Vanilla Bean Cake


My vanilla bean cake with the Honey Marshmallow Fluff frosting from my Dairy-free Ice Cream book, page 178.

After eating black bean cakes like Lauren’s chocolate bean cake (from Healthy Indulgences), I was hungry for a vanilla version. However, the only white bean cake recipes I found included a cup of flour or a cup of pumpkin, so I had to come up with a totally new recipe, avoiding those ingredients. I am so excited with how mine came out. Our whole family and the neighborhood kids all gave it a big thumbs up. I really hope you try this simple recipe, and let us know if you do!

Zoe and Ashley’s birthdays are coming up, and Zoe asked me for a vanilla cake with chocolate frosting. I decided to create a new cake recipe for their birthdays, using as few ingredients as possible, for as little money as possible. Also the cake had to be moist and delicious :-) A little research and a few tries later -it is so awesome. And the secret ingredient is white beans.

And are beans ok for the Paleo Diet? Chris Kresser says yes!

♥, Kelly

P.S. If you use this recipe for a birthday, wedding, or other celebration, then I would love to see a photo. Send me an email or tag me on my Instagram.

Vanilla Bean Cake

Cake Ingredients

2 cups room temperature cooked beans, like navy or great northern. Note: If your beans are cold from the fridge, put them in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes, then strain.
6 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla liquid stevia (do not measure over the batter, just in case it spills out)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup coconut flour
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 & 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (see my Grain-free Baking Powder recipe)

Chocolate Date Frosting* Ingredients

1 & 1/2 cups soft pitted Medjool dates
3/4 cup plain cashews
1 & 1/2 cups canned full-fat coconut milk
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 & 1/2 tablespoons tapioca flour
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup cocoa powder or cacao powder


    1. Set the oven to 325°F, and line a 9 inch springform pan with unbleached parchment paper on the bottom only. Set aside.
    2. Add the beans, and eggs the food processor fitted with the S blade. Puree until completely smooth.
    3. Add the rest of the ingredients and puree until smooth.
    4. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out mostly clean.
    5. Allow to cool, then transfer to a plate, and add frosting.
    6. To make the frosting puree the dates, and cashews in the food processor fitted with the S blade.
    7. Slowly pour the coconut milk in while the food processor is on, and puree until completely smooth.
    8. Add the rest of the frosting ingredients and puree until smooth.
    9. Refrigerate the frosting to bring the temperature down.
    10. When the frosting is the thickness of buttercream it’s ready to use.

*I also have a simpler chocolate frosting you can use. It was the original frosting in this post since 2009:

Original Chocolate Frosting

1 & 1/2 bars of 3.2 ounce dark chocolate (or about 3/4 cup of chocolate chips)
3/4 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp honey
10 drops liquid stevia
2 to 4 tbsp coconut flour, sifted.


  1. Melt chocolate over double boiler. When just barely melted, remove from heat.
  2. Mix in the coconut milk, honey, stevia, and coconut flour
  3. Refrigerate until the frosting has cooled, about 15 minutes. (You know it’s ready when it is the texture of frosting.)

Spunky Coconut Gluten-Free Vanilla Bean Cake


  1. says

    Thanks -M!

    Zoe and Ashley loved it, and they can’t wait for me to make it for their birthday tea party, at our house. I’m going to make it a tier cake, and decorate it with flowers. We’re all very excited. Zoe says it’s going to look like a wedding cake, and she can’t wait :-)

  2. says

    This seems like a great recipe!
    I’ve been wanting to add a bit more legumes to my diet (in small quantity) but in a more interesting way than usual the bean meals.
    I recently baked some flourless bean brownies and would like to modify the recipe to make a flourless white bean bread (I’m not quite sure how it’ll come out but gotta try!).

  3. says


    You should still make yours! I’d love to see it!


    Thanks so much! I’m such a big fan of yours!


    The brownies sound great! I can’t wait to make more with this technique myself. White bean bread would be terrific.

    • Anonymous says

      Hi Kelly,

      I hope this gets to you as I know its a few years since you posted this.
      I have a ton of diet restrictions and am intrigued by this bean cake. Sadly I cant have beans because if the starch and a food which is quite hard to digest. Do you think this beans could be substituted for butternut squash, sweet potato or pumpkin puree?

  4. says

    Thanks Lauren!

    You inspired it! Would you believe the bag just says “small white beans?” They’re by Bob’s Red Mill :-)

    Thanks CoconutGal!

    You don’t do chocolate, but only cacao nibs, right? Can you melt cacao nibs over a double boiler? I’ve never tried to melt them. If so, this frosting would work for you, wouldn’t it?

    Love, Kelly

  5. says

    That is gorgeous! (Of course, all your recipes are, Kelly!) Now I’m wanting cake for breakfast. :-)

    I have used chickpeas to make chocolate cake and black beans to make brownies, but not white beans yet. The added protein, etc. has to be wonderful for you in this recipe.

    Can’t wait to see the tier cake for the girls! You rock as a mom. :-)


  6. says

    This cake looks so amazing! Why is it when I decide to cut back on dessert, bloggers post the most delicious looking foods. Well its sugar free and high in protein right? So, technically, I don’t think it counts as dessert.

  7. says

    Thanks Shirley! I can’t wait to make the tier cake!

    Thanks CDM! I would call this cake dessert, *and* we ate it this morning again for breakfast :-)

    Thanks Alisa! I get such a kick out of that! I love telling people what ingredients are in something that looks unhealthy, or tastes amazing, and they can’t believe it!

    Thanks Harcout! I hope you enjoy it!

