This gluten free pistachio cake is moist and delicious and made with real pistachios. It also makes perfect gluten free pistachio muffins if that's more your thing!
I love quick breads and muffins! And just because it's gluten free doesn't mean it shouldn't be amazing. This is why lately I've been going a little batty in the kitchen with gluten free muffins and gluten free breads. It's a tinsy bit dangerous. I could hardly keep my paws off of this gluten free pistachio cake. It really was that good.
And although it looks beautiful it's actually a breeze to make.
This gluten free pistachio cake recipe is very simple. Here's what you need:
- Canola oil
- Gluten free all purpose flour - I always recommend Bob's Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free All Purpose Flour for two reasons. For one it's the flour I use to test and create my recipes so I know it will work properly in this recipe. But even more importantly it's because it's delicious and has a wonderful taste and texture.
- Pistachios - This recipe uses real pistachios and not pistachio pudding.
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Kosher salt
- Whole milk - The batter will seem slightly thick but don't worry this is correct. Don't be tempted to add more milk to "thin it out".
- Almond extract (optional) - Some people don't realize that almond extract tastes nothing like almonds. It actually has a more amaretto flavor and I can't get enough of it. If you're unsure whether you like it or know you don't then go ahead and leave it out.
- Powdered sugar - I combined powdered sugar with a small amount of water to make a thin glaze to go on top. Easy peasy and delish!
How to Make Pistachio Cake
For more precise instructions follow the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Before you start preheat your oven and grease your baking dish. Then grind up your pistachios in a food processor and get out all your ingredients.
Combine Oil & Sugar then Add Eggs
In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer stir together the sugar and oil. Then add both eggs and mix until well combined.
Add Dry Ingredients & Pistachios
Add the gluten free all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, kosher salt, and ground pistachios to the mixture. Stir until a very thick batter forms.
Add the Whole Milk & Almond Extract
Add the whole milk a small amount at a time mixing until combined. Repeat until all the milk is added and a smooth batter has formed.
Bake & Let Cool
Scrape the batter into the baking dish and bake for 65 to 70 minutes until golden brown. The top won't sink when pressed when it's done.
Glaze & Enjoy
Once the cake has cooled or is only slightly warm turn it out of the baking dish. Mix the powdered sugar and water together then drizzle the glaze over the cake. Top with chopped pistachios and enjoy!
Gluten Free Pistachio Muffins
I also tested this recipe as gluten free pistachio muffins because I'd sell my left arm for the right muffin. I can't resist a good muffin. They came out great!
Simply scoop the batter into a greased muffin tin making sure to fill the muffin holes all the way full. This will give you big beautiful muffin tops! I got about 10 muffins. You can use a sharp knife or a toothpick to check if there done.
Recipe Tips & Substitutions
- Let the cake cool for a while before trying to remove it from the pan. A hot cake is more likely to fall apart during removal.
- Try a lemon glaze and use lemon juice instead of water for the powdered sugar glaze. For a gluten free lemon pistachio cake omit the almond extract and add lemon zest to the batter then top with the lemon glaze.
- For a pistachio Bundt cake you can use the batter in a greased bundt pan. Just be sure to decrease the baking time as it shouldn't take 70 minutes to bake.
- Pistachio cake tastes delicious with cream cheese frosting if you want to bake it in a square cake pan and top it with frosting. Again adjust the baking time as necessary and wait until the cake is completely cool to frost.
Other Gluten Free Cake Recipes You Might Love
- Gluten Free Marble Cake
- Gluten Free Italian Cream Cake
- Gluten Free Cookie Cake
- Gluten Free Vanilla Cupcakes
- Gluten Free Sour Cream Pound Cake
Gluten Free Pistachio Cake
- A large bowl or stand mixer
- 1 cup canola oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs, large
- 1 ¾ cup Bob's Red Mill 1:1 All Purpose Gluten Free Flour or an all purpose gluten free flour that contains xanthan gum
- 1 cup shelled pistachios
- 2 t. baking powder
- ½ t. baking soda
- ¼ t. kosher salt
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ teaspoon almond extract (optional)
For the glaze:
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 ½ tbsp water
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 by 5 baking dish and set aside.
- Place the pistachios in a food processor and process until very fine but before it begins to clump together.
- In a large bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer stir together the oil and sugar. Add the eggs and stir/mix until combined.
- Add the gluten-free flour, ground pistachios, baking powder, baking soda, and kosher salt to the bowl. Stir/mix well until a very thick batter forms.
- Gradually stir in the whole milk and almond extract until well incorporated.
- Use a spatula to scrape the batter into the greased baking dish. Bake for 65 to 70 minutes until golden brown and the top doesn't sink when gently pressed.
- Let the cake cool in the pan. Once warm turn the cake out onto a cooling rack. In a small bowl whisk together the powdered sugar and water.
- Once the cake is cool drizzle the glaze onto the cake and top with chopped pistachios. Enjoy!