This easy raw vegan chocolate caramel cake has a nut base with a layer of caramel and a chocolate topping.
So it’s your your birthday and you need a cake. But traditional cakes are off the menu because they’re full of dairy, sugar, gluten and umm well just not tasty!
Personally, I hate (refined, processed) sugar because it has absolutely nothing healthy about it, yet it’s added to almost everything you can lay your hands on.
So I don’t buy it and I don’t use it. And that kind of put cakes out of the window really.
Until now that is.
Not a fan of baking? (Me neither btw.)
No problem . . .
Raw sounds so enticing to me. . .
Either way, this cake has me hooked!
Table of Contents
Overview of this Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake
- This raw vegan cake is 100% vegan and contains only 5 ingredients!
- Contains no gluten, refined sugar, dairy, eggs or flour.
- Can be put together in less than 30 minutes
- A little goes a long way
- Keeps well in the fridge or freezer
How I Discovered this Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake
This raw vegan 3 layer birthday cake was first made for me by my daughter and it blew me away!
I’ve always said that I’m not a fan of sweets and cakes (except for chia seed pudding!) but I think the tide is turning, and that raw vegan treats like this one might just change me forever.
I’ve already discovered how delicious a homemade raw vegan cheesecake is, so I suspect this is going to be the beginning of a love affair with raw vegan desserts and sweets.
This cake is so good I just had to try and make it again and again until I got it so that I can whip it together with no fuss and know that it’s going to turn out delicious.
Ok fair enough, so this is always delicious no matter what you do, even when it isn’t at its best. But I had to try various methods to find out!
What Size Cake to Make?
Don’t be fooled into thinking you need to make a big cake, this little cake measures 17.5 cm in diameter and is easily enough for 16 slices as a small piece of cake goes a long way. (It’s quite rich and filling).
This raw vegan, gluten free cake is made up of 3 layers and you can adjust the recipe in many different ways to suit your taste buds. Make a thicker base, more of the caramel layer or a deeper layer of chocolate on top.
Enjoy . . .(but not too often!)
Are Raw Vegan Cakes Healthy?
This is one of those relative questions. There’s lots of nutrition in a raw vegan cake, if it’s made like this one from only whole foods and it’s definitely much more healthy than a traditional cake.
For starters this raw vegan cake doesn’t contain any gluten, dairy, flour, refined sugar or additives. That already makes it a much more healthy option than your standard, baked cake.
But that doesn’t make it a healthy choice to eat at every meal.
Like many sweet things, this raw vegan cake is high in calories and contains oil in the form of coconut oil.
While raw coconut oil is considered an extremely healthy option by many, most people on a wfpb diet choose to omit oil altogether.
In that case, you would need to make this cake without the coconut oil, which would alter the cake considerably (see further down).
Is it Expensive to Make this Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake?
Like any sweet treat, the cake comes at a price and generally speaking, it’s more expensive to make a raw vegan cake than a traditionally baked cake.
Traditional cakes use flour, eggs and sugar all of which are cheap ingredients.
This raw vegan cake uses only wholesome ingredients, all of which are more expensive and all of which are more nutrient-dense foods.
The ingredients for this cake are basically nuts, dates, dark vegan chocolate and cold pressed virgin coconut oil.
And if you hesitate because of the cost, remember it’s not like you’re going to make a cake every day, so to me that makes the extra cost doable.
And on a final note regarding the cost, I do believe that with time as a vegan you come to realise that not only have you ‘given up’ spending money on so many things that you can treat yourself to some special food items with a clear conscious, but also that our health and our conscience are worth paying for.
If there’s two thing that are with you for the rest of your life on this planet, they are your body and your mind, so why not look after them?
How to Minimise the Cost of Your Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake
It’s worth looking around for the best source for these ingredients, because they tend to vary enormously in price.
I’ve found a source near me where one kilo of Medjool dates comes in at least 50% cheaper than the cheapest Medjool dates I can find on the internet or in the other shops where I used to buy them before.
Dark vegan chocolate, nuts and coconut oil are three other ingredient which aren’t cheap. But the secret is, hunt them down until you find the best deal, then stay with it and use them guilt-free on those odd occasions when you fancy a treat.
For somebody who is actually on a raw vegan way of life, the coconut oil will have to be cold pressed virgin coconut oil to be classified as raw, but otherwise you can source a cheaper coconut oil that you prefer.
Can You Make this Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake Without the Coconut Oil?
When I first tried playing around with this cake recipe, I wanted to make it without to coconut oil to see whether it could be made more in line with my usual oil-free wfpb way of eating. And it can, but it’s different and that’s because the coconut oil here has a job to do.
