Gluten-free Chai Tea Cake – when mistakes are made

Gluten-free Chai Tea Cake

Last weekend I was baking many different recipes and I found myself with extra condensed milk. I don’t use it often and I really didn’t want to let it sit in the fridge until it would be ready to be thrown out. So I decided to add another recipe to the list. Originally it was a Thai Tea Coffe Cake from the latest issue of Bake from Scratch.

I thought that I would easily find the Thai tea mix that was described as a “popular drink.” My trips to local stores brought me back empty handed. So, thanks to Google, I chose to collect ingredients and make the tea myself: black tea, anise star, cinnamon stick, cardamom, and turmeric. The result was a disaster. Turmeric was the only flavor that came through.

Though, I was still left with the condensed milk. So I made the decision to use the Chai tea I had in the house. In my rush, unfortunately, I didn’t read the recipe throughly, and forgot to make the spiced strudel, creating quite a bland tea cake instead of a spiced coffee one.

I then thought that some spiced icing, with more chai tea, and vanilla chai tea, would do the trick, adding some toasted almonds for texture.

The result was a soft and delicate cake, balanced with subtle hints of chai tea spices and vanilla. It was a truly delicious accompaniment to a hot cup of tea.


Gluten-free Chai Tea Cake – when mistakes are made

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Recipe by Simona Gluten-free Course: DessertDifficulty: Easy
Prep time


Cooking time




  • For the cake
  • 120 g 120 buttermilk – 1/2 cup

  • 6 bags 6 Chai tea – I used Twinings

  • 150 g 150 sweetened condensed milk – 1/2 cup

  • 57 g 57 unsalted butter, melted – 1/4 cup

  • 2 large 2 eggs

  • 42 g 42 vegetable oil – 3 Tablespoons

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons 1 1/2 vanilla extract

  • 2 Tablespoons 2 glycerin

  • 195 g 195 Simona’s Flour Mix – 1 1/4 cups

  • 72 g 72 granulated sugar – 6 Tablespoons

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons 1 1/2 baking powder

  • 3/4 teaspoon 3/4 salt

  • For the chai spice icing
  • 28 g 28 unsalted butter, 2 Tablespoons

  • 2 bags 2 Chai tea – I used one Chai and one Vanilla Chai

  • 180 g 180 confectioners’ sugar – 1 1/2 cups

  • 1 teaspoon 1 vanilla extract

  • toasted almonds toasted almonds as needed


  • In a small microwave safe bowl, heat the buttermilk on high in 10 second intervals, stirring between each, until warm. (Be careful not to overheat buttermilk) Stir in the 6 bags of Chai tea and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes. Using a sieve, strain buttermilk mixture into a small bowl, and discard the solids. Add additional buttermilk, if necessary, to yield 1/3 cup (80 g) buttermilk mixture.
  • Preheat the oven to 325 degree Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 inch springform pan, and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  • Add condensed milk, melted butter, eggs, oil, vanilla, and glycerin to the buttermilk mixture.
  • In a large bowl, which together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Gradually add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture and mix well.
  • Pour and evenly spread the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 22 to 30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and place on a cooling rack to ice.
  • For the icing
  • In a microwave safe bowl bring 2 Tablespoons of water to a boil. Add the tea bags and let them sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • In a 1-quart saucepan, melt the 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Stir in the concentrated tea, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla extract – adjust the consistency adding more confectioners’ sugar if necessary. Spread chai icing over the top of the cooled cake, allowing some to drizzle down the side. Sprinkle with toasted almonds.

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