Gluten-free Valencia Cake

Hello, Chris here.  I’m the lead product developer for the new Gluten-free Orange Valencia Cake.  Today, I’d like to share a behind the scenes look into the development of a delicious and gluten-free cake.  We start with just seven simple ingredients (eggs, Valencia orange pulp, almonds, sugar, orange peel, gluten-free baking powder, and orange oil) and carefully blend them together in small batches at our partner bakery.  Because gluten can easily contaminate through pans, tools and even in the air, the bakery has a special gluten-free zone with dedicated equipment, pans and washing stations. 

After the cake batter is made, it’s transferred to the batter depositor that pushes batter into baking cups (think of a hose nozzle, but instead of water, batter comes out).  The cakes are then hand-sprinkled with slivered almonds baked. Just 35 minutes later, little golden orange cakes emerge.  When the cakes are cooled, they are put through a machine called a “doughboy” wrapper. This machine individually wraps the cakes to prevent gluten contamination during transit and handling.  We ensure the product is gluten-free by lab testing the cakes every day (less than 20 parts per million) before they are shipped to our stores. Our partners have been trained to serve the cake in their wrappers to protect our gluten-sensitive customers. 

As you can see, a lot of care and attention goes into each and every cake we make. I hope you enjoy this moist and delicious Valencia Orange Cake as much as I do (and I am not even gluten-sensitive)!



5/5/2009 10:31 AM

I wast at my local Starbucks right when then opened this morning - 5:30 AM .  Had  a delicious treat before Yoga class..

Thank you for providing a Gluten Free treat we can enjoy!

5/5/2009 11:11 AM

Thank you!  I'm going today!

5/5/2009 1:07 PM

I'm so happy I could cry. Seriously, thank you so much.

5/5/2009 1:12 PM

i went to my starbucks and got two-one for me and one for my co-worker. yum! so glad to have a sweet treat to go with my latte. thank you!

love valencia
5/5/2009 1:13 PM

We don't have this in Las Vegas yet, but since it is Valencia flavoring does that mean we have the flavor back in our coffee again.  I was disappointed when the favor was taken away.  I have tried to buy some flavoring on my own but have had not luck.  Can anyone help?

5/5/2009 1:59 PM

Chris, thank you so much.  It's really tasty (and surprisingly moist!), and more important, it makes us feel like Starbucks is listening!

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

5/5/2009 3:53 PM

Thanks from Forbes and Shady Ave. Starbucks in Pittsburgh.  Now all Starbucks has to do is get their act together and advertise that they have Gluten Free cakes.  I hope that they get other varieties of such a high quality cake.

Kudos to Starbucks.

5/6/2009 8:22 AM

Thank you so much!!  I love that I now can have a treat with my latte!! It tastes great!!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

5/6/2009 9:27 AM

Thank you!!  This means so much to those of us who have Celiac Disease or Gluten Intolerance.  What a wonderful treat!  Since you have the dedicated space, I hope to see more treats. :)

5/6/2009 10:19 AM

I am SO thankful that there is something I can get for my son who cannot tolerate gluten or dairy.  I bought 2 yesterday!!!  Thank you - I will anxiously await further gluten/dairy free item arrivals!!!

Jane A
5/6/2009 10:21 AM

Oh . . . my . . . gosh !  It is so yummy - just had my first taste.  Thank you - it really does mean so much to us GF customers.    How about developing a chocoloate version ?  

5/6/2009 10:21 AM

WOW! This is wonderful news.. My mother is Gluten Intolerant and has to carry her own snacks with her.  I will let her know that Starbucks is baking a Gluten free Valencia Cake, she can have whenever she stops for her coffee. I am sure she will spread the word to her Gluten Free club here in Portland, Oregon.

Thanks for going the extra mile.

5/6/2009 10:24 AM

It appears that this is dairy as well as gluten free.  For many of us who have issues with dairy, it would be a good idea to let us know that this is also dairy free (if that is the case).  I always feel so deprived when I look at all the beautiful baked goods and have to assume they have dairy so cannot purchase.  I believe there is plenty of market for dairy-free offerings, so please heed our call.

