Salad with Cranberries – also a huge hit. Don’t you just love it when there are NO leftovers to clean up?5 stars

    1. Chris, I’m so glad to hear the cake (and the salad) was a winner! Kiwi sounds like a beautiful (and delicious!) addition. Thank you so much for giving the recipes a try and reporting back!

  6. I made this for Easter and it’s fantastic!! New fav. Do you think the batter will hold up if I added blueberries to make a blueberry lemon cake? 5 stars

    1. Tricia, I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed the cake! I’ve never put berries in it, so it would be an experiment, and they might make the cake collapse a bit, since it is more delicate. If you aren’t worried about the texture, you can go ahead and add them. The safest bet would be to pile them on top just before serving, or you could also cook the berries on the stove with a bit of sugar and lemon juice to make a compote, then serve that on top of the cake.

  7. I have made this recipe many times!   Everyone loves it. You do not have to be gluten free  to have this as a favorite.  Thank you 
    Rose5 stars

    1. Rose, I’m so happy to hear the recipe is a winner for you! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this excellent review. :)

  8. Delicious! Plenty of lemon flavor, and lovely texture. I am often baking for a group of people that includes people who eat gluten free or some level of dairy-free, and now one who must avoid even butter due to the Alpha-gal tick-borne illness. Finding a recipe that doesn’t require me to make 3 different things is WINNING.5 stars

    1. I’m glad this recipe was a winner for you, Deborah! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this great review!

  9. I made this cake for a friend’s birthday last weekend so that we could take advantage of the last of CA’s gorgeous summer berries, and it was a huge hit! The cake itself was perfection in terms of flavorand consistency and with the berries and the whipped cream it was the perfect light dessert after a big birthday meal. (Well, does it count as a “light dessert” if someone ate 2.5 slices in one sitting? Asking for a friend!) I am definitely adding this one to my list of go-to cakes!5 stars

    1. YAY Rachel, I’m happy to hear you enjoyed this cake! Thanks so much for giving the recipe a try and for taking the time to leave this awesome review!

  10. I made this cake for our Staff Christmas lunch. One of my co-workers has celiac disease so I try to do a gluten free dessert for special occasions. Your cake was wonderful. I served with homemade lemon curd and berries. It was a hit and have had requests for your recipe. The only modification I made was to leave out the Almond extract (I don’t keep that one on hand) Thank you for doing the testing and posting the tips with this recipe.5 stars

    1. Maryanne, I’m so happy to hear this cake was a hit! Thank you so much for giving the recipe a try for your special occasion and leaving this wonderful review!

  11. Just made this cake, and it is great. I will freeze it today, and make it into a bunny cake for Easter. Delicious, and GLUTEN FREE. GOOD RECIPE.5 stars

    1. This would be so cute as a bunny cake, Vicki! I’m so glad you enjoy the cake—thank you for taking the time to review!

  12. Made this tonight for dessert with fresh strawberries.  Very good!!! Cake was light, not too sweet and perfect to end dinner.  I can imagine just as good with cup of coffee in am!!!!  5 stars

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to review the cake, Kathy! I’m happy to hear you enjoyed it. :)

    1. Hi DS, I haven’t tried making the cake that way, but if you want to stack them, you could experiment! Note that the bake time will likely be shorter.

  13. I just found your recipe and am excited to make it for our Easter dinner!  We will be having 10 and wondered if you have tried making two cakes and layering them with lemon curd in the middle and then finishing like you did with the fruit?  This looks luscious!  Thank you for sharing!! 

    1. Jaye, I haven’t made the cake this way, but many other readers have! If you double the recipe, note that it will be A LOT of batter, and sometimes cake recipes can be hard to double while ending up with the right texture. If you are in doubt, you can make the cake twice, then assemble the layers as you like. I hope you all enjoy it and Happy Easter!

  14. Hello Erin ~ Thank you so much for responding to my question about layering the cake.  I made it for Easter but chose the single layer and it was delicious as well as a hit with the guests who attended dinner.  I put it on a plate with a little bit of lemon sauce and then topped with fresh whipping cream and the different fruits.  I especially liked the crusty top after baking because of the sugaring in the bottom of the pan.  Truly a delightful dessert ~ 5 stars for sure! 5 stars

  15. Taste was good but mine came out dense vs light and fluffy as described.
    I followed directions exactly. But when I combined the almond flour with egg yolks, the mixture was heavy and crumbly, making it nearly impossible to fold in the whipped egg white mixture without collapsing the eggs.  Any suggestions as to what could have gone wrong? 4 stars

    1. Hi Julie! As mentioned in step 3 and 4, the dough is really crumbly, which is why I recommend incorporating the egg white mixture 1/2 cup at a time, since it’ll gradually get softer and loosen up as the whites are folded in. It’s hard to know what may have gone wrong without being in the kitchen with you, but other possible culprits could be mismeasuring the flour or overbaking. I’m glad the cake still tasted delicious!