  8. says

    When I looked in my pantry and discovered I had all the ingredients, I figured it was a sign. My 12 year old sister was scared of the beans and kept sniffing the cake throughout the entire process. When it was done, everone loved it and no one (other than my sister and I) knew it was made with beans. DELICIOUS, moist, light….all the things you hope for in a cake.

  9. says

    Wow, this does not look like a “special” cake! The texture looks wonderful and I like the idea of no xanthan gum. I’m definitely going to save this recipe of yours and add it to my collection. It’s just my style!

    By the way, were you at the CSA Food Fair?

    Thanks! I appreciate your experimentation with the cake so that we can all enjoy your efforts.



  10. says

    Hi Kelly!

    I can’t find any coconut flour where I live (I’m from Malaysia…!). Can I substitute the coconut flour with anything else (non-wheat, low carb)?

    Thanks in advance!

  11. says

    Thanks Melissa!

    I was at the fair, were you?

    Cheers, Kelly


    Hi! I don’t know how to substitute for coconut flour, but you can order it online. I get mine from Tropical Traditions. If you follow the link on my site (on the right hand column) for Virgin Coconut Oil, you can buy the coconut flour I use there. And if you use my # they will send you a free book too!

    Cheers, Kelly

    Thanks Hanni! I hope you make it and enjoy it as much as we do! I’ll be posting my girls birthday tier cake with this recipe in a few weeks -Yeah!

    Cheers, Kelly

  12. says

    It looks so moist – without any oil? Is it the eggs, or what that makes it work that way (usually when I subtitute beans or applesauce for oil, my baked goods end up too dry…) Thanks!

  13. says

    Hi Annie!

    It is really moist and delicious! Just keep and eye on it so you don’t overbake it, and I think you will really enjoy this cake!

    :-) Kelly

  14. says

    is there something that I can put instead of coconut flour? I don’t get that on my country =( And I really want to try making this cake!

  15. says


    Can you order it online? If not, I would try 2/3 cup of other gluten-free flours, like brown rice flour, buckwheat flour, tapioca flour, etc. Coconut flour expands, unlike other flours, so I think about twice as much of another flour should work. Hope that helps!

    Cheers, Kelly

  16. says

    Thanks GF Dish! That sounds so yummy! This would make a great lemon cake. You could even use like 1/2 tsp of lemon extract. Let us know if you do!

  17. says

    Just made this for my wife’s birthday. We love it. Even my co-workers have tried it with a raised eyebrow and are very impressed. Great recipe!!

  18. says

    I made this last night, and was a bit skeptical by the way it tasted warm.
    I let it sit, covered, in the fridge overnight and frosted it this morning.
    Absolutely awesome!
    I don’t use honey, I simply substituted xylitol and a little bit of water…but it turned out perfect.
    I will most def. be using this again and again….noone will know it’s secret bean ingredient!

  19. says

    Kelly, is there anything I could substitute for the honey? My little boy has a digestive disorder that leaves him unable to process ANY sugar or dairy including honey. I am desperately trying to find him a cake recipe that doesn’t have dairy or sugar (no fruit either, because its high in sugar) Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  20. says


    Sure! You could just leave it out all together, or try substituting with coconut sugar or xylitol. Both are very low glycemic index, like stevia. Let me know how it goes :-)

  21. says

    Looks amazing! Can you advise on the frosting recipe? It says coconut milk, but I don’t see coconut milk used in the melted chocolate – just coconut flour. Just wanted to clarify before I go grocery shopping. Thanks!

  22. says

    I’d like to bake your cake, but is it possible to substitute the eggs with Orgran’s “Noegg” replacer? I have a stomach pain if I eat too much eggs:(
    Your cake looks soooo delicious!

  23. says

    Thanks Minerva! I use both, coconut milk and coconut flour in the frosting. I melt the dark chocolate bars with the coconut milk over a double boiler, then whisk in the coconut flour.

    Thanks Cinnamon! I’m not sure if it would work, but I would love to know! Please let us know if you try it!

    • Jennifer says

      This was fantastic once cooled in the fridge overnight. I froze some and thawed later – not so great…the texture was off after being frozen…fyi.

  24. Anonymous says

    This is such a fab recipe!! I have made it in both cupcake and cake and it’s delicious. I only use two eggs though and it still works out fine plus I use rice bran oil as the fat agent.

    I also tried the dark chocolate, coconut milk, and coconut flour frosting and loved it. Tried it on my family and they weren’t too keen on it – found it too bitter! I guess their taste buds aren’t adjusted for healthy bitter dark chocolate.

    It’s my birthday in two months and I’m planning on making this in cupcake form with the frosting. Do you have any suggestions as a way to make the frosting tastier for people who aren’t used to healthy-er food? Maybe not use dark chocolate? Also, how would the addition of orange zest in the cake batter be?

    Love your blog – keep up the good work.

    Kate – Australia

  25. says

    Thank you so much Kate! :-) It’s so wonderful to make people happy!

    Definitely, if it’s not sweet enough, just use like a 50% chocolate, or Enjoy Life chocolate chips.

    Love the idea of using zest in the batter. Let me know how it works out, and if you take a picture I’d love to post it.

    Love, Kelly

  26. says

    I finally have an excuse to make this – my husband’s birthday! I’m going to use 1 standard can of organic great white northern beans, drained and rinsed. If it works out as well as I think it will, it will also be present as a nut-free dessert option at Thanksgiving!

    Do you know, by the way, whether it freezes well? Also, what size chocolate bars or how many chocolate chips should I use in the frosting? And what size springform did you use – 8″ or 9″? Thanks so much!

  27. says

    Hi -M!

