Blackberry Mousse Gluten Free Trifle

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A gluten free trifle with blackberry mousse, moist chocolate cake, and fluffy whipped cream is what summer dessert dreams are made of!  The pretty dessert takes my blackberry mousse and layers it with gluten free chocolate cake, whipped coconut cream, and fresh berries to make a stunning dessert with minimal effort!

A pretty gluten free trifle with blackberries in a small trifle glass.

Blackberry Trifle

With the popularity of my peach mousse trifle, it was time to try my hand at the fruit trifle dessert again.  The pretty layered dessert is relatively easy to make and the structure allows you some creative authority when you make it.

Layers of cake, mousse and/or whipped cream, and fresh fruit can be arranged in any order.  And with each layers comes the option of changing up the flavors!  How about: 

And you change up the whipped cream in any of these with a blueberry whipped coconut cream, or strawberry whipped coconut cream.

Why You’ll Love This gluten free Trifle

  • Delicious way to highlight fresh fruit
  • Varying layers of texture and flavor
  • Easy to customize to any flavor you like – change up the mousse, cake, and fruit flavors!
  • Stunning dessert with minimal effort
  • Serve in pretty individual glasses or a larger centerpiece dish
Blackberry mousse gluten free trifle in pretty parfait glasses set side by side on a table.

Everything You Need To Make The gluten free Berry Trifle

Blackberry Mousse ingredients

  • Fresh blackberries – I recommend fresh for the flavor, and you want a layer of the fresh berries.
  • Lemon juice – Brightens the flavor of the blackberries.
  • Honey – I prefer the floral and fruity notes of honey with the blackberries.  But you can use any sweetener you prefer.
  • Water – Regular tap water to bloom the gelatin.
  • Unflavored gelatin powder – I’ve only worked with gelatin powder.  And be sure not to use the flavored gelatin packets – they have too many added ingredients we don’t need.
  • Canned Coconut Milk – This is a can of unsweetened coconut milk.  The coconut solids in the can are what we use to thicken the mousse and make it super creamy.  You can swap in dairy whipped cream if you prefer.

gluten free Chocolate Cake ingredients

  • Almond flour – Adds protein and structure to the cake.
  • Tapioca flour – Will  make the cake light, tender, and give a little chew.
  • Coconut flour – Is extremely absorbent and great for this cake because of all the wet ingredients.  It will give the cake texture and structure.
  • Xanthan gum – Not a necessary ingredient but great if you want a light as air cake.
  • Cocoa powder – My preference is Dutched cocoa because of its bold cocoa flavor and it isn’t as acidic.
  • Baking powder and baking soda – We use both to give the cake texture and help with rise.
  • Salt – A must to balance and enhance flavors.
  • Cane sugar – I like to use organic cane sugar, but you can use white granulated sugar.
  • Egg – Just 1 egg.
  • Coconut oil – The coconut oil will keep the cake incredibly moist.  You can swap in any neutral oil you prefer.
  • Sour cream – I use full fat to get unbeatable moisture and texture in the cake.
  • Vanilla – Flavor!
  • Hot coffee – The coffee enhances the cocoa flavor.  You can swap in plain hot water.

Baking Equipment

  • Mixing bowls – Which also includes a small prep bowl for the gelatin.
  • Blender – A good blender is a great kitchen investment!
  • Strainer – A fine mesh strainer to strain out the blackberry seeds.
  • Hand mixer – I’d be lost without my Breville hand mixer!
  • Serving glasses – Pretty parfait glasses are ideal for this gluten free trifle dessert.

Tips For Trifle Success

  • Use fresh blackberries – Because you will want the fresh fruit layers in the trifle.
  • Refrigerate the can of coconut milk overnight – This will force the coconut liquid and solids to separate.
  • Strain the blackberry puree – Unless you like the crunchy texture of the seeds in the mousse!
  • Arrange your layers any way you like – the great thing about this gluten free trifle is that there aren’t rules on the layer order!
  • Make the components ahead of time – Great thing about the mousse and cake is that they can be made the day before you want to serve the trifles.
  • Cut the chocolate cake in half – If you are making  your cake layer in rounds.  This will ensure you have enough pieces.
  • Chill the assembled trifles – The mousse needs some time to set and thicken.
Layers of blackberry mousse and chocolate cake in a pretty trifle glass.

fREQUENTLY aSKED qUESTIONS

Can I double the recipe to make more servings?

The mousse is easily doubled. You can try to double the small chocolate cake, or make a non-gluten free version and use my classic double layer chocolate cake.

Do I really have to chill the trifle? Or can I just serve right away?

I recommend time in the refrigerator to give the mousse time to firm up.

Can I swap in other berries or fruit?

Absolutely! I gave a couple recommendations at the beginning of the post on some possible flavor combinations.

Can I use store-bought cake?

You sure can.

How do I store the trifles?

Store the gluten free trifles covered in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. Beyond that, and the cake may start to dry out, and the mousse may start to separate.

A blackberry gluten free trifle with layers of mango mousse, chocolate cake, and whipped cream in a pretty parfait glass.