5/6/2009 10:24 AM

Thank you!  I (and several of my family members) avoid gluten and love Starbucks and I am delighted to have a GF treat option.  Thanks for listening!

5/6/2009 10:27 AM

THANK YOU, STARBUCKS!!! For years I've been jealously eyeing the treats in your stores and I now can finally purchase one!! You have absolutely made my day! My coworkers thought I'd won the lottery when I just squealed with excitement!

5/6/2009 10:30 AM

AHHHHHH. WHOOO HOOOO. guess where Im going after work! thanks Starbucks... more please :)

5/6/2009 10:30 AM

THANK YOU!!  I ask every time I'm there and finally you have something for me!  I'm on my way right now to try one!

Will you have them at airport Starbucks?

5/6/2009 10:32 AM

Finally Gluten Free products are being recognized.  Thank you Starbucks for listening!  Can't wait to stop at Starbucks tomorrow morning and see if these have made it here yet!

Can't wait to see what other GF yummies come out!

5/6/2009 10:34 AM

You have just made me one of the happiest men alive. Seriously. for *my* gluten-free cookbook, now I am thrilled to be able to buy and eat a pastry at Starbucks where I spend hal my time anyway. Woo-hoo!

5/6/2009 10:37 AM

Wonderful! Wonderful! (And I haven't even tried the cake yet.) Thank you for developing this gluten-free goody just for me! :)

I am thrilled to see Starbucks offering GF products and bringing awareness to the world!

5/6/2009 10:38 AM

That's excellent!!!  Thank you!!!!

5/6/2009 10:38 AM

Thank you SO much.  The growing number of people who recognize their gluten sensitivity now have a great-tasting option at Starbucks.  Good thinking and creating!

5/6/2009 10:38 AM

woohooo!  Gluten free is the words for me!  I have been sick for 14 years and just found out 3 years ago that it is Celiacs.  Anything GF is a God send, so THANK YOU TONS Starbucks!!!!  PLEASE bring out more!  We allergy sufferers need to be noticed too.  

THNKA YOU again!!!!!  God Bless from Southern Orange County, CA

5/6/2009 10:39 AM

What a aurprise to see this product this morning!  Loved it! Thanks and I look forward to more gluten free!

5/6/2009 10:40 AM

Thank you so, so much! As a celiac, I was able to have a product like this in a Starbucks while doing research in London, and I've been craving one in the US ever since. I am literally running out to Starbucks NOW. Chris you rock my gluten insensitive world.

5/6/2009 10:41 AM

THANK YOU!!!  I am so happy Starbucks is taking a leading role in providing for us gluten free folks.  Definitely a huge gold star in my book for Starbucks!!!!  YAY!!! No seriously, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.  Did I mention, THANK YOU!!!

5/6/2009 10:44 AM

Anyone know how many calories are in this new cake?

5/6/2009 10:47 AM

You just cannot understimate the import of this move - your great efforts wil NOT go unnoticed by the legions of GLuten Free people just lookign for one more bastion of  "normalcy"  - being able to enjoy a treat with my coffe is so more that it sound slike, trust me! :)

5/6/2009 10:48 AM


I doubt you have any idea what this means, and how much those of us who MUST eat gluten free appreciate this effort.

Let's face it-social activities usually revolve around some kind of food. How often I have felt left out because I couldn't go to Starbucks with my friends (or alone to read) and enjoy a snack with my coffee. Although it is not the end of the world, there is a feeling of being let down and deprived.

This is HUGE to me, and I know I speak for millions of people like me who have Celiac Disease. I've already been a Starbuck's fan, but you can bet now our relationship has been solidified.

5/6/2009 10:49 AM

I just posted the information to our Tucson Autism Community where many children are on GF/CF diets and going out with their family to snack or have a meal has limited options.   Thanks for getting this GF snack on your menu and hope there may be more coming our way.

5/6/2009 10:50 AM

<b>Just one problem...</b>

These are being displayed <b>unwrapped</b> in the pastry case, so cannot be sold to someone who needs gluten free. So you end up wasting at least 3 (that's how many were displayed) a day.

