Healthy Smash Cake

This healthy smash cake is made with almond flour and bananas. It’s the perfect option if you’re looking for a no added sugar cake for your little ones first birthday.

Small smash cake with white frosting, a "1" birthday candle and colorful star sprinkles.

Before I get this post started, I have to stop for a minute because I can hardly believe that my baby is turning one! It honestly feels like I gave birth to her yesterday and yet a whole year has gone by. Before having Liv I remember hearing parents say that their babies grow up way too fast and oh my goodness, now I can totally relate.

No Sugar Added Smash Cake

I’ve been thinking about making Liv a special cake for her birthday for months and it took some experimenting because I wanted it to be free of added sugar. Olivia eats pretty much any and everything (gluten, soy, dairy, etc.) but the one thing I try to stay clear of is added and processed sugar. When looking for a smash cake recipe almost all of them still had some sort of sugar and a lot of the healthier options looked too heavy and dense (aka less smashable).

With the no added sugar criteria in mind, I started testing cake recipes using mashed banana as the sweetener and after a couple test batches, I created this recipe which has a nice light and fluffy crumb, but is still super moist. And I love the fact that with this cake, Liv will be getting a ton of nutrients, especially given how nutrient-dense almond flour is!

1st birthday cake decorated with a "1" candle, sprinkles and white frosting. A slice of cake is on a plate with a gold fork.

Ingredients Needed for this Healthy Smash Cake

Moms (or dads), I have a feeling you’re going to love me because this cake only has seven simple ingredients (excluding the frosting + toppings)! And most of these ingredients you probably already have in your pantry:

  • almond flour – I chose almond flour for this recipe because it has a natural sweetness and gives the cake a light and fluffy crumb that makes it easier for your baby to smash and eat. I have a feeling that all-purpose flour will work, but I have not tested this recipe with different flours so I’m not sure how it will turn out. I highly recommend using almond flour for the best results.
  • banana – perfectly ripe mashed bananas are a key ingredient as they replace the oil and sugar in this recipe. Make sure your bananas are ripe (fully yellow with a few black spots is perfect). Unripe bananas will not work well for this recipe. I haven’t tested this with any other fruit puree so I’m not sure how it will work if you use applesauce or another fruit puree. If you try it, please let me know in the comments.
  • eggs – the eggs help the cake rise and give it the fluffiness. If you have an egg allergy or want to avoid eggs, readers have used flax seed eggs in place of the eggs with good results.
  • vanilla extract
  • cinnamon – cinnamon is totally optional, but I like the subtle sweetness it adds to the cake.
  • baking powder
  • salt – if you’re worried about the salt in your babies diet, you can leave this out.
  • icing + toppings – see all of my ideas below.

3 tier baby birthday smash cake with a slice taken out of it.

The Easiest Smash Cake… Made in a Blender

And the best part? There’s no creaming of butter or sugar and no need to break out the mixer for this recipe! You simply blend everything together in your blender. If you don’t have a blender, you can use a food processor or an immersion blender. You can also mix the ingredients together by hand, but you’ll want to make sure your banana is super mashed/pureed and well blended with the almond flour mixture. You could measure the mashed banana, blend it up in your blender and then mix the batter together by hand. For this recipe you really want the banana incorporated throughout rather than little pockets of banana within the cake.

Step by step process photos for making the batter for a smash cake in a blender and then the batter being baked in a springform pan.

What Size Should a Smash Cake Be?

I personally think 4-inch in diameter is the perfect size for a smash cake. I used a set of 3 (4-inch) springform pans, which make it super easy to pop the layers out of the pan. I haven’t tried making this into a larger cake, but others have made this cake using 6 inch pans by doubling the recipe for 3 layers.

Side by side photos of a 3 tier smash cake without frosting, and then with frosting and a "1" birthday candle and sprinkles.

Icing Ideas for a Healthy Smash Cake

There are so many fun ways to frost and decorate this cake. Here’s a couple that I recommend:

  • Coconut whipped cream – You can make your own or if you’re okay with a little sugar you can use store-bought coconut whipped cream (found in the frozen section). You’ll want to let the whipped cream thaw in the fridge and frost the cake right before serving. This is what I used for Olivia’s cake and I will note that using it as a frosting between the layers made the layers quite slippery so I’m not sure I would do that in the future. I think yogurt would hold better!
  • No sugar whipped cream – If you want a no sugar option you can buy unsweetened heavy cream, whip it with a mixer and use this as a frosting. Here’s an easy recipe.
  • Yogurt – Babies tend to love yogurt and it makes a great frosting option for this smash cake. You can use any flavor you like or even blend fresh berries with plain yogurt if you want a colorful frosting.
  • Traditional frosting – This will add sugar to the cake, but it’s an easy option! I really like the Simple Mills vanilla frosting. It’s thick so you may need to soften it up a bit before icing the cake.

