Busy Day Cake (aka Blender Cake!) – Moist, Yellow Cake That’s Sugar-Free and Gluten-Free

On a busy day, there’s nothing better than a slice of cake.

Low Carb Yellow Cake w/Creamy Sugar-Free Frosting>

To satiate your sweet tooth on those mile-long-to-do-list days, it’s tempting to hit up the grocery store or corner bakery for a pre-made slice, full of trans fatty, sugary frosting and white flour. For gluten-free eaters and low carb dieters avoiding sugar, there are few options for a quick fix. What’s a stressed out cake-lovin’ healthy eater to do?

Making healthy yellow cake in my Blendtec blender! Pictured are the ingredients, the blender containing eggs, butter and sweeteners, the finished batter, and the baked cake layers. Not shown: Me pigging out, eyes rolling back in my head from the pure decadence!
Making healthy yellow cake in a blenderSteps:
1. Turn on oven.

2. Get out blender
3. Blend up cake batter.
4. Bake! Get as much done in 20 minutes as possible whilst avoiding the distracting fragrance of cake baking in the kitchen. 
6. Remove cake from oven and take an oh-so-necessary 15 minute dessert break!

The best part of about this cake aside from being minimally labor intensive is the nutrient content. In place of white flour, I used ground almonds, oat flour, and whey protein powder to make it gluten-free and high in protein. It’s a truly magical combination of ingredients, as this cake batter yields a lovely texture even after heavy blending, and stays moist for days! I get my gluten-free oat flour from iherb.com, but if I’m baking this cake for friends who can eat gluten, I pick up whatever oat flour is available from the grocery store (usually Arrowhead Mills brand). Alternatively, if you have a Blendtec or other high power blender, you can make your own oat flour from oats. Any vanilla whey protein powder low in carbohydrates should work well in this recipe.

Using a serrated knife, I cut my 2 cake layers in half to make a 4 layer cake. For the fillings, I used  sweetened raspberry puree and an experimental dairy-free vanilla cream frosting. These fillings require a few steps to make, so I’d suggest making a 2 layer cake using the white whipped creamy frosting recipe below as the filling and topping if you’re pressed for time. A sugar-free chocolate buttercream frosting with this moist yellow cake would be out-of-this-world too. The possibilities for this cake are only limited by your imagination (and your schedule!).
Healthy Busy Day Cake (aka Blender Cake!)

Healthy “Busy Day” Cake (a.k.a. Blender Cake)

Makes 16 cupcakes or 2-9 inch cake layers
Ingredients:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 Tablespoons half and half OR 4 Tablespoons lite coconut milk
2 Tablespoons water
2 cups (about 8 ounces) almond flour, gently packed and leveled
1 cup oat flour, spooned into cup and shaken
3/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons erythritol OR 1 cup unrefined organic sugar
2 Tablespoons xylitol (if using erythritol)
1/2 teaspoon good-tasting pure stevia extract (if using erythritol)
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degree F. Grease 2-9 inch round cake pan, or 16 cupcake liners with grapeseed oil cooking spray or melted butter. Sift a little oat flour on the inside of the cake pan to ensure that the cake comes out easily.
If making in a food processor:
Add softened butter in pieces and pulse a few times until creamy. Add erythritol, xylitol, ¼ teaspoon stevia (or organic sugar), salt and vanilla and pulse until creamy. Add eggs, almond flour, oat flour, whey protein, baking powder, coconut milk or half and half, and water. Process just until batter is blended, about 20 seconds. Scrape batter into prepared cake pans. 

If making in a blender:
Add softened butter, vanilla, erythritol, xylitol and stevia (or organic sugar), and blend until creamy. Scrape around edges of blender bowl with spatula. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until batter is smooth, about 20 seconds. Scrape down insides of blender once during the blending process. Scrape batter into prepared cake pans.

Insert cake pans into middle rack of oven, then turn oven down to 325 degrees. Bake 20 minutes. Remove pans from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Cut around edges of cakes and invert to remove from pan after 5 minutes of cooling to finish cooling. Frost and enjoy!

