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Gluten-free Icebox Cake

Gluten-free Icebox Cake

Here’s where you reap the rewards. You’ve baked and baked. You’ve rolled and cut-out the dough for those gluten-free Crunchy Chocolate Wafer Cookies, then gathered the scraps and rolled some more.

Oh, the humanity!

The weather is already getting steamy (don’t get me started – it’s nearly 100 degrees here in New York today, and here I had pledged to myself that I would try to be more zen-like about the heat of the summer). Is there no end to the sacrifices you have made in the good name of gluten-free dessert?

When we made soft & chewy chocolate wafer cookies for ice cream sandwiches, some of you wondered whether they were suitable for an icebox cake. Well, not really

The way an icebox cake works is for the crispy chocolate wafer cookies to absorb some of the moisture from the whipped cream as it sits in the refrigerator overnight, making the cookies and the whipped cream at one with one another. If the cookies start out soft, the cake will simply fall apart.

Well, that just wouldn’t do. Cookies are important. The right cookies are important. I don’t like to mess around, you know?

You probably don’t need me to tell you how to make an icebox cake. But what if you were newly gluten-free and decided that you might like to make an icebox cake. You can’t buy those Nabisco chocolate wafer cookies. So what can you do? Can you even make a gluten-free icebox cake? So you hit google.

Maybe you’re new here, and a quick “Gluten-free Icebox Cake” search brought you here. Oh, how I hope. Gluten-free hope springs eternal! We’re all about the art of the possible around here.

Yes, we can! With no politics involved.

Oh, and make no mistake. We’re going to do plenty more with those crispy, crunchy chocolaty cookies this Summer. So crank up the a/c, and stock up, baby!

Gluten-free Icebox Cake
Recipe Type: Cake
Author: Nicole @ Gluten-Free on a Shoestring.com
Prep time: 10 mins
Total time: 10 mins
Serves: 6
Gluten-free chocolate wafer cookie and whipped cream icebox cake
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 2 tablespoons (14g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 35 gluten-free Thin & Crispy Chocolate Wafer Cookies
  • Bittersweet chocolate shavings, for sprinkling (optional)
  • Dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder, for sprinkling (optional)
  1. Place the bowl of your stand mixer (or a large metal bowl) in your freezer, along with the heavy whipping cream, in your freezer until very cold to the touch (about 5 minutes).
  2. Remove the bowl and cream from the freezer, and empty the cream into the bowl. Add the confectioners’ sugar, and whip the cream on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. If you mix on medium-high for a longer period of time, rather than on high speed for less time, the whipped cream will be more stable.
  3. Arrange 7 wafer cookies on a flat plate in a circular pattern, with one cookie in the center, making sure that the cookies are close enough that their sides touch. Place about 1/2 cup of the whipped cream on top of the first layer of cookies, and carefully smooth it out in a single, even layer with a slightly wet spatula. Top with another set of 7 cookies, staggering each cookie in the second layer so that it is positioned on top of half of each of two adjacent cookies in the layer below. Follow with another layer of 1/2 cup whipped cream, and another layer of 7 cookies, staggered back, like the bottom layer. Repeat with another 2 layers, ending with a layer of whipped cream.
  4. Place the cake in the refrigerator to sit overnight, or at least 8 hours.
  5. When ready to serve, remove the cake from the refrigerator and top with optional cocoa powder and/or chocolate shavings. Hulled and sliced strawberries are nice, too.
  6. Slice and serve chilled.

This cake can easily be made larger and/or taller, with up to 10 layers. Simply multiply the ingredient amounts accordingly.


P.S. If you’ve bought a copy of My Cookbook, I really & truly appreciate your support. I couldn’t do this without you. And I wouldn’t dare try, friend.

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  • […] Gluten Free on a Shoestring shared Chocolate Wafer Icebox Cake […]

  • June 21, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Your post caught my eye in Google reader this morning and I haven’t stopped thinking of it since. Giving up gluten meant the obvious (and obviously replaceable): bread, pasta, pizza, beer. But I hadn’t imagined having this family favorite until I saw your post – THANK YOU!! I grew up on this dessert but we called it Cookie Lert – the recipe came down from both sides of my family and now my daughter loves it too. She calls it Cooke Alert ;) Thanks for bringing a family treasure back to our table. We eat this at Thanksgiving and Christmas but I may have to give it a go this summer just to test it out, right?!

