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Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cake

Updated on June 20, 2014

Bake a Healthy Pumpki

Anytime is a great time to make a pumpkin cake. This cake will make your eyes pop open. It is a meal in itself, packed full of nutritious ingredients, and very tasty as well. I like to eat this cake for breakfast to start the day off right.

Don't be dismayed by the long list of ingredients. People love this cake, and personally (although they tell me the reason they like it is because it tastes so good) I think the reason is because somehow their taste buds are responding to the wide variety of healthy nutrients in it. But this is a very forgiving cake, so if you are missing any particular item, you can just leave it out or substitute for it.

This cake freezes well too - if you have any left!

Pumpkin Cake Ingredients

1 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour

1/2 cup of whole rye flour

1/2 cup of white flour

3/4 cup of Quaker oats

2 tsps baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg (optional)

1/2 tsp cloves (optional)

4 to 8 eggs (I like to use 8)

1 small very ripe orange (optional, but makes the cake taste even better)

5 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 small container of mild flavored yogurt (about 1 cup)

Three or four small, very overripe bananas

4-5 tablespoons of honey

2 cups canned pumpkin

1/2 cup chopped nuts (I use walnuts and pecans)

1/2 cup raisins

Optional: 1 small grated carrot or sweet potato. (Since I eat this cake for breakfast, I like to add as many different ingredients to it as possible.)

Making the Pumpkin Cake

Prep time: about 20 minutes

Cleanup time: about 5 minutes

Baking time: about 45-50 minutes

1. Grease your favorite flat cake pan. (I have one that is 12' x 18' and one that is 9' x 13' and it works in both of them)

2. Combine the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices in a large bowl or pot). Stir with a fork until they are well mixed. If you are missing one kind of flour just substitute an equal amount of the kind you do have.

3. Wash the orange and squeeze the juice into a cup. Remove any seeds that are in the cup with a spoon and add the juice to the flour mix. Grate the peel over the bowl, using the small holes on a hand grater.

4. Break the eggs one by one into a cup to check if they are good, and add to the flour mix. (Just use the one you measured the flour in.)

5. If you are going to mix this by hand, now just add everything else to the bowl and mush it about (like you do when you start off kneading bread by hand) until it is all thoroughly mixed. That's what I do (saves electricity and washing up the mixer) and it works fine. If you are going to use a mixer, mash the bananas with a fork first, and stir in the raisins and nuts last.

6. Pour the batter into your greased pan, and use a spatula or spoon to level off the batter so the top is even. You don't want a mound in the center or it won't bake evenly.

7. Bake at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes to an hour. This depends on your oven, the size pan you used and whether you used the orange juice and extra eggs. Insert a knife to test. The cake is done when the knife comes out clean. (Don't worry, you will be able to tell by the delicious smell emanating from your oven when it is time to test.)

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The Result - Tasty Healthy Pumpkin Cake

Healthy Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cake
Healthy Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cake

In this one, I decided I had plans (pumpkin soup) for the rest of the pumpkin. (So I used half pumpkin and half grated sweet potato.) This quantity here will cost you about 300 calories. Add a glass of milk or a container of plain yogurt or a hard boiled egg, and you should feel satiated for the next 6 hours at least.

Substitutions

This is a very forgiving recipe

If you are missing some of the ingredients, you can just substitute others, or leave them out altogether. I like to use as many as possible though, because the mix of different flavors and textures somehow helps make up for the smaller amount of oil and sweetener that this cake uses.

Flour

If you are missing any one of the other kinds of flour, just add more of the whole wheat to make up for it. I like to use all three kinds but you can make this with all whole wheat or all white flour (though it won't be as healthy).

Eggs

I like to use at least 8 eggs in this cake because I eat it for breakfast. If I am feeling extravagant I will even use 12. (They are medium sized eggs not large or extra large, though). But you can get away with using as few as three if you want to.

Oil

Here is the main trick to keeping this cake healthy. I use Zeitola oil, which is a mix of canola oil enriched with Omega 3 from flaxseed, and virgin olive oil, rich in vitamin E. If you can't find something similar you could use four tablespoons of canola oil, and one of olive oil. Because olive is a fruit, its taste blends in here with the tastes of the other fruit in the cake. You can even use all butter, though when I do this I use a bit more butter than I would oil. The oil seems to get mixed in more thoroughly than the butter does. The yogurt and bananas replace the missing oil (most cakes use 1 cup of oil) in helping keep the cake moist and tasty.

For a moister cake you can also add another tablespoon of oil, but if you use the bananas and yogurt, you'll probably find that the cake tastes just great without them. If you don't have bananas to add to the cake, then add 2 more tablespoons of oil. If you don't have yogurt, add half a cup of milk instead. Or you can omit the yogurt altogether.

Honey

The other main trick is to use honey instead of sugar, and rely on the very overripe bananas and the orange to add extra sweetness. If you have a bigger sweet tooth, or you don't have any overripe bananas just add another tablespoon of honey. Keep in mind that honey has a much sweeter taste than table sugar so you don't need as much of it.

Spices

If you don't have one of the spices you can leave it out or replace it with something else. For example, you could replace the cloves or nutmeg with ginger, or just leave them out. Cinnamon is a must have, though.

Canned Pumpkin

If you don't have canned pumpkin you can use fresh pumpkin. Just cut it into cubes, some water in a pot, boil it and mash it. Or if you are in a hurry you can substitute grated sweet potato without even bothering to cook it.

Toppings

ORANGE GLAZE

6 tablespoon of water

2 teaspoons of orange zest

2 tablespoons of butter

1 tablespoon of honey

Juice from one orange

Place water and orange zest in a small pot. Bring to a boil simmer until reduced by about half. Turn off heat and immediately stir in butter, honey, and orange juice. Poke holes in the cake with a toothpick, and drizzle the glaze over it.

You can also top this cake with your favorite cream cheese frosting, or even just powdered sugar.

Pumpkin Cake Nutritional Information

The entire cake, if made according to the recipe above, has about the following nutritional values:

Calories: 4040

Protein: 119 grams

Carbs: : 543 grams

Fat: 171 grams

Fiber: 78 grams

If divided into 36 pieces, each piece has about the following values:

Calories: 112 (about as many a slice of bread and a pat of butter, except it tastes a lot better, and provides more nutrients).

Protein: 3.3

Carbs: 15

Fat; 4.8

Fiber: 2

And provides about the following percentages of the minimum daily requirements,based on a 2000 calorie diet:

Iron: 4.1%

Calcium: 2.2%

Vitamin A : 44%

Vitamin C: 8%

Vitamin E: 3%

Vitamin K: 1%

In addition, each piece contains smaller amounts of the following vitamins and minerals B6, B12, D, E, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Folate, Pantothenic Acid, Choline, Betaine, Calcium, Copper,Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sodium, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Selenium, Floride Phytosterols.

Other Benefits:

Studies have shown that consuming cinnamon daily helps stabilize blood sugar.

It's great for restocking up on some healthy carbs after a rousing game of Quidditch.

What do you think about my pumpkin cake?

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    • profile image

      othellos 4 years ago

      Delightful lens. Very nice combination of some of the ingredients I like the most in my cake! Thank you for publishing it.

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      Never mind Thanksgiving or Halloween, this looks wonderful at any time. Thanks for this great recipe!

    • profile image

      getmoreinfo 4 years ago

      I like this Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cake

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 4 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      It does sound healthy. Just reading the first few ingredients-- all whole grains and oats. Does sound delicious too.