Key Lime Cake with Whipped Yogurt Frosting

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I’ve written about how I’m not crazy about cake mixes. They usually have hydrogenated oils, but sometimes I get lucky and find one that doesn’t.SAM_4933

Or if I’m really lucky, one that uses whole, unrefined sugars and flours. But that’s rare.

But people like those cake mixes so much! It’s hard to please a crowd with unrefined tastebuds.

So here’s a compromise I made for a very special someone’s birthday. He likes key lime pie, a lot. Now he likes key lime cake, too.

IngredientsSAM_4921

1 box of angel food cake

1 large lime or two small

1 container of key-lime-flavored yogurt

1/3 cup healthy whipped topping (try a soy type or Troo Whip)

DirectionsSAM_4931

-Prepare the angel food cake as directed, but add in some fresh lime zest and a little squeeze of juice at the end. The cake should still taste light and fluffy with just a hint of lime flavor, most of which comes from the topping

-Let cake cool, of course. But once it cools completely, you can begin making the whipped yogurt topping. It’s as simple as mixign the yogurt and whipped topping together, drizzling all over the cake, serving chilled, and if you like, sprinkling with fresh zest or coconut shreds.

Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

 

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DIY: Cupcake Transport Idea

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Friends of mine might remember the adorable cupcake presentation boxes I had for my letter writers when I was applying to M.A. programs two years ago.SAM_4837

Another round of excellent and supportive letter writers put up with my numerous reminders and gushing thank you’s again, this time for doctoral programs.

There’s a lot changing in my life right now, but craftiness and my cooking-to-relax routines are not. This time, it was a healthful little blueberry muffin. It needed delicate transport and it needed to be as cute as I was thankful. My favorite culinary truth: Eating is 50% presentation.

So I found this great little idea on Pinterest. Put a muffin or cupcake in a small plastic cup. Wrap with whatever kind of wrapping you like–I used treat bags from Michael’s–tie up in a pretty bow and take them anywhere. The cups keep the treats sturdy and upright. The bag gives the pizzazz.

Oh, and the most important part, the muffin, makes everything sweet. I hope they liked my thank you’s. I’m thinking of baking something for them again because I had so much fun tucking them into their mailboxes.

Cake Cups + Filling Ideas

This is more of a great idea (or two) than it is a new recipe.

Cake cups!

Like cupcakes, but reversed.

In a cake cup, you add in something you love. For me, it was my healthified fro-yo fix, which you can make simply by taking your favorite yogurt and freezing it for about an hour. Garnish with some sweet fresh berries and voila! A dessert that does a body good.

To make, simply follow any one of my single-serving cupcake recipes. But instead of filling the muffin tin slot as you normally would, gently press the dough up the sides of the slot. Bake for about 5-6 minutes (less time is needed because the dough is spread more thinly). Let cool and add in your favorite filling.

I’ll copy and paste the sweet-pink strawberry dough recipe I used below, but get creative!

I also did something similar with my super-moist chocolate blueberry cupcake recipe, but I made the cups smaller by dividing into two, scraped out the sides, and filled with a one-part peanut butter and one-part cream cheese frosting filling.

Yes, I was proud of this secondary cake cup, too. It tasted just like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, only cakier!

And in case you’re wondering, no you can not taste the blueberry, but you will be amazed at how moist the fruit puree makes the cake.

Strawberry Dough Ingredients

3 T flour ( I used spelt)

a pinch of baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla

1 heaping T milk

1 T stevia

.5 t vegan butter

1/5 egg (mixed, or flax egg)

.5 t maple syrup or agave

1 t strawberry preserves

1 medium to large strawberry (ripe, pureed or well smashed)

Directions

-Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Lightly grease a cookie sheet and set aside.

-Combine all dry ingredients in a small bowl; push to one side. On the other side, mix all wet ingredients. Combine wet and dry thoroughly. It’s okay if there are some chunks of fruit in the batter, but too many or too large of a chunk will bake into a gummy texture you won’t like.

-To form cookies, roll into small balls. If you’d like, however, to make doughnuts, you can simply shape a doughnut round by using a specialized pan, or doing as I do, which is using the rim of a muffin tin slot to shape an O. You could also use a cookie cutter that’s shaped like an O, but if you do this make sure the dough is thick enough–consider layering two or three Os.

-Bake for about 6-7 minutes.

Chocolate Blueberry Dough Ingredients

2.6 T whole-wheat flour

2 t cocoa powder

pinch of baking powder, baking soda, (scant) salt, and vanilla

1.5 t stevia

1 T and 1 t vanilla yogurt

1.5 t applesauce or coconut oil

1 T and 1 t almond milk

1 T and 1 t blueberries

Directions

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a cookie sheet or prepare with a cupcake liner.

-Puree blueberries or mash with a fork. Then mix in vanilla, oil, and milk. Set aside.

-In a small bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Transfer these to the wet ingredients, mixing in slowly. Be sure not to overmix.

-Spoon batter into cupcake tin and bake for about 11-13 minutes.

These toppings could be really fun. You could go more muffin like, as I did, with fresh coconut cream and blueberries. Or you could add icing because, essentially, this muffin could pass as a cupcake, too!

Let the sweetness last as long as you can :)

Orange Dream Cupcake

Remember my sweet lemon solo cupcake from late August? It was delicious & zesty, yes?

Well now that we’re in the dead of winter, I figured it was high time for another fruity cake, but one more appropriate for the season.

An orange one!

And you know the fruit won’t be expensive considering most grocery stores are selling oranges by the bag for just a few dollars this time of year.

