My baby is turning one and I have been testing a bunch of cake and frosting recipes for his birthday smash cake. I wanted to get it right this time because the cake I made for my oldest baby’s birthday was a total fail. I made an oatmeal banana-type cake and it was so gooey and mushy that I ended up making cupcakes for the guests and let my baby suffer through that banana cake. He actually liked it because it tasted better than baby food but it was definitely not a do-over for baby number two.

 I tried a few cakes that ended up really delicious (recipes to come soon), but weren’t a good fit for a smash cake. So when I tried this fudgy, creamy, rich chocolate cake it was definitely the winner. I think it really needs the coconut cream and the berries because it is very rich on its own.

This is a pretty easy and quick recipe if you have a food processor. But if you don’t have a food processor it can still be done, you just need to use almond flour instead of the blanched almonds. You would mix all the ingredients in a mixer and it would still turn out great. Also, you can use fresh berries or frozen berries. The pictures show fresh berries but I would probably make it with frozen. When frozen berries are warmed they make a juicy, syrupy topping that is so good on this cake. But either way turns out delicious.



Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups blanched almonds
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup 100% cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/3 cup non-gmo, cold-pressed canola oil
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup

Coconut Cream

  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk (cream only)
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Berry Topping

  • 1 cup mixed berries, fresh or thawed frozen berries


For the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a food processor add blanched almonds. Process almonds for a couple of minutes. Stop processor and scrape the almond pieces down from the edges of the food processor to incorporate with the rest of the almonds. Process again until almonds become a flour-like consistency, almost like a dust. This should just be a minute or so.

Add remaining cake ingredients in the processor in the order listed and process until batter is mixed evenly. Grease a round 9 1/2″ pan and pour chocolate batter into pan. Cook for 30-35 mins or until toothpick comes out clean. Allow cake to cool on a wire rack and set aside.

For the coconut cream: The night before, (or a few hours before) put can of coconut milk into the fridge. This will separate the milk from the cream. The day of, remove the cream (the thick part on the top) from the can and put into a large bowl or Kitchen Aid bowl. Add maple syrup and vanilla extract and whip until the cream becomes as thick as whipping cream.

For the berries: You can use fresh mixed berries or frozen. If you are using fresh, wash, remove stems and  and slice berries. If using frozen, gently warm frozen berries in a pan on the stove for a couple of minutes on medium to low heat stirring  constantly and making sure not to burn.

Assembly: Remove cooled chocolate cake from pan. Add coconut cream to cake and top with berries.

*Note: The cake comes out of the pan clean when it is completely cooled. The cake can be made a day in advanced – wrap the cooled cake in saran wrap (or put in airtight container) and keep in the fridge overnight. Remove cake when ready to serve. The coconut cream should be made just before serving.


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