  16. We really liked this recipe! I made two batches to make a two-layer cake. The cake is pretty delicate, which is great for texture and taste but makes it tricky to move the top layer without cracking. We patched it up with frosting and you couldn’t tell. Enjoyed by the gf birthday girl and everyone else who ate it too!5 stars

  17. Hi! I’d love to try this recipe, but I don’t have cream of tartar. Is that ingredient essential to the baking process?

    1. Hi Stefanie! I’ve never tried to omit the cream of tartar before, but from what I can find online, it sounds like you could substitute 1.5 teaspoons of baking powder for every teaspoon of cream of tartar. If you decide to experiment with it, I’d love to hear how it goes!

  18. Erin, I wish I would have remembered this recipe for Easter! We actually purchased gluten free cupcakes for my husband’s bday/Easter dinner and they were great, but I’m going to bake this cake TODAY and serve for dessert with Easter leftovers!  Thanks for all your meticulous recipe testing, I’m sure this cake will be fabulous!

    1. Hi Julie! I’ve only tested this recipe with the parchment paper, so I’m not sure how it would turn out. If you decide to try it, I’d recommend making sure it’s greased very well, as almond flour recipes tend to stick.

  19. This is a lovely recipe for gluten free and vegan diets! I used Splenda and it works really well! Thanks Erin for your wonderful contributions to the world of healthy cooking!5 stars

  20. Just made the cake for a gluten free friend and turned out great! I do plan on glazing with the juice from the lemons to make it little more sweet and lemony. Two points to make for others – make sure you follow the folding of the egg whites half a cup at a time. The first half of the whites loosens up the dry clumpy flour mixture and if you fold in the remaining carefully and don’t overmix, it turns out nice and light. Also, I cooked it in a 9” pan because that’s what I had, and for only 22 minutes, and it was perfectly done so glad I did follow the timing for the 8” round. Great recipe and I’ll have to try more!5 stars

    1. Hi Valerie! Thanks so much for coming back and giving all of your feedback! It’s so helpful for other readers, so I really appreciate it! So glad you enjoyed it!

  21. This is the best birthday cake recipe for persons who have Celiac disease. I followed the recipe carefully. It’s light and delicious. I frosted the sides with cream cheese frosting. I used a 9 inch spring form pan. I highly recommend this recipe. It’s easy to make.5 stars

    1. Hi Shannon, I’ve never put berries in it, so it would be an experiment, and they might make the cake collapse a bit, since it is more delicate. If you aren’t worried about the texture, you can go ahead and add them. The safest bet would be to pile them on top just before serving, or you could also cook the berries on the stove with a bit of sugar and lemon juice to make a compote, then serve that on top of the cake.

  22. OMG!I made this as a consession for my gluten avoiding friend, and it turned out to be a huge favorite in my repatoir of desserts I’ve been making for our weekly get togethers…gluten free or not. After I made it for the dinner, my husband asked me to make it again, just for us. Beating the whites separately is key. And don’t skimp on the zest!!5 stars

  23. I made this twice this week. The first time for practice with a 8.5″ pan and the second time with TWO 7″ pans. The second time I baked it only for 20 minutes.
    TIPS:
    1. Cream of tartar is ess
    2. For whipping egg whites, I aggressively mixed in ~1/4 cup egg whites with the flour mix first to make the mix smoother/less clumpy before gently folding in egg whites thereafter.5 stars

  24. By far the worst cake recipe I’ve ever baked. Mixing the egg yolks into the almond flour then adding beaten egg whites made for a very lumpy batter. Will not make again!

    1. I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble with the recipe, Judy. The amounts, flavorings and timing have worked well for myself (and others) so I wished it would have been a hit for you too! I know it can be so disappointing to try a new recipe and it does not turn out for you.

  25. Eek! If i ever make this recipe again, I won’t mix the egg yolks into the almond flour. It’s huge clumps. Super ick. My batter was sooo lumpy and nothing I could do about it without beating it to death. For those of you reading – if I were to go back in time I would mix the egg whites with the dry ingredients, then mix in the yolks when it’s all mixed together.2 stars

    1. I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble with the recipe. The amounts, flavorings and timing have worked well for myself (and others) so I wished it would have been a hit for you too! I know it can be so disappointing to try a new recipe and it does not turn out for you.