Apart from the flavour, the coconut oil also gives the base of this cake the substance to hold it together.
If you make the base without the coconut oil, it tends to be crumbly and fall apart. And it does lack that certain extra mysterious tang of flavour without the coconut oil.
As well as the base, the coconut oil is important in the chocolate because it makes it more cuttable. You can, of course, cover the cake with chocolate without the coconut oil, but it will probably break up into pieces when you go to cut the cake.
So for me, I reverted to adding the oil.
After all, this is a special occasion cake!
Is This Vegan Raw Cake Fattening?
Yes, the ingredients in the cake make this a high calorie, high fat food so while you might enjoy some for special occasions, I wouldn’t recommend it as a daily dessert.
Ingredients in This Chocolate Caramel Raw Vegan Cake
The whole cake needs the following ingredients:
- Hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds or cashews for the base
- Medjool dates
- Peanut butter
- Coconut oil
- Vegan dark chocolate
I hope you find this flexible guide to making this raw cake helpful so that you can play with it and make it your own.
The first time you make this, it may feel a bit of a faff – but that’s just until you get used to it.
Then it becomes easier and easier as you start to do it without checking all the ingredients every time.
Ingredients for The Base Layer
The base layer is basically made out of ground nuts, dates, peanut butter and coconut oil.
- 200g hazelnuts or other nut of choice
- 4 Medjool dates – 67g with stone /62g without (Medjool give the stronger texture but you can substitute for other dates if necessary – in which case you may need to add more quantity.)
- 1/2 measuring cup (or 5 tablespoons) boiling water to soften the dates
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter (optional)
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil (add more or less according to taste)
You can add more or less of each one as much as you like. One thing to bear in mind is that if you omit the coconut oil, the base will be crumbly and won’t stick together so well.
And if you put too much coconut oil in, the overriding flavour of coconut will be quite strong in the final cake. It will also depend on which
I’ve used hazelnuts for the base and also walnuts but you can also make it with another nut of your choice .
Ingredients for The Middle Layer
The middle, caramel layer is made from Medjool dates & peanut butter blended together until it reaches the caramel texture.
Ingredients for the Top Layer
Vegan chocolate and coconut oil. You can use the strength of chocolate you like.
I make it with 85% and some people say they would like it less dark. For me, it could go up to 95%!!
For the heart decorations I bought some heart moulds and poured the extra chocolate in to use as decorations on top of the cake.
Method of How to Make This Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake
Making the Base Layer
Grind the nuts of your choice in a blender until chopped up finely.
De-stone and cut 4 dates into quarters. Place them in a small bowl and pour a tiny amount of boiling water over them, just enough so that you can squash the dates into the water with a fork. 1/2 measuring cup is plenty.
Pour the dates and date water into the nut mix and add a tbs of lemon juice. Blend again.
Finally, add some coconut oil and give the final blend.
Pack the nut mixture into the bottom of your cake tin, using the back of a spoon to get it even and truly packed down.
You don’t want any separation of the base, so take a little care about this stage and make sure that the base forms one solid layer, with no weaknesses or gaps.
Making the Middle Layer
For the middle layer you need lots of Medjool dates and a little peanut butter. Chop the Medjool dates into small pieces unless you have a super powered food processor.
Blend them together with the peanut butter until it forms a caramel texture.
The coconut oil is important because that’s what makes the chocolate sliceable from the fridge. Without the oil, the chocolate will crack.
Once you get used to making the cake, you can vary the quantities to make your favourite layer the thicker layer, make the cake sweeter or less sweet etc.
Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel Cake
- 200g hazelnuts
- 4 tablespoons coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- 250g dark vegan chocolate
- About 20 Medjool dates
- Grind 200g hazelnuts until finely chopped.
- Add 4 dates, 1 tablespoon peanut butter and 1 tablespoon coconut oil and blend with the nuts until you get a sticky texture.
- Line the base of a cake tray with the mixture, squashing it down with the back of a spoon until a solid base is formed.
- Chop 14 Medjool dates and blend in the food processor. Add 1 tablespoon peanut butter and blend again until you get a smooth caramel consistency.
- Layer the caramel on top of the nut base.
- Place a bowl over the top of a saucepan of boiling water and put the chocolate in the bowl so that it melts as the steam heats the bowl. Add 1-2 tablespoon coconut oil.
- Pour the chocolate over the cake and put into the fridge to set.
- You can also put the cake into the freezer for an hour or so. I like it that way as it makes it firmer.