Recipe Collection: White Bean Vanilla Cake

**This post has been entered in Pennywise Platter Thursday at The Nourishing Gourmet and Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist!**

This is one for the history books.  It’s a delicious, rich, amazing vanilla cake that is entirely grain- and refined-sugar free and GAPS-friendly!  I needed a cake for my daughter’s birthday right after we started GAPS and didn’t want to compromise (last year I allowed a gluten-free cake).  This cake is just moist and amazing.  We asked all our guests (most of whom eat SAD) to guess what the cake was made of — no one could.  They loved it.  We got many compliments and kids asked for second pieces.  We didn’t hesitate to give them, either — this is one of the healthiest cakes out there!  Not to mention that it could not be simpler to prepare.

Top it with some fresh or frozen sliced strawberries and it’s just delicious.  I actually used strawberries with a custard recipe (but if you want that, you’ll have to wait for my next cookbook!).  I wasn’t able to perfect a frosting recipe, but it didn’t matter.  The cake was still great.  (And I’m still working on frosting for next time!  My birthday’s coming up too!)

Here it is.  And this is really epic in its healthiness and simplicity!!


  • 3 c. white beans, cooked and plain
  • 9 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 c. + 2 tbsp. raw honey
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda



Add all ingredients to a blender and blend on medium, then high until smooth.  Pour into two well-greased  9″ pans and bake at 350 for 35 – 40 min.  Once cooled, remove from the pans carefully and serve plain, with fresh jam (fruit blended with honey), fresh fruit, or however you like!


    • Kate Tietje says

      It should make 8 – 10 cupcakes if a single batch (3 c. beans) and closer to 18 if a double batch (6 c. beans). I use white navy beans for it, I believe others have used other types.

    • Rachel says

      I got 12 cupcakes out of half of the recipe (1 and 1/2 cups of beans), but as another commenter said, they did seem to sink after a little bit. I cooked the cupcakes for 15 minutes, and they still seemed pretty wet/oily, so I put them back in for 3 more minutes, which didn’t seem to change them still.

      Kate, do you have any suggestions for the wetness/oiliness? My thoughts were to use less oil; bake at a lower temp for longer; use liners instead of oiling the pan. My SIL suggested that if I make a cake instead of cupcakes, people won’t notice the wetness as much b/c they will be eating with a fork and not their hands.

      ALLLL that being said, I was pleased with the consistency. I want to make these for my son’s first birthday party in a week. I gave some of the test-batch cupcakes to my SIL and nephews (3.5 years and 2 years) to scrutinize and got great reviews!

  1. Sujata says

    Hi, Nice recipe. I want to try these today, are these 3 cups cooked beans or 3 cups dry beans?
    Thanks, Sujata

  2. Caroline Benzel says

    Great idea except it seems really expensive. 2 dollars for that amount of honey, plus about 5 for that much coconut oil. I tried it with lard instead of coco oil, but I think it needs that coco flavor. I also substituted bananas for honey. I’m curious to try it the right way because I bet it’s really good. I need some affordable paleo recipes!! Thanks!

    • Kate Tietje says

      Well, we usually make it for a special treat. :) I’m working on more frugal recipes, though, some of which will be paleo.

  3. Laura says

    Is there a way to substitute rapadura/coconut oil for the honey? It seems like it would make it a little more frugal.

  4. Allison says

    Made this today with my kids, and they loved it! I halved the recipe, used butter in place of the coconut oil, and it turned out lovely.

  5. Lauren says

    I made these, following the recipe exactly, and they sank like souffles. What did I do wrong?? I was really excited about these, and when they came out of the oven I was utterly crushed because I was baking them with my niece.

    • Veronica says

      I’ve made this cake a few times now, mine sinks a bit and tends to separate some too, unfortunately. I wouldn’t call it as bad as what a soufflé does though. And it is very, very delicious!
      You could try baking powder instead of soda if that’s something you eat. Make sure the cake is cooked at a high enough temperature and that you don’t peek or take it out too early and definitely definitely definitely don’t thud it when taking it out or cut it or remove it from the pan when it’s still warm. Also could try not blending but mashing by hand if you’ve got a good masher.

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