    I can’t wait for you to make this! Is a can equal to 2 cups of beans? I don’t know if it freezes well yet. We always eat it in a day or two :-)

    The chocolate bars I use are 3.2 oz, which is a little over 1/3 cup if you want to use chocolate chips. I’m guessing that’s about 3/4 cup total.

    My springform pan is 9 inches, and I also often use a bundt pan for it. It takes me about 35 minutes in the bundt pan, but I always check it.

    Cheers, Kelly

  28. says

    This is great! Very moist and spongy! Next time I would definitely use dark chocolate for the frosting though; I used Trader Joe’s semi-sweet chocolate chips and it was REALLY sweet for me (my husband had no problem with this, lol). This is the first white/yellow cake that either of us has liked, gluten-free or not, grain-free or not. EXCELLENT JOB! I can’t wait to make your waffles too.

  29. says

    I just made this cake yesterday for my birthday and it was AWESOME. My husband and daughter (both extremely picky eaters) enjoyed it as well. You can not even tell it has beans in it! thank you so much for this easy, delicious recipe!

  30. Anonymous says

    When I see coconut milk in a recipe is that referring to the canned coconut milk or the coconut milk found in the dairy section? Sorry I’m new to this….

  31. says

    Hi Laura,

    Yes I usually do use my blender. But it may have to be a really high quality blender to work.


    There is coconut milk in the dairy section? Do you know what brand it is? I use canned, but it doesn’t matter as long as it’s pure coconut milk, and not a blend of coconut milk and dairy.

  32. Anonymous says

    Thank you! I will use the canned coconut milk for my first attempt with the recipe.

    Yes, So Delicious makes a coconut milk we use as a replacement in recipes and on cereal. They also make a coffee creamer and an ice cream :o) My daughter is sensitive to dairy so this has been a great replacement for us!

  33. says

    I just made this over the weekend. I added lemon zest and substituted butter for coconut oil. I also tried this two ways: (1) sponge cake style (where i separated 4 of the eggs and beat the whites (to soft peaks) and eggs (til light and fluffy) and then folded them into the batter for extra leavening) and then (2) the “normal” way, just as the recipe says. I liked both results though the next time I do this I think I’ll just stick to the recipe as is. Beating the eggs separately makes it a little lighter but the crumb is a bit coarse and unattractive.
    This cake is really delicious! I am so surprised and impressed. I baked it for a customer with dietary restrictions. I did 1 1/2 times the recipe, baked it in two 9 inch pans. I then sliced each layer in half and filled it with alternating layers of raspberry bavarian cream and raspberry/blueberry/lemon compote. Tonight I will ice it in whipped cream. It would also taste amazing with coconut milk “whipped cream” for any non dairy people.

    I just gave samples to my coworkers at an upscale healthfood store and everyone raved! Yay..a great gluten free option. Thank you so much!

  34. says

    Betsy! That is so cool! Thank you so much! Do you have a photo? I would love to add you to my reader photos section if so, with credit to you and your website if you like :-) Thanks again! Cheers, Kelly

  35. says

    Kelly, I will try and get some photos tonight. how can I get them to you? I’m SOOO glad I found your site…i need to do some more exploring here. This is a great source for gluten free, etc. baking.

  36. Anonymous says

    Kelly, you are a godsend! Honestly! I made your yellow cake last night and practically cried, it tasted so good. Since going gluten free and dairy free recently, this is BY FAR the best dessert I have had. No more funky, expensive gluten free flours and gums for me!

    I substituted xylitol and added some coconut milk to replace the honey, since I am diabetic. I had a VERY large slice for my breakfast and my blood sugar was MUCH lower than after my normal breakfast, thanks to all those wonderfully nutritious and high fiber beans. And as you promised, no hint of any bean flavor.

    Woman, you have changed my life! THANK YOU!

    Cathy B.

  37. says

    Thanks Cathy! I was reading your comment out loud with my 7 year old, who is very into my blog 😉 and she and I were both crying “happy tears”—I am so touched and grateful. Big hugs, Kelly

  38. says

    I am really excited to try this recipe for my daughter’s 7th birthday coming up. Due to health issues, she has recently been put on a strict diet which prevents her from eating gluten, dairy, sugar, chocolate, just to name a few. No fun for a kid. I think I will try to subsitute Carob for the chocolate and hope it works out!

  39. says

    Hi Aimee,

    I think your daughter will probably like this cake a lot. It’s so moist that it really doesn’t require frosting. Besides carob, a sugar-free jam/fruit spread could also work nicely…that’s how I “help” store-bought Passover cakes, which tend to be dry. Or maybe a strawberry or raspberry sauce sweetened with honey. Good luck!

  40. Cathy B. says

    Hi Kelly, It’s me again! I think I figured out how to not be anonymous this time! :-)

    I keep thinking your bean cake recipe could be adapated to make a nice cornbread. Unfortunately I am not smart enough to figure out how!
    Any suggestions as to how one might combine white beans and cornmeal with a few other ingredients and come up with cornbread? :-)

  41. Anonymous says

    Would it be possible to substitute powdered stevia for the liquid vanilla creme stevia? and up the vanilla extract, perhaps?

  42. Anonymous says

    Do you have any suggestions for substituting the coconut milk for the the frosting? I would love to use almond milk…. but I’m assuming it’s not as thick as coconut milk (?) Thanks!!

  43. says

    I can’t use eggs, flax or the egg replacer because it has other stuff in it.

    Would the chia seed work out as an egg replacer for this recipe??

  44. says

    I think substituting the almond for the coconut milk would be okay.

    Ditto on substituting the powdered stevia for the liquid.

