Gluten-Free / Dairy-Free Buche de Noel

Forget any ideas you have about the classic edible Yule log. This recipe by a longtime GFF fan, 18-year-old San Franciscan Kelsey Puknys, beats them all. And it’s gluten free and dairy free and incredibly easy to make. If you’re looking for happy holidays, start with this gluten free dairy free buche de noel.

5 from 8 votes

Gluten-Free / Dairy-Free Buche de Noel Recipe

Light, fluffy, and irresistible are just a few words that describe this spectacular GF/DF yule log cake with barely sweet DF chocolate frosting. Better still, it’s super-easy to make, so don’t hesitate to get your holiday baking on! Note: the frosting recipe calls for overnight refrigeration of coconut milk, so plan accordingly, or use your frosting of choice. Also, be sure to chill the coconut frosting before use to help it hold its structure. Finally, if the thicker cream of the coconut milk didn't rise to the top and harden in the can with refrigeration, you can try to salvage it by adding 1 to 4 tablespoons tapioca flour when whipping.

Servings 8
Calories 356 kcal
Author Kelsey Puknys



  • 6 eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar divided
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar for dusting


  • 2 (13.5-ounce cans) full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar sifted
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder sifted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


  • 3 rosemary sprigs
  • 3 red cranberries or red gumballs or other round red candies
  • Sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Line the bottom of a large (about 12- by 15-inch) rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Make the cake: Separate the egg yolks from the whites; reserve both separately. With an electric beater, or by hand, combine the yolks with 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar and beat until thick and pale. Mix in the cacao powder, vanilla, and salt to combine

  3. In the large, clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or by hand, whip the egg whites on medium-high until they form soft peaks. Gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and whip until stiff peaks form.

  4. Gently fold the egg whites into the yolk mixture, then spread the batter evenly onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake until cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and the top is dry, spongy, and springs back when gently pressed, 12 to 15 minutes.
  5. Dust a clean (non-terrycloth) dishtowel with the powdered sugar. Run a knife around the edges of the warm cake to loosen it from the pan, then turn the cake out onto the towel. Gently peel off and discard the parchment paper. (This can be tricky, as the cake is sticky, so go slow and steady and help the cake along with your fingers, if needed; don’t worry if a thin layer of cake sticks to the paper here and there. The frosting will cover any imperfections.) Roll up the cake, along with the towel, from the short end. Set the towel and cake roll on a wire rack for 30 minutes to cool.
  6. Make the frosting: Carefully open the coconut-milk cans. Scoop out only the firm, waxy solids at the top of each can and place them in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (discard the remaining liquid or reserve for another use). Beat on medium speed for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat on medium-high until the cream forms stiff peaks, about 3 minutes. Add the powdered sugar, cacao powder, vanilla, and salt. Mix slowly to incorporate, then beat on high speed until fluffy and completely combined. Keep refrigerated until use.
  7. Unroll the cake. Using a spatula, spread 2/3 of the chilled frosting in a thin layer on the cake, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. Roll the cake into a log again, this time without the dish towel, so the frosting is inside the log.

  8. Gently transfer the cake to a serving platter seam side down, then use the remaining frosting to frost the outside of the log. Gently run a fork through the frosting to create a log-like texture. Cut off the ends of the log for a clean look.
  9. Rinse the rosemary and cranberries to moisten. Sprinkle with sugar. Let dry. Then use to decorate the cake. Keep cake refrigerated until serving to keep the frosting firm.
Nutrition Facts
Gluten-Free / Dairy-Free Buche de Noel Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 356 Calories from Fat 216
% Daily Value*
Fat 24g37%
Saturated Fat 20g125%
Cholesterol 123mg41%
Sodium 134mg6%
Potassium 351mg10%
Carbohydrates 33g11%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 26g29%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 178IU4%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 44mg4%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Photography Erin Ng

52 Comments on “Gluten-Free / Dairy-Free Buche de Noel”

  1. Avatar for Gwen

    5 stars
    I haven’t made this yet, but it looks and sounds delicious, could this be made ahead of time and frozen until the day it is needed?

  2. Avatar for Erika

    What a great question! I haven’t tried freezing it. But now I want to. I’m going to make one this week. Maybe I’ll make an extra and see how it goes. My primary question is how the coconut cream holds up from freezing…I think that if you freeze it and defrost it in the refrigerator, it should be just fine!

