Homemade Gluten Free Sponge Cake

Fresh, classic, and irresistible...

I've been on the hunt for a good gluten free sponge cake recipe for a while now. I made one recipe that I found in a cookbook, and it was waaay too dense. It was more like a white cake that was too heavy, then a light and airy sponge cake. I used the basics of the recipe I made, along with research on the science behind cakes and the ingredients that make up the different consistencies, and I created my own version of a Gluten Free Sponge Cake.

I learned three main keys to making a sponge cake. 1. Make sure that you beat the egg whites until very, very fluffy. 2. Don't let the batter or egg whites sit around long. This recipe has to be made systematically and without breaks. 3. The eggs have to be at room temperature.

I've always loved sponge cakes and angel food cake. I loved the slightly sticky texture, and the airy structure of the cake. Each bite is like a taste of heaven. Whenever in a grocery store as a young child, when I saw these types of cakes, I'd just gawk at them in a 'need to eat them' sort of way. (I sometimes still do!) Once in a while I'd ask my mom if we could buy one, which we usually didn't because they weren't very healthy. So I'd just try to eat them up with my eyes. :)
Now I have a recipe that I don't feel bad about eating, and it doesn't leave me feeling stuffy afterwards like a lot of recipes with flour in them sometimes do. This leaves me feeling fresh afterwards, especially when I have strawberries over top.

Gluten Free Sponge Cake

1 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup tapioca starch
3 Tbsp white rice flour
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
3/4 Tbsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cream of tartar

6 egg whites at room temperature, beaten into a fluffy foam
1 and 1/8 cups granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla
4 egg yolks
1 Tbsp water

NOTE: Before starting this cake, make sure that you have your eggs out so that they're at room temperature by the time you need to use them.
For this recipe, it's very important to be completely prepared before starting. You have to move quickly with this recipe, as it can't sit long.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a medium sized bowl, mix together with a spoon the first 7 ingredients.
  • In 2 small bowls, separate 6 eggs into yolks and whites. Pour the whites into a smaller deep bowl and beat for several minutes until very fluffy and white in color. Set aside the yolks for later. We'll use 4 of them later in the recipe.
  • After beating the whites, pour them into a large bowl. Add sugar very slowly. Now add vanilla slowly. Mix together with a wooden spoon.
  • Beat with a fork 4 egg yolks and then add to egg mixture. Add water. Stir well until combined. 
  • Fold flour mixture into egg mixture and stir with wooden spoon until completely combined.
  • Pour batter into a 10 inch round spring-form pan. Bake for 30-40 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. This part is very important, as the outside can be done, but the inside still kind of like a custard. Don't be afraid to put it in a few more minutes to make sure the middle is baked through.
  • Let the pan cool on wire rack; then serve with fruit.


Liz & Sarah

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