My husband is basically a big kid at heart. When there were rumblings about him wanting a peanut buttery dessert, I thought, who am I to stand in the way of birthday boy's desires? Peanut butter shows up rarely at our house - I usually go with sunbutter instead (a fabulous stand-in, by the way, tastes very, very similar to peanut butter).
Though I frequently use Primal Palate's dark chocolate coconut cake in our celebrations, this is also a gluten free recipe that works really well for cupcakes - we did the same cupcake recipe for my oldest's birthday party earlier this spring. I've noticed that for my oldest daughter, often the big draw of grocery store creations is the bright colors and characters. Though I no longer use the artificially colored frostings that show up on these kinds of birthday cakes and cupcakes, that doesn't stop me from using colorful decorations to punch up the visual excitement factor on an otherwise neutral hued peanut butter chocolate cupcake.
In no way would I consider these cupcakes paleo or especially nutritious - just a very rare gluten free dairy free egg free treat that our whole family (extended nonpaleo family included) thoroughly enjoyed. I originally got the cake recipe from an egg free gluten free mama friend after tasting it at her daughter's party! (This one is my adaptation of the original, shared here with her permission - thanks mucho, A!)
You could make this version below that much more allergen friendly by switching around to another nutbutter or seed butter of your choice, depending on your guests' food allergies or sensitivities.
Wacky Chocolate Cake
- 1 cup sugar (you can play with refined sugar substitutes here, too)
- 1 ½ cups Arrowhead Mills all purpose gluten free flour - this is available at Whole Foods and Wegmans, as well as other grocery stores
(You can also use King Arthur all purpose gluten free flour, if you also add 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum)
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon vinegar (I've used apple cider vinegar and rice vinegar in the past)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup cold water
- 1/2 bag semisweet allergen-appropriate dark chocolate chips of your choice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Put all dry ingredients in mixing bowl and blend them well, then add oil, vinegar, vanilla and water.
Beat well with mixer until smooth.
Stir in chocolate chips until evenly distributed.
- For 8" round cake: Pour batter into 8" greased pan (square or round).
Bake 35-40 minutes.
(You can double the recipe to make an 8" round layer cake.)
- For a bundt pan: double recipe and bake 45-60 min.
- For cupcakes: Makes one dozen, depending how full they are. Bake at 350 for about 25-30 minutes. If desired, you can fill your cupcake cups halfway, add ½ tsp. of your peanut butter, and then top with the other half of your batter. That leaves a little peanut buttery bite in the middle.
Peanut Butter Frosting
Can sub sunbutter or nut butter of choice
1 ½ cups smooth peanut butter, room temperature (if you can, try this with trans fat free natural/organic peanut butter)
½ palm shortening, room temperature
1/4 cup coconut nectar
1/3 cup powdered sugar
Blend all ingredients thoroughly.
Peanut Butter Pie Bonus Decoration: I picked up a 2 pack of Justin's dairy free gluten free organic dark chocolate peanut butter cups and sliced each of the two cups into six little pie-shaped pieces to use as decorative "peanut butter pie" toppers.
What are birthday cakes looking like at your house lately? How are you tinkering with recipes to make them allergen friendly?
This post participates in the Life As Mom Creative Birthday Cake Round-Up. Head over there to check out more fun decorating ideas, like the DIY Angry Birds cake! This post is also participating in the Daily Dietribe's Gluten Free Birthday Cake Roundup.