5/6/2009 10:51 AM

Could you provide a link posting the nutritional information on this offering?   That would really help me.   BTW - it looks like the DTour diet includes the oatmeal pairing at Starbucks (a big relief for me!)

5/6/2009 10:51 AM

Help.  We live in the center of Oregon.  We have really great Starbucks stores....oh, they are wonderful.  However, it appears have not supplied them with the new Valencia Orange Cake (I just did an online search on the Starbucks site).  Will we be getting it?  It sounds wonderful.  

Tho' I have to admit, there are so many good things---love the new breakfast sandwiches/wraps---it's getting harder and harder to make a selection.

5/6/2009 10:53 AM

Thanks!  It is great to see the care and concern you are taking in the production of this gluten free treat.  I can't wait to try it.  I applaud your efforts.

5/6/2009 10:54 AM

A part of the  food community is listening and working to help those of us who get very ill eating gluten products.  Thank you so much for being on board  with this.  It is a rainy day,  perfect for heading out to Starbucks  for a tasty treat.  

5/6/2009 10:55 AM

I also hope this means we're getting Valencia back as a drink flavor option.  Been hoping for that for a long time.

5/6/2009 10:57 AM

Oh thank you!!!!!!  I so appreciate it and so will many of my friends!!!!!!

5/6/2009 10:58 AM

YAY!  More like this... and make it CHOCOLATE!  :)

5/6/2009 11:01 AM

I cannot tell you how happy this makes me!! I hope this is a success and I look forward to more GF products at Starbucks!!!

Vanilla would be nice too :)

5/6/2009 11:02 AM

Thank you!! I screamed with excitement when I heard this this was finally in stores. When I got to the store, I was so happy that my starbucks carried the gf cake. Thank you, Thank you!!

5/6/2009 11:03 AM

You will get my business because of offering a gluten-free item. It is very important to be able to participate in "normal" functions with my friends and co-workers. This allows me to be that much more "normal." Thank you.

5/6/2009 11:04 AM


5/6/2009 11:07 AM

Thank you so much for offering SOMETHING for gluten-free folks!  And orange - yummy!  Can't wait to try one -- maybe tomorrow morning!

Thanks again!

5/6/2009 11:08 AM

Thank you so much for this! The cake is awesome!!! Keep it up!!!

5/6/2009 11:09 AM

Thank you for going the extra steps for a gluten free treat at Starbucks!  I can't wait to try one!

5/6/2009 11:10 AM

De-LISH!  Thank you so very much for going the extra mile to bring your customers this gluten-free yumminess.  I have longed for a Starbucks treat to go with my afternoon coffee for years.  Bravo!

5/6/2009 11:11 AM

Thanks for thinking of us gluten intolerant people, there are many of us out here and it is nice to know that we are not forgotten. I go to Starbucks everyday and can't eat the non gluten free items, my friends always feel bad for me and often will not order something when they are with me, which in turn makes me feel bad, so thank-you for thinking of us gluten sensitive people.  

5/6/2009 11:13 AM

I could not be more thrilled and appreciative...there is nothing I enjoy more than going to Starbucks (it's my happy place) and must confess that I sometimes fall off my gluten free wagon there occasionally because you just want to have something! Before I would get a rice krispie treat because it was wheat free, but it would still bother me later. Now I can have a guilt free treat, thank you so much! I know once word spreads, you will be so prospered by developing this you will want to make more delicious creations!

I am going to enjoy one today  :)

Bless you!!!!!

5/6/2009 11:14 AM

THANK YOU, THANK YOU! Giving up bakery has been the hardest thing for my celiac husband...when we go to Starbucks he looks longingly through the glass at all the forbidden goodies. He was so excited to hear about this!!

5/6/2009 11:14 AM

I agree, this is great news. Thank you! Maybe you could make a sugar-free treat for my diabetic husband to enjoy, that would make it even better!

5/6/2009 11:14 AM

Thank you so much for providing a gluten-free snack who those of us who are gluten-intolerant, but I have to agree that you cannot display these items unwrapped in your pastry case.  People who have severe gluten allergies or celiac disease will get very sick from any cross-contamination - so please reconsider how you display these items.