  3. Avatar for Kelleigh Roffman

    5 stars
    Best part of my holiday baking. I was skeptical that it would be easy ….but it really was and it looks and tastes amazing! I did swap out the frosting for a chocolate whipped cream one.

  4. Avatar for Erika

    Right? I’m so glad you trusted us and tried it. I LOVE this recipe. The cake is ridiculously good. Thanks for sharing your feedback!–Erika

  5. Avatar for Deb

    5 stars
    This recipe is amazing. My college age granddaughter and I attempt to create fabulous gluten free Christmas dessert every year and this one did not disappoint. The instructions were clear and easy to follow. We used buttercream frosting and a chocolate ganache over the frosting which doubled up on the decadence! Thanks for a wonderful gluten free dessert that will definitely be a repeat next year.


  6. Avatar for Erika

    I’m so glad you think so, Deb. I really, really love it too. I personally test/taste all the recipes we post on They not only have to work, they have to be exceptional as well!

  7. Avatar for Roy David Mateus

    I believe I just found heaven! Lady year, I was diagnosed with sjogrens and decided to go Gluten-free and lactose-free but it has been hard path specially when I go out for dinner or go away – strictly diet is not enforced. About 11 months I discovered a couple cookie recipes that I can enjoy it. For the last two days I’ve been straggling with the regular Bush the Noël recipe, but not any more. Thank you for this great site. I am a new blogger whom enjoy it sharing my skills and others via the blog and cooking demos. I will make a regular bush and a GF/DF bus as well, hopefully to the dot. ‘ll report any alterations to your recipe. Thank you again.

  8. Avatar for Erika

    Yay! This GF/DF yule log cake is one of my very favorite recipes. I can’t wait to learn what you think.

  9. Avatar for Christine M Parry

    5 stars
    I just made this yesterday, and it was fantastic! My husband is already requesting that I make it again when we visit with our son! The taste, texture, and ease of preparation are wonderful! Next time, though, I will NOT line the pan with parchment paper, but will line it with foil, then spray with oil. (maybe dust with flour too?)

  10. Avatar for Erika

    That’s wonderful, Christine! We love this recipe too! Let us know how it works with the foil. Happy holidays!

  11. Avatar for Christine M Parry

    5 stars
    This recipe was THE hit of the Holiday season. I had several requests to make this an annual tradition. I did try lining the baking sheet with foil this time, though, and it came out MUCH easier. I had lost some of the cake the first time when I tried to remove it from the parchment paper. GREAT recipe Kelsey!

  12. Avatar for Erika

    I couldn’t agree more, Christine! It’s a wonderful recipe. Thanks for the tip on the foil!

  13. Avatar for Mac

    My frosting comes out pretty liquide although I really only used thicker fatty part of coco milk. Did I maybe over do it on the mixing? Too long? Any tips? Cake came out great !!!

  14. Avatar for Erika

    Sorry about the frosting. Sometimes the coconut cream can be fickle. If you’re committed to a vegan version, try again, adding less of the coconut and making sure it’s cold?

  15. Avatar for Cj

    Hi, this looks great and its nice to see the rave reviews after subscribers made it. Erika, did you ever figure out if it can be frozen?

  16. Avatar for Charlotte

    5 stars
    Amazing recipe!! I made this twice a few weeks apart because I just couldn’t get enough. It’s so light and fluffy and perfect! I have celiac disease and am lactose intolerant so this was the perfect treat for me.

    The cake does stick to the parchment so I’m curious about foil next time. The first time I made it the frosting was perfect, but the second time it was pretty runny. Not sure what happened but I’m definitely chilling all my cans next time. Thanks for this recipe!

  17. Avatar for Erika

    Hi Charlotte! Thanks for the great feedback. Sometimes the coconut cream is not as solid and that results in problems. There are discussions about this all over the web; it generally has to do with chilling but sometimes not :-/

  18. Avatar for Erika

    I haven’t. But I should. I just keep eating all of it! But honestly, I can’t imagine why it wouldn’t be okay. I promise I will try!

