Dairy Free Dark Chocolate Cake with Espresso Buttercream Frosting

This dairy free chocolate cake recipe has decadent dark chocolate layers and topped with rich espresso frosting. The best dairy free, gluten free and keto cake you will ever have. This cake will quickly become a favorite recipe that you will want to make again and again!

chocolate cake with espresso on marble backdrop
What you need to make the dairy free dark chocolate cake

To make this cake, I doubled and modified (just a tad!) my death by chocolate cupcakes recipe which you can find here. Then I topped it with a sweet espresso buttercream using vegan butter, espresso powder, almond milk and powdered sugar. You can split the powdered sugar or use all powdered erythritol if desired for an entirely keto cake but I honestly don’t love the taste of using all erythritol for frosting. You’re the boss so if need a keto cake, Swerve powered erythritol will be a great substitute for the powdered sugar.

chocolate cake with espresso on marble backdrop

Back to what you need to make this unbelievably moist dairy free chocolate cake

  • Almond Flour – finely ground if you have it
  • Granulated Erythritol 
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – I split mine with unsweetened dark cocoa powder as well (optional)
  • Baking Soda
  • Finely Ground Sea Salt
  • Eggs, Large at Room Temperature 
  • Coconut Oil, Melted
  • Almond Milk at Room Temperature 
  • Vanilla Extract

For the frosting:

  • vegan butter or regular butter if not dairy free
  • organic powered sugar or powered erythritol for keto
  • espresso powder
  • almond milk
  • vanilla extract
chocolate cake on cake stand be held with chocolate dripping
chocolate being poured over cake
If you love this chocolate cake, you will love these popular cookie recipes on the blog–all dairy free!
chocolate cake with espresso on marble backdrop
chocolate cake with espresso on marble backdrop

Dark Chocolate Cake with Espresso Frosting

Decadent chocolate cake topped with a rich espresso buttercream frosting made gluten free, dairy free with a keto option!
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: dairy free, gluten free, keto
Keyword: cake, chocolate, espresso
Servings: 12


  • 3 cups almond flour finely ground
  • 1 cup granulated sweetener erythritol for keto
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened special dark cocoa powder can sub for unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 eggs room temperature
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil melted
  • 1 cup almond milk room temperature

for the frosting

  • 1/4 cup vegan butter soft
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup almond milk warm
  • 1 tbsp hot water
  • 2 tsp espresso powder
  • 3-4 cups organic powdered sugar powdered erythritol for keto

for chocolate ganache* optional

  • 1/3 cup sugar free chocolate chips Lily’s
  • 1 tsp coconut oil


for the cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare three 6-inch round pans with parchment paper on the bottom and non-stick spray. 
    Sift all dry cake ingredients together in a large bowl and stir until combined. In another bowl, whisk together the wet cake ingredients until smooth. Add the wet to the dry and stir until until combined. Transfer the cake to the pans and bake for 24-28 minutes or until cooked through. 

for the frosting

  • In a small bowl, stir together the hot water and espresso powder until espresso dissolves. Set aside.
    If your butter is not already at room temperature, you can chop it into cubes and place it in the microwave on 50% power for 20-30 seconds to soften. 
    Beat the butter until light and fluffy using a handheld mixer. Add in the milk, vanilla and espresso mixture and mix until combined. Add your powdered sugar or powdered erythritol 1 cup at a time until you reach frosting consistency. The frosting should be very thick but still spreadable. 
    Frost cake then melt the chocolate and coconut oil together and drizzle over cake if desired. 
I hope you loved this recipe! If you did, be sure to leave a comment here on the blog or reach out to me on Instagram. I love hearing from you and seeing your creations!
chocolate cake with espresso on marble backdrop


Do you have nutrition info for any of these recipes. Just thought maybe I missed it. Thanks, looks delicious!


Hi Chelsea!

I made a personal choice to stop counting macros a year or so ago and that has translated to my blog as well. Hope you understand. 🙂

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