Pear & Dark Cherry Gluten Free Fruitcake

gluten free fruitcake recipe
Benko Photographics
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 1 hr 5 mins
Calories: 399

Here’s a modern version of a gluten free fruitcake that everyone will love. A little brandy and some pear juice make it super moist and flavorful. This recipe can be made egg-free; see instructions.

For Egg-Free Fruitcake, omit 3 eggs. Combine 3 tablespoons flax meal with 9 tablespoons hot unsweetened applesauce. Let cool. Add this mixture in step 4. Reduce oil to ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons in step 5. Add 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder to dry ingredients in step 6.

Recipe by contributor Mary Capone.

Yields 16 servings


  • 2 cups dark brown sugar or coconut sugar, divided
  • 2 tablespoons brandy, optional
  • 2 ripe pears (D’Anjou or Bartlett), sliced in thin wedges
  • 1¾ cups frozen pitted dark cherries, thawed and separated, divided
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¾ cup milk of choice
  • ½ cup pear juice
  • 1¼ cups vegetable oil, such as grapeseed or canola
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2¼ cups Mary’s All-Purpose Flour Blend
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting, optional


1Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 10-inch springform pan and line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper. Alternatively, lightly grease two 9x5-inch loaf pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.

2In a small saucepan, heat ½ cup brown sugar and brandy. Bring to a simmer and swirl the pan to mix (do not stir), about 3 minutes. Remove from stove and pour syrup into prepared pan(s). If you’re sensitive to distilled liquor, skip this step and sprinkle sugar evenly over the bottom of prepared pan(s).

3Arrange pear wedges in the syrup in a spiral design, starting at the center and circling out. Place 1 cup cherries in the spaces between the pears. Set aside.

4In a heavy-duty stand mixer with a whisk attachment or with a hand mixer and a large bowl, beat eggs and remaining 1½ cups sugar, about 3 to 5 minutes.

5In a medium bowl, combine milk, pear juice, oil and vanilla.

6In another bowl, whisk together flour blend, baking powder, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt and cardamom.

7At low speed, alternate adding dry and wet ingredients to egg and sugar mixture. Add a little at a time, just until combined. Fold in remaining ¾ cup cherries.

8Transfer batter to prepared pan(s). Place in preheated oven and bake 60 to 65 minutes for a springform pan (45 minutes for loaf pans) or until cake center springs back to touch.

9Remove from oven and let cake cool in pan(s) until it begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. Remove sides of springform pan. Place a serving plate on the top of the cake and flip it over. Remove the bottom of the springform pan and peel back parchment paper. Replace any fruit that sticks to paper. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.

1 serving contains 399 calories, 21g total fat, 4g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 40mg cholesterol, 176mg sodium, 51g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 27g sugars, 3g protein.