Sugar Free Chocolate Cake

You won’t believe this is a sugar free homemade cake! An easy recipe for a fluffy, tender and moist Sugar Free Chocolate Cake. Frost with an easy cream cheese whipped frosting for a low-calorie dessert. You may also love our healthy banana cake.

two layer sugar free chocolate cake on a cake stand

Sugar Free Chocolate Cake Recipe

I’m so excited to be sharing this cake with you today. Many of you have asked for healthier cake recipes. This sugar free cake recipe was a twist on our traditional chocolate cake. It’s lower in calories so you can enjoy as big of a slice as you’d like…no guilt included!

Sugar Free Homemade Cake

If you’ve never made a homemade cake before, this is a great recipe to start with. We have made this cake countless times in many different ways. It has never failed us and is a great “beginner” cake. We replaced regular sugar with zero calorie sweetener (Splenda). The cake baked up moist and tender with a light crumb. I was really surprised how much I liked it and even my picky “sugar-loving” family didn’t seem to mind there was no sugar in it.

Why do you put coffee in chocolate cake?

This cake recipe calls for a cup of strong, hot coffee. Coffee enhances the flavor of chocolate cake. It will not taste like coffee, so even if you don’t care for coffee, you’ll still love this cake. Trust me! If you really don’t want to use coffee, you can use water instead. It will affect the flavor slightly, but the texture will still be good.

Sugar Free Chocolate Frosting

My biggest concern when tackling a sugar free chocolate cake was the frosting. I mean….frosting is sugar, so how was this going to work? I happened to find a recipe that used sugar free chocolate pudding and Cool Whip. Yes, I realize that Cool Whip does still have some sugar in it, but you can buy fat free or Lite, whichever works for you and you have a very low sugar frosting. This recipe also has cream cheese in it which helps to stabilize the frosting and “hold” it on to the cake.

Here’s our hint for making this frosting:

  • Beat the cream cheese until it is smooth.
  • Then in another bowl, mix together the pudding and milk.
  • Spoon this into the cream cheese one spoonful at a time (maybe like 2 tablespoons?) and beat each addition in until it is smooth before adding more. If you add it all at once, you may have trouble getting the frosting smooth. Take your time!!
  • Fold in the whipped topping.
  • Refrigerate the frosting until the cakes are cooled and then you can frost the cake. It’s important to store this frosting in the refrigerator at all times so it doesn’t “melt” off the cake.

Sugar Free Chocolate Cake


easy sugar free chocolate cake recipe
easy sugar free chocolate cake recipe

Sugar Free Chocolate Cake

3.77 from 81 votes
Servings 15
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 47 minutes


Chocolate Layer Cake:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups Splenda zero calorie sweetner
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup freshly brewed strong hot coffee

Chocolate Frosting:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 2.1 ounces sugar free chocolate pudding (1 large box)
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 8 ounces Lite Cool Whip


Make the Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 round 9-inch cake pans.
  • For the cake, put flour, Splenda, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl and mix well.
  • In a stand mixer, mix the buttermilk, oil, eggs, vanilla together. Slowly add in the mix of dry ingredients while the mixer is on low. Add the coffee and make sure everything is combined. The batter will be very thin.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack. While the cakes are cooling, make the frosting.

Make the Frosting:

  • Using a hand mixer, whip the softened cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth and creamy. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, mix together the milk and sugar free pudding mix, whisking until smooth.
  • Add the pudding, one spoonful at a time to the cream cheese, beating between each addition. Be careful not to add this too quickly or it won't mix in well. 
  • After you've added in all of the pudding, fold in the whipped topping and mix gently until completely combined.

Assemble the Cake:

  • Place one cake layer on a plate.
  • Spoon and smooth about 1 to 1 ½ cups of frosting over the first cake layer.
  • Place the second cake on top.
  • Frost the top and outside of the cake (if desired) with the remaining frosting.
  • Refrigerate the cake until serving. The frosting will soften and "melt" as it is at room temperature so be sure to keep the cake cold!


The calories shown are based on the cake being cut into 15 pieces, with 1 serving being 1 slice of frosted cake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate.


Calories: 329kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 510mg | Potassium: 208mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 330IU | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1.5mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 329
Keyword healthy cake, homemade cake, low sugar cake, sugar free dessert

Sugar Free Chocolate Cake

About Julie Clark

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Join the Discussion


  1. 5 stars
    Sounds great, but I will be sure to substitute the buttermilk and the oil with other things, such as unsweetened applesauce for the oil and Greek yogurt for the buttermilk.

    1. We did use greek yogurt, the batter climbed up the beaters and into the mixer!!! Icing did the same thing. But the kids enjoyed it. We made a 13×9 cake for a big family. I will definitely make again.

    2. If subbing applesauce for the oil and Greek yogurt for the buttermilk, how much do you put of each ?Use the same measurements as oil and buttermilk?

  2. Hi, I am looking forward to trying this recipe. I am new to sugar free baking. Is there a stevia based substitute that I could use instead of Splenda. Thanks.

  3. I just made this as hostess cupcakes with cream filling. Used monk fruit sweetner for a no sugar cake. Wowser! Saving this recipe!

      1. I can’t make that recommendation. I mean it is a good cake that even non-diabetics like, but I’d look at the ingredient list and nutrition info and make that decision for yourself.

