Chocolate raspberry birthday cake


Our traditional family birthday cake is chalk-full of chocolate. But thrown in are other flavors like raspberry and coffee that make it a hit with young and old alike. I use healthy ingredients besides chocolate, like coconut palm sugar, coconut oil and eggs. The alcohol in the coffee liqueur evaporates in the baking. But if you’d rather just use a second half-cup of coffee, be my guest.

I make the two layer cakes ahead of time and freeze them. A day before the party, I let them thaw for a half hour or so. Then I cut the two layers in half while still slightly frozen. It’s easier when the cake is still a bit solid. I fill the layers with jam and whipped cream and top off with a rich icing. This filled cake stays moist for several days in the fridge, the perfect party food.

I give you two options for icings, both of which are richly delicious. The one made with avocado rather than sour cream has more of the healthier fats, but fats never the less. Both toppings are easy to whip up and have good body for spreading. Take your pick.

Hey, it’s a birthday cake, not a diet food. God made chocolate in heaven and the devil threw in the calories! But don’t let that spoil it for you. We all deserve a treat once in a while. Happy birthday!

Chocolate raspberry torte

Chocolate raspberry birthday cake


  • 2 cups (220 grams) whole-grain pastry flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 squares unsweetened chocolate (3 ounces total)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 2 cups coconut palm sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup strong coffee
  • 1/2 cup coffee-flavored liqueur


  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 12-ounce jar double-the-fruit raspberry jam

Topping 1: Chocolate sour cream frosting

  • 1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup sour cream

Topping 2: Chocolate avocado frosting

  • 3 ounces (110 grams) dark chocolate
  • 3/4 cup (60 ml) chocolate milk
  • 3 tablespoons (30 grams) coconut palm sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
  • 2 completely ripe avocados, about 1 cup or 225 grams
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened dark cocoa powder, about 25 grams


  • fresh raspberries
  • candles

Chocolate raspberry torte

Make the cake layers

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Grease and flour two 9-inch layer cake pans and  cut parchment paper circles to fit bottoms of pans.
  3. Wisk dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.
  4. Chop chocolate into pieces and melt it in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Be careful not to get any water in the chocolate or it will curdle.
  5. In a large bowl, beat coconut oil, sugar and eggs at high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 min. Beat in melted chocolate and add vanilla. At low speed beat in flour in fourths, alternating with sour cream in thirds. Add coffee and liqueur, blending until smooth.
  6. Pour batter into pans and bake 30-35 min or until surface springs back. Cool in pans for 10 min, then remove from pans and cool on wire racks. When completely cooled, wrap in foil and store in the freezer until the day before the party.

Fill the layers

  1. Slice the two cake layers in half horizontally to make four thin layers (easier if still slightly frozen).
  2. Beat the cream until stiff.
  3. Place one layer with its cut side up on cake platter. Spread with 1/2 cup raspberry jam, then 1/2 cup sweetened whipped cream.
  4. Repeat with remaining layers, ending with the top layer placed cut side down.

Frost the cake with the sour cream topping (option 1)

  1. Melt chocolate chips in top of double boiler.
  2. Add sour cream (with a dash of salt) and stir gently until creamy and smooth.
  3. Work quickly while icing is still warm to frost sides and top of cake. Do the sides first and finish with the top. Use a wide spatula.
  4. Garnish with fresh berries and candles.

Frost the cake with the avocado topping (option 2)

  1. Melt the chocolate in top of double boiler. Stir in the milk, sugar, and vanilla.
  2. Scoop out the avocado flesh and put it into a food processor. Add cocoa powder and blend.
  3. Add warm chocolate mixture to the avocado puree. Blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl until no green flecks of avocado can be seen. Taste for sweetness and add more sugar if needed.
  4. Add more milk if the icing is too thick to spread, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  5. Work quickly while icing is still warm to frost sides and top of cake. Do the sides first and finish with the top. Use a wide spatula.
  6. Garnish with fresh berries and candles.
Karen's cake

May one of your gifts be a pony



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