Friday, May 22, 2015

Strawberry Shortcake (gluten free, dairy free, vegan)

This recipe was a bit more difficult than I had anticipated.  How hard can strawberry shortcake be to make? Well, if you're making it gluten free and dairy free, it can be tricky. And if you have a four year old who loves strawberries this can make it almost impossible.

My son devours so much fruit we call him The Fruit Bat. The first day I brought home two pounds of those beautiful red berries and by day two there was only a handful left.  By the end of the week I had gone through four pounds of strawberries!  Even still, this was not the most difficult part. It was the cake. The cake needed to be juuuuust right. Not too hard like a scone but not too spongy like an angel food cake. Luckily, my third attempt hit the jackpot.

My favorite part? The coconut whipped cream. I could eat that stuff all day! No, really I could.

Strawberry Shortcake (gluten free, dairy free, vegan):
Coconut Whipped Cream Recipe
16 ounces fresh strawberries
1 large lemon (for both the juice and making zest)
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (from the lemon listed above)
1/3 cup (62g) vegetable shortening (I use Spectrum brand palm shortening)
1/2 cup (80g) white rice flour (I use Authentic Foods brand)
1/2 cup (60g) tapioca flour
1/3 cup (65g) cane sugar (use organic for vegan) plus more for strawberries
2 Tablespoons (24g) potato starch (not potato flour)
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon finely ground flax meal
2 Tablespoons applesauce
1/2 cup (130g) coconut milk (I use Native Forest brand)

Makes six cakes. This is all done by hand so no mixing machines needed!

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a standard cookie sheet with parchment paper or grease and dust with flour.

For the strawberry mix, wash the strawberries, cut the tops off and slice into bite size pieces, then put into a bowl. Zest the lemon in a separate small bowl and set aside.  Once zested, cut the lemon in half and then squeeze the juice into another bowl. Pour the lemon juice through a strainer on top of the strawberries.  Also add about two tablespoons (or more) of cane sugar to the strawberries and mix together.  Place in the refrigerator until ready to use.

In a large bowl combine the white rice flour, tapioca flour, cane sugar, potato starch, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground flax meal and lemon zest.  Whisk together so it is completely combined.

In a separate bowl mix together the applesauce with the coconut milk.

Using a fork or knife "cut" the shortening into the flour mix to create a crumb mix.  If using a fork and your shortening is soft, hold the fork sideways and cut through the mix like a knife as opposed to mashing.  Then add the coconut milk/applesauce mixture and mix together until you have a thick lumpy batter.

With a scooper or large spoon, scoop out six mounds onto the cookie sheet.  If you have English muffin rings place one around each mound. This will give them a more uniform look.

Bake in the oven on middle rack for 8-10 minutes. Then check with a toothpick to ensure they are done (no batter should stick to the toothpick). If done remove from oven and let cool for about 20 minutes. If not done bake for another 2 minutes and check again.

Once cooled, layer your cake with the whipped cream and strawberries.  There's really no wrong way to do it although my husband tells me that the juice from the strawberries is very important as it soaks into the cake ever so nicely.  I say just eat and enjoy!

Questions or comments?  Please reply in the comments section below.  I'd love to hear from you!


  1. These look delicious! I love strawberries and strawberry shortcake is on of my favorite desserts. I can't wait to give your recipe a try. The coconut whipped cream sounds devine! Pinning, thank you!

    One question, where can I find potato starch? Would cornstarch work if I can't find it?

  2. Hi Jane, yes, the coconut whipped cream is devine! I usually shop for my flours online at Amazon so get potato starch there. I would think Whole Foods has it. I wouldn't use cornstarch. It tends to get clumpy. I've used quinoa flour in the past in lieu of potato starch. You could also try a bean flour or millet, etc. Let me know how it turns out.