Walnut Torte with Coffee Whipped Cream (Low Carb and Gluten Free)

In this household, it’s not only holiday season, it’s also birthday season. We have a multitude of family members born in the late fall and early winter, so the usual hustle and bustle of the holidays is magnified with the hustle and bustle of birthdays. This is especially true when those family members are children. Although it means significantly more work for us parents, I feel that little kids need their own birthday celebration separate and apart from the holiday festivities. My beautiful Celia turned four this past weekend, and as my dad, who is also a December baby, was here with his wife, we had a little family celebration. There were cupcakes for the kids, and a low carb, gluten free walnut torte for the adults.

My beautiful girl

I may have mentioned my passion for walnuts on this blog a few times, so I will try to refrain from boring you with that again. Suffice it to say that when flipping through old back issues of Bon Appetit, a recipe for a flourless walnut torte stopped me dead in my tracks. A quick glance at the ingredient list confirmed what I already suspected – that I could make a sugar-free version of this that would be virtually indistinguishable from the original. The only change I needed to make was the sweetener.

The Results: This really makes for a wonderful, elegant dessert. The texture is remarkably light, almost airy, from all the egg whites and whipped cream. And walnuts and coffee go surprisingly well together, it’s a flavour combination I wouldn’t think of on my own, but I won’t hesitate to make again. And if you are diabetic or a carb-counter, this is a dream dessert as each slice has only 2.9g of effective carbohydrate. Everyone agreed that you wouldn’t have a clue that this was a low carb version unless someone told you.

Walnut Torte with Coffee Whipped Creamadapted from Bon Appetit, Oct. 2005

1 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
4 large eggs, separated
1/4 cup granulated erythritol
16-20 drops stevia extract

1 cup heavy cream, chilled
2 tbsp powdered erythritol
1 tsp instant coffee crystals
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
12 drops stevia extract
2 tbsp chopped walnuts for garnish

Preheat oven to 350F and butter the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.

Process 1 cup of walnuts in a food processor until finely ground, but not clumping together. Do not overgrind as you will get walnut butter!

In a large bowl, beat egg yolks with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Gradually add erythritol and then stevia extract, beating until well combined. Stir in ground walnuts.

Using clean, dry beaters, beat egg whites in another large bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold into nut mixture in two additions. Transfer batter to prepared baking pan and bake until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 40 minutes.

Cool for 5 minutes and then run a sharp knife between cake and pan sides to loosen. Remove pan sides and let cool completely on a wire rack. Cake will fall in center.

Using an electric mixer, beat cream, powdered erythritol, coffee, vanilla and stevia until peaks form. Spread coffee whipped cream onto top of cake. Sprinke with chopped walnuts and serve.

Makes 10 servings. 10.1g total carbs per serving but only 2.9g if you subtract erythritol.

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  1. The cake looks amazing. And, your daughter is absolutely gorgeous!

    • Like you, I love walnuts and love coffee…putting the 2 together was genius!! I made this the torte and, not only, it was super easy, it was truly deliciousssss!!

      Thank you :)

  2. She is a dollbaby!!! Happy birthday, gorgeous!!!

    So I've always wanted to make a flourless cake. This looks delicious and light! I can see myself effortlessly eating the whole thing to myself…especially with the walnuts. NOMNOM!

  3. the cake looks amazing : walnut + coffee whipped cream sounds very good!

  4. Sprinkles of Parsley says:

    BEAUTIFUL!! I love the photos you've displayed! Sounds and looks absolutely delicious!

  5. Amy Bakes EVerything says:

    I've never thought of walnuts and coffee either, but I'll bet it's amazing! Well done!

  6. The cake looks amazing as always Carolyn but .. you have a future beauty queen on your hands with your little one (that or a lot of sleepless nights in around 12 years or so) ;)

  7. Your daughter looks like a little Princess. What a great combination of flavors.

  8. Your little girl is beautiful. Happy Birthday to her! So is your torte (beautiful, that is)! The flavors sound delicious!

  9. You are to walnuts like I am to artichokes. Love them! I do love walnuts, too, though. :-p Actually, I pretty much love everything I put my hands on. Well, within reason.

  10. Megan@foodalution.com says:

    That is a knock your socks off cake – love it…. everything about it!


  11. Carolyn, your little girl is as beautiful as I imagined when you spoke about her. Wow, those eyes!! Like mother like daughter! You are blessed beyond belief.

  12. Spicie Foodie says:

    Happy birthday to your beautiful little girl and father. I think it's great you give them a special celebration even though you are busy with the holiday. This torte looks heavenly and I sure it tasted so. Really sounds delish!