5/6/2009 11:16 AM

Thank you so much for coming up with a gluten-free item! I tried the cake yesterday and it was delicious. It's so nice that you're responsive to customer needs.

5/6/2009 11:17 AM

I had one yesterday, it's my new addiction!  Thanks for finally offering something for GF guests... can't wait to see what other delicious GF treats you come up with!  

5/6/2009 11:17 AM

This is wonderful I hope Starbuck continues to address food allergies issues.  I have recently become aware since my daughter is allergic to milk, wheat, tree nuts and peanuts.  I would love to see more cakes like this!  Maybe a no nut one? I am so looking forward to being able to have a coffee and pastry again!

5/6/2009 11:18 AM

I am sooo Happy about a gluten-free product at Starbucks!!! I have Celiac disease and it is hard to look at all those pastries...Thanks so much for feeding us too...Keep it up!

5/6/2009 11:22 AM

Here is a link to the nutritional information:

At 290 cals, looks like a great, natural option for an occasional treat!  However, no mention of sugar content.  

Thanks, Starbucks!

5/6/2009 11:22 AM

Like so many others with Celiac, this is great news!  I will go no where else but Starbucks for my coffee, my treat and my meetings with business associates.   You are so kind to listen and do this.  I look forward to your expanding your gluten-free choices!  Thank you.  Now off to my Starbucks!!

5/6/2009 11:25 AM

THANK YOU!!! More places need to get on the gluten free train!

5/6/2009 11:31 AM

Finally! Can't belive you finally did it! Hope it is going to be all over and not just in a few locations! Thanks!

5/6/2009 11:31 AM

I am so excited!! - you have no idea.  I can finally have a treat at Starbucks!  I go there every morning for coffee, but nothing to eat.  Thank you for adding something GF!  

coffee coffee
5/6/2009 11:32 AM

Thank you so much, i can't have certain coffees because of my gluten/wheat/dairy allergies. I am so glad you are adding this and hope to see a lot more in the future.  THANK YOU!!

5/6/2009 11:33 AM

I can't believe it has taken this long, but very happy. I can now treat myself to something  just like anybody else. It would be nice to see carrot cake.  It's  great and easy to make it gluten-free or a bread product would be nice too. Thank you for listening to us.

5/6/2009 11:41 AM

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!! This will make it so much easier for those who need gluten-free to get a snack along with their beverage. Hopefully, there will be some additions in the future.

5/6/2009 11:42 AM

Thanks you Starbucks.... Now that more and more people are finally getting diagnosed with Celiacs 1 in 300 have it but only 3%  are diagnosed... This is truly a blessing. ... Hope to see more gluten free options a bagel, blueberry scones maybe soon... Thanks again...

5/6/2009 11:47 AM

Thank you, Starbucks!  My son has food allergies and we come in all the time and he can never have any 'goodies'.  I'm so happy to see you thinking of those with allergies.  I'm hopeful to see more gluten free options and maybe even egg-free or dairy-free options, as well?  

5/6/2009 11:57 AM

I have not eaten something this fantastic in over a year and half. Thank you so very much!!!

5/6/2009 12:03 PM

Hi Chris,

I just tried the new Valencia Orange Cake and OMG- what a home run!  This is so moist and delicious- I actually like it better than the other bakery items.  Thanks for the delicious option!

Can we get a chocolate gluten-free option?  I love the orange, but chocolate would be AMAZING.

kero131 (and anyone else who's curious), the new Valencia Orange Cake has 290 calories, 16g of fat, 2 g sat. fat, 125mg cholesterol, 40mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 23g sugar, 9g protein.

The serving size is one cake.

There's no mention of dairy anywhere in the product ingredients on the package.

This cake is seriously worth trying. Yum, Yum, YUM!!

5/6/2009 12:03 PM

Thank you so much for the gluten free product.  I love the coffee and now I will be able to eat something to go with it.  I hope there will be more to come.

5/6/2009 12:14 PM

My daughter texted me this morning and was very excited to report that she picked up this treat on her Starbucks break today.  It reminded her of an orange bread that she loved at one of our favorite Ocean City, NJ restaurants which she has not been able to have since being diagnosed with celiac 10 years ago!  Thank you for venturing into the gluten free market!