Topping Ideas for a Healthy Smash Cake

For the photos you see here I did pastel star sprinkles and a 1 candle. For Olivia’s actual birthday I’m planning to top the cake with fresh raspberries as they’re her favorite and I have a feeling they will entice her to dig into the cake. I’m also going to top the cake with a little sign I ordered from Etsy that says “Olivia is One.”

A Healthy Smash Cake that Adults Will Like Too!

This no sugar added smash cake actually tastes really good. I would totally make it for myself and love it! If baby decides not to smash the cake, feel free to cut slices and enjoy!

Slice of 3-tier smash cake on a plate with a fork.

More Recipes for Your Babe:

If you make this healthy smash cake for your little one please be sure to leave a comment and star rating below! Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other EBF readers who are thinking about making the recipe!

Small smash cake with white frosting, a "1" birthday candle and colorful star sprinkles.

Healthy Smash Cake

Brittany Mullins
This healthy smash cake is made with almond flour and bananas. It's the perfect option if you're looking for a small, no sugar added cake for your little ones first birthday.
4.6 from 32 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 222 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cups fine blanched almond flour I used Bob's Red Mill
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana make sure your bananas are nice and ripe
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Frosting

  • coconut whipped topping homemade or store-bought OR plain full-fat yogurt OR frosting of choice

Toppings

  • fresh berries OR sprinkles

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and spray 3 (4-inch springform pans) with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Add banana, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, baking powder and salt into a high-powered blender or food processor. Process until mixture is smooth and well combined.
  • Add almond flour and pulse until mixture is just combined, scraping down the sides of the blender/processor if needed.
  • Divide batter evenly between the 3 springform pans and bake for 20 minutes or until the tops of the cakes are golden in color and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Remove cakes from the oven, let cool for 10-20 minutes before carefully removing from the pans.
  • Let layers cool completely before stacking and icing with frosting of choice. I've tested plain full-fat yogurt as well as coconut whipped topping. For toppings, I like the idea of naturally-colored sprinkles or fresh berries. Liv loves raspberries so that's probably what I'll put on her smash cake.

Video

Notes

  • 6 inch pans: I haven't tried this, but some others have made this cake in three 6 inch pans by doubling the recipe and cooking it for the same amount of time.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice without frosting or toppingCalories: 222kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 9gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 62mgSodium: 153mgFiber: 3gSugar: 3g
Keyword healthy smash cake
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Recipe Rating




    104 comments
    1. Stephanie Hores
      May 5, 2021 AT 10:12 am

      Excited to try this! Realized I don’t have a round baking pan, so going to do cupcakes and stack them on top of each other for a mini smash cake:)
      How long would you bake cup cakes for?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 6, 2021 AT 11:38 am

        Hey Stephanie – I haven’t tried making this recipe as cupcakes, so I’m not sure. You’d probably have to double the recipe if you want 12, but I’d start with 12-15 minutes and check them to see if they need more time of not. Let me know how they turn out!!

    2. Sarah Martin
      April 30, 2021 AT 10:48 pm

      1 star
      Turned out like banana bread. No way a baby could smash through it.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 1, 2021 AT 9:00 pm

        Sorry to hear this recipe didn’t turn out for you, Sarah. Did you change anything about the recipe?

    3. Claire
      April 21, 2021 AT 6:26 pm

      5 stars
      Love this!! Made it this week. We used a loaf pan and decorated our own slices. So fun and I feel like I can eat the rest for breakfast since it’s so healthy!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 21, 2021 AT 8:20 pm

        Oh yay!! So glad you loved this recipe, Claire. Thanks for making it and for the review. I so appreciate it!

    4. Elle
      April 21, 2021 AT 1:59 pm

      5 stars
      Perfect healthy smash cake! We made this for our son’s first birthday and it turned out great. He couldn’t get enough of it! We used 6 inch pans, doubled the recipe, and cooked for around 21 minutes and it was great. We frosted with greek yogurt and not only did our son love it but it also made for great pictures. Highly recommend. Thanks for the great recipe Brittany!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 21, 2021 AT 8:19 pm

        Yay!! So glad it turned out for you. Thanks for making my recipe for your son’s first birthday and for coming back to leave a comment. I so appreciate it, Elle.

    5. Kim
      April 16, 2021 AT 9:54 pm

      For those of us who have no clue how to bake, how would I adjust the recipe if I have a 6″ pan … and how long would I bake it?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 21, 2021 AT 8:23 pm

        Hey Kim – I haven’t made this in a 6″ pan, but others have doubled the recipe if using 2-3 six inch pans. Let me know if you end up trying this recipe and how it turns out for you!

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