This light red velvet cake roll is filled with cream cheese filling rolled in a soft sponge cake. Easily made gluten Free for the perfect dessert.

Guys, you can’t get much better than a chocolatey, sweet, tangy dessert – this Red Velvet Cake Roll is everything and more!

Without a doubt, red velvet is a crowd favorite. No other cake tastes as good with cream cheese filling.

Treat yourself to a decadent dessert, that looks super fancy, but is super simple to make.

If you like this recipe, you’ll also probably like my Pumpkin Roll and my No Bake Red Velvet Cookie Dough Bites.

What is a swiss roll?

Gluten free redvelvet roll with vegan cream cheese frosting is being served perfectly sliced on parchment paper

Generally, a Swiss Roll is a type of cake consisting of a thin layer of sponge cake rolled around some sort of jelly, jam, or icing.

Newer interpretations of Swiss rolls, such as chocolate variations often contain buttercream, whipped cream, nut butter, chocolate ganache, and other delicious fillings.

In this case, we are using a whipped, cream cheese frosting. However, if you ever feel like experimenting – the options are endless!

Is red velvet cake actually just chocolate?

Gluten free redvelvet roll with vegan cream cheese frosting is being served perfectly sliced on parchment paper

Generally, most people have heard the saying that red velvet is simply just chocolate cake with food coloring.

However, that is not the case. In this case, red velvet has far less cocoa powder than traditional chocolate cake. It was coined a “velvet” cake for the rich texture of the sponge cake. The red color came from the natural reaction of buttermilk, vanilla, and cocoa powder.

It was not until the Great Depression when food companies wanted to sell more coloring that they added red dye to the recipe to make it the bright red that we know today.

Read more about the difference between red velvet and chocolate cake here.

Food coloring

In truth, this is the first time I’ve worked extensively with food coloring. The very first time I tried using red coloring, the cake batter turned out purple. After baking, it simply looked like chocolate cake.

Afterwards, I used gel food coloring – a lot less because its more concentrated. This time, it turned out perfect!

Simply, add 1 tsp distilled vinegar to bring out the color more.

How to make this Red Velvet cake roll gluten-free?

To make these rolls gluten free, I use my Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free baking flour – it is a 1:1 ratio with regular flour.

Additionally, depending on your dietary preference, you can use unbleached all-purpose flour for this recipe as well.

Can I make this Red Velvet cake roll dairy free?

Yes!

In this case, the cake itself is dairy-free if you use vegan cream cheese. I love using my Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese for the filling to make this red velvet both gluten and dairy free.

What kind of towel do you use for the pumpkin roll?

Lucky for you, there is no towel needed for this recipe!

In this case, the cake consistency allows for it to roll well on its own. Plus, we pre-roll while its warm to ensure it maintains its shaper after.

Ingredients for Red Velvet Cake Roll

This red velvet cake is packed with delicious ingredients:

All purpose flour or gluten free flour

Cocoa powder

Baking powder

Baking soda

Salt

Eggs, room temperature

Sugar

Butter, or vegan or coconut oil slightly cooled

White vinegar + milk, or buttermilk

White vinegar

Red food coloring (gel)

Vanilla Extract

Cream Cheese Filling

Cream cheese

Butter, room temp or softened

Powdered sugar

Vanilla

HOW TO MAKE Red Velvet Cake Roll

Ingredients are being mixed together for the red velvet roll

First, mix the melted butter and sugar in a bowl.

Then, add the eggs one at a time while mixing.

After, add buttermilk, the red coloring, and white vinegar and mix well.

Ingredients are being mixed together for the red velvet roll- and then poured onto a cookie sheet

Combine with the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and mix through.

Next, pour into lined 10×15 jelly roll pan.

Finally, bake 350F for 10 – 11 minutes.

Following that, take the cake out of the oven and cover it with another baking pan or tin foil to retain the moisture. Loosen the edge a little bit if it appears to be sticking at all.

Then, while it’s still warm, gently roll it from the short edge. You’ll want to wrap it with a small piece of tin foil to keep it in place.

Cream Cheese Filling

Left image shows frosting being globbed on the cake- right the frosting is spread

Afterward, whip together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and butter into a bowl until smooth.

Once the cake has cooled for an hour or so, gently unroll it and spread the cream cheese filling evenly, leaving a little bit around the edge.

The images are showing the red velvet roll- perfectly rolled and also topped with powder sugar

Then, gently roll it back, but not too tight. It should be easy to roll because of the pre-rolling.

Following, wrap it with plastic wrap tightly and leave it in the fridge overnight.

Finally, sprinkle powdered sugar, slice, and enjoy this red velvet delight!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different size pan?

No, it affects the thickness of the cake which could change the baking time, and amount of filling you need in it.

Can I use cacao powder instead of cocoa powder?

