Chocolate Cake: a low sugar, low fat recipe

One of the goals for my healthy look at 2010 is to bake nutritious things without losing the flavor and satisfaction of eating something really evil. I plan on using a lot more whole grains and very little white flour in my quest to be sporting a bikini by summer. Oat flour, a hearty whole-grain flour, turns out to be a great alternative to white flour. It contains soluble fiber which has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol and improve heart health. It also makes a great substitute for whole wheat flour, especially if you are allergic to wheat. Or you can mix oat flour and wheat flour together for a healthy combo. I found some oat flour at the store (in the health food section), but you can easily make your own by tossing rolled oats into the blender or food processor and whirring away until it turns into powder. You’ll end up with the same stuff.
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My Father-in-Law had a birthday recently, and since he has to watch sugar levels & should be eating heart healthy foods, I thought this recipe would be perfect for him: Healthy Chocolate Cake.

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There is absolutely zero butter or oil in the cake portion. It stays moist with a whole lot of unsweetened applesauce, and egg whites are used in place of whole eggs. The sugar level in the cake is low too (just 2/3 cup of granulated sugar). In the recipe, I give alternatives to bake the cake with Splenda if you need it to be sugar free.

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The frosting is made from low fat cream cheese, a cup of powdered sugar (again, I give you a Splenda option), cocoa powder, vanilla and nonfat milk.

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And since it’s my blog’s two year birthday as well, I thought I’d give myself a piece.

I brought this cake to a birthday celebration with a bunch of relatives, and I didn’t tell any of them that I had baked a healthy cake. I sliced and served, and I waited for their reactions. My mother in law was first (she’s a chocolate fanatic): “Ok, Lori… what’s different about this cake?” My son said, “I can taste cinnamon!” My sister-in-law said, “It tastes like a healthier version of chocolate cake.” They all loved the cake (with the exception of one picky 4 year old, who ate the frosting only). The cake itself has a very different flavor (because of the oat flour). I don’t think the cake tastes all that fabulous on its own- it’s not super chocolatey and rich. My son argued that fact though and said he loved the cake part. The frosting is more “normal” and there’s a lot of it. Spread over the top of the healthy cake, the frosting really makes it a worthwhile baked treat. Divided into 15 pieces (a 9×13-inch cake), this cake only has 195 calories and is 3.5 Weight Watchers points. See, you can still enjoy dessert when you’re trying to be healthy!

The complete recipe with nutritional information can be found HERE.

Leave a Comment




38 Responses to “Chocolate Cake: a low sugar, low fat recipe”

  1. 1

    Jessica @ How Sweet — January 7, 2010 @ 3:44 AM

    I love oat flour and have never seen a recipe for cake with it! I usually use it for pancakes and loaves, but this is a great idea!

  2. 2

    Estela @ Weekly Bite — January 7, 2010 @ 3:52 AM

    What a delicious looking cake! Definitely doesn’t look low fat ;)

  3. 3

    Karen — January 7, 2010 @ 4:10 AM

    Thanks, thanks, thanks for the yummy recipe. My DH is diabetic and I’m trying to sustain a 100 pound weight loss I accomplished last year. I think I’ll make this today.

  4. 4

    shelly (cookies and cups) — January 7, 2010 @ 5:00 AM

    That looks sooo good!! Thanks for posting the ww points!

  5. 5

    Susan @ SGCC — January 7, 2010 @ 5:30 AM

    Looks great, Lori! I’d have never guessed it was low fat/sugar.

    Happy Blogiversary!

  6. 6

    bellini valli — January 7, 2010 @ 6:25 AM

    My goal is to continue to eat healthily in 2010 as well. Great recipe Lori!!

  7. 7

    noble pig — January 7, 2010 @ 6:33 AM

    Happy Blog Day with an awesome cake!!! It looks delish.

  8. 8

    Maria — January 7, 2010 @ 6:38 AM

    Looks like a winner to me! Nice job on a healthy dessert!

  9. 9

    Miss — January 7, 2010 @ 6:41 AM

    I’m a huge fan of using alternatives to oil and butter in baking – helped me keep fifty pounds off for over nine years now (even with having three kids during that time!)

    I’ve found that I prefer using apple butter as opposed to apple sauce though, thicker consistency and I enjoy the slight spicy flavor it adds to brownies, cakes and muffins. Slightly higher in sugar content though, sure.

    Works for me though. :)

    Favorite winter treat – the old Nestle Tollhouse recipe, replacing butter with 1/2 cup of Apple Butter, replacing eggs with just the whites and using only 1/2 a bag of chocolate chips. So yummy.

  10. 10

    Cate O'Malley — January 7, 2010 @ 6:41 AM

    Totally doesn’t look guilt-free at all – yum!

  11. 11

    Katie @ goodLife {eats} — January 7, 2010 @ 6:43 AM

    Happy Birthday RecipeGirl.com!!

    What a great way to still indulge with some chocolate while watching what you eat! I love these types of desserts.

