Ah, the good ole’ festive season. The caroling, the festive parties galore, and the biggest gift of all: the extra five pounds that suddenly show up on the scale. The holidays are all about indulging and merriment, but they can also take a toll on our healthy routines. During the holiday season, it’s a good idea to cut the butter, sugar, and flour out wherever possible and opt instead for healthier alternatives. Enter: the gluten-free, vegan cranberry cake. It’s refined-sugar free and made with almond and coconut flour instead of white flour. The coconut oil substitutes the butter, and chia seeds soaked in water thicken the batter to replace eggs. The result is an extremely moist, nutty cake with hints of vanilla and cinnamon, with the cranberries adding just a bit of tartness. Your guests and your waistline will thank you.
- 1½ cups almond flour (ground almonds)
- ½ cup coconut flour
- 1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup virgin coconut oil + ¼ tsp for greasing the pan
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 mashed banana
- ⅓ cup pure maple syrup
- ¾ cup almond milk
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 6 tbsp water
- ½ cup fresh cranberries
- 4-5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- ¼ cup fresh cranberries
- Dusting of confectioner’s sugar
Preheat the oven to 177°C. In a small bowl, combine the chia seeds and water, stir, and let sit in the fridge for ten minutes.
Place the fresh cranberries in a food processor and process until roughly chopped, then set aside.
In a mixing bowl, add all the remaining ingredients (almond flour, coconut flour, vanilla, virgin coconut oil, salt, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, mashed banana, maple syrup, and almond milk) and mix until combined.
Add the chia seeds mixture into the batter and mix, then add in the cranberries and mix until combined.
Lightly grease an 8½ inch spring-form cake pan with the remaining virgin coconut oil. Pour the batter into the pan and bake in the oven for 40 to 45 minutes until golden brown. Let cool completely for 30 minutes before removing from the pan. The cake is very delicate and moist, so be careful when you’re handling it.
Decorate with cranberries, sprigs of rosemary, and a dusting of confectioner’s sugar.