~8g net carbs per 1/12th of a recipe made with erythritol, xylitol, and stevia (without frosting)
~9.5g net carbs per 1/12th of a recipe made with erythritol, xylitol, and stevia (with the Whipped Creamy White Frosting below)

Quick Whipped Creamy White Frosting
adapted from Magda’s Cauldron and Mojewypieki blogs
Ingredients:
400 mL (about 1 1/2 cups) heavy whipping cream
225g (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese
2 Tablespoons erythritol OR organic sugar
Good-tasting stevia, to taste (recommended: NuNaturals Pure Stevia Extract)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Pinch sea salt
Preparation:
With a hand mixer, beat cream, sweeteners, and salt on low until soft peaks form, then increase speed of mixer to high until cream stiffens (like this) but doesn’t look gritty (like this). Do not overbeat! Scrape in mascarpone and vanilla, and beat just until incorporated.

~18.5g net carbs for the entire batch
——————————————————————–
Recipes from my blogger friends you might enjoy:
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting @ The Healthy Advocate
Almond Vanilla Layer Cake @ Splendid Low Carbing with Jennifer Eloff
Vegan Coconut Cream Frosting @ Elana’s Pantry
Coconut Flour Cake with Coconut Frosting @ Nourished Kitchen
Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Frosting @ Low Carb Family
Strawberry Birthday Cake @ The Spunky Coconut

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10499567537975135482 Unknown

    Looks absolutely YUMMY! Do you think I could sub coconut for oat flour?

  • http://www.thehealthyadvocate.com Brandon

    How delicious, Lauren! I love cake, even in this hot summer weather. :)

  • Cath

    Do you think it would work if i substituted liquid rice malt syrup for sweeteners and coconut flour for oat flour? (which is what I have in the pantry today) .

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11451831075629626943 Seygra20

    I love cake, this looks delicious. I love the colours and I would love to try this recipe.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12992918908739085132 Lauren

    Unknown and Cath – Unfortunately, coconut flour would not work in place of oat flour. It performs very differently, sucking up a lot of fat and liquid. It would make the cake very dense! I think it would actually be able to stand in for the whey protein if you added an extra two eggs. That's just a hunch. :) I sure hope you can get your hands on some oat flour to try this cake!

    Brandon – Me too! I'm trying your buttercream when I get home and have my stand mixer. Did you see I linked to it at the bottom? It looks perfect for this cake! So happy you shared it with me.

    Seygra- Thank you! The raspberry puree adds a colorful touch. :D Hope you get the chance to try this cake!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11965953387814128587 Magda

    Beautiful :) I'm so glad you like it :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02003623876099632888 DaveS

    Hey Lauren,
    One of the big questions I have is the proper measuring of powdered erythritol vs the crystal erythritol. Which do you use? It seems the powdered dissolves easier

    Thanks! Hope school year is going well!

    Dave

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12992918908739085132 Lauren

    Hi, Dave! I use the conversion from powdered sugar to granular sugar for converting my powdered erythritol to granular erythritol. It's 2.2 cups powdered sugar to 1 cup granular, but google it to check (I'm on the road now!). School is out for summer do it's been lovely being able to bake more. Thank you for asking!

    UPDATE: I changed the butter in the recipe to unsalted.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11211751611866332931 CJ – Food Stories

    Looks good, Lauren :-)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02003623876099632888 DaveS

    Oh man…how could I forget you were on break? Sign of advanced aging! Maybe bc last time I left I left a comment it was before Christmas break!

    I could not find what appeared to be a reliable conversion so I sent a letter to Netrition.com with the question.

    Now here's something interesting…I looked up Sensato, the brand of erythritol I buy from netrition.com. Not much of a web site and on the page there's mention that Sensato is a registered brand name name for the Tricenta LLC. So I looked up Tricenta and found very few listings..but I did find a NY state business listing for the company(http://businessprofiles.com/details/tricenta-llc/NY-3723803) which gives the official address of Tricenta as “c/o Netrition…”

    I'll post an answer when I get it.

    Dave

  • Eric

    Welcome back, Lauren! And talk about coming back with a bang… This looks FABULOUS! Can't wait to try it. Love the raspberry layers, but how to decide: White icing vs Chocolate Buttercream???

    DaveS: Interesting about Tricenta LLC. I like Netrition, so am not appalled, but do find it curious.

  • http://www.cakewhiz.com cakewhiz

    using a blender to make a cake is a brilliant idea… it's so efficient and i won't have to wash so many dishes and bowls afterwards!
    your cake looks so moist and fresh…i want to grab a bite so badly…hehe

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02003623876099632888 DaveS

    Hi Lauren! So, I get back a message from the Customer Service manager at Netrition.com in which he says he can't help me, but he gave me a link to a posting on lowcarbfriends board:
    http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/lowcarb-recipe-help-suggestions/706606-sugar-conversions-1-cup.html.

