Recipe: Blueberry Sunflower Cake

August 7, 2011 · 26 comments

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Sunflower blueberry bars

Blueberries are everywhere now! Here is a recipe for a grain-free, gluten-free, sugar-free treat that has an interesting consistency, balance and taste. Blueberries add flavor, texture and an abundance of antioxidants to any baked product.

Antioxidants are a category of vitamins, minerals and enzymes that help bind up harmful metabolic by-products called “free radicals” that can lead to tissue and DNA damage, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and other age-related diseases.

Free radicals are highly reactive compounds that are formed from normal metabolic functions in the body. Free radicals are also generated  when our cells are exposed to a variety of substances such as radiation, chemicals, pollution, smoke, drugs, alcohol, pesticides and the sun. A poor diet also contributes to the formation of free radicals. Anthocyanin (the pigment that makes blueberries blue) contains naturally occurring plant chemicals called polyphenols which have very high antioxidant characteristics. The darker, deeper blue fruits have the highest anthocyanin values, thereby supplying the most potent antioxidant sources.

The USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging in Boston has developed an assay called ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity), which rates the antioxidant capacity of foods. Fresh blueberries have a high level of ORAC, at 2400 per 100 grams. Researchers have found that blueberries rank #1 in antioxidant activity when compared to 40 common fresh fruits and vegetables.

Sunflower seeds are also full of nutrition. Be sure to soak them in a salty brine before eating in order to remove enzyme inhibitors that make them hard to digest. You may also dehydrate them before using in this recipe. I simply soaked them and used them right away. If you aren’t planning on using them right away they must be dried or mold will form.

While sunflower seeds are high in omega 6 fatty acids (which should not be too high in one’s diet), they also provide omega 3’s as well as protein and fiber, phosphorus, potassium and folate.

Recipe: Blueberry Sunflower Cake

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups sunflower seeds, soaked in a salt brine for 7 hours and drained (where to get sunflower seeds)

4 Tbsp coconut oil (where to get all the coconut products for this recipe)

2 Tbsp coconut cream, mixed in 1/4 cup  warm water to make coconut milk

4 whole eggs (pastured if possible)

3 eggs separated

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp vanilla

5-6 Tbsp honey (local raw)

1 1/2 cups blueberries (organic if possible, fresh or frozen)

1/4 cup coconut flour

1/2 tsp  sea salt

1 tsp aluminum-free baking soda

Instructions

  • In a food processor, grind the soaked sunflower seeds until they are a fine paste. After a while, use the pulse setting as it seems to work best
  • Melt a little oil to grease your 9 x 13 pan
  • In a small pan melt the coconut oil and mix with the coconut milk, set it aside
  • In a medium bowl, separate the 3 eggs and add the rest of the eggs to the yolk bowl. Set the whites aside and beat until stiff
  • Add the coconut oil/milk mixture, the egg yolk mixture, honey, and vanilla to the sunflower seed paste in the bowl of the processor
  • Process this until mixed well
  • Add the dry ingredients to the processor: cinnamon, salt, coconut flour, baking soda and process
  • Pour this mixture into a large mixing bowl. Fold in the egg whites and the blueberries
  • Pour batter into the oiled baking pan
  • Bake on 350 (325 convection) for 40 – 50 minutes. Check after 40 minutes. If it is browned on top but not quite done, cover lightly with foil or parchment paper. (Note that parchment can catch fire so be careful if you use this).
  • Let cool (this may be challenging!)
  • When thoroughly cool, cut squares or slices with a pizza cutter and enjoy!

Variations

  • Add some pureed banana or apple sauce to the batter for a smoother cake
  • Sprinkle whole sunflower seeds on top as a garnish
  • Sprinkle cinnamon on top as a garnish

This post is linked to: Sugar-Free Sunday, Real Sustenance, Savory Sunday, Sweet and Savory, Monday Mania, Weekend Carnival, Mangia Monday, Delectable Tuesday, Tuesday Tasty Tidbits, Tuesday at the Table, Tuesday Night Supper Club, Traditional Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Made from Scratch Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, What’s Cooking Wednesday, Real Food Wednesday, Cast Party Wednesday, Made it on Monday, What’s Cooking Wednesday, Healthy 2Day Wednesday, Gluten-Free Wednesday, Foodie Wednesday, These Chicks Cooked, Creative Juice Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Frugal Follies, Turning the Table Thursday, Simple Lives Thursday, Recipe Swap Thursday, Pennywise Platter, Friday Favorites, Fresh Bits Friday, Food Trip Friday, Foodie Friday, Fat Camp Friday, Fight Back Friday, Blueberry Sunflower Cake, Friday Food, Fresh Food Friday, Friday Potluck, Simply Delish

 

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Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil

1 Gallon Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil

Tropical Traditions Gold Label Coconut Oil is a product I use every day.
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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Raj @ Flip Cookbook August 8, 2011 at 8:03 pm

Looks excellent! Baking with sunflower seeds sounds like a great way to add omegas into a diet. Thanks for the share at this week’s Sugar Free Sunday!

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2 Susan with Permanent Posies August 8, 2011 at 11:03 pm

OMG! This looks delicious! I love all your information too!

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3 denise August 9, 2011 at 9:11 am

I love blueberry anything! This is a must try!

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4 Hannah K. August 10, 2011 at 12:26 pm

I never really thought about using sunflower seeds in my baking, but it looks and sounds delicious Jill!

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5 Lark August 11, 2011 at 5:59 pm

You really are filling up my GF recipe file! Love it!
Thanks for linking up to “Made it on Monday” :)

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6 Tetcha August 11, 2011 at 10:25 pm

I love blueberries, and your blueberry sunflower cake looks delicious, plus it’s healthy! Thanks for sharing your recipe! I hope you can visit my FTF entry, too. http://www.delightmyappetite.com/2011/08/food-trip-friday-bonchon-chicken/

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7 Jellybelly August 12, 2011 at 3:17 am

Very nice presentation, looks delicious too! Happy FTF!

The Twrp and I

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8 michelle August 12, 2011 at 9:29 am

sounds great! i love sunflower seeds too!

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9 Miz Helen August 12, 2011 at 10:43 am

My Sunflower’s are just starting to make their seeds. I can’t wait to try this recipe. Hope you are going to have a wonderful week end and thanks for sharing with Full Plate Thursday!
Miz Helen

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10 Danielle@SixTastesChef August 12, 2011 at 8:13 pm

That first picture of the cake looks almost unreal with those beautiful blueberries. I love blueberry anything. This recipe looks good, and the texture looks amazing for GF baking.

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11 Jill August 12, 2011 at 9:02 pm

Hi Danielle,
Thanks so much for your kind words! It does have an interesting texture.

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12 u8mypinkcookies August 13, 2011 at 1:58 am

i love blueberries! <3

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13 Jay-agent112778 August 13, 2011 at 2:00 am

oh! sunflower seeds! at first i thought its the flower petals =))

heres my FOOD TRIP FRIDAY entry

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14 KB and Whitesnake August 13, 2011 at 3:54 am

Looks Delish!

We’d love you to share your recipes with us at

Simply Delish Saturday

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15 Pearl @ Sassy Chef Recipes August 13, 2011 at 6:27 am

Now this is healthy! I always had sunflower seeds that are candy-coated, but I’d love to try them like this! :)
Visiting from FTF: Lunch in Crisostomo, Nuvali ♥

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16 emily August 13, 2011 at 7:34 am

hi! This looks amazing! I would love for you to come over and link up to my Tasty Tuesday Party…
http://nap-timecreations.blogspot.com/
Hope to see you and your tasty goodness next week.

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17 Krista August 14, 2011 at 1:42 am

I’m excited to try this! That’s a lot of eggs for our family (gulp!), so I’m going to try replacing the whole eggs with flax meal + water. I used to be vegan so I know tons of tricks for baking without eggs. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

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18 Jill August 14, 2011 at 11:09 am

Hi Krista,
Eggs are so nutritious I don’t know why you would want to leave them out. In this cake I think replacing the eggs with flax meal and water would make it VERY DRY. I do not recommend that at all.

Eggs are the perfect food. Keep them in the recipe.

Here is my post about pastured eggs:
http://realfoodforager.com/2011/04/pastured-eggs-need-no-improvement/

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19 Krista August 14, 2011 at 11:42 am

Thanks for the link. I totally understand about eggs and their awesomeness, but at this point in our life it’s a matter of budget. I can’t afford to put 7 eggs into a cake and then proceed to eat several more in the same day.

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20 Jill August 14, 2011 at 12:27 pm

OK, Let me know how it comes out!

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21 Krista August 15, 2011 at 2:26 pm

I started soaking the sunflower seeds and then looked for my flax seeds. I couldn’t find them anywhere! So I ended up making this with all the eggs after all.

It’s really good, I like it a lot. We used a muffin pan and two mini loaf pans, they worked well. Thanks for the recipe.

22 Rcel August 14, 2011 at 3:04 am

I love any dessert with blueberry in it! :)

Want a bite of my Choco-topped Shakoy? Lol. Have a great weekend!

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23 Bibi August 15, 2011 at 6:10 pm

I love this cake….till now I used sunflower seeds only in salads.

Thank you so much for sharing this at Foodie Wednesday. hope to see you there this week as well.

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24 Linda August 15, 2011 at 10:54 pm

This looks great. I’ve never used sunflower seeds in a cake like that. I like the idea.

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25 Sheryl August 16, 2011 at 5:37 pm

THANK YOU so much for sharing your recipe with me at Cast Party Wednesday. I’d like to invite you back this week.
Thanks,
I hope to see you again!

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26 christy August 21, 2011 at 5:25 pm

what a gorgeous cake! i bet the coconut combines beautifully with the blueberry flavor…healthy and tasty…just the kind of cake i love. thank you for sharing with tuesday night supper club!

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