5/6/2009 12:35 PM

Thank you so much!  You have no idea how much we appreciate that you have provided those of us with gluten intolerance with a tasty treat to go along with our favorite tasty drink.  You are setting a gold standard and I hope that you will be adding more gluten free products in the future.

5/6/2009 12:44 PM

Oh, hurrah!  I haven't tried this yet, but I am certain that it is the perfect complement to a doppio espresso.  I hope the "celiacs" of the world unite to make this product so successful that many more will follow.

5/6/2009 12:47 PM

This is the best news I heard all day!!!!  Thank you SO much.  I can't wait to try it.  I hope you get a great response and continue to add more gluten free products.

5/6/2009 12:59 PM

I am not intolerant but I am allergic to wheat, and I can't wait to try this.  I can actually eat it since it has no regular flour.  Hope to see more things like this in the future.  Keep up the good work.

5/6/2009 1:00 PM

I had one of these at lunchtime --- it was delicious!  I cannot believe the small list of ingredients.

HOWEVER, the partner that got it from the case for me, removed it from the packaging and put it in a regular Starbucks bag . . . since it was for me, I was okay with that, but if I'd been bringing it back for a co-worker with celiac disease I would have protested and requested one still in the wrapper.

5/6/2009 1:01 PM

This is a great addition to the menu! I have a friend with Celiac & she always had to bring her own "treat" with her. PLEASE,PLEASE,PLEASE do not unwrap a display cake. This is a waste of what will be a VERY popular item & it also may make some people afraid of the integrity of the Gluten-free,ie if all I see is an unwrapped item I'm not sure how well it is packaged. Thanks for listening.

5/6/2009 1:02 PM

OMG, the gluten free Valencia cake is delicious! I called the nearest Starbucks to make sure they had the cake before we drove there and they only had 4 left. We left right away and I scooped one up.

I love the Tazo teas at Starbucks but haven't enjoyed anything else to eat there since being diagnosed 3 years ago with Celiac Disease. It was so wonderful to have another place to go and get a gluten free item.

It is wonderful that you are offering different options for those of us with food problems. Keep up the great work and I will continue to drive 20 minutes to my nearest Starbucks!

Thank you so much!

5/6/2009 1:06 PM

THANK YOU STARBUCKS!  Finally, someone has heard of the plight of celiacs who cannot share food with others.  It's a social issue, an emotional issue, and a matter of long-term life and health.  I am concerned about training associates to keep your wonderful product gluten-free as they serve it. One molecule of gluten can ruin someone's entire WEEK, health-wise.  I will always support Starbucks for this gift to the celiac community.

5/6/2009 1:15 PM

I must say I was a bit skeptical about trying this new product. Most gluten free products are just plain awful. This product is great! Its a good alternative to the crispy rice squares (or whatever they're called. Thank you :)

5/6/2009 1:20 PM

Thank you so much! We are huge Starbucks' fans. Now my 14 year old daughter can have a snack when all her friends go to Starbucks. It is so thoughtful of you to develop a gluten free alternative. Thanks again!

5/6/2009 1:21 PM

I am so happy you are now doing Gluten Free cakes as there are lots of people out there that can not eat, unless it's Gluten Free3. Thank you from me and my daughter.

Latin Fan
5/6/2009 1:24 PM

Thanks for coming up with a Gluten Free option! It will be so nice to be able to have a snack along with my coffee. Way to go!

5/6/2009 1:32 PM

Thanks a lot!!!

We have been avoiding Starbucks: most of the drinks and foods you offer are not allowed in the Comprehensive Elimination Diet we are on.  We need to do that because my stepson and I are allergic to wheat, corn, dairy, etc...

< >

We enjoy the apple juice and the espresso drinks - Yes, I cheat!

I would love to see Starbucks introduce a lactose, fat-free milk ;)

Thanks again .

5/6/2009 1:40 PM

I am so pleased to see a gluten-free option available at Starbucks- bravo!  Sadly, I won't be able to eat it because of an almond allergy.  Perhaps another gluten free option without nuts?