    1. As a diabetic, I always look for a miracle dessert, especially cake. This cake has more than 40 grams of carbs, and as Kris says 23g. of sugar in each slice. My doctor would frown at this. Can the cake be made with coconut or almond flour? What substitute can be used to bring down the sugar count? Thank you. Richard

  4. 5 stars
    I made this cake this morning. Used Stevia for sugar, coconut oil and Almond flour. Frosting per directions. It is delicious. This diabetic CAN eat chocolate cake. Thank you for the recipe.

  5. I made this today and it turned out really good. I question the nutritional information posted though. I added up all of the sugar in everything used and came up with 51 grams total for the cake and frosting. Split that by 15 servings and I get 3.4 grams of sugar per serving, not 23. Where did you get your numbers from?

    1. It is automatically calculated and depends on specific brand ingredients. I’d go with what you came up with!

  6. 5 stars
    You are a genius. I just baked your chocolate cake . I could not tell that it’s sugar free. Used decaf instant coffee. I can’t wait to bake it for friends, poured thin ganache on single layers, more to share that way.

  7. Hi from London, UK! About to make this with my sugar-free 3 year old twins. They’ve never had chocolate before so this will be a real treat. I’ll also substitute the buttermilk with Greek yoghurt. What do you think about substituting stevia with coconut sugar? I’m also going to add a little hazelnut and cocoa butter to the mix with a little bit of decaf coffee. For the frosting we’ll use mascarpone with agave syrup. So excited to taste this and prove to other refined-sugar loving parents that we’re not weirdos for not giving our kids refined sugar!!

  8. 5 stars
    This was fantastic! I even used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten free 1-to-1 baking flour. Will make again! Was nervous about using Splenda bc I use monk fruit blend a lot but this was the best sugar free cake I’ve made. Thank you 🙂

      1. If the recipe is called sugar free cake, why does the nutrition state 23 grams of sugar?

      2. It is no added sugar. So any sugar is from natural sugars in the ingredients.

    1. I saw that also. As far as I know, it should say 0 grams of sugar. I hate when someone claims its something which it actually isn’t. It would be great for her to explain.

      1. No added sugar. It uses Splenda instead. This is not meant for low carb. This is meant for those who need sugar free cakes with sugar substitutes.

    2. 5 stars
      I agree it is amazing. As far as the sugar count goes if you add together the amounts of sugar in the ingredients ( milk buttermilk cream cheese lite cool whip) it comes to about 40 grams then divide that by 15 servings and you have approximately 3 grams per serving. If you use sugar free cool whip and make your own buttermilk with 2% milk and use 2% milk in the pudding you will have almost no added sugar per serving. That is what I did and it was delicious.

  9. 5 stars
    Made this today. This is absolutely the BEST sugar-free cake I’ve eaten! I used Swerve, but used half granular and half confectioner. Topped it with Lite Cool Whip. Stupendous! Thx!

  10. 5 stars
    Made this and it turned out amazing. I made of for my cousin who is pre-diabetic and she’s lactose intolerant so I substituted dairy free products. Huge HIT!!!!

  11. This was a delicious cake! But I didn’t get 2 9″ layer cakes out of it. More like 2-6″ and a cupcake to sample.

  12. 4 stars
    Made this recipe but with following changes based on what I had on hand:
    I didn’t have buttermilk so I substituted Greek yogurt.
    I only had 1/2 as much Hershey’s 100 % cocoa powder as was needed, but I had some Mexican cinnamon cocoa powder (sugarless), so I used it to complete the required 3/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder.
    I used 3 eggs instead of 2. I used 2 t vanilla instead of 1.
    I used 1/2 t salt instead of 1 t.

    I used Splenda for my sweetener.

    Cake top looked kind of leathery and deflated. Texture was denser than a usual cake and didn’t rise as much in my 9 inch cake pan. The mild cinnamon flavor was nice.

    I topped it with sugar free frosting: Swerve (3 cups powdered), butter (1 cup room temperature), 1 t almond extract and 2 t vanilla and 2 T milk, and whipped it GOOD. The frosting was delicious on this cake.

    I never made a sugar free cake before but this one was pretty good.

  13. 4 stars
    I made this cake today! It’s a great sugar free cake recipe. I did not however, make the frosting as I like something more made from scratch than Cool Whip. I would recommend baking it at a slightly lower temperature (325 for longer) because it doomed and cracked at the top. 350 is just a little too hot for this cake! I used Stevia instead and it worked great. Perfect amount for a 6” cake with 3 layers! Thank you for sharing.

  14. I have been into sugar free baking for awhile now and this literally the worst cake I have ever tasted.

    1. Did you use Splenda or another sweetener? Are you used to baking sugar free? Just trying to help diagnose 🙂

  15. Attention Everyone!

    Milk is the reason this recipe has 23 grams of sugar. You would have to replace it with almond milk. Also, all purpose flour has carbs you can substitute it with almond flour, then it will be ok for diabetics to eat by changing out the two ingredients. Will it taste the same? No!!

  16. My sister is a diabetic and I would like to make her a Birthday cake. she can not eat the regular sugar substitutes and I was wondering if i can replace the sweetener with either a date paste or mashed bananas instead?.

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