Ringy Dings, Gluten Free

Ringy Dings, Gluten Free. Calling Brenda Leigh Johnson...

Hostess Ho Ho’s and Ring Dings were a top dog secret thing we loved back in the day. We hid them in the back of the freezer away from the prying eyes of small children who were offered healthier snacks. 

It had been years since we even thought about those little cakes. There was something about watching Brenda Leigh Johnson stuff a Ring Ding in her face week after week that made the last episode of Closer seem almost poignant when her squad gave her that replacement purse – stuffed with Ring Dings. I was kind of jealous.

It was time to make those silly things gluten-free.

But they were a bit challenging. The cake has to be sturdy enough to not fall to pieces when you fill it with  goo. And It also has to be round with a square edge otherwise it just looks like a Hostess Cupcake that got covered in chocolate. The first batch was a sorry-looking mess. The second batch was much better but the chocolate stuck to it like how I used to paint a canvas – with 60 coats of paint. No one should need a chisel to eat a little Ring Ding.

Finally it all came together. All it took was a weird little pan made for tiny cheesecakes (remember we bought the canoe pan for the Twinkies) and a simple way to enrobe them in chocolate – Chocoley Bada Bing Bada Boom Dipping Chocolate.  Melt it. Dip the stuff and let it set. I ran out of dark chocolate Chocoley so I used the milk chocolate. I added some shaved chocolate to the top just because I could.  If I had to do it again, I’d go with dark chocolate, but this was tasty.

If you can’t wait, Wilton dipping stuff can be found at most groceries. Or be brave and temper bar chocolate. Here and here are good guides for doing that.

These aren’t fancy schmancy cakes. They’re Ringy Dings and they need to act like a Ringy Ding. If you haven’t tried Chocoley’s Bada Bing stuff, give it a whirl. It tastes pretty good and does exactly what it says it will do.

Here’s the Ringy Dingy Pan. But if you are not so much into pans, just use a muffin pan and fill it about one quarter full. Fill this pan less than halfway – after all, a proper Ringy Ding is kind of short and squat – a lot like a certain Boston Terrier in my house.

Ring Dings. It’s what’s for eating this weekend.

Ringy Dings, Gluten Free. Mine!

Ringy Dings, Gluten Free
A good ringy ding is nothing to sneeze at and a good GF ringy ding is even better. Be sure to share.
Ringy Ding Cake
  • 130 grams AP GF flour (66 grams superfine brown rice flour plus 32 grams each superfine white rice flour and tapioca flour/starch) (1 cup)
  • 186 grams granulated sugar (3/4 cup)
  • 50 grams unsweetened good quality cocoa (1/2 cup)
  • 1 scant teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 60 grams warm water (1/3 cup)
  • 130 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly (9 tablespoons)
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 60 grams buttermilk (1/4 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Cream Filling
  • 145 grams powdered sugar, sifted (1⅓ cups)
  • 144 grams solid vegetable shortening (Spectrum organic) (3/4 cup)
  • 50 grams canned full fat coconut milk (stirred well) (1/3 cup)
  • 1 tablespoons AP GF flour
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Chocolate Coating
  • 24 oz. Badda Bing or other Coating chocolate (Wilton)
  • or Tempered chocolate (see post for links)
Ringy Ding Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease the muffin or little cheesecake pan with nonstick spray. If using the cheesecake pan, set it on a baking sheet just in case to catch any drips. Set aside
  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, instant espresso powder, salt, and baking soda. Stir in warm water. Mix together melted butter, eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add to the batter and blend in thoroughly.
  3. Scoop into the prepared pans only about 25% full, and slightly less, actually. Use leftover batter as cupcakes if you wish or bake two batches of ringy ding cakes. Bake about 8 minutes and check with a toothpick. If it comes out with some dry crumbs remove pans and cool for a few minutes. Then remove cakes to a rack and cool completely before filling.
  1. In a small bowl blend all the ingredients together until fluffy. Using a filling piping tip (the long, skinny tip) push the tip into the center of the ring ding cake and add a few squirts of filling. You might have to sacrifice one to know just how much to insert - depends on how big your ring dings are. A little goes a long way. Scrape off any filling that oozes out, flush with the cake and set cake aside for dipping. There might be filling leftovers which can be refrigerated for another use, like when you feel like making more the next day.
Chocolate Coating
  1. Follow the directions on the package for melting the enrobing chocolate. Usually it entails a double boiler set up - a heat proof bowl over a small pan of barely simmering water. Melt the chocolate, dip each filled ring ding and use a fork to tap off excess chocolate on the edge of the bowl. Then place each coated ring ding on a parchment lined baking sheet to set. If the chocolate does not set after an hour or so, just place it in the refrigerator and eat chilled.
  2. Or follow the links in the post for tempering bar chocolate.

Ringy Dings, Gluten Free. Okay, I'll share...


  1. these bring back childhood memories. I am going to give these a try. my kids would love to find these in their lunch box!

  2. God these look adorable..want to gobble up

  3. What do you hold the cakes with when you dip them in the chocolate? These look so yummy! Haven’t had one in years and you’re making me hungry!!

    • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

      two things, like two forks, or a fork and spoon – or chocolate dipping tools – those aren’t all that expensive and pretty handy.

  4. Oh man, those look AMAZING!!! I love gluten free recreations of gluten-filled jumk food!

  5. These totally take me back to my childhood, Lisa! You rock. 🙂

  6. I have been thinking about this recipe since you posted it, and today I made it! Wow, so delicious!! I wish I could send one through the computer. Yummm.

    • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

      So glad you enjoyed them, C.j. And yeah, I wish you could send one through the computer, too. Chocolate sounds really good right now!


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