I often get asked by friends and family for gluten free pudding ideas (although sadly not always on the back of an invite to dinner). Whether you are gluten free yourself or entertaining a Coeliac guest, it can be really hard to know what might be safe and at the same time reasonably easy to make, without having to buy a load of special gluten free ingredients.
Thankfully, there are loads of naturally gluten free desserts out there, most of them surprisingly easy to make. But if you need a bit of inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve put together an ultimate dinner party guide of 60 gluten free pudding suggestions to help you out… from deliciously moist flourless cakes and meringues, to ice cream and petit fours. In addition to the offerings from Gluten Free Alchemist, I’ve collected recipes published across the web, so you can pretty much guarantee there’s a flourless dessert to suit every menu and skill level!
Feast your eyes and….. Enjoy! xx
Flourless Cakes – the ideal gluten free pudding for the Bakers among you
If you don’t have any gluten free flour, no worries… You can still make (and eat) gluten free cake!
There are loads of fantastic recipes for flourless cake which can be made with relatively little skill. Here are a few of my favourites and because they are flourless, most of the recipes are also perfect for Passover.
Flourless Chocolate Torte
How tempting is this? A deliciously fudgy chocolate torte which is incredibly ‘forgiving’, even if you struggle to bake. Better still… because it (mostly) naturally collapses when it cools, you can use the ‘well’ to make it into a show-stopper of a gluten free dessert with very little effort. Top your Flourless Chocolate Torte with whipped Mascarpone cream and serve with cherry or raspberry sauce.
Flourless Orange Cake
I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t swoon over this Flourless Orange Cake when served as a gluten free pudding (it’s dairy free too by the way). Perfectly moist, it is unusually made with whole boiled oranges and ground almonds. As gluten free desserts go, this one is pretty spectacular considering how easy it is to make. Try serving with a contrasting honeyed raspberry coulis.
If you fancy adding a little chocolate into the mix, you’ll find a variation on the ‘whole-orange’ cake in the form of a Whole Orange Chocolate Chip Cake over at From The Larder. Also check out these Posh Jaffa Cakes (just sub the almond flour for extra ground almonds if you need to).
Pistachio, Lime & Olive Oil Cake
Another one of my all-time favourite dairy and gluten free cakes is this Pistachio, Lime & Olive Oil Cake, topped with deep blackcurrant drizzle. Although it has a small amount of flour in the recipe, it is easily swapped out for fine-ground polenta. Ok…. so you may have to go and buy some polenta from the supermarket, but it will be worth it!
Another fruity option is the flourless Blueberry and Almond Cake that you’ll find over at Surprising Recipes, which would be perfect bathed in creamy custard.
Squidgy Chocolate Cake for gluten free pudding decadence
Ok… I know… it’s more chocolate, but this Squidgy Chocolate Cake adaptation of the classic Delia Smith roulade, is a perfect flourless dessert to round off a spectacular dinner party, because it is incredibly light, yet very VERY decadent. It is guaranteed to be gratefully devoured.
Other flourless chocolate cakes to consider include an easy Rich Chocolate & Coconut Cake from Beach Hut Cook; this gorgeously rich Sweet Potato Chocolate Truffle Torte (image below) by From The Larder; or a deliciously retro flourless Black Forest Gâteau from Tin and Thyme … a timeless gluten free pudding…. deglutened!
If you are looking for chocolate cake which is more ‘finger food’, why not try these Flourless Chocolate Mini Rolls? If they sound too fiddly, you can always knock together some ‘go down well at any occasion’ flourless chocolate brownies. You’ll find a lovely recipe for Triple Chocolate Almond Brownies (made with ground almonds) over at Tin and Thyme, which look sumptuously dense and gooey.
The more traditional Gluten Free Pudding
Sometimes, you want a more traditional pudding that is also gluten free, but may be thinking most of them wouldn’t be suitable for Coeliacs? You would be surprised at how many of our favourite desserts are naturally flourless and really easy to make! Don’t believe me? See how many of these you recognise…
Mousse, Fool & Syllabub (the creamy, sumptuous Flourless dessert…)
Mousses can be be made in a whole range of flavours and are a great gluten free pudding, not least because they are no-bake and can be made ahead of time. Don’t just think Chocolate Mousse (tempting as it is… although I have to admit, a delightful variation like these Chestnut and Chocolate Pots with a Raspberry Puddle from Beach Hut Cook may be just too irresistible)…
But a rich Strawberry Mousse or sumptuous coffee mousse can be just as delicious. These gorgeous Coffee Mousse Cups from A Baking Journey (image above) look to die for, as does the White Chocolate & Strawberry Mousse that you’ll find over at Fab Food For All.
You could also head down the creamy fool, posset or syllabub route, all of which would make a wonderfully light gluten free pudding. There is something perfectly English about these beautiful, tangy Lemon Posset cups from Apply To Face Blog, don’t you think? Aren’t they simply divine? And so easy to make too!
