Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Lemon Cake

This gluten-free, dairy-free lemon cake is one of my favourite treats that works equally well as a dessert, snack or breakfast. It’s perfect if you have to accommodate various dietary restrictions.

This cake turned out delicious and is so quick and easy to make. It’s sweet, zingy and fresh tasting from plenty of lemon zest. 

Lemon cake displayed next to some lemons.

Main Ingredients

I used coconut flour in this gluten-free, dairy-free lemon cake recipe, as that’s my preferred flour to use in paleo baking these days. It’s nutritious and low carb plus it’s high in fibre so it’s an excellent flour alternative to use in all kinds of healthy desserts, muffins and other treats. I love that coconut flour adds a subtle sweetness to desserts without being overwhelmingly “coconutty” tasting.

Coconut flour absorbs liquid differently than regular all purpose flour, so it’s important to note that you can’t just substitute coconut flour for wheat flour in most recipes without adjusting the other ingredients. I find that adding a few extra eggs to cake recipes often allows me to substitute coconut flour with good results.

I used extra virgin olive oil as the fat in this paleo lemon cake. I tend to use olive oil when baking, regardless of whether it’s a sweet or savoury dish. Extra virgin olive oil is paleo diet friendly, dairy-free, and works well in both savory and sweet recipes. I love the rich, warm flavour the extra virgin olive oil adds to this cake. If you prefer to use a different oil, feel free to substitute it. Any liquid fat (including melted coconut oil) should work well in this recipe.

This cake freezes well, so go ahead and stash some in the freezer and thaw it out as needed for a nutritious dessert, breakfast, or snack.

If you prefer to eat your cake in muffin form, you can make these in a muffin tray with paper liners. To convert this gluten-free, dairy-free lemon cake recipe to make muffins instead, simply reduce the baking time to 33 minutes. 

More gluten-free, dairy-free recipes made with coconut flour

For another delicious grain-free cake recipe, try this carrot cake recipe. It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and so easy to make.

Or try this paleo banana bread. It’s easy to make and perfect for dessert, breakfast, or snack.

Cake slices piled next to lemons on a plate.
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5 from 1 vote

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Lemon Cake

This gluten-free, dairy-free lemon cake is easy to make and bursting with lemony flavour.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword lemon
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 12 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 210kcal


  • The zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup raw honey
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt


  • Add the eggs to a large bowl and whisk well.
  • Add the extra virgin olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, raw honey, vanilla extract, salt and unsweetened apple sauce and whisk once more to mix the ingredients.
  • Add the coconut flour and baking soda and mix once more.
  • Pour the cake batter into a greased (just use a little extra olive oil) and parchment lined medium sized loaf pan (my loaf pan is 9.25 x 5.25 x 2.75 inches).
  • Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 60 minutes.
  • Let cool completely before removing the cake from the pan.


  • This recipe also works well with lime, grapefruit, or orange. Just substitute the juice and zest of whichever citrus fruit you prefer.


Calories: 210kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 98mg | Sodium: 173mg | Potassium: 56mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 146IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg