Blueberry, Almond & Coconut Cake

inspired by “Sweet” by Ottolenghi

Blueberry Almond Cake 

180g ground almonds (1 ½ cup)

60g desiccated coconut (¾ cup)

70g coconut flour (¾ cup + 1 tbsp)

1 ¼ tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

4 large eggs

¾ cup maple syrup

¾ cup unsalted butter, melted at room temperature

1 + ½ tsp vanilla extract

finely grated zest of 2 small lemons (2 tsp)

230g fresh blueberries (1 ½ cups)

20g flaked almonds

I love the versatility of this blueberry almond cake. It is grain-free, and can easily be made dairy-free; it is high in protein and full of fibre. Most importantly, it is delicious.

Blueberry season is perhaps one of my favourites. Every summer I eagerly wait for those cardboard cartons, brimming with fat, juicy blueberries, to arrive at our local grocer. I can’t get enough of them.

That’s why, when I saw this blueberry almond cake in Ottolenghi’s cookbook “Sweet”, I knew that it was going to be a new favourite. I was right. This cake is the perfect compliment to a cup of coffee, a delightful treat on a sunny afternoon, and a beauty to serve to a table full of guests. 

I modified the recipe, substituting maple syrup for sugar (oh how Canadian of me), increasing the amount of blueberries (I couldn’t help it), and adjusting the butter.  You can substitute in ghee, which is clarified butter, or coconut oil for the butter. This adds to the nutty taste of the cake, and pairs well with the blueberries. 

I made this cake three times, I insist –for quality control. While it is lovely to make this cake in the height of summer, when blueberries are fresh and in season, it’s also a great cake to make year-round. On a cool fall day, it provides a nostalgic taste of our previous abundant summer season.


Serves 8 – 10

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C (350 F). Grease and line a 23 cm round cake tin. 
  2. If you are using frozen blueberries, place the berries in a bowl to thaw. 
  3. If you have a high-powered blender (i.e. Vitamix, Blendtec), you can grind the almonds yourself. I freeze my nuts to prevent them from going rancid. Allow the nuts to thaw to room temperature before blending, otherwise they have the tendency to clump. If you do not own a blender, then you can purchase almond flour at your local grocer.
  4. Place the ground almonds, coconut flour and salt in a large mixing bowl and whisk. Ensure that the lumps have been removed. 
  5. Place the eggs in a separate medium mixing bowl and whisk lightly. Add melted butter, vanilla extract, maple syrup and lemon zest. Whisk lightly until fully combined. 
  6. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture, and whisk. Once the mixture is smooth, gently fold in two-thirds of the thawed blueberries. Pour mixture into the tin and sprinkle the remaining blueberries on top. 
  7. Bake the cake for 40 minutes. Very carefully remove the cake, and sprinkle the coconut flakes evenly on the top. Return the cake tin to the oven and continue baking for another 5-10 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. 
  8. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool before removing from the cake tin to serve. This cake can be served with yoghurt or, my favourite, vegan vanilla bean ice-cream by Cold Comfort

Further ideas and modifications

  • You can substitute ghee or coconut oil for the butter. 

1 Comment

  1. Denise cole

    What a fabulous looking dessert!


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