“bean there, done that”

Spunky Coconut's bean-based white cake (photo credit: Kelly V. Brozyna)

Remember the “bean-based” peppermint mocha cupcakes I made last year? Well, that was in preparation for Emmy’s birthday festivities (we’ve been planning a bean-based-birthday cake for quite sometime now). The mocha cupcakes were tasty but just didn’t seem to fit, so I thought I’d try something entirely new (thank goodness for a baby that will eat anything and supportive family&friends!).
…we ended up using navy beans for her cake and the entire thing was, gluten-free**! The recipe is below, but before I get to that I wanted to address texture. The texture was great! The eggs offset the fact that it’s bean-based and not flour-based, perhaps a cross-sectional photo might help?

See? nothing weird--no one reported anything disagreeable, neither texture nor taste! I have pretty honest friends, they'd tell me ; P

I guess grad schooling in nutrition really does affect my day-to-day decisions…my thought process: if we end up lathering cake with frosting, it’s only natural to find ways to cut the carbs and boost protein content via beans, right?
Here’s the recipe (it’s sooo easy!):
The inspiration came from here, but it called for trivial use of Stevia, which I’ve just never quite warmed up to (it has been associated with a dissipating sweetness that you can read more about here). Anyway, I wanted to use honey and found this second recipe, which I modified slightly since I wanted to use frosting:

  • 3 c. white beans, cooked and plain (you could used canned beans, too, just rinse them before use)
  • 9 tbsp. coconut oil (get the one for “medium-high heat”)
  • 1.2 cup-3/4 cup raw honey
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda

Simply add all ingredients to a blender and blend on medium, then high until smooth.  Pour into two well-greased  9″ pans and bake at 350 for 35 – 40 min (no need to line them with parchment, unless you want you), Let them cool, remove from pan, and frost.

No fancy tricks for the frosting, I just used a quick one from the Joy of Cooking, I was in a hurry so just tossed on whatever sprinkles we had (ran out of pink, oops!).
As for taste and flavor, it was a very pleasant vanilla-honey with a very subtle hint of coconut. 

she looks suspicious here, but she'll be introduced to the typical sweets soon enough...

Have you tried any bean-based cakes/cupcakes/desserts?
After two successes, I’m curious what else is out there!

**note: I primarily chose this recipe because it reduces carb content and increases protein content, not because it was gluten-free. I am NOT advocating that you eat gluten-free if you don’t have Celiac disease/wheat/gluten issues. I guess I feel the need to address this because, “gluten-free” seems to be a growing nutrition fad and many are just arbitrarily going that route without any need for it…


10 thoughts on ““bean there, done that”

  1. You are awesome! I’ll have to try this. As for the gluten free thing – I find myself saying those exact words all the time. Not sure why it’s becoming so trendy – annoying!

  2. Tasties! I’m glad you didn’t use Stevia, it was sweet enough. Plus, we don’t need anything else to help “trick” our taste buds and grow more accustomed to sweet stuff. :)

  3. How fun to see this! Stephen is gluten-free (sadly not bc he is a hipster but he has health issues with wheat, etc.) so this is handy to have for bdays and celebrations. Can’t wait to try it. Thanks for the yummy and healthier idea. Hope you guys are well. Kiss that gorgeous baby from us! – The Shangs

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