Absolutely! It gives a slightly more bitter taste which also pairs well with the cream cheese frosting.

Why does my swiss roll taste rubbery?

In this case, your red velvet roll may taste a bit rubbery due to overmixing!

Can you prep ahead?

Certainly, you can prep ahead!

In truth, it is better to have the assembled red velvet cake roll wrapped and rest for a couple hours in the fridge to set.

Additionally, you can make it the day before your holiday gathering and simply add the cream cheese filling and re-roll the next day.

Tips for making the best red velvet cake roll

Gluten free redvelvet roll with vegan cream cheese frosting is being served perfectly sliced on parchment paper
  • Prevent cracking! – First, pre-roll the cake without the filling while the cake is still warm. Second, don’t overbake. Third, don’t roll too tight!
  • Measure Your Flour In brief, the best way to measure flour is using a scale. However, if a scale is not available to you, my number one rule is DO NOT pack your flour in – you want the natural air within to remain.
  • Sticky Dough? – If you find that the dough is sticky there are a few options. First, you can sprinkle a bit of powdered sugar as you roll. Second, you can oil your hands while rolling to prevent the stick. Third, you can bake the cake on parchment paper and then use the parchment paper as a base to help you roll.

How to spice up this red velvet cake roll

Who doesn’t love a little extra deliciousness? Here are some ideas:

  • Use red and white sprinkles either on top or in the icing
  • Drizzle melted white chocolate on top
  • Mash some berries up and add into the cream cheese – raspberries and chocolate? Yum!
  • Additionally, you can experiment with different types of extract in the cake or the cream cheese – peppermint, mocha, pumpkin, and more! Usually, a teaspoon will suffice.

How to Store a Red Velvet Cake Roll?

Gluten free redvelvet roll with vegan cream cheese frosting is being served perfectly sliced on a small plate

You can leave the Velvet Rolls on the counter for a day and then I recommend storing them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Can I freeze cake rolls?

Yes, they freeze well up to a month. In this case, I like to wrap them into individual serving sizes.

How do I defrost cake rolls?

In brief, simply take them out of the freezer and allow them to thaw before serving.

Generally, it only takes 1-2 hours to thaw

How to Serve Red Velvet Cake Rolls?  

Certainly, these Velvet Rolls taste amazing on their own!

I love having a slice with a warm cup of coffee or tea. The creamy filling mixed with the soft cake pairs perfectly with a warm beverage.

Additionally, if you want to take it to the next level add a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

What other holiday-inspired roll recipe would you like to see?

I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOUR CREATIONS! YOU CAN USE “TRIED IT” ON PINTEREST OR SHARE ON INSTAGRAM BY TAGGING #SHUANGYSEATS

Gluten free redvelvet roll with vegan cream cheese frosting is being served perfectly sliced on parchment paper

Get the recipe:Red Velvet Cake Roll

This light red velvet cake roll is filled with cream cheese filling rolled in a soft sponge cake. Easily made gluten free for the perfect dessert.
3 stars (2 reviews)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup flour, 100 grams – all-purpose flour or gluten-free 1:1 flour
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder , 20 grams
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 3 whole eggs, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar, 135 grams
  • 2 tbsp melted butter, vegan butter or coconut oil, slightly cooled
  • 1/2 tsp white vinegar to mix with milk, mix this with the 2 tbsp of milk and let sit
  • 2 tbsp milk, you can also use 2 tbsp of buttermilk
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tbsp red coloring , 1 oz if using gel food coloring, 1/3 to ½ of the 0.67 oz tube
  • 2 tsp vanilla

Cream Cheese Filling

  • 8 oz block cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 tbsp butter, room temperature or softened
  • 3/4-1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions 

  • Mix the melted butter and sugar in a bowl.
  • Add the eggs one at a time while mixing.
  • Add butter milk, the red coloring, and white vinegar and mix well.
  • Combine with the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and mix through.
  • Pour into lined 10×15 jelly roll pan.
  • Bake 350F for 10 – 11 minutes.
  • Take the cake out of the oven and cover it with another baking pan or tin foil to retain the moisture. Loosen the edge a little bit if it appears to be sticking at all.
  • While it’s still warm, gently roll it from the short edge. You want to wrap it with a small piece of tin foil to keep it in place.

Cream Cheese Filling

  • Whip together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and butter into a bowl until smooth.
  • Once the cake has cooled for an hour or so, gently unroll it and spread the cream cheese evenly, leaving a little bit around the edge.
  • Gently roll it back, but not too tight. It should be easy to roll because of the pre-rolling.
  • Wrap it with a plastic wrap tightly and leave it in the fridge overnight.
  • Sprinkle powdered sugar, slice, and enjoy this red velvet delight!

The Nutrition Facts above are specific to the ingredients I chose to use for this recipe, which may vary.