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Healthier Birthday Cake For My One Year Old

This month we celebrated my daughter Harley’s first birthday. Watching her turn one has been the highlight of my life. She loves to read books, listen to music, is almost walking, still breastfeeding 6 times a day (sometimes more and still in the middle of the night) and took her first sips of organic raw green juice just recently (she loves it, of course!) I am such a different mom than I ever imagined being… To say I am attached to her is an understatement! I take her wherever I go, including business trips and can’t imagine ever leaving her.

When it was time to plan her 1st birthday, I didn’t follow the “guidelines” they suggest in parenting books. They say not to invite a lot of people, or have too many decorations, and to keep it low key, etc. I did the opposite, oops! I invited all her friends, rented out one of our favorite organic restaurants (Pure Pizza) and decorated the whole place with her favorite barn yard animals she loves to play with and sound out. 

The whole birthday turned out beautifully, she loved seeing her family and friends and we had so much fun. Harley especially loved playing with the PIG balloons – her favorite part! (The balloons are still flying around our living room as I type and she wakes every morning excited to play with them).

For her cake, I decided to make Harley her own special one-of-a-kind cake with organic ingredients that I knew she liked to eat. We haven’t introduced wheat quite yet, so the base was made with organic oat flour. To make oat flour, you can simply grind any kind of oats in a spice grinder or buy it pre-packaged. 

I also thought long and hard about whether or not to use “REAL” sugar for the icing on her cake, and instead of being completely obsessive and coming up with icing that didn’t have any refined sugar, I decided to go old fashioned and use powered sugar creamed together with butter and vanilla to pipe some flower like decorations onto her cake. I wasn’t planning on her eating that much of the icing but then of course I couldn’t predict what happened at the birthday party either.

At the party, after we sang Happy Birthday and blew out her candle, Harley’s grandma (my Mom!) took the white icing off of her cake and put it directly into her mouth! And of course… Harley loved it. Haha. So my daughter had her first taste of refined sugar on her birthday – Something I bet you thought would never happen! At least it was organic homemade icing, right?! Which reminds me to say – the Food Babe lifestyle isn’t about deprivation or guilt – it’s about enjoying the foods you love the healthiest way you know how while living a normal fun-filled and stress-free life! 

Since, sharing this photo below earlier this week on Facebook and Instagram, a lot of you have asked me to share the recipe, so here it is! I hope your little ones love it too!

Harley's Organic Happy Birthday Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Adapted from Kristine's Kitchen
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • ½ teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ripe banana
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup or less
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • butter and oat flour for the pan
Frosting:
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 8 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup organic powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Butter your pan and dust with oat flour. (I used a special tiered mini cake pan)
  3. Whisk together all dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt) in a large bowl and set aside.
  4. Blend banana, applesauce, coconut milk, egg, vanilla and maple syrup together in a separate bowl.
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry and mix until just combined.
  6. Pour batter into cake pan. Bake for 20 mins or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Let cake cool in pan for 30 mins before removing and cool completely before frosting.
  8. To make the frosting, cream together all ingredients until smooth.
Notes
**Please choose all organic ingredients if possible.**

I used this tiered cake pan for the mold of her cake. Harley loves feeding me… even on her birthday!

If you know a mom or dad looking for a healthier cake for their child, please share this recipe! This recipe is great for adults too! I personally loved eating this cake with Harley and plan to make it again for my birthday coming up soon. 

Xo,

Vani 

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53 responses to “Healthier Birthday Cake For My One Year Old

  1. Any good substitutions for the banana? I just don’t like the taste of it and a lot of recipes seem to use banana. Would love to know a good substitute, cake sounds good.

    1. You can’t really taste the banana in the cake… but you could use pumpkin or squash or maybe dates instead. Good Luck!

  2. Could you do a blog about what you feed Harley? I have a 9 month old and wanted ideas on making my own food for her at home 🙂

    1. Yes absolutely – I’ll start taking pictures soon and start writing a list down of her favorite foods. Now that she’s one, we’re getting into more table foods and eating dinner as a family – eating the same meal 🙂

  3. Wow, one year already! She is one lucky baby to have Food Babe as her Mom 🙂
    Question: Can you sub Almond flour or that new Paleo flour by Bob’s Red Mill (a mix of healthy flours like coconut, almond, arrowroot, etc.) Thank you.

  4. If you don’t want any refined sugar in icing, cream together butter & cream cheese. Sweeten with honey & a touch of vanilla.

