Applesauce Spice Cake

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Gluten Free Vegan Spice Cake Recipe

It always makes my heart smile a little when people talk about the recipes handed down through generations in their families.  The memories of the food they ate growing up, about baking cookies and family dinners.  It's a beautiful thing.  At least, I imagine it is....

I come from a long line of women who burn toast, forget to salt food and live by the motto; "When in doubt, boil the hell out of it".   The recipes passed down to me involved boxed mixes, canned fish and headcheese (contain your jealousy, dammit).

At one point (I can't remember exactly when, I'm guessing that's due to neon food related brain damage) my Gran discovered that gross glowing yellow chicken soup base with the jaunty green flecks in it that they used to make.  For her, it was love at first sight and from that point forward every single thing we ate, for quite a few years, was neon yellow and riddled with MSG.  That stuff is responsible for my inability to eat salmon, or worse, canned mushroom soup.  Nothing screams childhood trauma like a can of mushroom soup and some glowing yellow soup based smothering a poor rubbery chicken breast, nothing.

One day I'll tell you about the year of "Season All" - the spice that doesn't quit!  But for now, let's talk Spice Cake.  

I had a very minor apple buying accident at the market and as I was brainstorming what might become of my beautiful bushel of little fruits, he started reminiscing about the spice cake his mom used to make, which led me to believe, I could justify my apple purchase after all.

So here it is, applesauce spice cake the way his family used to make it (with a few modifications for our intolerant tummies). It's covered in caramel sauce and walnuts (both super optional) with warm and fragrant spices that make you kitchen smell and feel like fall.

Gluten Free Vegan Spice Cake Recipe
Yields12 Servings
Prep Time15 minsCook Time30 minsTotal Time45 mins
 ¼ cup Coconut Flour
 ¼ cup Ground Flaxseeds
 ½ cup Tapioca Starch
 ½ cup Buckwheat Flour (substitute sorghum if you need to)
 ¾ cup Rice Flour
 1 tsp Baking Soda
 2 tsp Baking Powder
 1 pinch Salt
 1 tsp Cinnamon
 1 tsp Nutmeg
 ½ tsp Allspice
 ¼ tsp Mace
 ½ cup Palm Sugar
 ¼ cup Cane Sugar (you can use all cane sugar if you want)
 ¾ cup Light Oil (Canola, Grapeseed, Sunflower) I use Olive Oil, a lot but there is a bit of a taste.
 1 cup Applesauce (unsweetened)
 1 cup Coconut Milk / Regular Milk (if that's how you roll)
 2 dashes Vanilla

Preheat your oven to 350F and dig out an 8" Cake Pan, a Loaf Pan or a 12 hole Muffin Tin. Muffins and 8" cake pans will need 30 minutes cook time, while the loaf pan is around 40 minutes.

In a large bowl, sift together all your dry ingredients (flours, baking soda/powder), salt and spices.

In a medium sized bowl, mix your sugars, oil, applesauce, milk and vanilla. Note: I've made this using both regular milk and coconut milk. The milk version cooked in 30 minutes and was ridiculously fluffy. The coconut milk version was also delicious, a little tiny bit less fluffy and took about 10 minutes more to cook (don't panic at the 30 minute mark like I did. It's getting there, it's just slower).

Using a whisk or an electric mixer (on medium), beat together the wet and dry ingredients. You can beat it up for a minute or two, just until it looks fluffy. (you can't over mix - so don't worry) The batter should be a bit runnier than you're used to if you've been baking with wheat flour. Runny batter in gluten free means light and fluffy. The denser the batter the more similar to a rock your final product will be. Look at the crumb!

Gluten Free Spice Cake

Pour your batter into a greased pan and pop it in the oven. If you're making cupcakes, I recommend putting the muffin liners on afterwards to beautify it. Adding the wrappers while cooking with coconut flour tends to lead to permanently secured wrappers to said muffins and who wants that?

For Cupcakes: 30 Minutes
For an 8" Cake Pan: 30 Minutes
For a Loaf Pan: 40 Minutes

At the end of the time, gently press on the center, springy is done, if your finger makes a dent - it just needs more time.

This puppy freezes well, just reheat it in the microwave or on the counter. If you plan on freezing it, don't make the caramel sauce an icing, but keep it separately as a drizzle (it gets weird if you don't).

