My allergy girl celebrated her 1st birthday not with the typical Chocolate Cake and accompanying adorable messy-faced photos that most do… she had strawberry-rhubarb pie. We just didn’t know at that time how to give a kid with dairy, egg and nut allergies a proper birthday cake! Kate HATES strawberries!!! So not a good pick but at that time, we were just newly diagnosed with all of her food allergies and I was just trying to survive (the stress!, breast-feeding and not knowing what was safe for ME to eat so that my milk would be safe for her!…. trying to figure out how we were going to live a normal life….). Thank god for my dear friend Wendy Lishman who saved later birthdays from similar fates by sharing what is now my go-to allergy-safe cake recipe!
This year, I wanted something fresh and summery for Kate’s birthday menu so I decided to mix things up with Lemon Cake! Her and I share yellow as our fave colour too so it was the perfect choice! I hope you enjoy it as much as we all did!
When life gives you lemons….bake a cake!
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspons baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup vegetable shortening at room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 tsps grated lemon zest
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups dairy-free “buttermilk” (click here for recipe)
For the Dairy-Free “Buttercream” Frosting:
- 8 cups powdered icing sugar
- 2 cups Earth Balance dairy-free margarine
- 2 tsps grated lemon zest
- tbsp dairy-free milk (I use rice or coconut milk)
- Grease 2 nine-inch round cake pans with coconut oil or the dairy-free margarine. Then flour them and line with 2 circles cut out of parchment paper.
- Sift together all dry ingredients for cake.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat together the vegetable oil, shortening, vanilla and lemon zest on high speed until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time.
- Fold in the lemon zest.
- Fold in the dry ingredients alternately with the prepared dairy-safe buttermilk. (Start with adding 1/3 or dry ingredients, 1/2 “buttermilk”, 2nd third of dry ingredients, remaining “buttermilk, and then add last third of dry ingredients. Do not overmix the batter).
- Once batter is smooth and lump-free, pour into prepared cake pans.
- Bake at 325 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pans for 10 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.
- While cakes are cooling, prepare the frosting. Combine the icing sugar, lemon zest, and margarine in stand mixer. Add rice milk or alternative dairy-free milk a little at a time as needed to create a smooth, creamy frosting.
- Spread a good amount of the frosting on the bottom layer for the middle of the cake and then continue to ice the entire cake – top and sides. Store at room temperature.