    Now that's interesting and I hope it's accurate and that it helps the readers of your blog.

    But I think it's kind of scary that there's a product we are consuming and it's nearly impossible to find and contact the company who makes it!

    Dave

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12992918908739085132 Lauren

    CJ – Thank you! I appreciate the thoughtful nomination you gave the blog, by the way. :) Sorry I didn't catch that nice comment of your earlier!

    Dave – You rock for going directly to the source re the powdered erythritol situation! Where is there a powdered to granular E conversion in that post? I found another unsourced conversion here:

    1 cup granulated sugar = 1 3/4 cup powdered sugar

    1 cup powdered sugar = 1/2 cup + 1 heaping tablespoon granulated sugar

    It is easy enough to figure out. Just blend up a cup of granular E in a food processor or magic bullet and measure the volume of what is left. :) If I find the time, I'll do just that and post it on the blog! Thanks for reminding me of this important question, Dave.

    Eric – Decisions, decisions! You COULD just make a batch of cupcakes and use one both types of frosting that way. ;)

    Cakewhiz – I'm with you on not liking the dirty dishes! Blender cakes are ideal for the lazy baker. :) Please let me know if you get to try it.

  • Adriel

    I'm trying to learn how to be White flour and Sugar free. I like your all you have done. Thank You!

    Can you just use Xylitol in this recipe. On the package it says i can use on one to one like sugar.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02003623876099632888 DaveS

    OH! sorry to be posting so much…
    In that chart for different conversions of sweeteners to a cup of sugar:

    For 1 cup of sugar;

    1 cup of granular Splenda
    2 T. Fiber fit
    1 1/2 t. Trishz's
    24 drops EZ Sweet
    1 t. Splenda Quick Pac
    1 1/3 c. Erythritol
    1 c. Diabetisweet

    the Erythritol they're referring to is the granular one. There was a question later on in the forum about it.

    I've never heard of most of the sweeteners they've listed. And there's also no listing for xylitol. Now I 'thought' I read that erythritol is only 70% as sweet as sugar, but xylitol is somewhere like 160+% as sweet. But I don't like using very much xylitol because of the after effects.

    Dave

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13618599299440054908 Lauren

    Adriel – You're welcome! You could use xylitol if you can tolerate that much of it in one recipe. ;) My system doesn't handle it so well so my recipes use as little xylitol as possible.

    Dave – Thank you for sharing that valuable info about sweeteners. I've heard that erythritol was 60-70% as sweet as sugar, and xylitol is 90%. That seems to match my experiences baking with them. ;)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14969331613492429220 toosmartforherowngood

    I love your blog and am amazed at the recipes you come up with. Things that I'll be able to EAT! woo. I came by to let you know I've given you the Sunshine Blogger Award. Check out my post at:

    http://2smart4.blogspot.com/2012/07/me-sunshine-you-bet.html

  • Kendra

    Lauren, I just stumbled upon your blog searching for a low carb biscuit recipe, and I have to tell you mine turned out delicious! I would love to make this cake, but I have a question: I know the name brand sweetener Truvia is a mix of erythitol and Stevia ( I think) but where I am I can't seem to find gem independent of each other and I don't like cooking with Splenda, I find it leaves a very noticeable funky aftertaste which I cannot stand. Is there a way for me to substitute truvia for the sweeteners in this (and other) recipes and what would the equivalencies be (if you know them)

  • http://www.vaporoutlet.com/ vaporizer

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  • Anonymous

    Lauren,

    I have never blogged or posted a comment or given a review on the internet. I absolutely love your blog and your recipes. The chocolate cake with beans was amazing! One request- can you work on a new pizza crust recipe? I have tried one similar to your blog (thin, cheesy, crispy) and others that came out too cakey with soy and almond flours. I am seeking a traditional thin crust that really tastes like the real thing without the carbs. I know you would be more successful than me! Thanks again for your wonderful recipes and please never stop blogging!

  • http://www.slowcarbdietexperiments.com Eric G.

    Lauren,

    This looks delicious, and it's going to be a great recipe for me to bake for my dad's upcoming birthday (he's diabetic). Thanks for sharing this one with us!

    - Eric

  • Dianne

    Oh, Lauren, thank you, thank you, thank you!!! These are delicious! I froze them and when I took them out, put them in a covered plastic container to thaw, they tasted fresh and moist a couple hours later.

