gluten-free & vegan lemon poppy seed cake

You asked and I tested!

I posted this recipe on my instagram a few days ago and my DMs blew up (thank you all! I love DMs!). A few months ago, I started poking around and asking my sister what her boyfriends favorite cake is, because he is spending his birthday in Oregon with us, while we visit for our family friends wedding! His birthday falls on the day of the wedding and we knew we wanted to celebrate him as well! He is an incredible illustrator, he and me sister are so stinking talented, and I knew that the cake had to be gluten free and vegan so I could also indulge!

When Lily got back to me she said, “Lemon Poppy seed”. My heart started to race because I have never tested this recipe before! Not only do I have to make a bomb-ass lemon poppy seed cake, I have to make it vegan, gluten free and oh transport it to Oregon and have it hold its moisture for 3 days. I had the work handed to me!

I went to the drawing board and started doing my research on different base lemon cake recipes. I found there were a ton of similarities between the 20 recipes both not vegan and vegan. I ended up using the basis of my vanilla cake and adding a lot of lemon juice, lemon zest and a twist of vanilla. I feel the vanilla added depth to the butter flavor and the lemon added the brightness that was needed.

Not only is this cake incredibly quick to prep, it lasts great for a few days unfrosted and wrapped tightly while stored in the fridge which is was BIG goal here! I went ahead and tested this recipe a few times and am confident in saying, this is a winner!

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gluten-free & vegan lemon poppy seed cake

  • Author: Paige
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients

Cake:

– 1/2 cup of softened earth balance butter

– 1 1/3 cup of sugar

– 1/4 tsp lemon extract *if you dont have add more juice

– juice of 1 whole lemon

– 1 tsp lemon zest

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

– 2 tsp baking powder

– 1 1/4 cup of non dairy milk

– 2 tbsp poppy seeds

– 1 tsp salt

– 2 cups of gluten free (1:1 flour)

Frosting:

– 1/3 cup of vegan butter

– 1 tbsp of coconut milk

(canned thick coating on the top)

– 2-3 cups of powdered sugar depending on the

moisture in your coconut milk

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

– 1 tsp salt


Instructions

1. Preheat your oven to 350° F and grease your 2, 7″ cake pans or 1, 9″ cake pan, dust with flour and set aside

2. in a bowl, cream your vegan butter with your sugar

3. next add your lemon extract, vanilla, salt and baking powder until combined

4. alternating 1/2 cups of flour to 1/2 cups of non dairy milk mix those into your butter and sugar mixture until smooth

5. next add your lemon juice and lemon zest

6. lastly, add in your poppy seeds and stir until fully folded through your batter

7. evenly fill your 7″ baking rounds with batter and bake for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean

8. while your cakes bake, beat your vegan butter, coconut cream, vanilla extract and salt

9. add in your powdered sugar to create a vegan butter cream, the texture should be thick but spreadable

10. let your cakes cool completely and cut then in half length wise to create 4 layers

11. alternate cake, frosting, cake and frosting to create a layer cake with 3 of the layers

12. using the 4th layer (choose a top piece with the “crust”, using your hands create a cake crumble and set aside

13. after your cake is frosted, add your cake crumble as decoration, top with fresh fruit and enjoy!


Notes

best kept in the fridge covered to stay fresh longer!

Let’s talk about transportation of cakes!

When we were prepping to get married 2 years ago, I had decided to make our own cake. I couldn’t find a cake baker in the area (south west Montana) that had a good, not dry vegan and gluten-free cake so I said, “heck, I will make my own!”. I had to prep this cake at least 2 weeks before our wedding due to travel and the week before prep. The key to keeping cakes fresh is allowing them to cool for hours before wrapping them in plastic wrap. Usually and in my everyday life I avoid plastic at ALL costs. But in this case, you have to have a tight suction on your cakes to suck out air.

Step 1. Bake your cake

Step 2. Allow your cake to FULLY cool (I am talking 3 hours)

Step 3. Wrap each layer that you make individually 4 times with Saran Wrap and TIGHT

Step 4. if you are baking the cake weeks in advance, toss it in the freezer, if you have a few days, toss it in the fridge

Step 5. Transportation: Whether you are flying or driving, get an insulated bag or cooler and fill with ice packs wrapped in towels (we don’t want them leaking condensation on to the cakes), fill the cooler with ice, and your cakes, you can stack them here in their individual wrapping and cover them again with ice packs in towels

Step 6. Upon arrival at your first or final destination, put cakes immediately into the fridge for an event within the next 3 days or the freezer for an event in the next week

*allow your cakes to thaw in the fridge for 1 day prior to your event – may need more per cake size

Step 7. Pull out your chilled cake rounds from the fridge and start frosting (I like to frost a cold cake to avoid crumbs

*if you are using a pound style cake or a denser cake, I suggest a simple syrup cake soak on each layer before frosting to bring back moisture

Step 8. Frost your cake and enjoy!

Now that I figured out how to transport this cake, I wanted to share it with you! Feel free to top the cake with fresh berries, I choose strawberries, but blackberries, blueberries and raspberries will work beautifully. Enjoy with a friend and tag me in your posts! I love seeing the creations you make!

