This weekend was Gavin’s 1st birthday party. I cleaned the house, rented a helium tank and ordered party supplies without a hitch. But I agonized over the cake. Gavin has never had sugar before, and due to a heart condition, I wasn’t ready to make that introduction by an overdose of birthday cake and icing. He’s also a bit behind on food introductions, so I wanted to try and serve something that wouldn’t induce an allergic reaction in front of 40+ family and friends.
So I scoured the internet for healthy, sugar-free first birthday cake recipes. After pouring over several dozen recipes, I finally found one that was not only healthy, but incorporated mostly all ingredients he had already been introduced to. The recipe is Banana and Blueberry Cake found on the Homemade Baby Food Recipes website.
Now, I don’t do any of the cooking or baking in my house, so my husband took the reins and made the cake. What we loved is how simple it was. We didn’t need any special baking equipment and all the ingredients we either already had, or purchased during a quick trip to the grocery store. It was so simple to make I could have definitely handled it!
Here’s the recipe. We halved all the ingredients from the original below, as we only wanted to make a small cake. (Note: we still had leftover batter, so you probably could have third everything and still been fine). We also substituted the frozen apple juice concentrate with Gerber NatureSelect 100% apple juice drink, since we already had it in the fridge.
4 oz (1 cup) old fashioned oats
5 oz (1 1/4 cups) whole wheat flour
4 oz (1 cup) all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
6 medium ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
4 fl oz (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup blueberries, chopped (use fresh, or frozen berries thawed and drained – we used fresh)
4 eggs, beaten well
6 fl oz (3/4 cup) frozen unsweetened apple juice concentrate, thawed*
*You can use regular apple juice concentrate instead for a sweeter result, but do bear in mind that the recipe will be higher in sugar than if you use the unsweetened variety. (As I mentioned, we used the Gerber apple juice here, which has 13g of sugar per serving, but is still not nearly as much sugar as most cake recipes)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Put the first seven ingredients into a large bowl and mix them together.
Add all the rest of the ingredients and stir well until thoroughly combined.
Grease a 9 inch cake tin and pour in the mixture (we used 4″ Wilton Springform Pan, typically used for Cheesecakes).
Bake for around 50 mins to one hour, until a sharp knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Cool in the tin for 20 mins, then turn out on a wire rack to cool completely. We then sliced the top off to make a flat surface before icing.
To make a cream cheese frosting:
Stir together one 3 ounce package of cream cheese, 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract and 2 1/2 tbsp regular frozen apple juice concentrate (thawed)*. Spread over the top of the cake once it’s cool.
Once iced, we decorated the perimeter of the cake with puffs to entice Gavin to try a bite. Voila! One healthy, sugar-free cake that is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters. I know, because I am one…and this cake was yummy! Enjoy!