    I am new to your website, and all your recipes I have tried are wonderful! I will SO be buying a cookbook from you when you put one out. Thank you so very much for not just your recipes, but your knowledge of nutrition that you share with us-I have learned so much from your articles you write. Thank you!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12992918908739085132 Lauren

    Toosmartforherowngood – Thank you for the award! :)

    Kendra – Please scroll down on the main page to see my review of Truvia and the recipe I used to make it with stevia and erythritol separately. That gives you the conversion. ;)

    Anon – What a great idea! As soon as I can get more almond flour I'll play around with some crusts . It'd sure be great to have a “real” tasting g-free low carb crust!

    Eric – Hope your Dad enjoys the cake. :)

    Dianne – Glad the cupcakes turned out for you. It's great to know they can be frozen and thawed out without a change in their texture – thank you for sharing that with us!

  • Anonymous

    .thanks for sharing

  • Jemma

    Hi! My family (that usually turns their noses up at anything “healthy”) LOVES it when I make this cake! However I have a problem: I want to make this when I'm having a guest with nut allergies. Is there any way I could replace the almond meal with coconut flour? I know it makes stuff more dense but I haven't actually cooked with it yet so I don't REALLY know how it behaves. Any advice? Thank you!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05460816868683017840 Ellen R

    Hey Lauren – Been a lurker for a while, haven't commented yet. But I wanted to comment on this and tell you that I made this for my baby son's first birthday! I made it a moderate low carb by putting a very low sugar raspberry jam in the layers and then a sugar free buttercream from another low carb blog. It was absolutely fantastic! My son had cake for the first time and he loved it! And I'm proud and so happy that it's a healthy treat that he could enjoy, not nutritionally void like every other birthday “treat”. Thanks for posting this – I am finding so many wonderful low carb and low sugar treats and meals that I can really see a lifestyle change as feasible for my family! :-)

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  • asheedy

    I wanted to share some information I recently heard in regards to protein powders in baking recipes, such as this one. I had gone to GNC to buy some whey protein isolate, to try and make my own protein bars, and the sales clerk told me that most protein powders will lose a large portion of their protein if exposed to high heat, like it would be in baking. He said the only powder he’d heard of that can be baked and still maintain the protein is Any Whey, which they didn’t even sell there. So I’ve been making the freezer protein bars, but wanted to let you know since you’re using protein powder in this and other recipes. I haven’t done any serious research on this, other than to look up Any Whey online and the label says it can be baked, while no other protein isolate I’ve looked at has said that. Love the blog, keep up the good work!

  • Claire

    Hi Lauren – Great blog! I’ve been looking for sugar-free gluten-free recipes on line and am so happy to have found your blog! I love that you use mainly combinations of erythritol/xylitol/stevia to bake as that’s what I believe to be the best healthy sweeteners based on my research and the advice from celebrated nutritionist such as J. J. Virgin, etc. This recipe looks so good and simple so I’m definitely gonna try it. I don’t have whey protein powder though. If I skip this from the recipe will that affect the texture or flavor? Can I sub with something else that I may have on hand? Thanks for all your great work!

  • Ann Fenner

    Way too complicated. Will not be making this one. Just because you are using a blender doesn’t make it simple.

  • alejandra

    What can i use instead of whey protein?? Could i use another type of flour??? Protein powders are not very popular in my country so its hard to find them! Thanks!!

  • Ginger

    Lauren, I have enjoyed your fun and informative blog for well over a year and this is my first comment because I cant contain my gratitude any longer! Thank you so much! ALL of your recipes are amazingly delicious, so good in fact that my sugar loving sweetheart asks for more! I just made your busy day blender cake and it takes the cake! Delicate, moist, sweet vanilla goodness, oh my! I made cupcakes and enjoyed with fresh whipped cream…pure heaven! I appreciate your blog and all of your fantastic delicious creations that you share with all of us!

  • Stacy

    Is there anything at all that can be substituted for the oat flour? It’s just too high in carbs for me.. I’m thinking about trying this with 1/4 cup of coconut flour subbed in for the oat flour, and adding 2 additional eggs. It sounds like it might come out more dense, but do you think it will still work?

    • Mandy

      Hi Stacy. My friend made this with Oat Fiber instead of Oat Flour, it was awesome and more in lower carb range!!!

  • Michaela Ellison

    this alternate topping is delicious!