5/6/2009 1:41 PM

Thank you Starbuck's for the gluten-free cake.  A GF friend of mine once commented that she would know we celiacs had 'arrived' when she walked into a Starbuck's and found an honest-to-goodness GF treat!.  Well, here we are!  My daughter-in-law just sent me your email announcement and I'm on my way out the door to see if the orange GF cake has made it west of the Mississippi!  I sure hope so!!

5/6/2009 1:55 PM

This is gluten free, but is it milk-free? All your edibles seem to have milk, butter, cream, yoghurt, cheese, etc. Even the egg salad sandwiches have yoghurt.

5/6/2009 1:58 PM

Hats off to you for providing a gluten free treat.  I always stand at the

counter and wish I could eat I can.  Thank you for

going the extra mile.  I hope these show up in the Starbucks I go to.

5/6/2009 2:03 PM

THANK YOU STARBUCKS...I know believe that providing positive comments gets results!  I was just at a SBucks two hours ago...didn't notice, but I didn't look!  I will tomorrow!  THANKS for listening...since being diagnosed many years ago with celiac sprue, I REALLY appreciate this!

5/6/2009 2:07 PM

Whoopee!!!!!! So excited...thanks for listening, it means a lot!  Headed there tomorrow morning...I'm hoping our Starbucks here in Vegas has it...can't wait to try it!

give thx
5/6/2009 2:26 PM

Thank you for offering something gluten free. I will definitely purchase more to eat if more becomes available. I have forwarded this on to all my friends, especially those with Celiac disease.

Thanks again - good move!

Lisa S
5/6/2009 2:30 PM

This is awesome!  Can you please tell me whether your gluten-free baking powder contains aluminum?  I downloaded the fact sheet that someone posted but the baking powder ingredients are not listed.  My child reacts to aluminum.  Thank you!!

5/6/2009 2:34 PM

This sounds DELISH! Is it possible to create one that is sugar free as well?

5/6/2009 2:35 PM

I was so excited I called everyone in too look at the first gluten free product from starbucks!!  I  am looking forward to a great gluten free bagel from Starbucks.  Can we get a gluten free Oatmeal, too, Yum...  

And it is packaged separately to keep it completely  gluten free. SMART:)

5/6/2009 2:40 PM

I just tried the new GF cake.  Very light and moist.  Didn't crumble like a lot of GF products.  My only con is that it is orange.  Not on my top ten list of flavors.  I would get it again though as it is the only GF treat there and sometimes I just want something.  Excellent product, now just work on the flavors.  :)

5/6/2009 2:42 PM

Very exciting!

Great that it's Gluten Free; is it also wheat free (I'm allergic).

Vic Ferrari
5/6/2009 2:49 PM

Just finished my Valencia Cake and it was great. Thanks for all your hard work. Any chance of getting Rice Milk instead of Soy?

5/6/2009 2:59 PM

So happy  that you have a gluten free treat!  My daughter is 5 and gluten intolerant so it is nice to finally have something for her.  Suggestion....replace refined white sugar with organic cane sugar, most of us that buy gluten free foods are health nuts to boot !   Thanks.

5/6/2009 2:59 PM

About time we have a non dairy treat. I have been complaining for years for something to eat at startucks along with my soy chai! Thank you!

5/6/2009 3:01 PM

I also want to thank you for adding a Gluten Free treat.  Can't wait to try it!  Hope Ohio won't be last in line.

Thank you again and I hope celiacs get the word so you will continue to keep it on the menu.

5/6/2009 3:07 PM

Thank you Starbucks! I used to love their pastries, up until I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. But, now, I'm unbelievably happy Starbucks listened! It just goes to show how dedicated the company is to making us happier customers -- THANK YOU!!! (Hopefully, more are to come...)

5/6/2009 3:12 PM

I am so pleased that you are now offering gluten free treats.  Just yesterday, when I was at my Starbucks,  I cheated because I really wanted something yummy to eat.  I paid the price the rest of the day.  I look forward to trying your new treat, without the repercussions!  Thank you...

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