A good keto diet is about healthy whole foods, but now and then life calls for something special. Birthday cake is one. While not everyone who goes Primal or keto chooses to bake traditional treats, some do. And for those who do, it’s nice to have a lower carb version to enjoy.
This cake recipe uses Swerve in place of sugar. If you tolerate sugar alcohols well, Swerve can be one tool for Primal and even keto friendly baking—so you can have your keto cake and eat it, too.
Preheat the oven to 325 ºF/162 ºC. Set up a double boiler and gently melt the chopped chocolate and butter together until the mixture is melted and smooth. (If you don’t consume dairy, this cake can be made dairy free by substituting coconut oil for the butter. For the buttercream, use a 2:1 ratio of palm shortening and coconut oil.)
Remove from the heat and stir in the almond butter, vanilla extract and coconut milk. Allow the mixture to slightly cool before adding the egg yolks. Whisk together until well combined and set aside.
In another bowl, combine the almond flour, cacao powder, granular Swerve, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Slowly mix the dry mixture into the wet mixture a bit at a time until incorporated.
In another bowl, whisk the egg whites. (Whisking the egg whites help create a light and airy cake texture. You can whisk by hand or use a mixer. If using a mixer, start on a lower setting and increase after 1-2 minutes until soft peaks form.) As you whisk, they will become foamy and eventually start to stiffen. Once they begin to form soft peaks, carefully fold the whites into the batter until just combined. (Overmixing will cause the batter to lose the airy texture.)
Pour the batter into two greased 6” round pans (glass pyrex work well, too). Bake for 20-25 minutes. The cakes are done when a toothpick Just comes out clean or the top of the cake feels firm but springy. Set aside to fully cool.
To prepare the buttercream, combine the softened butter and vanilla. Sift the powdered Swerve into the butter a bit at a time and mix together until it is all combined. Set aside 1/3 of the buttercream mixture. To the remaining 2/3 of the mixture sift in the cacao powder and mix. Chill in the fridge for 10 minutes.
Stack the cake layers with the vanilla buttercream in the center of them and place on a cake stand. Frost the top of the cake with the chocolate buttercream and use a spatula to dab frosting along the outside of the cake and turn the stand as you spread the frosting with the spatula. If desired, sprinkle shredded coconut on top of the cake. Chill the cake until the frosting is set and slice.