Healthy Coconut Cake with Coconut Frosting
Coconut Cakes are NOTORIOUS for being INSANELY bad for you. I mean, I love Ina Garten and her show, Barefoot Contessa, but just look the main components of her recipe:
- 3/4 of a pound of butter (that’s three sticks)… oh, and more for greasing the cake pans
- 2 cups of white sugar (that’s 32 tablespoons and 1,536 empty calories)
- 4 ounces of sweetened shredded coconut (yes, more sugar…)
- 3 cups of all-purpose flour (bleached, white and refined)
And that’s just for the cake. Please, don’t get me started on the frosting! Ina’s recipe is not nutritious in any sense of the word… sure it might be tasty, but it is detrimental to the human body.
This Healthy Coconut Cake is actually good for you. It is made with whole grains, no refined sugar and no butter!
Yeah, no butter (sorry, Ina)! But don’t worry, this cake has an amazing texture — it is soft and moist and tastes very similar to a decadent and sweet vanilla cake, but with a natural coconut flavor. This is definitely one of the best gluten-free cakes I have made in my life (as claimed by my taste-testers)
Because I explained how typical coconut cakes are known for being crazy unhealthy in the beginning of the post, I thought I would have a little nutrition label showdown to compare my cake recipe to Ina Garten’s cake recipe. Ina Garten’s nutrition label is on the left, the Desserts with Benefits nutrition label is on the right:
I don’t know if you noticed this, but the nutrition label for Ina’s cake’s is for 1/16th of the recipe while mine is for 1/8th. That means you can have TWICE as much of my cake and still consume less calories, fat and sugar than a tiny slice of Ina’s cake… wow.
Seriously though, I don’t even know what to think of Ina’s nutrition label. At first I was shocked, I couldn’t believe a tiny slice of cake could conceal 5 tablespoons of sugar and nearly 3 tbs of butter somewhere inside of it. It looks so pretty on the outside, but when you take the time to analyze the ingredients, it’s just plain old sad
After my initial state of shock, I started laughing. The number of calories Ina stuffed into that cake is simply comical. After a few seconds of laughter, I got offended. I know for sure that I am taking this wayyy too personally, but in my opinion, I think it is rude to hand someone a slice of cake full of ingredients that are processed beyond belief. In my college career I have learned a great deal about the destructive effects of refined ingredients (particularly sugar) within the human body. If I were to hand someone a slice of Ina’s cake, I would feel like I am, essentially, slapping them in the face saying, “Here, enjoy this cake along with some health repercussions!”
Ugh. I know I am taking it a little far, but it is only because of my personal experience with sugar. Throughout my entire childhood I ate sugary, nutrient-deprived food like chocolate bars, cakes, cookies and brownies. And I have suffered the consequences of my poor food choices. Just as an example, in high school, my LDL cholesterol level was in the “very high risk” range and because of the lifestyle changes I have implemented my total cholesterol levels today are lower than my LDL level alone just a few years ago. So please, pardon my nagging and emotional feelings! Gahh. Rant over.
So enjoy this cake — it is sweet, moist, flavorful and best of all, healthy.