I didn't actually measure for the caramel sauce (sorry!), but if you want to make it the general idea is: in a small sauce pan, add some butter/margarine (3 tbsp I'm guessing) and let it melt over medium heat. Add some sugar - maybe 6 tbsp (I use palm sugar because it's already caramel tasting and better for you marginally), and stir constantly until it starts to look combined. If the butter is still floating on top, you need more sugar. Once it's looking kind of thick and saucy add milk/coconut milk, just a tiny splash at a time until the sauce starts thin out slightly. Add a pinch of salt or two and then taste it to see if you need some more. When it tastes awesome, bring it to a boil (until it's bubbling) and then pull it off the heat. Voila - caramel sauce!

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 1 Slice

Servings 12


Amount Per Serving
Calories 261
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14.7g23%
Saturated Fat 2.6g4%
Cholesterol 2mg1%
Sodium 225mg10%
Potassium 251mg8%
Total Carbohydrate 31.3g11%
Dietary Fiber 3.9g16%
Sugars 9.5g
Protein 3.1g7%

Calcium 5%
Iron 1%
Vitamin D 1%

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Ingredients

 ¼ cup Coconut Flour
 ¼ cup Ground Flaxseeds
 ½ cup Tapioca Starch
 ½ cup Buckwheat Flour (substitute sorghum if you need to)
 ¾ cup Rice Flour
 1 tsp Baking Soda
 2 tsp Baking Powder
 1 pinch Salt
 1 tsp Cinnamon
 1 tsp Nutmeg
 ½ tsp Allspice
 ¼ tsp Mace
 ½ cup Palm Sugar
 ¼ cup Cane Sugar (you can use all cane sugar if you want)
 ¾ cup Light Oil (Canola, Grapeseed, Sunflower) I use Olive Oil, a lot but there is a bit of a taste.
 1 cup Applesauce (unsweetened)
 1 cup Coconut Milk / Regular Milk (if that's how you roll)
 2 dashes Vanilla

Directions

1

Preheat your oven to 350F and dig out an 8" Cake Pan, a Loaf Pan or a 12 hole Muffin Tin. Muffins and 8" cake pans will need 30 minutes cook time, while the loaf pan is around 40 minutes.

2

In a large bowl, sift together all your dry ingredients (flours, baking soda/powder), salt and spices.

3

In a medium sized bowl, mix your sugars, oil, applesauce, milk and vanilla. Note: I've made this using both regular milk and coconut milk. The milk version cooked in 30 minutes and was ridiculously fluffy. The coconut milk version was also delicious, a little tiny bit less fluffy and took about 10 minutes more to cook (don't panic at the 30 minute mark like I did. It's getting there, it's just slower).

4

Using a whisk or an electric mixer (on medium), beat together the wet and dry ingredients. You can beat it up for a minute or two, just until it looks fluffy. (you can't over mix - so don't worry) The batter should be a bit runnier than you're used to if you've been baking with wheat flour. Runny batter in gluten free means light and fluffy. The denser the batter the more similar to a rock your final product will be. Look at the crumb!

Gluten Free Spice Cake

5

Pour your batter into a greased pan and pop it in the oven. If you're making cupcakes, I recommend putting the muffin liners on afterwards to beautify it. Adding the wrappers while cooking with coconut flour tends to lead to permanently secured wrappers to said muffins and who wants that?

For Cupcakes: 30 Minutes
For an 8" Cake Pan: 30 Minutes
For a Loaf Pan: 40 Minutes

At the end of the time, gently press on the center, springy is done, if your finger makes a dent - it just needs more time.

6

This puppy freezes well, just reheat it in the microwave or on the counter. If you plan on freezing it, don't make the caramel sauce an icing, but keep it separately as a drizzle (it gets weird if you don't).

7

I didn't actually measure for the caramel sauce (sorry!), but if you want to make it the general idea is: in a small sauce pan, add some butter/margarine (3 tbsp I'm guessing) and let it melt over medium heat. Add some sugar - maybe 6 tbsp (I use palm sugar because it's already caramel tasting and better for you marginally), and stir constantly until it starts to look combined. If the butter is still floating on top, you need more sugar. Once it's looking kind of thick and saucy add milk/coconut milk, just a tiny splash at a time until the sauce starts thin out slightly. Add a pinch of salt or two and then taste it to see if you need some more. When it tastes awesome, bring it to a boil (until it's bubbling) and then pull it off the heat. Voila - caramel sauce!

Applesauce Spice Cake

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