Cheesecake Factory Flourless Godiva Cheesecake

The Cheesecake Factory

UPDATE 3.23.2012: Thank you to reader Lilly, I’ve gotten more information about this cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory itself. While recently dining at The Cheesecake Factory, she was told this by the manager: I “The cocoa powder that is dusted on top of the cheesecake has wheat mixture in it, AND Godiva chocolate itself has gluten.” Thank you, Lilly, for sharing your experience. I try to be transparent on this blog about my less vigilant approach to eating gluten-free since I can get away with eating a little and being fine, however, I encourage all of my readers to listen to their bodies, be careful and always err on the side of caution. I know how unpleasant a reaction can be.

I did my own homework on one of my favorite social media channels, Twitter, and reached out to The Cheesecake Factory to see what they had to say on the issue. The verdict? It’s not looking good, folks:

Cheesecake Response


I sat down with my dessert with the intention of writing about the gluten-free muffins I tried the weekend before last from the breakfast bar in my kitchen, just as I said I would in my City Feed post. But as I began eating my leftover Flourless Godiva Cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory, it became quite clear to me that my mind and palette were not thinking about muffins. Nope. They were all about the rich, smooth, delicious cheesecake.

As I’ve mentioned before, my allergy isn’t so severe. So a piece of chocolately, flourless cake on a special occasion (the Cheesecake Factory is my family’s good old birthday dinner standby, though this particular instance happened to be my cousin’s graduation from grad school…congrats!) is good enough for my sister, my mother and me. So to write this post, I did a little bit of research to see if this flourless cake is gluten-free and suitable for others, too.

My research first revealed that the Cheesecake Factory website is quite interesting–it is set up to look just like a Cheesecake Factory, pre-recorded waitstaff included. Freaky. The folks on the message boards at proved a bit more helpful. There I was able to find the ingredients of this cake, taken from an email a poster received from the Cheesecake Factory:

Godiva Cheesecake
INGREDIENTS: Cream (Cream, Mono & Diglycerides, Polysorbate 80, Carrageenan), Cream Cheese (Pasteurized Milk and Cream, Cream Culture, Salt, Xanthan and/or Carob Bean and/or Guar Gums), Semisweet Chocolate (Sugar, Chocolate Processed with Alkali, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa, Butter Oil, Soy Lecithin, Milk, Vanillin an artificial flavor, Natural Flavor), Eggs, Sugar, Milk Chocolate (Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Chocolate, Skim Milk, Milk, Butter Oil, Soy Lecithin, Vanillin – an Artificial Flavor, Natural Flavor), Cultured Sour Cream (Cultured Grade A Pasteurized Sour Cream, Non Fat Milk, Enzyme), Chocolate Liquor, Butter, Water, Chocolate Snow Powder (Dextrose, Cocoa Powder, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil), Gelatin, Vanillin (Artificial Flavor).

No gluten from what I can see! However, the posters bring up an excellent point: cross contamination. In a restaurant as busy and bustling as the Cheesecake Factories around here tend to be, I can’t imagine that they would ever be truly able to prepare food on a completely gluten-free surface. Another poster made a point that the company does not make the cheesecakes on location, but rather ships them in from a facility. That facility does also produce the other glutenus cheesecakes.

Does this cheesecake belong on a gluten-free blog? Perhaps not. It depends on your condition, your history, and the risks you are willing to take. This post may be a bit insensitive to those with severe allergies, and for that I apologize. Please skip the next paragraph.

This cheesecake is out of this world. It is so delicious and smooth and chocolately and rich — it is divine. It tastes as if it is likely one of the most unhealthy, ridiculous desserts you could possibly eat in the best, most delicious way possible. It is so rich that I find it difficult to finish it in one, sometimes two sittings; every bite is flavorful and satisfying. If you are a chocolate lover, gluten-free or not, you need to try this cheesecake, it is possibly the most indulgent cake out there.

Well, my leftover cake is finished, and I’ve said what I had to say. What a lovely little dessert-time. Nothing like a little chocolate after a long day. Or in this case, a whole lot of chocolate… To those who cannot enjoy this treat, I am sorry. My next post will most certainly apply to you. Onto the muffins (for real this time)!


16 thoughts on “Cheesecake Factory Flourless Godiva Cheesecake

  1. I had this cake when I was traveling 2 weeks ago and was incredibly surprised! It is amazing. I am pretty sensitive now and have noticed my reactions getting worse but had absolutely no reaction after eating a piece of this cheesecake. I just wish we had a location near me!

