My sweet baby is allergic to chicken eggs.
We discovered this when she was around nine months old and had an unpleasant reaction when I fed her some hard-cooked egg yolk (I’ll spare you the details). Since then, we have mostly avoided any foods that contain eggs, including most baked goods (breads, cookies, cakes, etc.), pancakes, and ice cream. But, I have to say, it’s been a bit of a bummer.
We have found some egg-free alternatives, and I have used egg replacers or flax eggs in some baked goods on occasion. But as A gets older and more aware of what others are eating, the egg-free challenge becomes more complicated.
To further complicate matters, I (and therefore my family) have been trending away from eating gluten (the protein found in wheat, rye, and barley) for about a year now, and it has been six months since I bought any gluten-containing products for home consumption.
A turned two last week, and I wanted to make her a birthday cake that she could eat and that I could feel good about serving to our party guests. Trying to make egg-free baked goods without wheat is tough, especially if you don’t want to rely on packaged gluten-free mixes.
I usually bake with coconut flour, which is impossible without eggs, or almond flour, both of which are gluten-free and make delicious cakes. I figured I would need to find a recipe that used almond flour, but no eggs–these are rare. I happened upon this recipe for Baklava Cake, which I then adapted to create my own egg-free, gluten-free cake (it is also dairy-free).
This cake is denser than most cakes, which makes it perfect for a coffee cake (spread it with some grassfed butter!). Add some frosting (I used this one) and it also works as a birthday cake. A’s birthday party was Elmo-themed, so I doubled the recipe below to fill the Elmo cake pan.
The birthday girl loved it (More cake! More cake!), as did the rest of the party guests. I hope you love it, too!
Egg-free, Gluten-free Almond Cake
- ½ cup organic, unsweetened applesauce
- 1 Tbsp organic chia seeds, ground (measure after grinding)
- 2 Tbsp hot water
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups almond flour (I used almond meal from Trader Joe’s)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease an 8×8 glass baking pan with coconut oil.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the applesauce with the chia meal and hot water on high for two minutes, stopping once to scrape down the sides and bottom.
- Add honey and vanilla and beat until combined.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: almond flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Add to the mixng bowl and beat just until incorporated. Stir once or twice with a spatula to make sure everything on the bottom is mixed in.
- The batter will be thick! Pour it into the prepared pan and spread it evenly with the spatula.
- Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool in pan for 15-20 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack and let cool completely.
- Cut and serve, or decorate with frosting. Enjoy!