A Healthy Smash Cake Alternative for Your Child's First Birthday

What to do... What to do...? Over the last six months, you have likely made a considerable effort to be certain your infant eats only the most nutrient dense foods. What parent wouldn't want that? But when it comes to first birthday party desserts, the topic can be more controversial. Some parents argue that "It's just one day! Let them eat cake!" Other parents are more conservative and believe "He doesn't know the difference at this age, why give him a whole load of sugar he doesn't need?" Regardless of where you stand, the important part is that you are modeling your soon-to-be-toddler life long healthy eating habits.

In my house, we certainly enjoy our desserts. Enjoy. That is the key word. We do not over indulge or have countless options. We choose quality over quantity. And savor... every... bite. For my little one's first birthday, I knew that I wanted his smash cake to be a special treat, but not over the top. I chose to use natural sweeteners (fruit, lactose) and whole grains. And boy, did he enjoy it! Too bad he did not leave much for mom to enjoy. Luckily, we are having another smash cake party with our 1-year-old friends this weekend. Another excuse to sing the "Birthday Song" which always results in happy coos, big smiles, and clapping!

Ingredients

For the cake

  • 5 ripe, medium sized bananas

  • 3/4 cups whole wheat flour

  • 3/4 cup oat flour (just grind rolled oats in a blender, then measure)

  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup natural no sugar added applesauce

  • 3 tbsp butter (melted), plus more for greasing cake pans

  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup fresh blueberries

For the frosting

  • 8 ounces organic heavy cream

  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • Additional fresh berries for topping

Instructions

1. Preheat your oven to 375, and use butter grease two 4-cup Pyrex bowls.

2. Mash bananas with a fork.

3. Combine both flours, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.

4. Add mashed bananas, applesauce, butter, vanilla extract and mix until just combined.

5. Gently stir in blueberries, trying not to break the skins,

6. Making sure to distribute the batter evenly, pour it into each Pyrex bowl.

7. Spread the batter into the edges of the bowls. Use a butter knife to even out the top of the batter. This will help your cake layers lie flat when you stack them.

8. Bake at 375 for about 35 minutes, or until the cake is golden on the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

9. Let the cake cool.

10. Once cooled, flip the cake out of the pans onto a cutting board. Use a cerated knife to cut each cake into two layers. Freeze for later if making ahead.

For the frosting

1. Pour cream and vanilla extract into a chilled mixing bowl. Whip on high speed until stiff peaks form.

To frost the cake

1. Find a pretty platter, and put the base cake layer on the plate.

2. Using an offset spatula or butter knife, spread a generous amount of whipped cream onto the top of the base cake layer. Put next cake circle on top. Repeat the process until you reach the top of the cake.

3. Pile whipped cream on the top layer, then use your spatula to spread it downwards, covering the sides of the cake. Use extra whipped cream to cover any cake left uncovered.

4. Top with fresh berries, and voila! Enjoy!

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