    • June 22, 2012 at 11:53 AM

      That’s what it’s all about, Lisa. Keeping tradition alive! Cookie Lert, huh? I’ll have to look that up. I’ve never heard the term before. And a dry run is always important, for sure. :)
      xoxo Nicole

  • Kathy
    June 21, 2012 at 6:44 PM

    I enjoy the web site and wonderful details. I am not sure how to contact the web person, as the blog community , can’t get a link sent with password.
    I had some issues with the pizza dough , and was hoping to ask my question.
    THe dough did not rise, but the yeast was good, not to hot or cold water, used a thermo. tried twice, about 105. Other breads i made turned out wonderful, from your site, just can’t figure out what went wrong. used food processor, thinking, maybe it didn’t get stirred up a lot. Made it into a ball, not to sticky. Just dense. thanks you, your blog is a gift. Thank you.

  • Beverly
    June 21, 2012 at 8:51 AM

    This is a childhood favorite that my mother used to make, but she made it into a log-style rectangular loaf. Here’s how to do it: Using the above recipe, make stacks of cookies about 5 or 6 tall with whipped cream in between. Line the stacks up on a serving platter, reserving enough whipped cream to completely frost the log. Garnish with the shaved chcolate. When the log is sliced as you would a loaf cake, you see a pretty striped pattern.

  • June 20, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    I’ve never heard of an icebox cake until this blog (I’m from NJ but maybe it’s a southern east coast thing!) but something tells me I’ve been missing out! I bet my husband would love it, looks fabulous and decadent. My daughter isn’t into whipped cream (crazy I know) but she’ll be all over those crunchy chocolate cookies. Can’t wait to see what else you’ve got planned next! It may be close to 100 again in NYC tomorrow but I may need to turn on my oven anyhow :)

    • June 21, 2012 at 7:52 PM

      Okay, Dana, not being into whipped cream is just a language I do not speak. So crazy!
      I don’t understand this NYC heatwave. I don’t want to understand this NYC heatwave. It was meant to break, but now it’s not. It doesn’t care about us. And our cookies. And our ovens.
      xoxo Nicole

  • June 20, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    This looks amazing!

  • June 20, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    Your website and recipes look amazing! I love this icebox cake and your Ice Cream Sandwiches! I hope you don’t mind, I wrote a post on my blog entitled, “What We All Miss Being Gluten Free” based on a conversation that happened on a facebook page I monitor. I posted a link to you Ice Cream Sandwiches.

    God bless!

    • June 21, 2012 at 7:53 PM

      Of course I don’t mind, Hannah! Thanks for stopping by.
      xoxo Nicole

  • June 20, 2012 at 3:12 PM

    Oh, that looks GOOD…I wish I had a slice right here in front of me, so I could eat it ;) :) Thanks for the recipe. Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

  • Pam G
    June 20, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    that looks soooo refreshing! yummo! can’t wait to try…

    • June 20, 2012 at 3:36 PM

      If you want refreshing, Pam, try putting it in the freezer before serving! It’s actually really really good. :)
      xoxo Nicole

  • Kristi
    June 20, 2012 at 10:28 AM

    I have never made or heard of an icebox cake. I clearly and most definitely have been deprived. Is this an East Coast thing? It really looks yummy! I love fun desserts.

    • June 20, 2012 at 3:35 PM

      Funny, Kristi, I had never considered it an East Coast thing, but it may very well be…
      xoxo Nikki

    • Alli B
      July 3, 2012 at 10:53 PM


      It’s not just an East Coast thing! I’m in Idaho and LOVE it! But, come to think of it. . . .I had it first with a family who is from the East Coast. Hm. . .


  • Patti
    June 20, 2012 at 10:07 AM

    Daughter’s birthday this week and this is what I am going to make. Thank you! And by the way, the lemon bars with the True Lemon……….I can’t get enough of them! Good thing I actually have to take the time to make them. Love ’em!!

    • June 20, 2012 at 3:34 PM

      Sounds like a great birthday, Patti! So glad you’re enjoying the True Lemon Bars. Thanks for letting me know!
      xoxo Nicole

  • June 20, 2012 at 9:25 AM

    Good morning! Any thoughts on how to make the chocolate cookies in another flavor — perhaps lemon or brown sugar/butterscotch? My husband can’t eat chocolate (and yes, my celiac daughter says giving up gluten is easier). I can play around with the recipe myself, just wondered if I could benefit from your experience first!

    • June 20, 2012 at 3:34 PM

      Hi, there,
      Wow. That’s a cross to bear for your husband, isn’t it? ;) I would suggest using my gluten-free ‘Nilla wafers instead of the chocolate wafers. They’re the perfect consistency. Just look under cookies in the recipe index, or use the search bar.
      xoxo Nicole

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