Gluten-free and Vegan Chocolate Cake with Vegan Vanilla Frosting
(courtesy of Allison Sayles, owner, Sugar Pine Cakery & Café in Tahoe City. Serves 12 to 15)

3 cups gluten-free baking flour
2 cups sugar
⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups hot water or coffee
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons vinegar
⅔ cup expeller pressed canola oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or grease 3, 8-inch round cake pans and line with parchment, then dust with gluten-free flour.

Combine all dry ingredients in large bowl; whisk to combine. Combine all wet ingredients in another bowl, then whisk to combine. Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients, and whisk to combine.

Pour batter evenly into the 3 cake pans. Spread batter with small offset spatula to make it even. Bake cakes about 30 minutes or until cake springs back when touched. Let cool.

Once cakes have cooled, place 1 cake layer on a cake plate, top with vegan vanilla frosting (recipe below) and smooth out to edges of cake. Lay second cake layer on first frosted layer and repeat process, then do the same with the third layer (reserving some frosting for the top), this time also frosting the sides of the cake with a thin layer of frosting to create a crumb coat. Refrigerate cake until it’s cold and frosting is set. Once this happens, frost the outside of your cake with the remaining frosting and serve or refrigerate until needed. Cake will stay fresh up to 2 days in refrigerator. 

For Vegan Vanilla Frosting

1 cup Earth Balance butter (room temperature)
1 cup Spectrum shortening (room temperature)
6 cups powdered sugar, sifted
½ cup milk alternative of choice (room temperature)
2 teaspoons high-quality vanilla extract

Place Earth Balance and Spectrum shortening in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until thoroughly combined. Add ½ of sifted powdered sugar, and mix on low until combined. Add rest of powdered sugar, and mix on low until combined. Add milk alternative slowly until combined, then add vanilla extract. Turn mixer up to medium speed and beat until frosting is smooth, adding a bit more liquid if frosting is stiff. 

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