Blackberry Mousse Gluten Free Trifle

Yield: 2 Servings
GF
A gluten free trifle with blackberry mousse, moist chocolate cake, and fluffy whipped cream is what summer dessert dreams are made of!  The pretty dessert takes my blackberry mousse and layers it with gluten free chocolate cake, whipped coconut cream, and fresh berries to make a stunning dessert with minimal effort!
Prep30 minutes
Cook22 minutes
Chill4 hours
Total4 hours 52 minutes

Equipment

Ingredients
 

Blackberry Mousse

Chocolate Gluten Free Cake

Instructions

Blackberry Mousse

  • In a blender, add 8 ounces of the blackberries, lemon juice, and honey. Puree until light and smooth. Keep in the blender and set aside. Halve or chop the remaining 2 ounces of blackberries for layers in the trifle. Set aside until ready to use.
    1 teaspoon lemon juice, 3 tablespoons honey, 10 ounces fresh blackberries
  • In a small prep bowl, add the water. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top, let sit for 5 minutes to allow the gelatin to bloom – it will resemble a firm gel when ready. Then, heat the bloomed gelatin to a liquid in the microwave – only about 5 to 10 seconds.
    1 ½ tablespoons water, 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder
  • Pour the liquified gelatin into the blackberry puree in the blender and mix for another 30 to 45 seconds – until all ingredients are thoroughly blended.
  • Strain the blackberry puree through a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl – to remove the seeds. Cover the bowl and chill in the refrigerator until is starts to thicken. About 1 hour. 
  • While the blackberry puree is chilling, make whipped cream with the coconut milk.
    13.5 ounces unsweetened canned coconut milk, full fat
  • Add the coconut cream solids to a medium mixing bowl. Using a hand held mixer, beat until soft peaks form. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use. Note – Sweetening the whipped coconut cream is optional. If you prefer a sweeter dessert, add a tablespoon of honey to the whipped cream as you are whipping it.
  • Now, make the chocolate cake.

Chocolate Gluten Free Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350F degrees and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Line the bottom of a 6-inch round cake pan with a piece of parchment paper. Lightly grease the pan and the paper.
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the almond flour, tapioca flour, coconut flour, xanthan gum, cocoa powder, baking powder and soda, and salt.
    1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons blanched almond flour, 3 tablespoons tapioca flour, 1 and 1/2 tablespoons coconut flour, 1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum, 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch process, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/8 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • In a medium mixing bowl, add the sugar, egg, melted coconut oil, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Whisk until completely combined.
    1/2 cup organic cane sugar, 1 large egg, room temperature, 3 tablespoons cold pressed refined coconut oil, melted, 2 tablespoons full fat sour cream, room temperature, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Sprinkle the dry ingredients over the top of the wet ingredients. Stir until no dry streaks remain. Add the hot coffee (or water), and stir until combined.
    2 tablespoons medium brew coffee, very hot
  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 22 to 25 minutes, or until the cake is springy to the touch, the sides are pulling away from the pan, and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out mostly clean. Cool the cake in the pan set on a wire cooling rack for 10 minutes, then transfer to the rack to cool completely.

Assemble

  • Once the blackberry puree has thickened, add 3/4 cup of the whipped coconut cream. Gently fold the mix together until no streaks remain. The mousse will be the consistency of the whipped cream and will continue to firm as it chills. Note: Any remaining whipped cream can be used for layers in the trifle. If you don't have enough, follow the instructions for the whipped coconut cream linked in the recipe.
  • Slice the cake in half if you are making cake rounds – to ensure you get enough cake pieces. Use a cookie cutter that fits your serving glasses to cut out the cake rounds. Or, you can also chop the cake into large chunks.
  • In your serving glasses, layer your trifle: starting with 1) cake 2) mousse 3)whipped cream 4) blackberries. Or make the layers however you prefer.
  • Cover and chill for at least 3 hours to allow the mousse to set. Enjoy!
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RECIPE NOTES

  • Serving Size – This is intended to be a recipe for two people.  You can easily double the mousse.  And you can try to double the cake, but I can’t say for certain as I have not tested it.
  • Whipped Cream – I prefer whipped coconut cream for a creamier whipped cream.  However, you can swap in dairy whipped cream.
  • Mousse Sweetener – Swap in any sweetener of choice.  Taste test as you go and add more sweetener to get desired sweetness.  Keep in mind, the fruit is inherently sweet and too much sugar will overpower the fresh fruit flavor.
  • Chill Time – Refrigerate for at least 4 hours total to give the mousse time to set.  Overnight is also a great option.
  • Strain the Puree – I recommend straining the fruit puree to remove the seeds and for a super smooth mousse.
  • Cake – You can use any cake/flavor you like – including store-bought.  My vanilla gluten free cake would also be delicious!
  • Storing – The trifle should be stored covered in the refrigetaor for 2 to 3 days.  Beyond that, the cake may start to dry out the mousse may start to ‘weep’.
  • Freezing – I do not recommend freezing the trifle.  
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Erin Cernich
Nutrition information is calculated by a third-party and should only be considered an estimate and not a guarantee.
About the author photo.

about the author ...

I'm Erin and I'm all about desserts - and a little bit of butter!

I've tested, written, and photographed hundreds of recipes on my website. Here you'll find the tastiest small batch gluten free and traditional desserts - all homemade, all simple, and all for you!

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