Who doesn’t love cake? However, we all know the importance of eating healthily and with the high sugar and saturated fat content in most cake recipes; they are a far cry from being good for our bodies. So if you are looking for something a little healthier, you are in the right place. Perhaps you want an alternative for your child’s next birthday instead of a sugar packed birthday cake. Maybe you just want to be able to treat yourself with something delicious without the guilt. There are so many healthy cake recipes out there that you can try for yourself, and we have put together some of the easiest and healthiest options.
Some Handy Healthy Alternatives
If you enjoy baking you probably have your own favorite ‘go-to’ recipes. Rather than throwing them out completely, why not modify them into healthy cake recipes? With some simple substitutes, you can enjoy eating even more of them without the unhealthy effects.
When it comes to cakes, two of the most problematic ingredients found in the majority of cake recipes are sugar and butter. Sugar, particularly in the form of fructose, in high quantities is not good for your body, which was not made to consume these levels of sugar.  There is no physiological need for our bodies to consume this kind of sugar and it provides us with no nutritional value at all.  Instead, it is an addictive substance that keeps us stuck in the loop of always wanting more.
Butter fills your baked goods with unnecessary saturated fat, calories and cholesterol.  While certain types of fats are good for you and useful for your body, if you are trying to lose weight then it may be worth swapping out the butter for something else. Most of the fats in butters are saturated fats which clog arteries and increase your risk of heart disease.  However, we need to be careful with what we choose to substitute butter with. Margarines and other spreads are packed full of Trans fats and are even worse for our bodies. 
So what can we use to replace these two unhealthy ingredients without sacrificing the taste or texture of our baked goods? Here are some ideas.
Healthy substitutes for butter in baking:
Apple sauce. While it makes the baking a little denser, apple sauce is a great alternative for butter in cakes.  It also adds extra fibre to your baking.
Avocado. Simply puree your avocado and swap it gram for gram into your baking. 
Olive Oil. While olive oil is slightly higher in calories than butter, it is made from healthy, unsaturated fats that your body actually needs. Use ¾ of a cup of oil for every cup of butter in your recipe. 
Healthy substitutes for sugar in baking:
Honey. The great advantage with honey is that you have many different flavors to choose from, whether it is something dark or light, so that you can match the flavor to your cake and the type of the sugar you are replacing. 
Xylitol. While it may sound like a nasty chemical, this sweet substance actually comes from the tree bark of birch trees. It tastes similar to sugar except that it has a low GI, so keeps you full rather than making your blood sugar spike and then crash, leading to more sugar cravings. It also has fewer calories than sugar, so it is a great alternative. 
Maple Syrup. Not only does maple syrup have a sweet taste but it also has additional nutritional content that sugar does not. It contains iron, zinc and other important minerals. Use ¾ of a cup per cup of sugar in your recipes. 
Healthy Cake Recipes
Flourless Chocolate Cake
This delicious and healthier take on a chocolate cake is sure to leave your sweet tooth satisfied and your taste buds happy. You will need 3 eggs, 4 oz. of unsweetened chocolate, ½ a cup of coconut oil, ¾ of a cup of honey and ¼ of a cup of cocoa powder. The method is easy too. Melt together the chocolate and coconut oil and combine this mixture with the rest of the ingredients. Whisk the mixture and pour it into a greased dish. Bake for around 20 minutes at 375F and you are done. You now have a beautifully rich cake that only requires small portions to satisfy. 
For these little muffins you will need 200g of wholemeal self-raising flour, 50g of porridge oats, 1 egg, 1 ½ teaspoons of bicarbonate of soda, 100g of caster sugar (or one of our alternatives), 2 bananas, 150g of blueberries, 2 tablespoons of honey, 100ml of skimmed milk and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Add the flour, bicarbonate of soda, oats and sugar or substitute to a bowl. In another bowl put the mashed bananas and egg, followed by the vanilla extract, honey and milk. Whisk it together. Then add this to the dry ingredients. Add the blueberries and put the mixture into cupcake cases. Bake them for 20 minutes and enjoy! 
Spiced Carrot Cake
This tasty treat does not involve any sugar. You need 150g of self-raising flour, 50g of raisins, 3 eggs, 100g of ground almonds, 50g of crushed walnuts, 300g of grated carrots, 3 tablespoons of skimmed milk, 4 teaspoons of mixed spice, 100ml of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda. Begin by putting the walnuts, almonds, raisins, flour and bicarbonate of soda in a bowl and mix together. Separately, add the eggs, milk and oil together, whisk and then add in the grated carrot. Add this mixture to the other ingredients and stir together. Pour it into a greased tin and bake for around one hour. You can also add a frosting if you wish.