Gluten Free Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

Published on Sep 05, 2023

  by   Kristina Stosek

6 reviews

Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 75 minutes Serves: 9-inch cake
Add a Rating
​This post may contain affiliate links, please see our privacy policy for details

This timeless Gluten Free Strawberry Buttermilk Cake recipe incorporates creamy buttermilk and the rustic charm of cornmeal. This gluten-free dessert combines the natural sweetness of ripe strawberries, the tangy richness of buttermilk, lemon zest, and a light drizzle of buttermilk glaze. 

slice of strawberry buttermilk cake on a plate

Extra moist gluten free strawberry buttermilk cake

This gluten-free Strawberry Cake boasts a moist and tender crumb that keeps for days, thanks to the creamy buttermilk, while the cornmeal adds a subtle crunch and a hint of nuttiness. This strawberry dessert is a sweet and zingy perfection. 

a slice of strawberry cake with buttermilk glaze on a plate

Why use buttermilk in gluten free strawberry cake?

Buttermilk is a dairy product that is often used in cooking and baking. In this cake recipe, I used buttermilk to create a tender crumb, add flavor, and give it lasting moisture.

What is buttermilk?

Most of the buttermilk available in stores today is cultured buttermilk. It is made by introducing lactic acid bacteria to low-fat or skim milk. These bacteria ferment the milk’s sugars, producing lactic acid, which gives the buttermilk its characteristic tangy flavor. Cultured buttermilk is typically thinner than traditional buttermilk and contains around 98 calories per 1 cup. This is the type most commonly used in recipes.

Full-Fat Buttermilk: Full-fat buttermilk is made from whole milk and contains around 150-160 calories per 1 cup, similar to whole milk.

Buttermilk is used in cooking and baking for its acidity. It can react with leavening agents like baking powder or soda to produce carbon dioxide gas, leading to leavening and rising in baked goods. This is why buttermilk is a common ingredient in pancakes, muffins, cakes, and other baked items, as it helps create a light and fluffy texture.

Beyond using it in recipes, buttermilk has also been consumed for its potential health benefits, as it is a good source of several essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12, riboflavin, calcium and phosphorus. 

Special equipment you may need: (affiliate links) strawberry huller, whisk or electric mixer, 9-inch springform pan or  9-inch round pan with 3-inch high sides, parchment paper.

cake batter layered with strawberries in a springform pan

Helpful Tips:

The butter should be melted and warm when mixed with sugar. This helps to dissolve the sugar

The buttermilk and eggs must be at room temperature. This will add lightness to the cake

The batter should be more like a pancake batter, not a cake batter. This is because the cornmeal needs extra moisture

The strawberries are not mixed into the batter. Instead, they are layered over the 2 layers of batter. This stops the cake from becoming soggy and makes it look pretty

overview of baked strawberry buttermilk strawberry cake in a springform pan

Why should you rest a gluten free strawberry cake after baking before removing it from the pan to cool?

Resting the cake before removing it from the pan to cool is an important step because it prevents it from falling apart.

Typically, it’s recommended to let a gluten-free cake cool in the pan for about 10-15 minutes after removing it from the oven. Then, run a knife along the edges to ensure it’s not sticking, and carefully invert it onto a cooling rack to cool completely. 

round strawberry cake with buttermilk glaze on a plate with mint garnish

How do you check for doneness when using cornmeal in cake recipes?

Gluten free cakes made with cornmeal take slightly longer to bake than cakes made with traditional wheat flour. This difference in baking time is primarily due to the characteristics of cornmeal and how it interacts with liquids and heat.

Use a toothpick or cake tester to check for doneness. Insert it into the center of the cake; if it comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached (but not wet batter), the cake is ready.

Pay attention to the cake’s color. A properly baked cake using cornmeal should have a golden-brown crust.

Be patient and avoid opening the oven door frequently, as this can cause fluctuations in temperature and extend the baking time.

While cornmeal cakes may take longer to bake, the result can be a deliciously unique texture and flavor. 

close up of half eaten slice of cake

Replace maple syrup for sugar in gluten free strawberry cake

Replacing granulated sugar with maple syrup in this strawberry buttermilk cake recipe can add a unique flavor and healthiness. However, it’s essential to adjust the ingredients in your recipe to ensure the proper texture and consistency of the cake.

Method 1: Reduce Liquid Ingredients:

Maple syrup contains a significant amount of moisture. To compensate for this extra liquid, you’ll need to reduce the overall liquid content in your recipe. For a cup of sugar you replace with maple syrup, reduce the liquid (e.g., buttermilk) by 4 tablespoons.

Method 2: Increase Dry Ingredients: 

Add an extra 3 tablespoons of the primary dry ingredient (eg., flour) for one cup of sugar replaced.

Adjust Leavening Agents: 

Consider adding a 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to help with leavening. 


Keep in mind that maple syrup has a distinct flavor that may affect the overall taste of the strawberry cake

Monitor Baking Time: 

Be aware that the extra moisture from maple syrup can affect the baking time. It may take slightly longer to bake.

It’s important to note that while maple syrup is a delicious and natural sweetener, it won’t provide the same structure and moisture-retention properties as granulated sugar. The cake may have a different texture, crumb, and level of sweetness, but these adjustments will help you achieve the best possible results when substituting maple syrup for sugar.

fresh strawberries in a bowl

Our 3 Most Popular Gluten Free Strawberry Desserts


Gluten Free Peach & Strawberry Crumb Pie

Gluten Free Strawberry Icebox Cake 

Gluten-Free Strawberry Tiramisu



zesting a lemon

How to remove wax from lemons and why?

Removing wax from lemons before zesting is essential because the wax can have a bitter taste and may contain chemicals or residues you don’t want in your food. Wax is often applied to the surface of lemons and other citrus fruits to enhance their appearance and extend their shelf life. 

Mix a Solution: 

In a bowl, mix a solution of water and baking soda. Use about 1 tablespoon of baking soda per 16 ounces of warm water.

Soak the Lemon:

 Submerge the lemon in the baking soda solution and let it soak for a few minutes. This will help soften and loosen the wax.

Scrub and Rinse: 

After soaking, scrub the lemon’s surface with a brush, then rinse it thoroughly under warm water.

Dry the Lemon: 

Pat the lemon dry with a clean towel before zesting or using it in your recipe.

Removing the wax from lemons before zesting ensures your zest is pure in flavor and free from unwanted bitterness or chemical residues. This is especially important when using lemon zest as a flavoring or garnish in cooking or baking.

3 Good Reasons Why One Should Try Gluten Free Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

Trying new recipes can be exciting, and a gluten-free strawberry buttermilk cake can introduce you to a different way of baking, exciting textures and flavor. Enjoy!

Let’s Connect!

Be sure to FOLLOW US on FACEBOOK and PINTEREST. And don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter. We always have something new and exciting for you! 

Many thanks!

Kristina xx

Leave a Comment

Add a Rating

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *