Gluten Free Vanilla Layer Cake {with rose decorating tutorial}

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, anniversary, wedding, or just the fact that it’s another day, this gluten free Vanilla Layer Cake is perfect for all occasions. Covering the cake with the beautiful buttercream roses really adds something special, and it’s really easy to do too!

Gluten Free Vanilla Layer Cake with rose decorating tutorial


Thank you so much to everyone for the outpouring of birthday wishes yesterday on Facebook. It’s so great to be able to spend my day with so many caring people. Thank You! I promised you that I would share the recipe for this delicious vanilla cake today, so here it is!

I find that creating a gluten free vanilla cake is quite a bit more difficult than a chocolate cake. Getting the crumb just right, plus the flavour, texture, and colour, was a bit of a challenge. After the numerous attempts creating the gluten free Vanilla Bundt Cake, at least I had a starting point.

And the roses? SO EASY to do, you can easily impress your loved ones with a beautiful rose cake that you decorated yourself.

Gluten Free Vanilla Layer Cake {with rose decorating tutorial}
Serves: 12-16
Vanilla Layer Cake
  • 1 cup white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup dry milk powder
  • 1/4 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca starch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup milk, room temperature
Crusting Buttercream
  • 8 cups confectioners’ (icing) sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon clear vanilla (regular vanilla can be used, the icing will not be as white though)
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 8-12 tablespoons heavy (whipping) cream
Vanilla Layer Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two 9-inch baking pans with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the rice flours, potato starch, milk powder, sweet rice flour, tapioca starch, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar until light in colour and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs and egg whites, one at a time, running the mixer in between, allowing the mixture to become smooth before adding the next egg/egg white.
  5. Add the sour cream, vanilla extract and almond extract.
  6. With the mixer running on low, add half of the flour mixture to the sugar/butter mixture. Run the mixer until it is combined.
  7. Add the milk, and continue mixing until combined.
  8. Add the last of the dry ingredients, and mix until all the ingredients are evenly mixed.
  9. Divide the batter between the two prepared baking pans. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  10. Leave the cakes in the pans for about 5 minutes before turning out on a cooling rack and allowing to cool completely before frosting.
Crusting Buttercream
  1. Beat together all the ingredients until smooth. Start with 8 tablespoons cream, and add more, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you get a nice soft, smooth consistency that still holds its shape. If you accidentally add too much cream, add a little more confectioners’ sugar. This is a LOT of frosting, but piping the roses uses a lot of frosting.
  2. Frost the top of one of the cakes, and stack the second cake on top. Using an offset spatula, coat the cake with a thin layer of frosting. It doesn’t need to be smooth or pretty, just coated. Refrigerate for 15 minutes to let the frosting set before piping the roses.
  3. Fit a piping bag with a large star tip (I use the Wilton 1M tip). Fill with the buttercream.
  4. To see how to make the roses, watch my video on YouTube.


Watch how easy it is to make a rose cake. Change up the colour of the frosting for a beautiful ombre cake.


How to make a rose ombre cake


Looking for more cakes that would be perfect covered in roses? How about these:


  1. Jill says

    The most beautiful cake I’ve ever seen. I’m horrible with icing but I might have to give it a try! Thanks for sharing and happy belated birthday Jeanie.

  2. Alice says

    Looks wonderful!! I made the Rainbow Layer cake with the 4 colors for my daughter in law’s birthday this weekend! It turned out great except that it wasn’t GF!! Would love to try it with this cake! I wonder how it would work?

    • says

      I was thinking about that too, April. Thing is, my daughter wanted to bake my birthday cake, so I was thinking a cake mix was easiest. Then we ended up not baking any cake. lol If you try it, please let me know!

  3. Penny Calhoun says

    Isn’t vanilla gluten. I suppose you could make your own with potato vodka. I’m thinking of trying it myself. I have raging Celiac, I have to be so careful.

  4. T says

    This looks delicious. I have made different cupcakes you have posted and everyone always loves them. They don’t even think they are gluten free!! You have the best cake/cupcake recipes by far. I was wondering if you would add sprinkles to the cake to make it more of a confetti cake or would you just use your confetti cupcake recipe and make it into a cake? Am looking at making it for Easter in the shape of a bunny and thought sprinkles would be fun and colourful (plus everyone loved the confetti cupcakes). Thanks for all your great posts.

    • says

      Thank T! I think I’d try the confetti cupcakes as a cake. I haven’t, but don’t see why it wouldn’t work. Then again, I’m sure this cake would take the sprinkles just fine as well. :)

  5. Anna says

    I have trialed a number of gluten free cakes now, but not one has had the replicated consistency of a flour cake like this one. I mean hands down the best recipe I’ve come across! Thank You!!!! No more scouring recipes. I did make some modifications if others are in the same position as me (diabetic). I halved the sugar and used 30 drops of liquid stevia and increased the (plain greek) yogurt by a couple tablespoons to make up the bulk. Also I used coconut oil (in place of butter) and unsweetened almond milk. I had unflavored pea protein (2 tablespoons) on hand which I used in place of the milk powder. It is divine!

  6. Lucy says

    This recipe is beyond 5 stars! The best I have made, no one could tell it was GF.
    My picky eater asked for seconds… which was amazing!

    Thanks again Jeanine… love ya!

  7. Helen says

    Do you think this recipe would work for cupcakes too? I know some recipes work great, but others, less so.

  8. Lynn says

    I halved the recipe to make a dozen cupcakes for my daughter’s birthday yesterday. Fabulous cupcakes. They didn’t even need icing, though of course they had it. Soft, fluffy, wonderful flavor. Already planning when will make again.
    I’d like to have the calorie content and basic nutrition info if possible.


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