I am a HUGE fan of Panna Cotta and make it often. Again, it can be made ahead of time and is no-bake, making it an ideal gluten free dessert for the most timid of cooks. At Gluten Free Alchemist you will find recipes for White Chocolate Panna Cotta with Honey-Roast Figs & Walnut (great to end a celebratory Christmas meal); Vanilla Panna Cotta with Raspberry Coulis (pictured below) and we even have a wonderfully Autumnal White Chocolate, Lavender & Blackberry Panna Cotta.
Or maybe you could combine the creaminess of a citrussy panna cotta with fruity jelly, like the pretty glasses of Lemon Panna Cotta with Raspberry Jelly that you will find over at Lost In Food…
If you are looking for a dairy-free option, the Free From Panna Cotta with Cardamom & Treacle from Proper Foodie (pictured below) gives this perfect pud an exotic twist.
Or you can even go Vegan, with an utterly beautiful Coconut Panna Cotta with Strawberries that you will find at the blog A Baking Journey (below).
More Jars Of Creamy Flourless Dessert Delight
Cranachan is a fabulous Scottish offering which combines oats with whipped cream, honey, raspberries and of course, a little tot of whisky. Simple to make, but still rather special, it is pretty as a picture served in glasses and should not (in my humble opinion) be reserved for Burns Night. Just be sure if you are serving Coeliac guests, that you double-check they are not also sensitive to oats and be certain that any oats you serve are certified gluten free to avoid any cross contamination.
You can find a lovely traditional Raspberry Cranachan recipe over at Cooking With My Kids.
Alternatively… Show your guests the potential of tapioca pudding with these beautiful, layered glasses of Coconut Tapioca Pudding with Passion Sauce (above) from Pretty Sweet. Whatever their memories of school tapioca may be, I am certain this gluten free pudding will be a revelation to anyone at your table.
Meringue – gluten free pudding made pretty
Although some meringues may have a tiny amount of cornflour added to them for stability, they are essentially flourless, so providing you make it yourself or check any packaging ingredients, they are likely to be Coeliac-safe (cornflour is safe for Coeliacs). And let’s face it… who doesn’t love a crisp, yet chewy meringue, slathered in fresh cream and fruit? Gluten free heaven? you bet!
Try adding a little bit of colour to the meringue to make it extra special, like my show-stopping recipe for Perfectly Pretty Pink Pavlova with Berries & Nectarine (shown below). Or pile it high with a Layered Berry Pavlova, or a stunning tropical Mango & Pineapple Pavlova (from Pretty Sweet Blog – above).
You could even go nutty with a Pistachio Dacquoise with Raspberry & Pomegranate (from Baking Queen 74).
Alternatively… you can make it individual, with Meringue Nests. To get them as pretty as possible, try piping the meringue into little baskets before baking. I particularly love the textured look of these Chocolate Meringue Nests from Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen (pictured below), but you may prefer a more traditional white meringue like the beautiful Raspberry & Lemon Curd Meringue Nests over at Curly’s Cooking. Frankly, I could devour either (or both) of them…
If your meringue didn’t turn out quite as expected, worry not! Smashed and broken meringues make one of the best (if not always the most perfect-looking) gluten free puddings! Check out the Ruby Berry Eton Mess over at From The Larder.
Need a Vegan Meringue Alternative?
Have you ever heard of Aqua Faba? If not, let me enlighten you… It’s the liquid found in a tin of pulses and beans (most commonly chickpeas). But this is the weird thing… it acts like vegan egg-white in many recipes… including meringue! Yup! You heard me!
If you want to make a vegan pavlova… you can! Check out the Vegan Aquafaba Pavlova with Coconut Cream & Berries over at Cook Veggielicious, or her pretty Vegan Aquafaba Meringues with Rosewater, Pistachio and Raspberry (featured below). You’d never guess they were vegan would you?
A little twist on the meringue theme is to make a meringue roulade. Although a little more tricky than pavlova, if you are a bit of a baker, it’s a flourless dessert that it sure to turn heads… yet light enough to end the heaviest of meals. Go fruity with a Zesty Lemon Meringue Roulade, or try making this summery White Chocolate & Raspberry Roulade (pictured below), from Apply To face Blog.
I love Crème Brûlée so much, I even had it at my wedding feast! There is something totally gorgeous about the crisp ‘flamed’ sugar top against the smooth, creamy interior it gives way to. Whilst it involves a little care in the making, it is not particularly difficult. Here’s my recipe for White Chocolate & Raspberry Crème Brûlée (below), if you fancy making it. Or leave out the white chocolate for a Vanilla Crème Brûlée that you’ll find over at Jo’s Kitchen Larder.
Easy To Convert To Gluten Free Pudding : Cheese cakes & Trifles
Okay…. I know that cheese cakes and trifles are not strictly either flourless OR naturally gluten free, but I’ve decided to include them anyway for inspiration, because when you are trying to come up with a great gluten free pudding, both can be really easily made using shop-bought gluten free biscuits or cake.
Gluten free biscuits are so easy to grab in any supermarket these days and you use them in the same way as normal glutenous versions for making biscuit bases. So what’s stopping you? Think easy whip together no-bake cheese cake… How about a celebratory Banoffee Cheesecake with Salted Caramel?
