Vegan Chocolate Snack Cake (gluten-free)

Megan
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You would never know that this Chocolate Snack Cake is made with bananas & applesauce! It’s rich, moist, fudgy and topped with a chocolate protein frosting.

You would never know that this Chocolate Snack Cake is made with bananas & applesauce! It's rich, moist, fudgy and topped with a chocolate protein frosting.

A chocolate cake that’s made with healthy ingredients, including FRUIT? Yes, please! I was nervous at first, but after my little neighbors tried it and said it was “10/10 amazing” (their words, not mine), I felt successful. Did I mention this cake is vegan, gluten-free, oil-free and naturally sweetened? Did I also mention that this cake is topped with a 3-ingredient chocolate protein frosting (no refined sugars!)? I know, it’s wild. So, let’s get into the details of this amazing vegan and gluten free chocolate snack cake.

What’s a snack cake?

Snack cakes are sheet pan cakes with minimal frosting (but still delicious). The idea is that you can pick it up and eat it with your hands. The whole point is that it’s much easier to bake and eat, compared to a three-tiered cake. It’s something you and the family can snack on during the week, grabbing a small piece whenever the craving hits.

If you’ve never made a snack cake before, consider this as your sign. I think we can all agree that having cake as a snack is a great idea.

You would never know that this Chocolate Snack Cake is made with bananas & applesauce! It's rich, moist, fudgy and topped with a chocolate protein frosting.

Why You’ll Love This Chocolate Snack Cake

  • Made with healthy, wholesome ingredients – including 2 bananas and applesauce! It’s vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, refined sugar-free, and naturally sweetened!
  • No fuss and ready in no time – the whole point of a snack cake is how easy it is to make. No mixers required. All you need is one bowl.
  • Kid-approved – fruit in disguise as a chocolate cake? What kid (or adult) would say no to that? My little neighbors next-door LOVE this chocolate cake.

Ingredients To Make Chocolate Snack Cake

  • Bananas – just two bananas needed. The riper your bananas are, the better. With riper bananas, the cake will be more sweet and have less of a banana flavor. The bananas add natural sweetness, moisture and help bind the cake. Even if you don’t like bananas, don’t worry! I’ve tested this recipe with banana haters and they LOVED it!
  • Applesauce – I promise you can’t taste it at all. The applesauce adds natural sweetness, moisture and helps bind the cake.
  • Coconut Sugar – adds natural sweetness and lightness to the texture of the cake.
  • Maple Syrup – adds some extra all natural sweetness.
  • Hot Water – this is the secret. I like to add hot water to my cake recipes because it makes it extra soft and moist, and it also enhances the chocolate flavor!
  • Non-Dairy Yogurt – use plain, unsweetened yogurt. This adds moisture and probiotics.
  • Vanilla Extract – to add a depth of flavor
  • Almond Flour – the flour in the cake.
  • Cornstarch – this adds a softness to the cake. If you’re allergic to corn, you can substitute tapioca starch.
  • Cocoa Powder – adds chocolate flavor.
  • Baking Powder – to help the cake rise.
  • Baking Soda – to help the cake rise.
  • Salt – to enhance all of the flavors in the cake.

How To Make The Cake

Step 1: Mash the bananas very well. Then, add in the rest of the wet ingredients. Whisk to combine.

Step 2: Fold in the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Slowly add the hot water. Continue mixing until a smooth and runny batter forms. Pour the batter into a parchment lined baking dish and bake for 40-45 minutes.

Step 3: Make the chocolate protein frosting by whisking the 3 ingredients together. Once the cake has cooled, frost it, slice it, and dig in!

You would never know that this Chocolate Snack Cake is made with bananas & applesauce! It's rich, moist, fudgy and topped with a chocolate protein frosting.

Recipe inspired by Minimalist Baker.

More Dessert Recipes You’ll Love

Vegan Chocolate Snack Cake (gluten-free)

You would never know that this Chocolate Snack Cake is made with bananas & applesauce! It's rich, moist, fudgy and topped with a chocolate protein frosting.
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 16 servings
Author: Megan

Equipment

1 baking dish

Ingredients

Cake

Chocolate Protein Frosting

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350℉ and line a 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Then, add the applesauce, coconut sugar, maple syrup, non-dairy plain yogurt and vanilla extract. Whisk until combined.
    2 bananas, ¼ cup applesauce, ½ cup coconut sugar, ¼ cup maple syrup, 2 tablespoons non-dairy plain yogurt, 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Use a spatula to fold in the almond flour, cornstarch, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir just a few times. Slowly add the hot water and mix until a runny batter forms.
    2 cups almond flour, ½ cup cornstarch, 1 cup cocoa powder, 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder, 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt, ¾ cup hot water
  • Pour the batter into the lined baking dish. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean (some crumbs on the toothpick are okay, but it shouldn't be wet. If it's wet, it needs to bake a little longer).
  • Remove the cake from the oven and let it sit in the pan for 5 minutes. Then, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • To make the frosting, add the vegan chocolate chips to the microwave and heat in 30 second increments until completely melted.
    ½ cup vegan chocolate chips
  • Add the non-dairy plain yogurt and chocolate protein powder to the bowl and whisk until combined. Place in the fridge to thicken, if needed.
    ½ cup non-dairy plain yogurt, ¼ cup chocolate protein powder
  • Use a spatula to frost the cake, cut into squares, and enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.04g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 235mg | Potassium: 162mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 11IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 95mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so it should only be used as an approximation.

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