  12. 12

    Kalynskitchen — January 7, 2010 @ 6:59 AM

    Lori what a great idea to use oat flour to make a dessert. I grind up oatmeal all the time and use it in various things. I’m curious about the applesauce you used here, was it unsweetened applesauce?

    And congrats on the two year anniversary, your blog just gets better and better!

  13. 13

    Kalynskitchen — January 7, 2010 @ 7:00 AM

    Okay, duh. I should have checked the recipe first because I see you specified unsweetened applesauce. Sounds very good!

  14. 14

    Josie — January 7, 2010 @ 7:12 AM

    Happy Blogiversary! :)

  15. 15

    LilSis — January 7, 2010 @ 8:05 AM

    Happy Birthday Recipe Girl! I love the photo with the piece of cake and two candles!

    Tomorrow is my husbands birthday and I still haven’t decided on a cake. You certainly can’t tell by the photos that this is low fat.

  16. 16

    Mimi — January 7, 2010 @ 10:19 AM

    Looks delicious and definitely worth the calorie savings.
    Mimi

  17. 17

    cookiepie — January 7, 2010 @ 11:19 AM

    Happy blogiverary!! That is one gorgeous healthy cake!

  18. 18

    MaryMoh — January 7, 2010 @ 11:38 AM

    Looks very delicious…love it. Love that it’s a healthier version…..less sweet & less fat.

  19. 19

    Cakes By Lizzie — January 7, 2010 @ 11:56 AM

    Your blog looks scrumptious, and you have so many amazing things on here!!

    Lizzie

  20. 20

    Sarah, MaisonCupcake — January 7, 2010 @ 12:29 PM

    This looks fantastic! I signed up to WW this week so I’m delighted to see you even have points value here. Happy Blogiversary too, I love your blog and it’s a real inspiration to me. xx

  21. 21

    Bob — January 7, 2010 @ 12:46 PM

    Looks wicked good to me! And happy blogiversary!

  22. 22

    faithy — January 7, 2010 @ 6:20 PM

    Interesting! A chocolate cake that is low fat & yet look so deliciously chocolatey! Yummy!

  23. 23

    Adam — January 7, 2010 @ 6:50 PM

    Great way to kick off your program, Lori. I bet the applesauce worked really well with the cake, frosting and all. My mother did WW, and I remember 3 points being not too much at all. Fantastic job :)

  24. 24

    Jen Schall — January 7, 2010 @ 7:14 PM

    I’m impressed… Your cake looks great. Congrats on teh blogiversary!

  25. 25

    Gera @ Sweets Foods Blog — January 7, 2010 @ 7:22 PM

    Marvelous seeing a healthy chocolate cake!! Congrats for your 2 Years Lori!!
    You’re showing that it’s possible to have healthy desserts :)

    All the best,

    Gera

  26. 26

    chinesischer grüner Tee — January 8, 2010 @ 3:03 AM

    Thank you so much for this. I am having guests at my place this weekend who are extreme fitness freaks. This would be apt to treat them with.

  27. 27

    Katrina — January 8, 2010 @ 7:45 AM

    That’s awesome, indulgence without all the guilt! Looks and sounds de-lish! I love making things like that.

  28. 28

    Katrina — January 8, 2010 @ 7:45 AM

    Oh, and happy 2 years bloggin!

  29. 29

    Angie Verburg — January 8, 2010 @ 8:28 AM

    This looks great. I haven’t tried oat flour before but will definitely look for it or make it myself. I’d like to try nut flour too. Splenda is my fave sweetner.

  30. 30

    patsyk — January 8, 2010 @ 10:08 AM

    Wow! That’s quite a treat for less than 200 calories! Very nice!

  31. 31

    jennywenny — January 8, 2010 @ 12:22 PM

    How interesting, thanks so much for sharing! This looks perfect for the coach of my bike team, I think he’s type 2 diabetic so this would work well with the reduced sugar, I dislike using splenda so I appreciate that you didnt use it.

  32. 32

    pigpigscorner — January 9, 2010 @ 3:13 AM

    What a treat!

  33. 33

    Kelsey/TheNaptimeChef — January 9, 2010 @ 12:08 PM

    Happy Blogiversary!!

  34. 34

    Lisa @ Stop Eating All The Chocolates — January 9, 2010 @ 2:34 PM

    Yum!! Looks delicious! Happy 2 years!!

  35. 35

    applesauce — January 9, 2010 @ 9:55 PM

    on the pictures it looks so rich, hope it turns out the same when i make it.

  36. 36

    LyB — January 15, 2010 @ 5:12 AM

    I love the idea of that frosting, sounds just delicious! Happy 2 year anniversary!

  37. 37

    steff — October 24, 2010 @ 5:27 AM

    This looks like a great recipe. Also since it uses oats, it may be great for diabetics. I know that oats help stabalize your blood sugar, so maybe with that and the low sugar content….

    • Lori Lange replied: — October 24th, 2010 @ 7:43 AM

      @steff, yes! I made this for my FIL’s birthday and he is diabetic.