Want something lighter? One of my absolute favourites is a Blackberry-Coconut Cheesecake which is to airy, it’s like eating the most decadent of fruity clouds. Or why not go ‘baked’ with this Double Chocolate Cheesecake?
If you want a Vegan alternative, the Vegan No Bake Avocado Cheese Cake on the site – Cook With Renu is not only beautiful and delicious, but super-healthy too.
Another variation on the theme is the biscuit-based tart, like my Lemon, Ginger & Dark Chocolate Tart (no bake), which is rich and luxurious. Just make sure you remember to use gluten free biscuits when you make it.
What’s not to love about trifle? And with the range of free from cakes now available in the shops, they are easier than ever to make gluten free with no baking skill required at all! At Gluten Free Alchemist, we adore a trifle, so why not do a trifle search for your favourite? In fact, one of our most-treasured dinner party desserts is this amazing Nutella Trifle made with gluten free chocolate cake.
simple Fruit desserts
In Coeliac circles there is a saying which goes ‘fruit is not a pudding’… It stems from the fact that we are often offered straight-up fruit when all the other guests get ‘proper’ dessert. But fruit done right can be just as show-stopping and delicious as all those other yummy treats…. right? I mean seriously…. who can’t be impressed by these stunning Spiced Red Wine Poached Pears from A Baking Journey? Gluten free pudding? Yes please!
You could also serve up Caramelised Oven Baked Bananas (from Hint of Healthy), or go ‘tropical cocktail-inspired’ with some Boozy Pina Colada Hot BBQ Pineapple (which is just as easy to bake in the oven). So there you go… fruit can be a pudding after all!
Iced Gluten Free Pudding : Ice Cream, semifreddo, Parfait & Sorbet
Not to be forgotten, a good, naturally gluten free iced dessert is always a winner. If you are feeling time-deprived, you could (of course) head to the supermarket and grab a tub of ice cream (just make sure you thoroughly check the ingredient labels for anything added that contains gluten). Or better still, make your own! At Gluten Free Alchemist, you’ll find plenty of churned and no-churn recipes.
churned ice cream
Our favourite churned ice creams include Double Mint Choc-Chip (served with pretty hearts cut from After Eights); silky smooth, rich Chocolate-Caramel ice cream; and a seasonal summer Mascarpone, Cherry & Dark Chocolate (although given that you can get cherries pretty much all year now in the supermarkets, this would be delicious whenever…). If you like the sweet stuff, we also have a recipe for Honeycomb ice cream.
For the really creative, we can offer an extra special home-made Raspberry Ripple & White Chocolate Coconut Milk Ice-Cream, made into individual ‘bites’ and bars (above). Or if it’s a simple sorbet you’re after, we have fruity Tropical Sorbet or a refreshing Baobab, Mint & Pineapple Sorbet.
No-Churn Ice Cream
But why bother with churning when you can make the most incredible no-churn ice creams?
Best recipes? Without a doubt, my really easy no churn Baileys Ice Cream (photo below) is the shining star. But if that doesn’t float your boat, why not try no churn Roasted Strawberries & Cream ice cream? Seriously, if you have never roasted strawberries, it’s a game-changer!. Perfect for using up left-over pie filling, our Christmas Mincemeat ice cream is a gorgeous variation on traditional Christmas flavours, but you could also try Rhubarb no churn (tart and tangy) or Vegan Rich Chocolate ice cream (made with coconut milk)…
If you’re thinking more ‘Parfait’, the Blackberry Parfait that you will find over at Lost In Food is a little trickier to make, but sounds (and looks) stunning.
After-dinner Petit Fours
If you are really out to impress your guests, why not offer some tantalising petit fours with after-dinner coffee? Let’s face it, there’s nothing like rounding off a good meal with a little extra perfection.
Although they can be tricky little devils, Macaron are always great tempters. You can buy them in a few specialist confectioners these days or give baking your own a go (check out these Raspberry & White Chocolate Macaron or maybe Blackcurrant & Dark Chocolate). You can even get easy macaron-making kits in some supermarkets.
Or how about making some eye-catching Colourful Meringue Kisses, which will definitely be a coffee-table conversation starter. In fact, you could wind back a course and serve them with cream and fruit as a ‘kissed’ Eton Mess! Want to see how pretty that looks? Head over to Curly’s Cooking to see her Eton Mess with Meringue Kisses…
Another option is to offer some really easy to make Nutty Cookie Mounds, with a choice of three flavours : Amaretti, Hazel-Chocolate or Pistachio, or some traditional Italian Amaretti Cookies, which pair perfectly with coffee.
Or…. if you want something more typical, why not make your own home-made Marzipan Chocolates… they really are are way easier than they look (if a little messy to pull together)!
So there you have it… My ultimate dinner party guide to gluten free pudding recipes and flourless desserts. Whether you’re a Coeliac hosing your own dinner party, or you are entertaining gluten free friends, there’s no need to panic. Everything you need is here!
Good luck and happy entertaining xx
I am sharing 60 Gluten Free Pudding Recipes & Flourless Desserts – An Ultimate Dinner Party Guide with the following :
Cook Blog Share with Easy Peasy Foodie
Full Plate Thursday with Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
What’s For Dinner #125 with The Lazy Gastronome