    I know it is recommended that little ones don’t have honey, you could also use maple syrup.

    1. You could also use Avacado, cocoa powder, nut milk ,or dairy,honey or maple syrop and vanilla to make a mousse type icing if u have blender or food processor.
      The bonus is you can eat the left over”icing” as a pudding.!

      1. Yes, I did something similar for my little one’s first birthday cake. I used sweet potato, coco powder, almond milk, maple syrup, and vanilla. It was fabulous.

  5. Did you know that there is led in most maple sirup? Because of the tools they use for the sap to drip and the bucket.

      1. Sadly it is true but I heard that Canada’s maple syrup companies have to come up with an alternative to reduce the Led in their maple because their clients in California are very severe with the amount of Led in food.

  6. I love making organic cakes and my favorite is using beets the color is beautiful and so very moist and sweet . My granddaughter bday is close to Valentine’s Day so very perfect .

  7. Congrats Dairy and butter are not the healthiest options, there’s too many saturated fats and parasites among other toxins. Organic vegan is best for many reasons, I’m not judging you, just spreading the word. CONGRATS!!!!! HAPPY FOR YOU!!!! I put organic raw superfoods powders in my frostings for natural color and great health, delicious and nutritious.

    1. Parasites? If something is pasteurized it wouldn’t have parasites. If there is low fat in Organic dairy it is very little or no saturated fat. Organic butter is good at very small amounts, but healthier options are available. Organic eggs are very nutritious for you a also.

      In reference to another post: A lot of the Organic maple syrup is collected by stainless steel tools and wooden tools. I’ve never heard of lead being in Organic maple syrup.

      Please share your recipe(s) with your icing and what type of raw superfood powders you use that’s organic! A great cake recipe also preferably ‘chocolate’ of course!

      Vani is one smart babe! ~ so I definitely follow her posts, leads, articles, information, heads-ups, and all the other great info. she shares! I dont know how she does it all! It’s soo much horrendous grave stuff out there that we all need to be aware of!

      Vani~What a beautiful little angel you
      have! Happy 1st Birthday Harley and may God bless you and your family richly! Will have to try that cake recipe!

  8. Agree agree agree with the previous poster that Dairy and Butter (organic or not) are so unnecessary and unhealthy. Organic vegan is the best for your health, the planet and of course the animals! Please realize that eggs and dairy are just glue to recipes so easy to substitute with healthy vegan options. The best brownie I ever had was vegan – just last week I had the best burger I have ever had in my entire life – it was so amazing i can’t even – and completely vegan organic. You are doing a disservice to yourself, your family and your readers not understanding the incredible health benefits of a vegan lifestyle.

    1. We also eat exclusively plant-based here in our home, but I would never dream of telling another family that they don’t have enough “understanding” to eat the way we do. What a haughty, self-righteous thing to suggest. I do believe this lifestyle choice is right for my family, and I’m thrilled to share with others who are interested. But I wouldn’t dream of trolling non-vegan blogs to preach to others about their food choices.
      Keep up the great work, Food Babe!

      1. Totally agree with your comment K. I eat an exclusively plant-based vegan diet as well and believe it’s the healthiest for my family and I. However, everyone has the right to do what they believe to be best for themselves. Vani has done such a great job with promoting healthy eating and I truly value all of her hard work. It’s not necessary to cast such judgment on another person because they differ in opinion.

      2. Kudos to you K! Unfortunately, that’s the attitude I find a lot of vegans having. And I find it incredibly self-righteous and disgusting. There are much worse things for people to be eating than organic (grass-fed, grass-finished) dairy and organic pastured eggs! There is a ton of research showing long vibrant lifespans of non-vegans. Good grief!

    2. I am confused why you’ve given this recipe 1 star? Have you actually tried baking it yourself that it deserved such a low rating? I didn’t see anywhere that she claimed this was vegan. I, for one, would love to try this recipe and am disappointed to see those with opposing views (or preaching for that matter) give it a poor review without even trying it first. :/

  9. Hi, I need to substitute the egg…would I add more banana or applesauce? How much…thank you and Happy Birthday to your sweet girl

    1. Hi Misty, I use 3 TBS of flaxseed meal, (Trader Joes) to 6 TBS water, filtered, of course, mix together and let sit for 2 minutes to thicken. This is equal to 1 egg. Good Luck

