slice of healthy-ish chocolate cake on a plate with the whole cake in the background

Healthy-ish Chocolate Cake

Healthy-ish chocolate cake is a dense, chewy, brownie-like chocolate cake topped with the best buttercream frosting. Making it the perfect healthy-ish combination!

two slices of healthy-ish chocolate cake on plates with the whole cake behind them

I feel like I’ve been hitting the dessert jackpot lately. As in Burken has really liked a lot of the desserts I’ve recently baked up in our kitchen.

For those of you who are new around here, Burken is my husband, and he’s not a huge sweets eater.

What? The woman who bakes constantly married a guy who doesn’t really like sweets?

I know, this seems crazy! But I know I’ve hit the dessert jackpot when he sneaks little bites of the dessert sitting on the counter.

cake cutter pulling a slice of healthy-ish chocolate cake out of the cake

This healthy-ish chocolate cake? Yea, this one we both almost finished the entire thing, and it never made it to the office. That’s when we know a recipe is really good: we’re too greedy to share it with anyone else, haha.

Burken’s description of it was that it tasted a lot like a Hostess cupcake. You know, the one with the swirly white frosting on top?

I’ll admit, it’s been a long time since I’ve had a Hostess cupcake, so I’ll take his word for it. I think it tastes like a hybrid between chocolate cake and a brownie, constantly leaving me wanting more.

Healthy-ish chocolate cake: the base

Okay, so here’s the healthy portion of this healthy-ish chocolate cake.

Into a blender goes unsweetened applesauce, avocado {for a healthy fat to mimic butter}, pure maple syrup for some sweetness, along with dates to thicken and sweeten naturally.

healthy-ish chocolate cake batter in a blender with chocolate flour mixture in a bowl to the left

Then I added a hefty amount of Silk Chocolate Cashew Milk, which may quite possibly one of my new favorite treats. As I write this post I’m drinking a glass of this creamy, silky goodness. It has just the right amount of chocolate flavor to enhance our chocolate cake.

Once blended and smooth, pour the whole mixture into a mash-up of whole wheat flour and sugar-free, fat-free Jell-O instant pudding mix. I’m convinced this addition of pudding mix is what gives this healthy-ish chocolate cake that brownie-like texture.

The batter is thick, so don’t be concerned that it’s not as liquid-y as traditional cake or brownie batter.

Healthy-ish chocolate cake: the frosting

No cake is complete without frosting, and this buttercream takes this healthy cake to the “ish” territory.

frosting a healthy chocolate cake (top), sprinkled frosted cake (bottom)

It’s such a simple buttercream frosting, requiring only butter, powdered sugar, milk and vanilla.

However, creaming your butter well enough is what makes buttercream either silky smooth, or grainy and lumpy.

I’ve made my fair share of lumpy buttercream frostings, but this one was so smooth and the perfect texture, all because after the powdered sugar was totally mixed in, I spent an extra few minutes continuing to whip it.

A hand mixer or stand mixer are great ways to accomplish the perfect sweet, buttercream frosting {that’s truly so much better than the can}.

frosted healthy-ish chocolate cake. naked cake

If you want a healthy frosting to go with your chocolate cake, by all means, use the frosting from this healthy confetti birthday cake. You’ll get a whole lot of chocolate flavor, but it’s a healthy alternative to the buttercream frosting.

Healthy-ish chocolate cake: frosting and eating

The amount of buttercream frosting makes just the right amount for a naked cake. Meaning that the sides of the cake are exposed and the cake is not fully frosted.

If you don’t like a lot of frosting, a naked cake is the perfect way to get just the right amount of frosting without overloading things.

Plus, since this is a layered cake, less frosting is really more in this case. That way you get the perfect bite of sweet frosting with dense, chewy chocolate cake every time.

fork holding a bite of healthy-ish chocolate cake

Use about half of the frosting to frost the top of one cake. Top with the second cake and frost with the remaining frosting. Easy peasy!

Since we’re now getting closer to Valentine’s Day, I thought the red and heart sprinkles were perfect for this cake, but feel free to use whatever sprinkle colors you have lying around.

No matter what sprinkle colors you use, you’ll surely love a big bite of this healthy-ish chocolate cake!

Looking for more chocolate desserts? Check these out:

Healthy Chocolate Cake

Bailey’s Chocolate Cheesecake

No-Cook Vegan Chocolate Pudding

Healthy-ish Chocolate Cake
Healthy-ish chocolate cake is a dense, chewy, brownie-like chocolate cake topped with the best buttercream frosting. Making it the perfect healthy-ish combination!
  • cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 large ripe avocado pitted
  • 1 cup Silk Chocolate Cashew milk
  • cup plain whole milk Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • cup pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup dates
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cup white whole wheat flour sifted*
  • 1 {1 oz} package chocolate or vanilla sugar-free fat-free Jell-O instant pudding
  • cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
Buttercream Frosting Ingredients:
  • 1 cup {2 sticks} unsalted sweet cream butter softened
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2-3 Tbsp. Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk
Preheat oven to 350°F and grease two 8” round cake pans.
  1. In the jar of a blender, add the applesauce, avocado, chocolate milk, yogurt, vanilla, pure maple syrup and dates. Blend until dates are smooth with very few chunks. Add the eggs and blend on low until smooth.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the sifted flour, pudding mix, cocoa powder, baking powder and soda and salt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until incorporated.
  3. Split the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 28-30 minutes, until cake starts to pull away from edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  4. Remove and let sit on a wire rack to let cool completely.
  5. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, beat the butter until smooth, with a hand mixer. Beat in the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, and vanilla until combined. Add the milk and mix until smooth. Continue to beat the frosting for another two-three minutes, until frosting is very smooth.
  6. Once cakes have completely cooled, place one cake on the bottom. Spread half of the frosting on top. Place the second cake on top and spread with the remaining frosting.
  7. Sprinkle with your favorite colored sprinkles.
Recipe Notes

*Note: sifted flour will make for a less grainy and lighter cake.

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