When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Maple Icing (gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free)

It was a very autumn-y sort of weekend around our house.  Matt and the boys and I went and visited a local orchard this afternoon, where we walked among the rows of fruit-laden trees and had fun filling four large bags with shiny red apples together.

These two kooky kids are always the apples of my eye.

The rest of the weekend was pretty blustery and damp outside, so it was a great opportunity to spend time in the kitchen cooking up foods for fall feasting: some homemade granola, a batch of oatmeal cookies for school lunches, beef pot roast for dinner, and a pumpkin spice cake with maple icing for dessert. This cake has quickly become a new seasonal favourite in our house; it's a just-right combination of savoury and sweet that goes perfectly with a warm mug of apple cinnamon tea.

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Maple Icing

For the cake:

6 cups blanched almond flour
6 tbsp arrowroot flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground allspice
2 cups pure pumpkin puree
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
6 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, arrowroot flour, baking powder, sea salt, cinnamon, ginger, and allspice.

In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, grapeseed oil, maple syrup, almond milk, and vanilla. Add half of the dry ingredient mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring to combine, then add the rest of the dry ingredient mixture and stir again until you have a nice thick cake batter.

Lightly grease a bundt pan with grapeseed oil, then spoon the cake batter into the pan. Smooth the batter with the back of a spoon to create a level top. Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 55 minutes to an hour, or until a cake tester inserted in the cake comes out clean.

Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool in the pan for about 15 minutes. Carefully invert the bundt pan onto a wire rack to remove the cake from the pan and let it cool completely.

For the icing:

1/4 cup raw coconut butter
1 tbsp + 1 tsp coconut oil
1 tbsp + 1 tsp pure maple syrup

toasted chopped pecans for garnishing

Beat the coconut butter, coconut oil, and maple syrup in a bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until a smooth mixture forms. Spoon this mixture into a piping bag fitted with a small round tip. Pipe the icing in loops over the top of the cake, and garnish with toasted chopped pecans.

When Will came in from outside yesterday afternoon and smelled this pumpkin spice cake baking, he exclaimed, "Oh my gosh, I could just float away! It smells like heaven in here!" We all agreed after dinner that it tasted every bit as delicious as it smelled. Maybe you'd like to bake up one of these tasty cakes yourself for a fun fall celebration this month.


  1. I can't have coconut, any substitute ideas? This sounds delicious

    1. Hi Carole. For the coconut oil in the cake recipe, you can definitely substitute another kind of of oil -- grapeseed is one of my favourites for baking. I'm not sure what to suggest for the icing, though. Perhaps you could try another smooth nut butter (cashew is nice) with maple syrup? Please let me know how it turns out if you experiment! :)

  2. Hi. If you are looking for coconut oil or butter, just buy the packet coconut from from any asian shop.
    Cook the coconut till it become oil. and for the coconut butter just use the cream.
    There so many brands there, we used the M & S SANTAN.
    Just try. And to Liza, I enjoyed reading your blog. Cheer

  3. What an absolutely gorgeous cake, Lisa! Amazing for a gluten-free and more-free creation, too. :-) Thanks so much for sharing it in the Thanksgiving edition of Gluten-Free Recipe Fix!


    1. Thanks, Shirley! I'm enjoying seeing all of the other recipes people are sharing in the recipe fix, too. I love that you ladies are such generous hosts. xo