    • Carl – glad to be of help! No birthday in my family is complete without a piece of Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake! I hope you get to enjoy a piece yourself, it is heavenly and happy birthday to your dad.

    • Last night I was at Cheesecake Factory, excited to have the Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake, since I thought it’s gluten free and here’s what happened. I was told by the manager “The cocoa powder that is dusted on top of the cheesecake has wheat mixture in it, AND Godiva chocolate itself has gluten” So folks, even if you or your loved ones do not have any ill effects from eating the Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake at Cheesecake Factory, please be advised that it does contain gluten at least on two levels, the cocoa powder, and the Godiva chocolate chunks that is in the cheesecake. Not to mention it is processed on equipment/facility that also is shared with wheat/gluten. So Celiacs, please DO NOT eat this cheesecake. Those of you who are gluten intolerant, and won’t die from it, go ahead, at your own will.

      • Lilly, thank you for this information. I tried to be as transparent as possible about my more lax approach to eating gluten-free, and that there is risk when eating a product where is any sort of uncertainty about whether its ingredients are gluten-free. I am going to update this post to reflect the information you have provided. Thank you so much for your comment!

      • Hi: I have Celiac Disease and I’m very sensitive to Gluten. I have now had the Godiva Flourless Cheese Cake twice in the last 6 mos. That last time was 2 weeks ago. The 1st time I didn’t seem to have any problems, BUT This last time I have been sick for over two weeks now. Starting with immediately my stomach bloating up in pain and sitting around a toilet hoping I could just throw up all night long after eating. . .AS days went on I have diarrhea for almost two weeks that I had to be near a toilet for. . .next I got hit with Autoimmune responses from all different kinds of pains that I had to use Asprin just to sleep at night with because I was in pain. I have also been horribly tired. Drag me feet tired. So, I will not be eating this again. Tasted wonderful going down, BUT it was NOT worth the pain. I’m not sure what happened differently from the first time. BUT I was very disappointed. I haven’t had an issue like that, since a couple of Thanksgiving ago, when some of the Spoons for our family dinner got mixed up and ended up in my part of the food. Again the same symptoms and discomforts that lasted for several weeks. Needles to say our family is now longer putting gluten items on the family table where spoons can be mixed up. Sincerely, Catgross. . .Hope this helps someone else. 🙂

  2. Pingback: ALLCANEAT Gluten-Free Yellow Double Layer Birthday Cake « the gluten-free guru

  3. I must say THANK YOU for writing this! I found it while in the cheesecake factory looking over their menu… I recently had to remove gluten from my diet and this was only the second time I have been out to eat since… who can go to the cheesecake factory and not have at least a little bit of cheesecake? Thanks to finding your blog I was able to make a more informed decision and ordered that decadent Godiva flour-less cheesecake… I didn’t eat the bottom, but picked at the delicious silky middle (about 1/3 of it!) and loved it! No reactions for me as of yet so I doubt there will be. One thing I will say is that they are very vigilant regarding customers with food allergies/intolerance’s/restrictions and bend over backwards helpful! They did not claim that the cheesecake was gf and explained everything to me in detail then left the decision to me.

    • Alyssin, THANK YOU for you kind words! I’m glad to hear that the staff at The Cheesecake Factory was accommodating – I hope they know how hard it is to go there and not be able to eat their brown bread or cheesecake flavors! Happy to hear you haven’t reacted too – I can eat it as well (and also avoid the bottom!), but feel a little nervous sharing that information with others who may be affected. Glad my post could be of help – thank you for coming by and letting me know how your meal went!

      – Jenn

  4. I just ate this cheesecake last night at The Cheesecake Factory and it is delish!!! I have had it in the past several times also. I Love it! I am a celiac who is very sensitive to even traces amount of gluten. I have never had a problem.

  5. It’s 2015 and the Cheesecake Factory still has GF next to the Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake. It is also served with a individually wrapped Godiva chocolate. I wish they would resolve this once and for all, they should not associate the Cheesecake with Godiva, just call it chocolate cheesecake, and get rid of the piece of chocolate :).

    • Jen, thanks for the update! I haven’t been back to the Cheesecake Factory in probably a few years at this point, I’m glad to hear they’ve made strides on providing GF info to patrons!

      • It is very confusing to a celiac person to see “flourless” anything and think it’s gluten-free when it’s clearly not. “Flourless” does NOT necessarily mean “gluten-free” because it could contain oats, barley, rye, malt, etc. If Cheesecake Factory wants to make a gluten-free chocolate cheesecake, why not partner with Ghiradelli? Their chocolate is fabulous. Forget Godiva!

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