  10. I always made boiled milk frosting for my children’s cakes when they were growing up. Very light and creamy, plus it’s very easy to modify ingredients to suit your diet.
    They were raised organically, so this worked out very well.
    Another favorite was graham crackers slathered in whipped cream, then frosted in whipped cream. Once this sits overnight, it makes an amazing tort-like cake that will blow your mind!! 🙂

  11. I now make my cakes organic , with various GF grains, usually organic oat, sorghum, amaranth, almond, and/or quinoa flours…. Also coconut oil and organic, powdered stevia. My “buttercream” is org, unrefined coconut oil, coconut or almond milk, and organic stevia….. Sometimes I may add a little grass fed butter & powdered sugar, but only a touch. I’m Le Cordon Blue trained chef, & I have evolved into a health obssessed chef. There’s just no reason why something can’t be very healthy, meet individual medical requirements, and still be drop dead delicious ! …. It is my constant quest; my kitchen has become almost a lab, and I love the challenge & the benefits !!

  12. Thank you for all the work you do. I constantly refer your site & FB page to my family, friends, & fellow chefs & cooks. I repost many of your posting on my page. Thanks again.

    1. Mary Talley, I would love to connect with you to see who’s vegan recipes you use because it seems so hard to me to make plant base taste good. At least for me, I have been on a vegan quest for about 7 months and I’m getting really discouraged giving into having meat every once in a while. That’s not being very vegan. Maybe through facebook? And Vani, if you’re still reading these, thank you for all you do I have been following you from the beginning 2012 and love that you go up against Big Grocery etc. You are my favorite warrior <3

  13. What a beautiful little girl. Happy Birthday Harley!
    Thank you for the recipe and all your hard work Vani.

  14. Bananas are not good these days, even organic, because of what they do to them. I am surprised
    anyone concerned about GMO or sprayed fruits & veggies use bananas. I would love for you to
    look into this. I go to weekly talks from a holistic practitioner and he cannot say enough about
    avoiding bananas.

    1. Parasites? If something is pasteurized it wouldn’t have parasites. If there is low fat in Organic dairy it is very little or no saturated fat. Organic butter is good at very small amounts, but healthier options are available. Organic eggs are very nutritious for you a also.

      In reference to another post: A lot of the Organic maple syrup is collected by stainless steel tools and wooden tools. I’ve never heard of lead being in Organic maple syrup.

      Please share your recipe(s) with your icing and what type of raw superfood powders you use that’s organic! A great cake recipe also preferably ‘chocolate’ of course!

      Vani is one smart babe! ~ so I definitely follow her posts, leads, articles, information, heads-ups, and all the other great info. she shares! I dont know how she does it all! It’s soo much horrendous grave stuff out there that we all need to be made aware of!

      In another post about organic bananas ~ why wouldn’t organic bananas be healthy as that’s the only kind I will buy?

      Vani~What a beautiful little angel you
      have! Happy 1st Birthday Harley and may God bless you and your family richly! Will have to try that cake recipe!

  15. For vegans and those who’d like to avoid refined sugar- if you have a high speed blender, this is my go-to recipe for chocolate frosting:

    1c. medjool or other soft dates
    1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/4 c. coconut oil
    3/4 c. water

    Blend til velvety.

    I’m not a vegan but this is still one of my favorite recipes. I put the frosting on raw brownies that are awesome…process 1 cup raw pecans in a food processor until pieces are small and crumbly. Add 1 cup dates and process again until the mixture sticks together. Next add 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt and process again. Press mixture into a small loaf pan and top with above frosting (I also sprinkle pink salt on the frosting). To die for!

  16. So many concerned about eating healthy. Maybe they all missed your Monsanto article. I think that company has effectively poisoned America. Thank you for all you do, FoodBabe and may God bless your lovely family.

    1. If you want a vegan cake recipe, go to a vegan blogger. Vani has never claimed to be a vegan.
      Ridiculous to be so disappointed. You’re just wanting attention.

  17. Happy Birthday to a beautiful little girl! I think you made excellent choices with your ingredients, everything cannot be perfect. I say do your best and enjoy all the many blessings around us.

  18. If you used a regular cake pan instead of the tiered kind, what size would you recommend?

  19. Loved these! I had bookmarked the recipe when you posted it and made them yesterday for my daughter’s first birthday. They turned out perfectly- like a very yummy banana bread. I didn’t do the frosting, but would have to serve to adults if we were having a big party.

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