    I don’t think it’s possible to replace so many eggs, though I could be wrong.


  45. Stephanie says

    We just made it, and THANK YOU! You inspired us to do a two-family cooking extravaganza at the home a friend who’s celiac, soy-free and dairy-free. And I’m vegetarian!

    Delicious dinner and this incredible cake for dessert!

    We could not find liquid stevia of any variety, so did 2 packs of powdered and increased the vanilla. He doesn’t use honey, so we used coconut syrup (and a little less than you called for). It was still sweet enough for the kids & all the grownups. We did the coffee-cake version you have on The WHOLE Gang, but I’m inspired to try this version, too. He doesn’t do much chocolate, tho…

    I like the lemon cake idea. I was also thinking that banana would be good in it, and you could reduce the other sugars further?

    Wow! Great recipe!

  46. says

    I saw the same chocolate cake that inspired this and made it just a few days ago and was wishing for a white one. Thanks!

    As I’m allergic to coconut, I’ll be changing the recipe just a bit (No death cake for me!!)

  47. Anonymous says

    I just made the black bean brownies, was in LOVE! But, it started me thinking about a white bean cake, did a search…presto! Found this & can’t wait to try it!
    THANKS, Dana

  48. says

    We really, really loved this cake! Even my SAD diet family loved it, which in my mind is complete success.

    Thanks for the great recipe! I’m posting about it on my blog tomorrow … hope I do it justice :)

  49. honeygirl says

    I made this recipe for my husband, who loved it. I’d like to make it again, but this time as cupcakes. Does anyone have any suggestions about baking time? I’m thinking I should start checking after about 20min.

  50. SPODN says

    Can you tell me if this cake tastes like coconut. I’m assuming it does but I thought you would call it a Coconut Bean Cake if so. I’m looking for a recipe for a white/yellow cake that is low in carbs for my diabetic husband but he doesn’t like coconut.

  51. Anonymous says

    Hi I am making this cake for my sons birthday party. I am so exiceted to give it a try! I have great northern beans and Garbanzo beans. Which one do you think would be a better choice?

  52. Anonymous says

    I don’t use Stevia. If I leave this out will it turn out ok or should I substute some other sweetner? Increase the honey? Add Sucanant?

  53. says

    Hi! I would choose the great northern.

    I don’t think this recipe would work without the stevia. Stevia is very concentrated. Half a teaspoon of stevia is probably equal to a cup of sugar.

  54. says

    I don’t have a springform pan, but a bundt pan is ok, right?
    If I use canned beans, do I need to cook them first?
    Can’t wait to try this!

  55. says

    I made these as cupcakes this weekend and they were a huge hit. Thanks for the great recipe! Where did you find the recipes with the cup of pumpkin in it? Now, I’m hankering for a good pumpkin muffin.

  56. says

    Dear Kellly,
    after some mistakes making the chocolate version, I used up the rest of the beans I had cooked with this version. I used powdered stevia instead of the liquid and added an extra teaspoon of vanilla. I also used only 1 teaspoon of baking soda and no powder.
    The results were fantastic. Since going allergy and sugar free I have not been able to enjoy cake without buying expensive ingredients and this time I could keep the cost down and the health up. I’ve been eating this for breakfast and snacks, and am already planning varieties that I can make for special occasions, like lemon poppyseed and orange.
    You have really changed my life by sharing your recipes of food that I can eat without pain and I really want to thank you SO MUCH. Thank you! *happy tears*

  57. says

    This looks great and I want to try it! But I am allergic to citrus (the GSE in the vanilla cream stevia). How do you recommend your recipe be adjusted to be free of citrus? thank you

  58. says

    Kelly, I made this cake today as cupcakes. I didn’t have coconut flour so I used buckwheat and garbanzo bean flour instead. I also added half of a vanilla bean. These turned out so yummy!!!! And they were easy peasy! I felt like I was at your house having cake and tea. 😉

  59. says

    Love the recipe, I am going to make it for my 4yr old daughter’s birthday, she’s never had a real good cake for her birthday and have high hopes for this one !!

    She wants white frosting, any tips to make it white instead of chocolate?
    Thanks so much !

  60. sophieg says

    Hi Kelly.
    I have a question about the eggs in this recipe. If I substituted the eggs for the flax seed mixture (1 TBSP flax seeds + 3 TBSP boiling water for every egg) would this recipe still work out, you think?
    Also…I never heard of using beans in cake…and I am very excited to try this recipe out!

  61. mokiya says

    I’m wondering if I did something wrong when I tried this recipe. After over 30 minutes in the oven, the top browned but underneath it was still liquid. Any ideas on what I could’ve done wrong? I read the recipe over and over, and as far as I can see, I did what it says.

  62. Anonymous says

    I made this last night and while I did have to cook it longer than stated and bump the temp up (are you sure it is 30min @325?), it came out PERFECT. Very tasty and great texture!! My son has just been diagnosed with mild Aspergers and while I have been gluten free for some time, we have never tried Casein free. Thanks for all your insperation!

  63. says

    I am new to being gluten-free and we are trying to stay as sugar free as possible… all of your recipes look amazing… thank you for posting! Can’t wait to try some of them. ~T

  64. Karen G says

    This recipe looks AMAZING! Regarding the frosting, when you say dark chocolate, does that mean unsweetened (baking) chocolate? (Doesn’t dark chocolate have sugar in it?) Thank you so much!

  65. Kelley says

    I can’t wait to try this recipe! It looks amazing! I’m very new to GF baking so I have a question … when it says coconut oil, liquified – what does that mean? I have some coconut oil that I got a week ago but haven’t opened yet, but it looks solid to me. Is liquified coconut oil a different product, or can I just use the coconut oil straight from the jar? BTW I really enjoy your blog. My son is autistic and we are still trying to figure out his diet. Your blog makes it feel less overwhelming!

