Better Living through Science, aka Gluten-Free Microwave Mug Cake

Have you ever had a mug cake? Also known as microwave cakes, they’re exactly what they sound like: cakes made in a mug and cooked in the microwave.

mug cake

Are mug cakes good? I have no idea, in large part because I don’t have a microwave. They look simultaneously delicious and strange, though – one of my favorite combinations of adjectives.

What’s more, it’s easy to make the basic recipe for mug cake gluten-free. For playdates involving both gluten-eating and gluten-free children (or late-night study sessions, or office holiday parties, or nights at home alone in front of the TV), this could be just the ticket.

The basic premise is simple enough. Here’s a rundown from Wired Magazine:

You’ll need:

  • A microwave oven
  • A large microwavable mug
  • A tablespoon for measuring
  • 4 Tablespoons flour
  • 9 Tablespoons hot chocolate mix
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 Tablespoons water
  • 3 Tablespoons oil
  • Cooking Spray

Makes enough for one enormous serving.

  1. Spray a little cooking spray into the mug.
  2. Measure out the flour, hot chocolate mix and salt into the mug. Stir.
  3. Crack the egg into the mug. Stir a bit after adding the egg so the cup doesn’t overflow.
  4. Add water and oil.
  5. Stir until thoroughly moistened. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the mug with your spoon to avoid any leftover pockets of dry ingredients.
  6. Put the mug in the microwave on high and set the timer for 3 minutes.
  7. The handle of the mug may be hot, so use a potholder to remove it from the microwave.
  8. Tip your cake cylinder out of the mug into a dish. Use a fork to break it up into quarters. This will allow steam in the center to escape.
  9. Make sure the cake has cooled enough to eat before digging in. Add whipped cream or ice cream if desired.

mug cake 2

Just sub out the flour for your favorite gluten-free flour or GF flour blend and make sure you’re using gluten-free hot chocolate mix, and you’re golden. Our grocery guide can help you find all the ingredients you need, right in your local supermarket.

There are a number of variations online, and there’s even a cookbook just for gluten-free mug cakes. As for me, I’m going to track down a microwave ASAP and see how it goes.

Have you ever made a gluten-free mug cake? How did it turn out?

3 thoughts on “Better Living through Science, aka Gluten-Free Microwave Mug Cake”

  1. I had lots of doubts about whether these things worked, but they do, and they make a really nice little cake that was perfect for my 2 girls and I as an occasional snack, since you really don’t want a huge cake sitting around. It’s the perfect little treat and very moist and yummy. My recipe had chocolate chips in it and it was ooey gooey delightfulness in a mug! Perfect for those days when chocolate does save the world, one husband without a fork in his brain at a time. 😉 I can’t wait to try a gluten free version!

  2. Yes, I have made gluten-free microwave mug cakes. In fact, I’ve created 101 recipes for gluten-free microwave mug cakes which is the title of my new book! You can find a sample recipe for a gluten blackberry muffin microwave mug cake here: I hope you’ll let me know what you think of it! My book, “101 Recipes for Gluten-Free Microwave Mug Cakes,” is also available through my web site.

  3. Someone was using your recipe on another site for a really disgusting cake. By chance I came here this is a great recipe.

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