  19. Avatar for Alex

    Do you have a recipe for a white sponge Yule log that is GF, DF. I wanted to do one of each

  20. Avatar for Adam

    This looks great! My parents are very sensitive to caffeine and chocolate, would the icing work if it was without cocoa in it? I am just worried having both cocoa in the cake and frosting might be too much for them!

    Looking forward to making this.


  21. Avatar for Abbe

    My daughter and I made this this year- Thank You for a Gluten And dairy free recipe that was as fun to make as well as tasted Ahmazing!!! I Generously sugared my towel, read Over sugared ha but it worked and we followed the other suggestions of I lined the pan with foil instead of parchment- this is our new yearly tradition the making of the Yule Log.

  22. Avatar for Erika

    Oh, hooray, Abbe! I’m so glad you loved it. I can’t get enough of it, too. And it IS fun to make! Thanks for sharing and wishing you the very best in 2022!

  23. Avatar for Sue

    5 stars
    Can’t wait to try this great recipe. I can’t have gluten or dairy so this is perfect!
    Can coconut palm sugar be used in place of the granulated sugar?

  24. Avatar for Jennifer

    I can’t wait to make this. I will have to travel. Do you think the frosting will make an hour car ride?

  25. Avatar for Marisa

    I want to make this but my mother-in-law is allergic to coconut. Is there another dairy free milk that would work for the frosting?

  26. Avatar for Ashley

    What sort of pan do i use for this? It’s clearly a rounded pan? Or do I cut the cake after? I don’t see any instructions on how to make it into that shape?

  27. Avatar for Brooklyn

    Hello! Trying out this recipe for my sisters (very) late birthday gift. I was wondering if I could refrigerate the cake batter overnight, because I’m making different parts of the cake in stages. Thank you. 🙂

  28. Avatar for Erika

    You should be able to refrigerate the batter! Let us know how your sister likes it! Very generous gift from you!

  29. Avatar for Dana

    Is it okay to bake the cake and let it cool overnight before frosting? I sid not put the coconut milk in the fridge until I started baking and I am worried it will not be separated into cream and firm enough if I use it right away.

  30. Avatar for Erika

    I suspect it will be okay, but it’s tricky because you don’t want it to harden too much in the air. Maybe cover it with plastic wrap!

  31. Avatar for Colleen Kavanagh

    This is Kelsey’s family commenting 😊 We still make one or two of these every year ❤️ Our friend who is a professional baker says it’s the best bouche he’s ever had! It’s not very high in sugar so we love having leftovers for breakfast too.

    This year I’ll try the foil method and freezing and report back.

  32. Avatar for Dawn

    How much can you taste the coconut? I like a chocolate mint cream usually, but not sure if mint would work with coconut milk flavour.

  33. Avatar for Sara

    5 stars
    I will confess I did a bit of cursing while making this, but the end result was delicious!

    A few things: I could NOT get the coconut frosting to set up. Refrigerated the cans overnight (two nights, actually), used only the waxy white part…nada. Added 2 T. arrowroot. No dice. I used it, but it was super messy, not quite thick enough, and I had a lot left over (which I served alongside the Yule log as an extra topping). It wouldn’t set up after almost an hour in the fridge, but when I checked on the leftover frosting the next morning, it was much closer to the texture I wanted. (Lesson learned!)

    Modifications: added 2 T. Frangelico to the frosting, made a vegan ganache (also with a dash of Frangelico) to put over the log/frosting, and that worked out super well. Then added chopped hazelnuts on top. I would have added crystallized cranberries, but the stores apparently tossed all their fresh ones after Dec. 25. I had wild ambitions of meringue mushrooms, but…nope. Maybe next time.

    The cake was absolutely lovely. I dusted the parchment paper with cocoa powder and that reduced the stickiness a lot. I think I might try foil on the sides of the pan next time (since the cake stuck and created some jagged edges if I wasn’t careful) and then keep the cocoa-dusted parchment for the bottom.

    Biggest lessons: make it a day or two before you want to serve it. (I meant to do that, really I did, but…didn’t. I will next time.) Or at the very least, make the frosting first and make sure that’s the texture you want it before you start on the cake. So…I will either make the frosting the night before or try a vegan buttercream. Or both. 🙂 I definitely had the leftovers for breakfast (with berries and extra frosting on top) the next day–it’s rich but not super sweet, so it worked nicely for a decadent post-NYE breakfast.

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