  66. says

    Hi Kelly,

    Last weekend I made this cake with a chocolate avocado frosting (avocado, dates, stevia, cacao, coconut milk, agave and coconut oil), it was amazing and my family could not believe how healthy it was. I also filled your pie crust with a chocolate avocado filling, similar ingredients as listed above, just less sweet. Thank you for these wonderful recipes.

  67. says

    I made your vanilla bean cake recipe into blueberry cupcakes/muffins. So good! I followed your directions for making the cake in the Cuisinart and then folded in one cup of frozen organic blueberries. I used muffin liners and baked for 22 minutes. Perfect! In some of the cupcakes the berries sank a bit, but they all taste super delicious (you could probably further reduce the sweeteners if you wanted to, but I didn’t)! My husband agrees, too.

    I wrapped them individually in saran-wrap, then foil, and then put them in gallon-sized freezer bags for after my little girl arrives (any day now!). We did sample one yesterday, though, and they were a bit deflated after freezing but still extremely tasty! Thanks!

  68. Anonymous says

    I have been making this cake without the stevia, but increasing the honey to one cup. Also, since we do not use baking powder, I put in 2.5 teaspoons of baking soda. The cake is fantastic! One of the things I have done with it is soak slices in beaten egg with a little coconut milk and make French toast. Yum! I was hoping to leave stevia out and just put in a couple of tablespoons of honey to make a bread, but without the honey it did not rise up as much and was disappointing. Has anyone made a bean bread yet?

  69. Anonymous says

    This is amazing. I couldn’t help mentally deconstructing the ingredients into a traditional breakfast of eggs, beans and hot chocolate. Then the magic wand of coconut acted to transform that mundane breakfast into a moist, yummy cake.

  70. says

    We are hooked!! I have made this and a chocolate version many times and my kids (who hate coconut)LOVE this! I have even let them have cake for breakfast before, it’s so healthy! THANK YOU!

  71. Anonymous says

    I made this after seeing your post. Was looking for a healthy carrot cake recipe so I turned this into one by doing some tweaks and omitting 3 eggs and added ground flax w/ water. Had several tast testers and they all LOVED it.changes:Added carrot,ginger,a bunch of carrot cake spices,coocnut oil plus ghee, coconut, vegan protein powder, raisins,walnuts, almonds, lemon. THANK YOU.

  72. says

    Hey Kelly, I tried making this recipe. It didn’t quite turn out for me. Does it matter if you over-cook the beans a little? Lol. This is the first time I’ve cooked my own beans, Im trying to get away from canned items. It’s the only mistake I can think of . =) All your other recipes I’ve tried have been wonderful. Thanks!

    • Michelle says

      I made this cake and I had to bake it twice as long before the tooth pick would come out clean :S the cake was brown instead of white as well

  73. says

    Thanks so much for posting this! I’m on the SCD for Crohn’s disease (specific carbohydrate diet), but I didn’t want to forsake a cake for my upcoming 21st birthday.

    I think I’ll leave out the stevia and increase the honey to one cup as one commenter did, and make a strawberry glaze for “frosting”…. mmmmm. I can’t wait! I might have to make a couple trial cakes. Haha =)

  74. says

    THANK YOU for this recipe! I have just found your blog and am so excited about all that I will learn from you. Made the cake last night and it is delicious!! I look forward to exploring the archives! Thanks again…

  75. says

    I made this cake last week and nearly cried. It made me so happy. It was inexpensive to prepare, easy and tasted WONDERFUL! I did have to bake it an extra twenty minutes, though. I just put another one in the oven but I used apples, walnuts and cinnamon in it. Can’t wait to see how it turns out! Thanks for this recipe.

  76. says

    i am scraping to find an egg-free, grain-free cake. i can’t seem to find anything anywhere!
    any ideas? do you have a recipe up your sleeve?
    any tips would be appreciated!
    ps i’m getting ready to buy your cookbook, is there something in there?

  77. Jeanmarie K says


    Whenever I make this cake it tastes too ‘beany’, I soak, cook, and rinse white navy beans, then put everything into a food processor, and from there into a cake pan.

    I live in the Pacific Northwest, so perhaps our beans are lower quality?


  78. says

    Finally! This is such a fantastic recipe, thank you so very much. This is my first sucess with a gluten free, sugar free dessert and I just want to kiss you right now:)

  79. says

    Hi, Thanks so much for posting this recipe. I used it for my daughter’s birthday and we loved it. I actually changed it a little bit…used vanilla Agave and added freeze dried strawberries. Delicious!!

  80. says

    I just had this recipe at a birthday party and it was AMAZING!!!! I asked for the recipe and love your site but had no idea this gem was on here. Just wanted to THANK YOU for being a genius! :)

  81. Jennifer says

    Made these as cupcakes this weekend and they are very hard to stay out of! I swapped coconut palm syrup for the honey (lower GI)and used unsweetened carob in the icing. What a wonderful, healthy treat!

  82. Jody says

    I’m making this tomorrow and I was wondering what consistency should the bean be. Soft? Very soft? I’m using organic cannellini beans. Any help would be much appreciated. Trying it out for an Easter cake this year! It looks soooo moist and delish!

    By the way thank you for a wonderful site. Coming from someone who is still a newbie to gluten free and using coconut it’s been a real help.

  83. Lacey S says

    This is the best texture I’ve ever had in a healthy cake. I can’t believe it. It is so wonderfully moist and, well, cake-y. I loved it and so did my kids. I will be making this again and again. Yum! Thanks for the recipe.

