Swedish Saffron Cake (Saffranskaka) Gluten Free



This Swedish saffron cake is a real eye-opener. Saffron is used a lot in Swedish baking at Christmas time. Festivities get underway first with Lussekatter and then all the way up to Christmas, saffron is found in a multitude of baking recipes from cookies, bread, all the way through to cakes.

Up until I moved to Sweden, I’d never used saffron. I certainly hadn’t baked with it. I’d lived and worked in Turkey for a couple of years so knew of the spice and was pretty taken by its gorgeous colour, but other than that, had little experience of it.

Last year I got all saffron crazy. I cracked out overnight saffron and white chocolate buns and saffron skorpor (Sweden’s answer to biscotti) but this time, it’s a cake.

Saffron adds a stunning colour to baked food. I mean really beautiful. I expected this, but I was a little surprised at how delicious it was. Take care though, you only need a pinch. Add too much, and the exotic taste of saffron would become overpowering. Good job, too, seeing as how expensive it is to buy!



This Swedish saffron cake is gluten free and made with a ready mixed blend, along with ground almonds. There’s something very unique about the mixture of almonds and saffron; other-worldly, almost.

The cake is so soft and fluffy, with just the right amount of sweetness, and a taste that lingers in your mouth long after you’ve eaten it. The only downside of being less sweet is that you could snaffle down half a cake in one sitting and not even notice. Oh. Is that just me?

I made a small cake (this one is 18cm) but you could easily double the recipe to make a larger one.


Swedish Saffron Cake (Gluten Free)

Course Christmas
Cuisine Swedish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes


  • 80g (⅓ cup) butter
  • ½ gram  (¼ tsp) ground saffron
  • 1 egg
  • 135g (⅔ cup) sugar
  • 75ml (5 tbs) milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground psyllium husk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 35g (⅓ cup) almond meal/ground almonds
  • 135g (1⅛ cups) gluten free flour blend (see note 1)
  • icing / confectioners sugar (for sprinkling)


  • Pre-heat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
  • Grease a small springform pan (mine was 6 inches/18cm)
  • Melt the butter, then stir in the saffron and let it sit for a while.
  • Beat the egg and sugar together.
  • Add the saffron/butter mixture along with the milk.
  • In a separate bowl, mix all the dry ingredients (apart from the icing sugar) together.
  • Add them to the wet ingredients, and stir until just combined.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and bake for around 35-40 minutes (if you feel the top is browning too much, cover it over with a piece of foil)
  • The cake is ready when it is slightly springy to the touch, and an inserted skewer comes out just about clean.
  • Let the cake cool, sprinkle with plenty of icing sugar and serve either as it is, or with a little cream by the side if you fancy it. Enjoy!


  1. I have not made this recipe with anything other than a gluten free flour. However, I don't see any reason why you couldn't use spelt (or regular) flour in place of the gluten free blend. Just use the same amount of flour, but omit the psyllium husk.
I have converted grams to cups/ounces/tablespoons using online converters. Although I have no reason to believe they are inaccurate, please be aware that I have not made the recipe with imperial measurements.
In addition, many ingredients are different in Europe compared to North America. I do all I can to offer possible alternatives and to ensure the best possible outcomes for everyone. However, results cannot always be guaranteed if you have not used the same ingredients, measurements or methods as me.
Lastly, I do everything I can to ensure that my recipes (and instructions) are accurate and easy to follow. However, I am human, and don't always get it right. If you notice anything strange, a mistake, or even a typo, please let me know in the comments.






Swedish Saffron Cake (Saffranskaka) Gluten Free

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