It’s hard to believe, but my little angel turned one this past week! What an incredible, challenging and exhausting year it has been! We had his party this weekend and I was faced with the decision of what to do in terms of a birthday cake. I don’t want to be that parent who doesn’t let their kid eat anything “bad”, but I also am not ready to fill his body with sugar, dairy, gluten, etc., especially considering he has not yet been introduced to any of these potential allergens.
I elected to make him his very own CLEAN smash cake—free of all food allergens—using only foods he has been introduced to and we know don’t cause any adverse reactions. It was a huge success! In fact, almost everyone wanted to try the “clean cupcakes” just to see what they were like! I’ll consider that a win.
The recipe is below. Feel free to experiment with different proportions and different gluten-free (or other) flours. I personally started out just using quinoa flour but found I don’t really love the flavor, so I mixed it with a few others. Coconut flour on it’s own can be pretty dry and brown rice flour is okay, but mixing these together was perfect. We also have not yet introduced nuts, so almond meal was not an option.
I made these as cupcakes, but you could easily use a larger pan and make this a larger cake. Be mindful to adjust cooking times, and prepare the cake pan by lining with parchment paper or using coconut oil. On the other hand, if you use these as cupcakes, they make great breakfast muffins with or without the avocado on top!
Happy birthday baking!
This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, nut-free, vegetarian and vegan.
- Recipe Yields: One small cake or about 6 cupcakes/muffins
- Prep time: 10 minutes (if you cook the sweet potato ahead of time, 50 minutes if you don’t)
- Cook time: ~15-20 minutes
- ⅓ cup melted coconut oil
- ½ baked sweet potato (no skin)
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- ⅓ cup quinoa flour (gluten-free)
- ⅓ cup brown rice flour (gluten-free)
- ⅓ cup coconut flour (gluten-free)
- 2 Tbsp ground flaxseed
- A pinch of baking powder (optional)
- A handful of pumpkin seeds (optional)
- 1 ripe avocado
- COOK THE SWEET POTATO: You can do this ahead of time if you would like. Use a fork to poke some holes in the potato, wrap in aluminum foil and bake for ~40 minutes at 400°.
- FOR THE CAKE: Preheat oven to 375°
- In a large bowl, combine wet ingredients
- In a separate large bowl, combine and mix dry ingredients
- Combine wet and dry ingredients. Mix well. If mixture seems too dry, add additional applesauce. If mixture seems too wet, add additional flour.
- Coat the cake pan with coconut oil (and GF flour if you’d like). You can also use muffin tins to make muffins/cupcakes.
- Spread batter into pan
- Bake for ~15-20 minutes at 375° (baking times vary per oven). Remove from oven when the cake starts to brown on top.
- Let cool, then spread avocado on top of cake. NOTE: If you attempt to spread avocado on top of cake too soon out of the oven, you will smoosh the cake. I actually baked the cupcakes the night before and stored them in the refrigerator overnight. The morning of the party, I removed them from the fridge and let them sit out at room temperature until the party that afternoon. I frosted them right before we ate to keep the avocado fresh.
Feel free to be creative with the ingredients! Pumpkin and/or sunflower seeds, and nuts (if your child is OK with nuts) are nutritious additions! If you’re making these for yourself or other adults, I might suggest adding some cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, (baking soda/powder if you want the cake to rise more) and possibly some coconut aminos if you want added sweetness. Also, I am very loose when it comes to measurements for this (and most) of my recipes. If you find you prefer more or less of something, please feel free to customize this recipe to fit your taste! Enjoy!
Peace, love and clean-eating babies,