Chocolate Cake Roll

by lydia on July 5, 2010

Today, we celebrated my son’s 5th birthday! I marvel, simply marvel, at how the years truly do fly by.

For the past several birthdays in this household, I have tried to make a healthier cake. My big issue is with the frosting. I do not want to make the typical frosting loaded with powdered sugar these days, so I have tried to come up with a sour cream based frosting. The problem, though, is that I would never make the frosting in advance and the frosting would just slide off the cake because it hadn’t firmed up.

This time, I decided not to put up with that nonsense and remembered a fabulous cake roll I had made years ago. Instead of the powdered sugar base filling, I did it with mascarpone and a little bit of honey. It was amazing!! This time, I came up with a filling based on what I had in my fridge and thankfully it turned out wonderfully!! Oh, and did I mention it’s a gluten-free cake as well? Not to mention pretty relatively low carb as well. My kids all loved it too!! Okay, enough raving here’s the recipe:

Chocolate Cake Roll
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12
  • ⅓ cup oat flour ( pretty sure you could successfully use sprouted oat flour as well, I'll try that next time!)
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
  • 3 Tbsp of arrowroot, or 2 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. aluminum free baking powder
  • ⅓ tsp. salt
  • 4 large pastured eggs, separated
  • ½ cup organic sugar, divided
  • Filling:
  • 1 - 8oz tub mascarpone, or 8 oz cream cheese
  • ¼ cup butter, brought to room temperature
  • ½ to 1 cup of sour cream
  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tbsp. organic sugar or honey (if I'd had honey on hand I would have used that instead of sugar)
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Line a 15 x 10 x 1-inch jelly roll pan with parchment or waxed paper. I actually used an 11 x 16 x 1-inch pan, which was a lot thinner and I preferred it this way. Butter and flour lined pan; tap out excess. I used arrowroot to flour mine, so it would be gluten-free.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, cornstarch or arrowroot, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. In a separate bowl, using an electric mixer set on a medium speed, beat egg yolks and ¼ cup sugar until fluffy.
  4. In a small bowl, using clean beaters, beat egg whites on high until foamy. Gradually add ¼ cup sugar, beating until stiff, but not dry, peaks form.
  5. Fold ⅓ beaten egg whites into egg yolk mixture. Alternately fold in remaining whites and flour mixture. Pour batter in pan; smooth top. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 15 minutes.
  6. To Roll and Fill the Cake:
  7. Set out a clean tea towel. Turn cake out onto the towel; remove waxed/parchment paper. Trim the cake's edges if needed, I waited until I rolled it up then trimmed the excess.
  8. Starting with a long side, tightly roll up cake with towel. Transfer cake, seam-side down, to a wire rack to cool.
  9. Unroll cake; remove towel. Spread with the filling over cake to within ½ inch of edges. Re-roll cake; place seam-side down on a plate. You can dust the cake with confectioners' sugar before serving, however I did not.
  10. To prepare the filling simply mix all filling ingredients in a mixer until whipped and incorporated. If not serving right away keep the cake refrigerated.

The next time I make this I hope to have made my own mascarpone cheese!! Can’t wait! Also I am contributing this post as a part of ‘Real Food Wednesdays‘ and ‘Fight Back Fridays


Phil July 5, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Looks tasty! Nice photo, too.

Gina July 6, 2010 at 9:07 am

She’s not lying – it was amazing. Yum :)

Phil July 7, 2010 at 6:29 am

Haha I don’t doubt it! :)

Mindy M July 7, 2010 at 12:49 pm

Over the weekend I tried to make a cake roll for my daughter’s birthday. When I unrolled the cake after in cooled, it fell into pieces. It was a natural lemon cake roll so I added fruit and whipped cream to make a Trifle. It was beautiful and everyone like it but I still have never made a successful cake roll. Thanks for the healthy recipe. I’ll have to save it for the next birthday.

Lydia July 7, 2010 at 7:50 pm

Hey Mindy – it sounds like you turned it into something lovely! I have some thoughts on the cake roll not working out – first is, did you roll it with the top side up – the side that was on top during baking should be the side you have facing up when you roll it. Also it can’t be rolled too tightly either. I actually baked mine in a larger pan and I think that may help, not sure though. Anyway, I wish you success next time you try it!!

Julie December 2, 2010 at 1:47 pm

This is very impressive!!! During the winter holidays you could tweek this and turn it in to a bouche d’ noelle cake (sorry if the spelling is wrong). This is that chocolate cake roll that has been frosted and made to look like a yule log-complete with a knot coming out of the log. I think you could do it!

lydia December 2, 2010 at 5:59 pm

Yes, I wanted to make a Buche de Noel out of this, and a pumpkin cake roll, but I want to make it grain free too – I now can’t tolerate oats :( We’ll see if I get around to it though 😉

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