Healthy Orange Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Ganache & Raspberries Baby Led Feeding.

When I was a child my mother taught me how to make sponge cake – the margarine, flour version filled with cream and loaded with chocolate and fresh fruit. Not healthy by any means but was always the cake we always picked when it came to our birthday celebrations. Roll on 30 or so odd years, i’m now a health conscious mother who has taken on a challenge of making a ‘good for you cake’. I’ve a good excuse seeing as Monday is my birthday and this is my birthday weekend and the perfect excuse to make and eat cake!

I don’t think i’ve ever worked harder on a recipe since I started this project. For the first cake, I swapped out all of the ingredients in my mothers cake with my own combinations – flour for buckwheat and coconut, butter for coconut butter, sugar for maple syrup but the result was a little blah and very dry (even with the cream cheese filling).

The second attempt I used a little less coconut flour, a little more buckwheat, sweet potato and coconut butter. The cake was good but lacked in the soft moist sponge texture I was after.

My final attempt (yes I made 3 cakes) replaced the maple syrup for apple sauce. My heart actually skipped a beat when this cake came out of the oven. The apple made the cake moist and light and even healthier than the previous versions. O.k, so I know it is not normal to get this excited about cake but it is so delicious considering the entire cake is made from only healthy ingredients, fruits and veggies! Almost a meal in a cake and a healthy meal at that.

Healthy Orange Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Ganache & Raspberries Baby Led Feeding.

For the cake I used a mix of buckwheat and coconut flour. Buckwheat is a gluten free flour which tastes really delicious. It is high in protein, contains essential amino acids and is rich in iron. It is also filled with many minerals including iron which is important for little weaning babies. Coconut flour not only is high in fibre it is also packed with protein and adds just a very slight hint of flavour to the cake without overpowering it. The sweetness in the cake comes from apple sauce and sweet potato. Apple sauce provides lots of vitamin c and fibre and adds amazing moisture to the cake.

As many of you will know I am a big fan of sweet potatoes (see sweet potato muffins) and I think with good reason. Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin C as well as fibre and potassium. Seriously though, the more I learn about them the more I want to use them in everything I cook. To bake them, I just give a whole potato a little scrub under some water, pierce with a knife and then throw into the oven for about an hour. The potato should be nice and soft when its cooked. Cut in half and it simply slides out of the skin with minimal effort. I then put it into a blender and pulse until it is creamy and completely lump free and ready to be made into cake!

Finally, the cake mixture uses cacao. You can buy cacao from your local health food shop and a bag will last you ages! Cacao is an amazing ingredient. It is said to have more antioxidants than any other food on the planet (thats what it says on the back of the pack i’m currently reading). It is also high in fibre, protein, vitamin c, iron and calcium and when combined with something sweet it like magic becomes a delicious healthy chocolate.

Healthy Orange Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Ganache & Raspberries Baby Led Feeding.

The filling of this cake is super simple. I used banana to sweeten the cream cheese along with orange zest and juice. It makes a delicious spreadable filling that works so well with the cake.

Last but not least, the chocolate ganache topping (my favourite part). Thankfully nobody took photos of myself and Oscar trying the sauce. There were lots of ooouuuuu’s and ahhhhh’s and lip licking. When the coconut milk and maple syrup is boiled and then simmered it starts to turn into an almost toffee like concoction. Once the cacao is added the sauce magically thickens and then it’s just a matter of having the patience to not eat and let it cool to pour on top of your cake.

Don’t think of this cake as being full of veggies and fruit, think sponge cake, yummy scrummy chocolate sponge cake with a hint of jaffa cake in every bite and with around 202 calories in every slice it is a winner for the grown ups as well as the little ones.

With that, i’ll leave you with the recipe and hope that you and your families enjoy it as much as we did.

Aileen x


      • PREP TIME
      • 20 minutes
      • COOK TIME
      • 20 minutes
      • TOTAL TIME
      • 40 minutes
      • SERVES
      • 12 Slices

What goes in...

  • Cake
  • 1 & 1/4 Cups Buckwheat Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 3 Eggs or for egg free – 3 Tablespoons Flaxseed+ 9 Tablespoons Warm Water
  • 1 Cup Pure Apple Sauce
  • 1 Cup Puréed Sweet Potato
  • 2 Tablespoons Cacao Powder
  • Cream Filling
  • 180g Cream Cheese (For Vegan replace cream cheese 1 tin full fat coconut milk)
  • 1 Banana
  • Zest 1 Large Orange
  • Juice 1/2 Orange
  • Chocolate Ganash
  • 1/2 Tin Coconut Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon Cacao Powder
  • Zest of 1/2 Orange
  • Assembly
  • Zest of 1/2 Orange
  • 1 Punnet Fresh Raspberries

How to make it...

How to make the cake

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180ºC.
  2. Add Buckwheat flour, coconut flour and baking powder to a bowl and leave aside.
  3. Into a separate bowl add eggs (or flaxseed), apple sauce, sweet potato and cacao and using an electric whisk if you have one beat until the mixture is lovely and creamy.
  4. Slowly whisk in the flour little by little until it is fully combined.
  5. Divide the mixture equally into 2 oiled springform tins and bake for 20 minutes. You will know the cake is cooked when a skewer comes out clean.
    (I only have 1 springform tin so I did one at a time and also I lined it the second time with parchment paper as it prevented it from sticking to the tin).
  6. Remove from the tin and leave the cake mixture on a wire rack to cool fully before assembling.

How to make the Cream Filling (regular)

  1. Firstly, purée the banana until it is creamy and soft.
  2. Add all of the ingredients to a bowl and whisk until they come together and make a soft spreadable mixture. It should have the consistency of cream when finished. {It is important to note that if using a high speed blender (like a Nutribullet) to make the filling it will be a little runny after blending. If this happens, add the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for an hour before using on the cake. This helps it thicken up.}

How to make the Cream Filling (vegan)

  1. The night before you are making your cake place the tin of coconut milk in the fridge. When you are ready to make the filling, open the tin without shaking and gently scoop out the coconut cream into a bowl.
  2. Using an electric whisk, whisk the coconut cream until stiff peaks start to form. It will resemble the same consistency as the whites of eggs when beaten.
    Fold in the pureed banana and orange zest (omit the orange juice)

How to make the Chocolate Ganache

  1. Add coconut milk and maple syrup to a saucepan and bring to the boil. Stir well and turn the heat down to medium and allow it to keep bubbling for about 10 minutes. Keep and eye on it so it doesn’t burn. The mixture should start to darken ever so slightly and reduce.
  2. Using a hand whisk, add the cacao powder to the milk and whisk until it is totally mixed through and no lumps are visible. The sauce should be lovely and velvety at this stage.
  3. Stir in the orange zest and then take the sauce off the heat and allow to cool before using it on the cake. This will thicken it up even more and will make it more like a regular melted chocolate.

Assembling your cake

  1. Spread the cream filling on one side of the cake mixture and gently place the other half on top.
  2. Pour the chocolate ganache over the top of the cake and spread using a spatula so that everywhere is covered. It should be thick so should mostly stay on the top.
  3. Cut the raspberries in half and decorate the top of the cake and finally sprinkle the zest of the orange over the top.
  4. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.