The recipe is below. I’d recommend pairing with coconut flakes or almonds. Or if you like a little sweet, cream cheese frosting. Check out my healthy Neufchatel cream cheese frosting recipe, featured earlier on my fluffy carrotcake cookies.

IngredientsCooling off in an individual silicone cupcake mold.

(makes just one cupcake)

  • 3 tbsp flour (30g) (See directions for flour notes)
  • heaping 1/16th tsp salt
  • little orange zest, if you like
  • 1 tbsp applesauce, oil, pre-melted margarine (I used French vanilla yogurt), or a combination
  • 1 tbsp nondairy milk
  • 1 t freshly-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 to 1 1/2 packets of stevia should be about right. If you use liquid sweetener, cut back a tiny bit on the other liquid.)

Directions

-Preheat the oven to 330 degrees.If icing isn't your favorite, you can also eat this cupcake plain (more like a muffin)...

-Mix the ingredients and pour into an oiled (or sprayed) muffin pan. Smooth top of batter. Bake for about 10 minutes or so.

-Alternatively, you can cook in the microwave, in a greased mug or ramekin. (Microwave times will vary, depending on the flour you use and the strength of your microwave.

Chocolate Cupcake for One

It’s been a long week…

On a Thursday night when you’re beyond exhausted from working, nothing tastes better that warm chocolate-y cupcake.

This recipe makes one VERY BIG chocolate cupcake(or a lot of little ones if you use a mini-muffin pan). It will bring you happiness. Guaranteed.

In case you’re wondering, yes, it will melt in your mouth…

And if you swirl dark-chocolate chips on top of it right after you pull it out of the oven, well, it will bring you more happiness.

Ingredients

1 T cocoa powder

2 T + 2 t spelt flour

pinch of baking soda, baking powder, and salt

1.5 T stevia

1.5 T organic vanilla yogurt

1 T applesauce

1 T non-dairy milk (I used almond)

Directions

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a muffin tin. Set aside.

-Combine dry in a small bowl. Push to one side. On the other side, mix the wet ingredients. Blend the two together.

-Pour into greased tin and bake for about 12-14 minutes.

Serve warm with melted chocolate, like I did, or maybe some fresh berries and cream for a chocolate-spin on traditional shortcake.

Little Vanilla Cupcakes

Today is a special day that called for an equally special recipe.

I won’t make you guess. It’s my 23rd birthday.

It’s funny because my mom, my grandpa, and I all get a little sentimental-sad on our birthdays (in a bittersweet sort of way). But I wasn’t feeling too sad today! No, every year I’m aware of this creeping feeling, and now I fight it. I remind myself over and over again how lucky I am to be alive and well (which are also the lyrics to my favorite post-run, cool-down song).

I’m also very lucky to have tried so many delicious, healthy desserts over the past year, which for the most part have been very tasty. I’ve truly treated myself this year.

But sometimes, though, when you’re using healthful, whole-food ingredients, things just don’t turn out as pretty.

It’s not much of a sacrifice, but it doesn’t make blogging easy. Or at least, it’s not as easy to express how wonderful my recipes taste. The pictures never do the recipes justice. I have been holding out for a perfect vanilla cupcake recipe for a long time. One that wouldn’t have grainy lumps and somewhat brownish coloring.

Well it looks like I’ve found it (and just in time for my birthday!). Thanks once again to Chocolate-Covered Katie.

It seems the solution lies in equal parts spelt flour and French vanilla yogurt. I swear, she’s a genius. Now all I needed to do was to make her party-sized recipe a single-serving one.

Mission accomplished:

Makes one very big or two small cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup spelt flour
  • pinch of baking powder, salt, baking soda
  • 2 tsp ener g powder, or 1 flax or chia egg (see directions here)
  • 1.5 T stevia
  • .75 t pure vanilla extract
  • 3-4 T vanilla yogurt of choice
  • 1 T milk of choice
  • 1 t coconut oil

Directions

-Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and place 1-2 paper liners in a muffin. Set aside.

-Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl and push to one side.

-On the other side of the bowl, combine all wet ingredients and stir. Mix wet into dry ’til just combined (don’t overmix).

-Bake for about 10 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick and remove it without any batter clinging to it.

-Let sit at least 10 before removing from muffin tins.

These turned out so good, and for once, I think the pictures actually do them justice.

Know what I want to try now? Cake cookies! I bet they’d turn out so fluffy and perfect. Cheers to baked goods that look good, taste even better, and make for a healthful indulgence!

Strawberries-n-Cream Cupcake

Surprise!

Look what just rolled off the berry patch. A scrumptious little cupcake for one.

I love this recipe because the baked in fruit keeps the dough super moist and scrumptious. Plus, I’ve adapted Chocolate-Covered Katie’s shortcake recipe with some vanilla yogurt. This, I think, makes the texture of the cupcake super smooth, creamy, and soft. Her coconut-oil version also tastes great because the oil adds a very rich flavor, but I like the creamy smoothness of this one.

Ingredients

-3 T spelt flour

-2 t stevia

-tiny dash of baking powder and salt

-1 T vanilla yogurt of choice

-1 T + 1 t non-dairy milk

– 1-2 strawberries, chopped

Directions

-Preheat oven to 330 degrees. Place paper liner in a muffin tin and set aside. Alternatively, if you’d like to microwave, do so on high for about 1 minute and 15 seconds, placing dough in side a coffee mug. But know that the cupcake won’t turn out as soft and moist.

-Mix dry ingredients, then blend in wet. Then, delicately, fold in chopped strawberry bits.

-Transfer dough to paper liner and bake for about 10-12 minutes.

Serve warm with fresh berries and cream (if you have those on hand).