  84. Nikki says

    Hey Kelly!

    I made a new version of this cake today. I substituted black beans, used between 1/3 and 1/2 c. honey and 1 t. vanilla stevia. It turned out great! my hubby was very impressed with the texture, he said it just needed a little more sweetener.

  85. says

    Blimey, this looks delicious! I’m probably being a complete nonce, but roughly how many people would the cake serve? And what size baking tin did you make it in? Thanks so much for your help – this looks stellar!

  86. says

    I love this cake! I’m making it again, but need to make a couple of 9 x13 inch sheet cakes to cut into animals. Do you think this recipe would fill the volume of one 9x 13 pan? (I’m not sure what size springform you used) Thanks for the recipes!

  87. says

    Is there a way to use something other than honey?

    It would be for my son’s first birthday and my cousin happens to be allergic to honey.

  88. Anonymous says

    This sounds delicious and I would love to try for my youngest who cannot have dairy or soy; however, I had to comment on the “sugar-free” claim. Honey contains fructose and glucose, which are sugars.

  89. says

    Jryanbass – Would you mind sharing the name of the digestive disorder your child has? My son is medicated for reflux and is dairy- and soy-free, but we still have digestive issues. We do see an excellent GI doc, but I am always doing my own research. I can give you my email if you prefer to do it privately. Thank you!

  90. says

    I have made this twice as cupcakes and it was a hit with everyone! I used honey and organic sugar because I was making for a crowd not used to stevia. I think I might try it with coconut sugar and maple syrup next time so my 9 month old can have more than just a bite. I am going to make it today and cut it up to use in a blueberry trifle! I had a friend ask for the recipe and told her to check out your blog.

  91. Nicole says

    This is sooo yummy! you will be soon famous here in Europe, as I will bring this cake to all my friends and family in Germany, Switzerland and France 😉

  92. Mandy says

    Thank you for this great recipe! I made this tonight using canned organic beans (rinsed well) and 1/2 cup agave in place of the stevia/honey, plus an extra 1.5 tsp of vanilla. I was able to get two perfect 8″ cake rounds! I can’t wait to try variations in flavor with zests/extracts/spices. Thank you!!

  93. Jade says

    I just made this for my daughters 1st birthday. I am so excited about this cake recipe and all of your recipes on here. Me and my family loved the cake and I think it is just so amazing how you add the coconut flour to make the icing , like real icing! Amazing Thank you so much for your recipes!

  94. says

    Shared your cake at the end of the original post, Kelly. I know it’s an older recipe and you’ve made many delicious creations since. 😀 Congrats on all of your success!

  95. says

    Just baking right now… Smells yummy!

    I didn’t have vanilla stevia but did have “vanilla cream” stevia drops so hopefully they are similar or the same thing. :)

    Thank you for the great grain free cake recipe!

    ~ Heather :)

  96. says

    So delicious! I just made cupcakes with this recipe for the second time and I can’t get over it! This time I added cinnamon to the batter and made a coconut oil/honey icing with cinnamon, clove and nutmeg and shredded coconut, and covered with more shredded coconut. It tastes incredible! I can’t wait to blow my grain-loving friends’ minds with it tomorrow!

  97. says

    This recipe is great! I added cinnamon and made a coconut oil, honey, shredded coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove frosting this time, sprinkled with more coconut for a Christmas dessert. Great even to those who love grain-based!

  98. says

    I made this for my friend’s daughter’s 2nd birthday and it turned out fabulously! I omitted the honey and added some banana puree. Thank you for a wonderful recipe!

  99. says

    Wish I had found this recipe sooner! Looks much better than the birthday cake I “attempted” for my kids :( Will have to try this one out for next year!

    Is there something that can be substituted for the honey?

  100. Anonymous says

    I made this today for my daughters second birthday. My family loved it!!! I’ve been gluten free for awhile and trying to be sugar free. This was the best cake I’ve made. Thank you so much. I can enjoy cake without the awful sugar hang over. Yay!

  101. Alana's Mom says

    I am desperately exploring cake and cupcake recipes for my children’s joint birthday party this weekend. I am new to gluten, dairy, and sugar free baking – so we’ve been experimenting a lot these past couple of weeks. Things were either too crumbly (not going to work for a toddler party), too expensive (lots of maple syrup and coconut oil), or she just didn’t like them. Anyway, I’m planning to try this cake today. I have all the ingredients except the liquid vanilla stevia. Can I substitute “Stevia in the Raw”, Truvia, or Agave? I’ve been checking on line for conversions and while I have found DIY recipies for liquid stevia, I can’t quite find conversions. I do already have a pantry full of specialty flours and substitute sweetners (“Stevia in the Raw”, Truvia, agave, brown rice syrup, honey, and mollasses). Thanks so much…

  102. Merrill says

    Finally!! A healthy and delicious cake!
    I suffer from a severe case of “Sweet Tooth” and I keep searching for recipes that have little to no sugar. My family loved the Vanilla Bean cake.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  103. says

    This looks great. Is there any special reason it needs to be in a springform pan vs. a regular cake pan? Just wondering.

  104. Sandy Buckler says

    I love this cake!! I make it all the time. I have made it in a 9×13, just keep an eye on the time. I also made it into a doll cake for a birthday party. Using a bowl pan the mom gave me. It took much long to bake the outer edges where a little dry. But the girls loved the cake!! Imagine a gluten free doll cake she could eat on her birthday. She was the happiest girl ever.
    I have also done 2 9×13 pans and put them ontop of eachother. My friend can have sugar so I made a buttercream frosting with India Tree coloring.

