A quick and easy snack cake filled with holiday spices and simple ingredients that can be used as a healthy dessert, a snack, or even part of a healthy breakfast!
Simple, hearty, and gooey sweet potatoes.
Light and sweet mashed banana.
Hints of vanilla and pecans.
Yep… this cake has all the good stuff, friends!
If you’re looking for a last minute holiday snack cake recipe that you can put together in minutes, I have a winner for you! Or, if you’re looking for a way to use some cooked sweet potatoes you have on hand—or you’ve got a brown banana lying around in your kitchen like I did yesterday— then this recipe is a perfect way to make use of them!
Not only is this recipe free of added sugar and oil like my other recipes, but it’s even grain-free so it’s perfect if you follow a Paleo diet or you’re a gluten-free eater who avoids other types of grains. I personally love baking with oats, but I also like variety and experimenting with other ingredients in the kitchen too.
Two of my favorite ways to make a baked recipe sweeter, richer, and heartier without oil, sugar, or grains are sweet potatoes and ripe, mashed bananas. But I don’t like to use bananas very often in baked goodies (or smoothies, for that matter) because I get pretty sick of the flavor quickly. I don’t want all my baked goods tasting like bananas.
You know what I mean?
But this recipe is really wonderful because it reminds me of a holiday snack cake. It’s incredibly balanced in flavor and doesn’t taste too much like bananas or sweet potatoes; it actually reminds me of a traditional holiday spice cake, to be quite honest.
Super tasty and flavorful!
About the Ingredients:
I actually use plain, organic canned sweet potato purée for the sweet potato part of this recipe, but you could also use one pre-cooked, cooled, and mashed sweet potato if that’s all you have on hand. You just mix the sweet potato with a very brown (ripe) mashed banana for the base of this recipe which acts as the glue that holds the recipe together without eggs. These two ingredients also provide moisture so you don’t need oil, and they’re naturally sweet too!
Instead of a grain-based flour, I used coconut flour since it’s light, low in fat, easy to digest, and high in fiber which makes it perfect when you need extra thickness in a recipe and you don’t want to rely on a gluten-containing flour. Almond flour would also work, but I find it’s a bit too heavy so I never use it.
Coconut flour, in my humble opinion, is the best grain-free flour because it provides a light, cake-like flavor and you can use less of it to get the results that you’re looking for.
Since I have a major sweet tooth, I also added just a pinch of stevia extract to the recipe for more sweetness, but you could use another sweetener if you tolerate them and prefer to do so. Finally, I topped the mixture with some pecans and coconut, which really set off the flavor this cake has. Feel free to leave those off if you prefer, or use your favorite nuts and seeds instead.
Just one more note about this recipe:
Bake it at least 50 minutes or it won’t firm up properly. Natural cakes are a bit more delicate, but they’re actually really easy to work with if you follow the directions. Plus, this snack cake is so healthy that you can easily eat it for breakfast if you choose.
Or, just pop a piece or two with your meals and enjoy it as a light dessert! 🙂
- 1 (15) ounce can of pure sweet potato purée (I used Farmer's Market Organic brand) or 1 medium-sized cooked, cooled, peeled, and mashed sweet potato
- 1 very ripe (brown) medium-sized banana, peeled and mashed
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 2 tablespoons ground flax meal
- 1 small box (about 1/3 cup) of raisins (or any other dried fruit of choice)
- 1/4 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond or cashew milk
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla powder
- 1 tablespoon of apple pie spice (or pumpkin pie spice)
- 1/4 tsp. ginger
- 1/2 tsp. pure stevia extract or 3 full drops of liquid, alcohol-free stevia*
- or you favorite nuts/seeds
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, Fahrenheit.
- Add the contents of the can of sweet potatoes (or the mashed sweet potato flesh) to a bowl and then add the mashed banana. Stir with a fork, just enough to combine.
- Next, add in the coconut flour, ground flax, vanilla, stevia, apple pie (or pumpkin pie) spice, and the ginger.
- Top with the unsweetened vanilla almond or cashew milk, and stir everything together with a fork. It will seem like it's too dry, but keep stirring and it will all come together. This mixture is really thick, which is what you want for the cake base.
- Finally, fold in the raisins, and stir again really well so everything is combined. Set the bowl aside.
- Grab a small baking dish (I used a 6 inch by 6 inch glass dish, but you could also use a loaf cake pan too). Cover the the pan with parchment paper, or spray very lightly with non-stick spray (such as coconut oil spray).
- Scoop the prepared batter into the prepared dish/pan and smooth out evenly. Make sure the top is smooth and even in texture. The mixture will be very moist, but it will hold together very well.
- Add your favorite nuts or seeds to the top; I used a tablespoon each of unsweetened shreded coconut and chopped pecans. If you use nuts, press them slightly into the top of the cake so they stick properly.
- Bake at 350 degrees, Fahrenheit for 50-55 minutes, or until a fork comes out clean.
- Remove, let cool on a counter for at least 30 minutes, and then slice into 8-10 small pieces. Remove with a fork, and enjoy!
- Two things to keep in mind: If you substitute ingredients, I can't promise it will turn out properly. Follow the directions appropriately, and it will work perfectly!
- Also, this cake is really moist and soft, so don't expect it to be like a firmer, dry cake. It's similar to applesauce cake in texture. Keep it in the fridge all week, or you can freeze it for long-term storage in reusable containers.
- Feel free to double the ingredients if you want to make a larger cake, and be sure to share with family and friends!
I can’t wait to jump back in with some fresh new content soon, but until then, I hope you all enjoy your holiday with family and/or your friends, and I hope you get a chance to bake yourself something special like this healthy Sweet Potato Banana Snack Cake! 🙂 Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!