Angel food cake has become one of my kids favorite desserts. Perhaps because it’s reminiscent of cotton candy. You know how it tastes like straight up sugar and it kind of melts on your tongue before you even get a chance to begin chewing? Just like cotton candy! That has to be why it’s called angel food cake. It’s light as air, tastes like heaven, and, bonus, it’s basically fat free. What angel wouldn’t like that?
It’s a fairly easy dessert to make. One both my son and daughter enjoy making with me in the kitchen. Easier still when you have saved the leftover egg whites from recipes like my key lime pie or my vanilla pastry cream. I usually keep a mason jar in the fridge or freezer (depending upon how long it will be before I use them up) full of leftover egg whites from recipes calling for just the yolks.
I remember for years my daughter thought it was called Angel Fruit Cake. I didn’t tell her otherwise because it was just so cute to hear her ask for it that way. Kind of like how she called the dining room the Diamond Room. I liked that, too. Sometimes we still like to eat in the Diamond Room. It’s fancier that way.
In this recipe I have opted to mix up my own combination of gluten free flours and starches to create a gluten free flour blend that I felt might offer similar attributes to cake flour – which is what angel food cake often utilizes. If you don’t have these separate ingredients, feel free to use a gluten free flour blend of your choosing, totaling 1 cup. If your blend includes xanthan gum already, then omit it from my recipe. If you do make a substitution, please let us know in the comments below so that we can all learn what substitutions work (or don’t). That’s the beauty of baking on this gluten free frontier. There is still so much to learn and create.
- ¼ cup sweet white sorghum flour
- ¼ cup potato starch
- ¼ cup brown rice flour
- ¼ cup sweet rice flour
- 1½ cups confectioners Swerve (you can safely use cane sugar or coconut sugar)
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
- 12 large egg whites (approximately 1¾ cups)
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1¼ teaspoon cream of tarter
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract (optional)
- sliced strawberries and whipped cream for serving, optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Have ready an ungreased 9" tube pan (preferably not non-stick). If your pan does not have a removable bottom, cut out a circle of parchment to line the bottom of the pan for easier removal.
- Into a bowl or onto a piece of parchment on your counter, sift together the sorghum flour, potato starch, brown rice flour, sweet rice flour, ¾ cup of the sugar of your choice, salt, and xanthan gum. Set the remaining ¾ cup sugar aside.
- Place egg whites into the clean bowl of an electric mixer (any residue of fat in your bowl will impede the whipping of the whites) along with the lemon juice. Whisk on medium speed until eggs become frothy, about 30 seconds. Add cream of tarter. Whisk on high speed until very soft peaks form, about 1-2 minutes. With mixer on medium, very slowly add remaining ¾ cup sugar, whipping until the whites turn glossy and hold a soft peak. Add the extracts and whip quickly just to incorporate.
- With a large rubber spatula, gently fold in the flour-sugar mixture, ¼ cup at a time, being careful not to deflate the fluffy batter.
- Gently pour the batter into the tube pan, smoothing the top before placing in the preheated oven. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the cake is golden brown and the top springs back when pressed firmly with a finger.
- If your pan has "feet", invert the pan to rest on the feet and allow it to cool for 2 hours. If your pan does not have "feet", invert the pan's neck over a bottle with a long neck (wine bottles are perfect) and allow to cool for 2 hours. Once the cake has cooled, carefully run a knife around the pan sides to unmold it.
- Place the cake on a serving plate or cake stand and use a serrated knife to gently slice the cake into pieces. Serve with sliced strawberries and freshly whipped cream.