  105. says

    Hello this cake looks amazing and i really want to try it, but last night when i was making it i really the dough was very stiff did i miss some liquid in the recipe?

  106. says

    Hello, I got this cake in the oven but I wanted to say it taste more like coconut than vanilla cake. Is the right?
    I also using the bread glass pan.



  107. says

    Hello I am making this cake but it taste like coconut not vanilla. Is this right?? Also, I am using a bread glass pan. I hope the cake will cook with 325 degrees. Please let me know,
    Thank you,


  108. Melissa n says

    Hi! I cannot wait to make your cake tomorrow. I just got done with my beans. We are having a play date on Friday with a bunch of kids and I am desperately on the hunt for treats and sort of “normal” foods to replace our junk food. This is a perfect option. I heard about it from a friend. She said its amazing! Ok, here’s my question…(I read comments for about 20 minutes and just coudln’t any more so im not sure if you answered….) I made my own coconut milk and coconut flour a few days ago, from organic coconut. Do you think homemade coconut milk would work over canned? I used it for a curry masala dish that is a family favorite and I learned that it actually made my recipe taste BETTER, but it wasn’t quite as…hmm…”white”? Not sure how to explain. It did seperate in the jar and there is a huge band of white coconut “oil” on top…so I think it should work, right? Have you done this? My 2nd question is…do you think i could double this and make a 9×13 pan and have it turn out good?

  109. Anonymous says

    Beans in a cake? I HATE Beans-but this is the MOST AMAZINGLY DELICIOUS GF cake I have ever had or made! I love it!! Thank you so much for your recipe–This has cut my quest down to fun only, not desperation! Thanks-Maureen in Phoenix

  110. says

    This cake is outstanding. I have made it 3 times in the past 6 weeks. Everyone loved it , including my very very picky eater. Thank you and glad I came across your website.

  111. says

    This cake is outstanding!! It’s so easy to make that I have made it 3 times in the past 6 weeks. Even my very very picky eater loved it(didn’t tell her beans were in it till after she ate a piece and begged me for the recipe) So glad I came across your website and now have it bookmarked! Can’t wait to try more of your recipes. :)

  112. Nicole says

    Thanks for your blog! Very helpful for someone like me just getting started in the dairy-free, gluten-free, etc. way of life 😉
    I am going to make this for my daughter’s first bday – but into cupcakes. Is 325 for 22 mins sound right? Also, since family members are coming (very very picky), can I sub half almond flour for half of the coconut flour for fear of it tasting too coconut-y? Also, my baby girl’s favorite fruit is strawberries. Can I chop up some fresh strawberries for the cake? Would that change anything in the cooking time? And do you have a good recipe for a coconut frosting, sans chocolate?

  113. says

    Hello, this looks good. I plan to use a flower cupcake pan to bake. Would using a cooking spray suffice for this batter in lieu of parchment paper? Its for a bday party, so I can’t take a gamble if you think the batter is too sticky to use a flower cupcake pan (rose one, teflon). Thanks.

  114. Kristine U says

    I would love to try this for my kiddos birthdays coming up. Have you ever made your own coconut milk? I saw a recipe where you just blend water and coconut. Would it be the right consistency for this recipe? Where do you get yours? Is it canned? Thanks so much!

  115. Sharon L. says

    I am making this today for my husbands bday cake! He was recently diagnosed celiac and has been overwhelmed and iI’m sure he’s thinking he’ll never eat cake again!!! Well… I cannot wait to surprise him with this tonight!
    *** My question is… I bought canned organic white kidney cannellini (sp?) beans, as I didn’t see it in the recipe if you used white cannellini or great white northern beans??? I hope it works out regardless. 😉 Thanks!

  116. says

    I’ve been too busy eating this cake to comment. I made it for two birthday groups in the past week. Everyone, esp. me, loved it. I’m so impressed it pleased many children who are used to “normal” cake. We don’t do chocolate, so I used 2T carob powder in the frosting and replace some coc. water with coc. cream to compensate for removing choc. bars. Worked great. Oh, and we’re down by the sea, so I had to bake it around 45 min., FYI. I’m so appreciative that you figured out this cake. It is truly revolutionary. Thank you.

  117. Bec says

    I made this yesterday but in cupcake form with some yummy chocolate avocado frosting.. and they were heaven! I have tried a couple of other coconut flour recipes before, but always got that floury, dry taste in my mouth after eating whatever I made. But this was so moist! So all I can say is thank you, thank you, thank you for being a creative genius! xx

  118. says

    So I love this cake and have made it many times! How can I use this recipe but make it chocolate instead? I would like to use black beans but do not know how much cocoa powder to add and if I just add it will it mess up the cake? Also, found a frosting made from just dates, coconut oil, water and cocoa powder and it is truly amazing – just blend and it is creamy and chocolately and no double boiler!

  119. Becky says

    I made this cake the other day and it is YUM a hue thumbs up from both my children and husband… Does it need to be kept in the fridge or can it be kept in a air tight container in the pantry? and does it freeze well?

  120. Racelle says

    I was so excited to see that I could stay on my candida diet (later stages) with the ingredients on this list while enjoying cake again! I made the cake exactly to your recipe (only exception is I had powder stevia versus liquid so I adjusted) and it was delicious! Even my picky husband who wasn’t sure it was going to taste any good really liked it. (I didn’t make the frosting so I can’t comment on that) But thank you SO MUCH for making this recipe so I can enjoy cake again on my very restricted diet. I can’t wait to make it again on my birthday!

