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Recipe Review – Gluten Free Birthday Cake

Recipe Review – Gluten Free Birthday Cake

How many of you like cake? I mean, are there really people out there who don’t? If you’re anything like us, you eat cake fairly often. Pre keto, the kids and I would venture to the store to get a cake just because. Maybe it was a Wednesday and we managed to make it through the day without fighting. Or maybe they made a goal at their soccer game. How did we celebrate? Cake! Now that we’re keto, we desperately miss cake. DESPERATELY. So when I found a fellow ketoer post this recipe for a keto cake, by Wholesome Yum, I was like, “Stop everything you’re doing. We’re going to the store.” The original poster described this cake as “the best thing she has indulged in thus far” so of course, I had pretty high hopes.

So far, keto baking has been a pretty huge disappointment for me. Sugar and flour substitutes are VERY expensive and not easy to find so it pains me something fierce when a recipe isn’t great. And I’m sorry to say, this cake recipe wasn’t great for me.

What I love about the recipe

The versatile frosting – One of our favorite sweet treats is a Cinnamon Roll Pancake recipe. We’ve made it for breakfast when friends sleepover and even for dinner when the kids are wanting something a little more “normal” (pre-keto life is still what they consider normal). The frosting from this cake was great to have on hand for when we made the cinnamon roll pancake recipe as it’s perfectly sweet and there’s a lot leftover if you only make two tiers.


What I would change about the recipe


The texture – This is a really hard thing to overcome in the keto baking world. Most recipes call for almond flour or coconut flour, two items that don’t create a fluffy, dare I say moist, cake texture. The cake was almost grainy.

The vanilla cake – In order to have a “birthday cake”, I really need buttercream frosting. The keto world makes that slightly difficult so you often see cream cheese frostings as the substitute. For me, it really just didn’t work with the flavor of the sponge. I think that if the cake portion of the recipe called for nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice, I think it could hold the cream cheese frosting. Plain vanilla cake with cream cheese frosting just didn’t cut it for me.

Moral of the story

I would not make the cake again as the recipe stands today. Two out of three of my kids liked it just fine, with my toddler and I taking only a few bites and turning our noses up to it. Even on day two, it was still just ok. If I were to make it again, I would add the carrot cake spices into the sponge to create a similar flavor in order to work better with the frosting. I think that will help improve the mental block that is created with the texture of the cake as well, because it will taste and feel more like a carrot cake. **I think I’m on to something here** Sadly, the cake takes a lot of cream cheese and almond flour so I’m just not sure it’s worth the expense to MAYBE improve it slightly. I think I’ll put this idea on the back-burner until I’m feeling a little frisky with my pocket-book.

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