Gluten free diets have become increasingly popular in recent years, both for people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity and those simply looking to avoid gluten for other health reasons. For those on a gluten free diet, navigating ingredients, processing standards, and cross-contamination risks can make buying packaged foods a challenge. Understanding what common products contain gluten or may have been cross-contaminated is key.
One dessert that often comes up in gluten free discussions is Godiva flourless chocolate cake. Godiva is a well-known maker of fine chocolates and desserts. Their flourless chocolate cake is a popular offering, but is it safe for gluten free diets? Here is a thorough look at Godiva’s flourless chocolate cake and whether it can be considered gluten free.
What is Godiva Flourless Chocolate Cake?
Godiva Flourless Chocolate Cake is a dense, fudgy cake made without flour, hence the name flourless chocolate cake. According to the product description, it consists of chocolate cake made with chocolate liquor, butter, sugar, eggs, cocoa powder, and chocolate chips, topped with chocolate ganache and chocolate shavings.
Flourless chocolate cake has become a popular gluten free dessert option because it does not contain traditional gluten-containing flours. Instead, the cocoa powder and eggs provide structure to the cake. Godiva’s flourless cake takes advantage of high quality chocolate products for maximum chocolate flavor.
Godiva Flourless Cake Ingredients
According to the Godiva website, the ingredients in Godiva Flourless Chocolate Cake are:
- Cake: chocolate liquor, butter, sugar, eggs, cocoa powder, chocolate chips
- Ganache: heavy cream, chocolate liquor
- Garnish: chocolate shavings
At first glance, this cake appears to be gluten free based on the ingredients list. It does not contain any gluten-containing grains or flours. The chocolate liquor, cocoa powder, eggs, butter, and sugar make up the base of the cake. The chocolate chips add even more chocolate flavor, while the ganache and shavings incorporate different textures and chocolate flavors.
Are the Ingredients Gluten Free?
To determine if a product is gluten free, you need to evaluate each individual ingredient for gluten content. Let’s take a closer look at the Godiva flourless chocolate cake ingredients:
Chocolate liquor (also sometimes called cocoa liquor) refers to the pure chocolate extract made from cocoa beans. It consists of cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions. Chocolate liquor does not contain any alcohol or gluten. It provides the signature chocolate flavor in Godiva’s flourless chocolate cake.
Butter is made from milk fat and does not contain any gluten. The butter in Godiva’s cake provides richness and moisture.
Regular granulated sugar does not contain gluten. It adds sweetness and helps give the cake structure along with the eggs and cocoa powder.
Eggs are a naturally gluten free food. The eggs bind the ingredients together and provide rise and structure in the absence of flour.
Cocoa powder is made from roasted cocoa beans that have been processed to remove most of the cocoa butter. Like chocolate liquor, cocoa powder does not naturally contain gluten.
The ingredient list does not specify what type of chocolate chips are used. Chocolate chips are generally safe, but it depends on the exact product. Pure chocolate, without gluten-containing additives, is naturally gluten free. The brand of chocolate chips would need to be verified to ensure they do not contain barley malt, wheat, or other gluten sources.
Heavy cream only contains milk fat and does not contain gluten. It is used to make the chocolate ganache topping in Godiva’s flourless chocolate cake.
Like the chocolate chips, chocolate shavings are safe if they come from a gluten-free source. Pure, uncontaminated chocolate does not contain gluten. The brand and processing of the chocolate shavings would need to be verified.
Is There Risk of Gluten Cross-Contamination?
In addition to evaluating the ingredients, gluten cross-contamination is another consideration for gluten free status. Cross-contamination occurs when gluten is accidentally introduced during processing from shared equipment or facilities.
Godiva’s website and packaging does not provide any information about gluten cross-contamination risks or whether the product is made in a dedicated gluten free facility. Because flourless chocolate cake recipes traditionally don’t contain gluten, there may be less risk compared to other products made on shared lines. However, without transparency or certification from Godiva, slight cross-contamination is possible.
Does Godiva Claim Gluten Free Status?
Godiva’s website does not make any gluten free or allergen claims about their flourless chocolate cake. The product details simply list the ingredients without further information about processing practices or potential for cross-contamination.
