Texas Sheet Cake Brownies (+Dairy Free Gluten Free Substitutions)

Watch out! This Texas sheet cake recipe with dairy free and gluten free substitutions will be DEVOURED! Verified by the students of my daughter’s local high school who didn’t even leave a crumb behind. 

When I made this recipe I did not think that it would be devoured like it was. I’m really glad I stole a few pieces for myself because I don’t think I would’ve gotten any for myself. I tasted a bite before it went over to the school and was so thrilled with the results. It did NOT taste gluten free or dairy free to me and I’m glad that the students agreed.

texas sheet cake brownies

My oldest is in her first high school play and since yesterday was an all day rehearsal we threw them a lunch and i got to help with food. Pretty much because it was the ONLY thing on the list I could do. I cannot paint sets, sew, shop at thrift stores or do any of those “artsy” things so food it was.

My trunk of my car was FILLED with Texas sheet cake brownies for the students and a dairy free gluten free Texas sheet cake brownie for those with allergies. And a lasagna. To balance all the dessert out. my daughter said that nothing was left and it turned out delicious! i left a cake for my video gaming boys at home and that didn’t fair very well either. Half of it was gone by that night.

texas sheet cake brownies

having a teenage boy is definetely taxing on the wallet. They don’t just eat “one” anymore. “One” is defined as the entire pan. As in “one pan” or “one cake” or “one pizza” for themselves. I hope they enjoy their heightened metabolism now because when you get to be my age, your @$# jiggles for a week while you work it off at the gym and just looking at something sweet makes you gain weight.

boy and food

I think the dog has learned that this week. She’s eight years old now and not as active right now since she’s recovering from some fatty tumor removals. It’s definetely been a test of patience for all of us. She has managed a few tricks. When I had all of the cakes cooling and ran my daughter to the school, the dog proved that you can break and enter through the locked dog door.

cone dog

She also finds that cuddling in the morning is rather tough on everyone. More than one morning i’ve been poked in the face with her cone as she tries to get her morning belly rubs head scratches in.

morning cuddles

And driving? Well let’s just say that is a pretty fun adventure too. Oh the looks you get. But she is adamant she not miss her car rides as it is her only chance to “take it easy” but also get out of the house for a little bit. our legs are not fairing very well either. Every time she comes running through the door all of us unanimously head to run up against a wall or move to the side of the stairs to let her pass so she doesn’t run into your legs but unfortunately we are still covered in bruises.

teen and dog driving .

Today poor Chelsea just gave up and was absolutely stir crazy so we took her over to the school for a walk. She did not want to walk at all and continued to pull on the leash where her staples are so I finally had it and let her off. She ran around like she’s used to doing and then realized she can’t do that and was happy moving alongside us at a slower pace. i think sometimes we are all like that. We have to eat just “one” or be allowed off leash a little to realize our limitations and learn the hard way. Raising kids feels like that sometimes. No matter how hard it is to see them taking that harder path, some kids struggle and end up going that route. I see it a lot with the kids that i counsel. it’s heart breaking but I just seem them in ten years with those great stories that start with “when I was a teenager I was so…..”

texas sheet cake brownies

so if you’re now here reminiscing about your teenage years and all the crazy things you did, grab out your jelly roll pan and start making some of these Texas Sheet Cake Brownies. make them the regular way or make them dairy free and gluten free.

Texas Sheet Cake Brownies (+Dairy Free Gluten Free Substitutions)


    For the Brownies:
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (can use gluten free flour blend)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter (for dairy free substitute a dairy free brand like Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (substitute non dairy if needed--we used almond milk)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • For the Frosting;
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter (can substitute dairy free)
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup milk (non dairy can be substituted--we used almond milk)
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla


    To Make the Brownies;
  1. preheat the oven to 400 degrees farenheit. lightly grease a 17x11x1/2 inch pan (the pan is the size of a jelly roll or cookie sheet)
  2. In the bowl of a mixer, stir together the flour and sugar.
  3. in a large saucepan, place the butter, oil, water, cocoa powder and buttermilk. Heat until boiling, stirring.
  4. Pour the boiling mixture into the flour mixture and stir or whisk with the mixer until blended well.
  5. Add in the eggs, baking soda and vanilla and finish mixing well.
  6. Pour the mixture into the jelly roll or cookie pan and spread evenly with a spatula.
  7. Bake at 400 degrees for 16-18 minutes. Remove from oven when the brownies test done in the center. Immediately pour the frosting on top of the warm brownies.
  8. To Make the Frosting:
  9. During the last few minutes that the brownies are cooking, prepare the frosting.
  10. In a saucepan, heat the butter, cocoa powder and milk to boiling, stirring.
  11. Remove from heat. Immediately whisk in the powdered sugar and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
  12. Pour the frosting over the warm brownies and spread evenly. Allow brownies and frosting to cool before serving.


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