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Chocolate Miracle Cupcakes

The “OH MY GOD” Cupcake of your Dreams!

Let me just preface you all by saying, I am not being dramatic, at all! This is The cupcake of your dreams, the “I can eat 5 of these” and the don’t feel guilty cupcake. Two years ago, I was in full swing of recipe testing and developing for our wedding cake. I knew that as a baker, I had to make my wedding cake or I really wouldn’t love what anyone else made for me. Everyday after my full time job, I would bring out my mixer, my cake pans and all the ingredients to perfect my vegan & gluten-free vanilla cake recipe! After about 3 months and 4 recipes, I created, the most delicious vanilla cake.

I consider myself someone who loves chocolate and vanilla. My goal in the end of 2018 was to create the cupcake of your dreams. A chocolate cupcake that was sugar free, gluten-free, dairy free and drumroll please….low carb!

On a sunny Saturday afternoon, I grabbed my trusty kitchenaid, a notebook and my apron and set to the kitchen. My timer buzzed, I pulled the first batch out of the oven, waited impatiently staring at the cupcakes for 15 minutes to be cool enough to remove from the cupcake tin and sliced my first cupcake in half to examine the texture.

Not only were these deeply rich in chocolate flavor, but the texture was something that rivaled a 4 star restaurant chocolate cake. Full of air pockets, moist through the center, a firm top and a nice squish when you bit into it. These cupcakes were visually a work of art, and tasted like a devil’s food box cake mix. My house smelled like a bakery. The scent of chocolate and vanilla extract coated the air and I knew this recipe needed to be shared with the world!

Let’s take a step back! How many of you have had a “gluten-free/healthy” treat that tastes like grass? Me! I have had so many bakery items that were health, vegan, gluten-free, nut free, sugar free, you name it and they all tend to be very disappointing. I do not skimp on flavor. Having dietary restrictions myself and living with celiac, I made it a point to myself, family and community of gluten-free eaters to never create a recipe that was “meh”. This recipe is truly the “OH MY GOD” Cupcake of your dreams!

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Chocolate Miracle Cupcakes

  • Author: Paige
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 10 cupcakes

Description

the healthiest cupcake you will ever eat! close to no net carbs and tastes like a boxed cake. yes you read that correctly!


Ingredients

Cake

– 1 cup of egg whites (room temperature)

– 1 tsp of baking soda

– 1 tsp of baking powder

– 1 tsp of vanilla extract

– 1/2 cup of almond milk

– 1/2 cup of flax meal

– 1 tsp of peanut butter per muffin (optional filling)

– 2 tsp of stevia

– 2 tbsp of maple syrup

– 1/4 tsp of salt

– 1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder

– 2 tbsp of coconut flour

– 3 tbsp of melted coconut oil

Frosting

– 4 tbsp of room temp vegan butter

– 2 tbsp of cocoa powder

– 1 tsp of vanilla extract

– 1/4 cup of canned coconut milk

– 3 cups of powdered sugar


Instructions

1. preheat your oven to 350° F and grease your cupcake tin (make sure you get in the edge)

2. in a bowl with either a stand mixer or a hand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip your egg whites for about 10 minutes until soft peaks form and they are white in color

3. while your egg whites are whipping, in a separate bowl mix together your dry ingredients (baking soda, baking powder, stevia, salt, cocoa powder, flax meal and coconut flour

4. when your egg whites have reached soft peaks, with the whisk attachment moving, slowly add in your coconut oil, vanilla extract, maple syrup and almond milk

5. remove the bowl of egg whites from the mixer and slowly (1 cup at a time) fold the egg whites into the dry mixture until fluffy and fully combined. *be careful on step 5. you want to keep air in your egg whites while adding in your dry mixture this creates lightness in your cupcake*

6.add 1/2 cup to batter to each cup in your cupcake tin – if opting to add Peanut butter, add 1/4 cup of batter, a scoop of peanut butter and the remaining 1/4 cup of batter on top – repeat until batter is gone

7. Bake for 20-25 minutes until crackly on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean

8. let the cupcakes cool for about 30-40 minutes until removing them from the tin

9. To make the frosting, cream your vegan butter in your mixer with a whisk attachment

10. add your coconut milk, cocoa powder and vanilla extract until fully combined

11. slowly add in your powdered sugar 1 cup at a time until fluffy

12. using a spatula or a piping bag frost your cooled cupcakes

13. eat and enjoy!


Plain or with Frosting?

This recipe can be eaten as a chocolate muffin (without frosting) or as a cupcake for any occasion with frosting. Something that I find hard when making frosting healthy, is that you really do need a powdered sugar to help whip your vegan buttercream. Although, the cake itself in your cupcake is sugar free, a little frosting never hurt anyone! It’s simply the best of both worlds, healthy cake, rich, creamy, sweet frosting! If chosen to omit the frosting, these muffins are perfect for breakfast room temp, warmed up as an afternoon snack for tea or perfect for an after dinner indulgence!

Now that we have established the fact that this recipe is what dreams are made of, let’s start baking!

The goal with this recipe was to create a cupcake that was healthy, delicious and something you could bring to a party and surprise your friends with its flavor and health! If you guys make these, please tag me in your Instagram pictures so I can see your creations! Cheers to happy baking and a healthy life!