Without clear gluten free labeling or certifications like Certified Gluten Free, Gluten Free Certification Organization (GFCO), or Certified Gluten Free by GFCO, Godiva does not provide enough transparency for those requiring strict gluten avoidance.
Should You Rely on Godiva’s “Flourless” Description?
Although Godiva describes this cake as flourless, those with celiac disease and gluten sensitivities know that the term “flourless” does not automatically equal gluten free. A flourless cake recipe still has potential sources of gluten like chocolate chips, chocolate shavings or even cross-contamination if processed alongside other gluten-containing desserts.
The flourless description is not enough documentation to confidently consider Godiva’s chocolate cake free of gluten and safe for those on gluten free diets, especially those highly sensitive.
Summary: Is Godiva Flourless Chocolate Cake Gluten Free?
Based on the available information, Godiva flourless chocolate cake cannot reliably be considered gluten free:
- The cake ingredients appear to be gluten free at face value
- However, there is uncertainty around the brands of chocolate chips and shavings used
- Godiva provides no information about gluten cross-contamination risks or dedicated facilities
- The product does not claim to be gluten free or carry certifications
While the recipe itself is flourless, there is too much missing information and risk of gluten exposure from processing and ingredients. Until Godiva provides more transparency or gluten free certifications, their flourless chocolate cake should be avoided by those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivities.
Individual tolerance levels vary, so some less sensitive to small amounts of cross-contamination may be able to consume it without issue. But for those requiring strict gluten avoidance, there are too many unknowns with Godiva’s flourless chocolate cake.
Safe Gluten Free Alternatives
Thankfully, there are many delicious gluten free flourless chocolate cake options available today. Here are some recommended brands and products:
1. Betty Crocker Gluten Free Flourless Chocolate Cake Mix
- Certified gluten free and made in a dedicated gluten free facility
- Rich chocolate cake with ganache topping
- Just add oil, eggs, and water
2. King Arthur Gluten Free Flourless Chocolate Cake Mix
- Certified gluten free by GFCO
- Made with trusted King Arthur ingredients
- Delicious chocolate flavor
3. Enjoy Life Foods Crunchy Vanilla Honey Graham Gluten Free Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Top 8 allergen free (including gluten)
- Made in dedicated allergen free facility
- Has vanilla honey graham crackers in the cake batter
4. Make Your Own Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Find trusted gluten free recipe
- Use certified gluten free ingredients
- Avoid cross-contamination by thoroughly cleaning cooking tools/surfaces
Checking labels thoroughly, looking for gluten free certifications, and calling brands with any questions can help identify safe gluten free flourless chocolate cake options. Those with celiac disease or sensitivities should use caution with products like Godiva’s that lack transparency around potential gluten exposure from processing or ingredients.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is flourless chocolate cake naturally gluten free?
Flourless chocolate cake recipes without gluten-containing ingredients are naturally gluten free. However, any brand of flourless chocolate cake could have cross-contamination without proper processing controls.
What makes flourless chocolate cake gluten free?
Replacing traditional gluten-containing wheat flour with eggs, cocoa powder, and sometimes almond or coconut flour that are naturally gluten free makes flourless chocolate cake free of gluten.
Is Godiva chocolate gluten free?
Godiva does not claim to be a gluten free brand. Some pure Godiva chocolate products without gluten-containing ingredients may be safe, but their products can still have cross-contamination risks.
Does Godiva facility have wheat/gluten?
Godiva does not provide information about product facilities or allergen handling procedures. Their facilities likely process wheat/gluten and have potential for cross-contamination.
What are good gluten free chocolate cake brands?
Some examples of good gluten free brands for chocolate cake mixes and prepared cakes are Betty Crocker, King Arthur, Enjoy Life Foods, Glutino, Namaste Foods, and Bob’s Red Mill. Always check labels and certifications.
The Bottom Line
Those with celiac disease and gluten sensitivities need to be cautious of claims that flourless cakes are automatically safe, even from brands like Godiva. Without transparency, testing or certifications, cross-contamination and ingredient risks remain. Thankfully there are many delicious gluten free flourless chocolate cake options available from trusted brands, or homemade recipes using certified ingredients.