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Peanut butter bliss cake

November 26, 2008

Stop the presses. Hold the phones. Drop everything you are doing, RUN to your kitchen, and make this now.

It’s my take on a Nava Atlas recipe, and ladies and gentlemen, this is one of the three best cakes I have ever made. I can’t even be sure where it ranks within the top three – it may very well be number one. Imagine a moist, gooey, peanut-butter laced cake, studded with melty chocolate chips and crunchy crushed peanuts, that melts in your mouth like some sort of giant Reese’s PB cup. I am a peanut butter FREAK, and I’m telling you, if you even mildly like peanut butter, YOU HAVE TO MAKE THIS.

Did I mention that it’s low-sugar, whole wheat, and vegan?
Does life get any better?

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup soymilk (vanilla or plain)
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tsp nut oil (optional)
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup chopped peanuts

A couple notes and tips…
– You can use all-purpose flour in place of whole wheat pastry if you want.
– You can use any type of milk (rice, almond, even ::cringe:: dairy).
– The nut oil is optional; I just added it for extra sumptuousness. You can use walnut, almond, hazelnut, macadamia nut (like me!), or even just canola.
– The easiest way to measure a half cup of PB is to fill a 2-cup measuring cup up to the 1 1/2-cup mark. Spoon in PB until the water reaches the 2-cup mark. Just drain off the water, and voilà.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Combine the applesauce, soymilk, peanut butter, and oil in another bowl and whisk together until smooth.

Pour the wet ingredients in with the dry and stir together until fairly well blended, then whisk until the mixture is smooth.

Stir in the chocolate chips and all but a tablespoon of the peanuts. Pour into a greased 9-inch round (or square) cake pan.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden, and a knife inserted in the center comes out with chocolate, but no batter.

At this point, it is divine as-is, but I decided it needed some extra flair, and some concealer for those little cracks in the top. So I whipped up an impromptu chocolate glaze. I just eyeballed it – I’d say I used about 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 3T cocoa powder, and just enough soymilk to make it smooth (add it a tsp at a time).

Spread the glaze over the warm cake, sprinkle with the remaining peanuts, and set aside to cool. It’ll be difficult to wait very long.

Now prepare for the most luscious peanut butter experience of your life.

There are no words. It rendered me speechless. (And not just because of that delightful peanut-butter-on-roof-of-mouth effect that leaves your tongue lolling about in sticky glee.) There’s really no describing it – you’ll just have to make it yourself.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Yield: 12 slices. Per slice (with nut oil, without glaze): 240 calories, 13.3g fat (4g sat), 27.8g carbs, 2.5g fiber, 5.1g protein.

12 Comments leave one →
  1. November 26, 2008 12:22 pm

    Oh my, this makes a cake? I’ve been looking for healthy peanut butter cake recipes forever and this one certainly takes the ….Excellent entry and I will be making this shortly =). Thanks!

  2. December 7, 2008 8:22 pm

    Hi Amber, I found your blog through the peanut butter boy 🙂 I just made your cake and have it in the oven! Instead of choc. chips though, I used peanut butter chips…talk about overload! Can’t wait to try it!

  3. Anonymous permalink
    September 6, 2009 9:02 pm

    Just made (and ate!) the cake…loved it!!! All my guests loved it too. Plus, my dad who has diabetes could also eat some. Thanks for the recipe!
    Stéphanie (Montréal, Canada)

  4. September 29, 2009 3:13 pm


    I’m glad you made this one, and that everyone enjoyed it! It’s definitely a keeper.

  5. February 22, 2010 1:33 pm

    Oh holy moly, can I can cancel my Europe trip and go home to my oven to make this instead? 😛

  6. February 12, 2012 9:59 pm

    Daahhhling, I just made this cake and even made it gluten free, baking it in 3 mini fluted tube pans (becuz ya know I love bundts!). I turned out very, very well. I think this would be better with an egg (or maybe just some extra liquid to loosen the batter a bit and some extra baking powder, maybe 2 tsp??) for the gluten free version however as it didn’t rise much and was pretty dense, but most folks probably aren’t going to complain about that! 😉 I’m going to make a wheat version tomorrow and see how the two compare. My GF mix had a little sorghum flour in it, so that flavor comes through a bit. I’m even wondering how they would turn out if I subbed in a Tbsp. of almond flour for the other flours as it is like a dream in G-free baking. I love how they aren’t overly sweet, either. I even made a ganache with chocolate chips and coconut milk. Now if only I could extract the fat out of the peanut butter…
    This will be showing up on my blog in a few days for sure, so keep an eye out for the trackback!

    • February 13, 2012 1:27 pm

      I’ve never tried making a GF version of this – so cool to hear that it worked out well! Very good to know. Can’t wait to see it on your blog! 🙂

      • February 15, 2012 8:43 am

        They disappeared in less than two days in this house…even my husband ate one ‘secretly’ and doesn’t mess with sweets too much, unless it’s a lemon cake or anything chocolate. He like peanut butter but usually won’t even eat anything I bake with peanut butter…and I’m like you, I love P.B. in with my sweets. Though they ARE a little high on the fat scale, the fact that they very little sugar is great because my body reacts to sugar, especially when the thyroid is being pesky. I ate a full mini cake and didn’t feel foggy, bloated, weighed down… I would probably gain weight pretty quickly eating one every day, haha, but my sensitive body enjoyed the treat.
        Thanks! xx

      • February 15, 2012 9:51 am

        That is awesome!!
        I used to watch my fat intake closely and not worry too much about sugar, but I’ve pretty much done a 180 from that. I need to make this again, but GF like you did!

      • March 17, 2012 3:37 am

        I FINALLY got the gluten-free version of this scrum-diddly-upmtious cake posted to my blog. I have been really busy doing other things, so the blog kinda took a back seat. But I’m back! I linked you back and also provided a link to your book!!


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