  121. says

    This is my family’s all time favorite all purpose recipe for cupcakes, cakes & coffee cakes. Thank you for such an awesome recipe! We are excited to be able to take this recipe with us when we move the Dominican Republic as missionaries, praying to be able to leave by January 2015.

    Missionary Mom in the DR with International Ministries

  122. Dale Almond says

    Do you think this might work with cooked white sweet potato instead of beans? Beans are not my friend :(

  123. Erin says

    Is your white bean biscuit recipe still on the website? I can’t find it anymore :( Is it in one of your cookbooks? did it call for eggs? I can’t recall.

  124. Melissa says

    Hi. Love this recipe! Made it for my twins birthday! Does it have to be refrigerated if made the day before?

  125. april says

    Hi! Thank you so much for this recipe- I make the cake weekly into bars and use them as snacks! I usually do 1 egg and the rest egg whites and dairy free butter instead of coconut oil. I make them without the frosting and they are great to pack and snack on! Thanks again!!

  126. says

    What size cake pan did you use for this recipe? I need to know if I have to double it to make 2 8″ cakes for a layer cake. Thanks. Can’t wait to review it on my blog!

  127. Judy says

    I made cupcakes and I am wondering if these need to be refrigerated or can they be left out at room temperature? I made a similar chocolate (bean) cupcake recipe and they had to be refrigerated.

    The cupcakes aren’t frosted, if that matters.


  128. says

    Colors of your cake are charming. Bean is a valuable ingredient for a cake. Being gluten-free is really an asset that increase value of it. Thanks.

  129. says

    The cake turned out quite good for me (taste-wise), unfortunately the inside of the cake was still quite doughy regardless of how long it spent in the oven (I used flaxseed extract instead of eggs, which might be why). Any ideas as to what I can do to fix it next time (without using eggs)? :-)

  130. Kathy J Manning says

    This is the most delicious cake, my husband is diabetic and he thinks that it is fantastic. Great flavor, I used almond extract in the cake and made almond frosting the second time I made it. What a wonderful dessert that is diabetic friendly. Do you know what the nutritional values are?

  131. JP says

    I think I did something wrong, my cake turned out more like a heavy very moist almost greasy oatmeal cake… The only thing I adjusted was add a little more honey because I don’t have any stevia, would that have thrown it off that much? I hope to try again…

    • says

      Yes, the extra honey probably made it too wet. You can leave out the stevia and keep the honey at the same amount. I think it’s still sweet enough.

  132. Hannah Fairchild says

    These cupcakes were amazing! I’m still in shock. The first couple of times I made them, I added more coconut flour fearing the too thin batter. They tasted more like cornbread, maybe partially because they were dense. But the third time, I decided to leave the batter thin and see if it would work. It was much better, light and fluffy and more like real cake. They’re so good, I never seem to get around to frosting them. I’d like to make a chocolate version too like another commenter said. And I wonder how they’d taste with dates instead of honey. And was about to buy a springform pan to try it in, but am too worried it will leak. Thanks for a great recipe, I hadn’t been able to have cake in years.

  133. Ivana says

    Is it possible to substitute banana puree for the honey? I am making this for my son’s first birthday smash cake, and I don’t want to add sugar, plus I’m not comfortable with him having honey yet.

    Thank you!

  134. Jessica says

    Hi Kelly! In comparing recipes among bloggers who have made this bean cake, everyone seems to use different amounts of eggs but the same amount of beans. The original post from Healthy Indulgences uses 5 eggs, you use 6 eggs, yet another used 4…why did you choose 6? How does it change the batter? I tried a chocolate version with 4 eggs, and it turned out pretty good–a little bean-y in taste, but I probably needed more cocoa powder. Anyway, just curious about the eggs :) thanks!

  135. Megan Wilder says

    This is such an awesome recipe. It floored everyone who tried it and because I didn’t have the right pan it easily adapted to a loaf pan (plus a few min), I kept the cake and frosting separate for those who wanted cake without frosting or just the frosting. Now I’m going to have to check out ALL your recipes :)

  136. Katherine says

    I made this today into cupcakes, and the texture was perfect, however, the cake had an almost metallic taste – maybe that’s the beans? I used canned beans – would this make a difference? Also it was slightly bitter – would using coconut palm sugar instead of stevia be okay, or would it change the cake texture? I really want to perfect this recipe to use it a lot – it’s such a great one!

  137. Teressa Adams says

    I was wondering if this could be modified for a Peanut Butter cake and also what kind of white beans did you use? My husband loves Peanut Butter cake but has a grain allergy.

  138. Telma says

    Hi Kelly,

    My baby’s first birthday is coming up and am making this cake. Do you have a good vanilla frosting that’s sugar-fee, grain-free? She’s never had anything sweet so I don’t want to overwhelm her little body.

    TIA :)

  139. Brandi says

    If you don’t have time to soak and cook the beans, can you use canned white beans? Drained and rinsed of course.

  140. Lenny says

    Do you have to soak the beans for a long time? I just found this recipe this morning and would love to make it today! Thanks!

    • says

      I soak dry beans overnight. If you have canned (soft) beans, then they will be ready to use today. I prefer soaking the beans because it makes them more easily digested :)

  141. Tiara says

    Do you have any suggestions on replacing the stevia? I’m okay with any other unrefined sugar, just not sure how to make the swap.

  142. Kate says

    Hi! This looks completely fab and lovely and brilliant. I have two issues though. One, liquid stevia. For some reason, I hate liquid stevia but I adore the crystallized version. How much regular stevia can I put in instead of liquid? Two: my little au pair kiddos say “nanny, coconut flour is alien flour” which personally I don’t understand, but how can I substitute it?

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