Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Dirt Cake

This Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Dirt Cake recipe is a Midwestern dessert favorite!! Layers of crushed chocolate sandwich cookies with a vanilla pudding layer for an easy gluten-free dessert. Add your favorite seasonal decorations! 

Plan ahead: The pudding needs to chill 1-2 hours, while the assembled dirt cake needs to chill for 3-4 hours or overnight. 

Course Dessert
Keyword gluten-free dairy-free dirt cake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Total Time 6 hours
Servings 8
Author Tessa Fisher


Vanilla Pudding

Dirt Cake

  • gluten-free dairy-free chocolate sandwich cookies like K-Toos or Glutinos
  • 3/4 cup organic powdered sugar
  • 8 ounces dairy-free cream cheese
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight or canned coconut cream


  1. In a small or medium saucepan, add coconut milk and almond milk over medium heat. As the milk starts to warm, whisk in arrowroot starch until completely dissolved. Whisk in maple syrup and salt. Stir mixture frequently until it comes to a low boil. The mixture should start to thicken.

  2. Once at a low boil, let it bubble and cook for about one minute more, while stirring, then remove from heat. Stir in vanilla extract. Transfer to a glass bowl and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes.

  3. Press a piece of plastic wrap onto the surface of the pudding as you cover the bowl. Refrigerate until pudding has completely set (at least 1-2 hours).

  4. Add chocolate sandwich cookies to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until you have a crumb mixture. Set aside.

  5. Once pudding has set, it is time to assemble dirt cake. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.

     In a medium bowl, place powdered sugar and cream cheese. Scoop out the hardened white coconut from the top of the coconut milk can (stop scooping when you hit liquid) and add to bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on low and increase to medium speed, until ingredients are smooth and evenly combined. Add  chilled pudding and mix on low to combine.

  6. Take about 3/4 cup of the cookie crumbs and spread them in the prepared baking dish. Spread the pudding mixture over crumbs in an even layer. Then spread remaining cookie crumbs over the pudding mixture. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours or overnight.

  7. Serve in bowls, cups, or flower pots. Top with gummy worms or other decorations as desired.