No matter the occasion, Healthy Vanilla Birthday Cake with Chocolate Frosting is a great choice. This delicious recipe uses almond flour, maple syrup, and coconut oil to create a unique and delicious flavor that everyone will love.
The birthday cake to end all birthday cakes
Who says birthday cakes must be reserved for actual birthdays?! One of the funniest realizations I’ve discovered in adulthood is the fact that you don’t need to be celebrating to enjoy a good ole’ slice of birthday cake.
Simply moving along in our day-to-day is reason enough to sit down on the couch with a heaping serving of your favorite flavor.
For me, that’s always classic vanilla with a decadent chocolate frosting. Mmmmm.
I recently had a craving for that exact thing and headed to my local grocery store, as I didn’t really feel like baking. I wanted my cake right then and there! After a few minutes peeking at the different ingredients, I totally changed my mind and decided that I would make a healthy cake from scratch. For the sake of health, my craving could wait!
I got to baking, and sure enough, this healthy vanilla birthday cake with chocolate frosting was born. This is the birthday cake of birthday cakes. It’s delicious and healthy and made with ingredients that are nutrient-dense and taste great!
Whether you’re celebrating a friend’s birthday or want to acknowledge the freedom of adulthood with a cake just because, you’ve got to give this recipe a go!
Ingredients used to make healthy vanilla birthday cake
Since this recipe consists of both a cake and a homemade frosting, we will be using different ingredients for both parts. The first nine will be dedicated to the cake, leaving the coconut cream and chocolate chips for the frosting! Yummm.
- Almond flour
- Arrowroot powder (or tapioca starch)
- Baking soda
- Melted coconut oil
- Maple syrup
- Lemon juice
- Coconut cream
- Chocolate chips
Tools needed to make this recipe
Making a cake is always a bit more involved than making a simple cookie or brownie recipe, but the end result always makes the labor so worth it!
This recipe is very straightforward and easy to follow. It will be even simpler if you gather the necessary tools before you begin! Here’s everything you’ll need to make your yummy, healthy birthday cake.
- Double boiler
- Stirring utensil
- Three 6 inch cake pans or two 8 inch
- Large mixing bowl
- Small mixing bowl
- Hand mixer or whisk
- Frosting utensil
How to make healthy vanilla birthday cake with chocolate frosting
To make healthy vanilla cake and chocolate frosting, we’ll be using two sets of directions. We’ll start by making the frosting, as it needs ample time to chill in the refrigerator. While it chills, we will work on the cake! Let’s dive in.
In a double boiler (a saucepan filled with water with a glass bowl on top filled with chocolate chips), melt the chocolate and coconut cream. The coconut cream is the hard white part at the top of the can. Discard the remaining liquid, or save it to use in smoothies.
Once the chocolate and cream are melted, let the bowl rest on the counter for 15 minutes. Then, place it in the fridge for 2 hours.
To make the cake, begin by preheating the oven to 325F and greasing three 6 inch cake pans. You can use two 8 inch pans instead, but they’ll need to cook a little bit longer.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry, and stir until combined. Divide evenly amongst the cake pans.
Next, place the pans in the oven and bake uncovered for 28 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Once fully cooked, remove from the oven and let cool.
Meanwhile, remove the frosting from the fridge. If it’s too hard to blend, let it sit for 15 minutes at room temperature. If it’s soft, whisk it with a hand mixer until fluffy. Don’t have a hand mixer? You can use a hand whisk!
When the frosting is ready, add it to the cake, followed by a layer of sprinkles. Enjoy!
A healthier vanilla cake recipe
In most cake recipes, you’re more than likely to see ingredients like flour, butter, granulated sugar, and vegetable oil. It’s safe to say that cakes with including ingredients are pretty much lacking major nutrients.
I always try to make my baked goods with health in the forefront of my mind. After all, my blog is all about living whole! For this cake, I used a handful of ingredients that serve as nutrient-rich swaps and help to make this recipe a bit healthier. Here are some of the things that I used.
Rather than using all-purpose flour, I pretty much always use almond. It’s filled with a larger list of nutrients and is simply a better choice health wise. It’s also a fantastic source of protein!
This ingredient is a healthy alternative to cornstarch that contains a long list of nutrients. It provides potassium, B vitamins, and even iron. It works as a thickening agent in baked goods.
Vanilla cake substitution options
Within this recipe, there are a few ingredients that make easy swaps. Here are some ideas that you may wish to implement!
- Eggs: For a vegan cake, you may be able to swap eggs with unsweetened applesauce or flax eggs! I haven’t tested this and this may change the taste a bit, but it will still be yummy!
- Coconut oil: Coconut oil can be replaced with any similar high fat oil.
- Maple syrup: Instead of maple syrup, you can use honey.
- Add-ons: Get creative with your toppings! In addition to sprinkles, you can add chopped candies, mini M&Ms, etc. You can even put some whipped cream around the edges!
Have your cake and eat it too
With all of my cake recipes, there are more than enough variations to go around! There is truly a recipe for everyone. If you liked this healthy vanilla birthday cake with chocolate frosting, you’ll enjoy my other recipes too!
- Paleo Chocolate Cake
- Healthy Carrot Cake (Gluten Free)
- Paleo Strawberry Shortcake
- Healthy Gingerbread Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe by Erin Morrissey + Photos by The Mindful Hapa
- 2 cups almond flour
- 1/4 cup arrowroot powder (or tapioca starch)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 can coconut cream
- 1 (12oz) bag chocolate chips
- Make the frosting first. In a double boiler (a saucepan filled with water with a glass bowl on top filled with chocolate chips), melt your chocolate and coconut cream. The coconut cream is just the hard white part at the top of the can. Discard the remaining liquid or use in smoothies.
- Once melted completely, let bowl rest on counter for 15 minutes. Then place in fridge for 2 hours.
- Preheat your oven to 325F and grease 3 6-inch cake pans. You can most likely use two 8 inch, just cook for a little bit longer.
- In a large bowl, combine your almond flour, arrowroot, baking soda, and salt.
- In a smaller bowl, whisk eggs, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and lemon juice.
- Add wet ingredients to dry and stir until combined. Divide evenly amongst three cake pans.
- Bake uncovered for 28-30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cool completely. Meanwhile, take frosting out of fridge. If it is too hard to blend, let sit for 15 minutes at room temp. If it’s soft, whisk with hand mixer until fluffy. If you don’t have hand mixer, whisk well with a hand whisk.
- Ice completely cooled cake and top with sprinkles.
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