  13. Happy B-Day to your daughter who is absolutely gorgeous just like you! (She really looks a lot like you)
    Cake is fantastic, and looks very tasty! btw, all three of my kids are born around this time Late Nov. and two in Dec. So I feel your sweet pain:))

  14. Torviewtoronto says:

    Thank you :)
    Happy Birthday to your daughter and dad
    delicious cake yay you guys had a party too

  15. Kimberly Peterson says:

    Aaawwww Happy Birthday to your beautiful girl, turned 4! Kids just grow up so quickly don't they?

    If I don't get to visit your blog until the new year (because I'm going away for the holidays and therefore will be offline), have a MERRY CHRISTMAS and happy holidays and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

  16. Ohhh that looks beautiful.

  17. That torte looks fabulous! Happy Birthday to everyone!

  18. Cake Duchess says:

    Happy Birthday to Celia-she is gorgeous (like her pretty mommy!!).
    Love this recipe. I also really like walnuts!!

  19. Wilde in the Kitchen says:

    This cake looks amazing, I love walnuts!

  20. happy birthday to your daughter! she is precious! such a cute little princess with her crown!

  21. whatsfordinneracrossstatelines says:

    Your daughter is adorable! Tell her I said Happy Birthday! This photo is stunning, hope they feature it. I wouldn't ever guess that was low-carb. I would so eat this. I have to get the erythriol so I can try this.

  22. Boulder Locavore says:

    Happpy Birthday to Celia! She favors her pretty Mommy! 'Coffee whip cream'? I will never want it any other way now! Visionary.

  23. sara @ CaffeIna says:

    In Italy, these is the season of walnut tortes but I've never tried one with this amazing coffee cream on top. A must try!

  24. AnjasFood4Thought says:

    This cake looks absolutely delicious. I have been looking for a nut cake for a long time. All my attempts turned out very dry.Will give this one a try. How can I substitute the erythritol? Would it be the same amount normal sugar, brown sugar, palm sugar agave syrup? Hope you can help me with this.
    And your daughter is gorgeous.


  25. happy birthday to your little doll! She is adorable!

    I love that you got to have your cake and eat it too! This flourless walnut torte sounds delicious. And the way you describe the texture…mmm I would love this.

  26. Happy birthday to your dollbaby :)

    Ummm this whipped cream sounds delightful. I have to try it :)

  27. Wow, this looks amazing! Happy Birthday to everyone!

  28. We have a lot of birthdays in the fall/winter, too. I love the elegant cake that you made to celebrate. It sounds wonderful.

  29. Wow, Carolyn-Your little angel looks just like you…that gorgeous platinum blond hair, and the beautiful blue eyes. You are truly blessed!
    The torte is so light, and yummy…love the coffee whipped topping too.
    Thanks for sharing!…and HAPPY BITHDAY to your little one, and your family, of Dec. birthdays!

  30. Table Talk says:

    We too have a few December birthdays sandwiched in before and after Christmas, which is hard, when there are so many other cookies and treats around. Adding a birthday cake (or 3), can betricky. I am going to try this one for my mom's b-day; I know she will love it!

  31. Lynn @ I'll Have What She's Having says:

    My birthday is a week after Christmas, I was always so disappointed when I got a birthday/Christmas gift. I think making sure everyone gets to properly celebrate is important. This cake looks like a great way to do that!
    I've got a blog award for you at my site. Hope you'll stop by to pick it up!

  32. BakingWithoutaBox says:

    Look at that angelic little face!!! Beautiful looking torte.

  33. Amy at TheSceneFromMe says:

    This looks great! Something my father would love for me to make him for his birthday next month :)

  34. Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels says:

    Happy Birthday to your beautiful little girl and you dad! She is just SO cute! :)

    That torte looks AMAZING! I have an obession with walnuts too and can't get enough of them, especially in desserts. I love the idea of coffee whipped cream. The combination of walnuts and coffee sounds delicious! :)

  35. Coffee whipped cream!?!?! That sounds amazing. Can't wait to get make some for myself.

  36. kitchenarian says:

    I am in love with the idea of coffee whipped cream. Perfect on this dessert, on brownies, in my coffee and on a spoon! Great recipe. Thanks.

  37. low carb? gluten free? coffee whipped cream??!?!?!??!?!?!?!? amazing!

  38. Angie's Recipes says:

    The torte looks absolutely fantastic! Flourless, nutty and with a creamy coffee cream…mmmm…I would love a second serving! (I bet your beautiful angel was wondering why she couldn't get one! LOL)
    And Happy belated Birthday, Celia!

  39. Lindsey @ Hot Polka Dot says:

    That torte look dreamy! And what a good idea to add coffee to the whipped cream!

  40. Stormy at LaMaoomba says:

    Yum! And GF. I'll have to try it out over the holidays

  41. She's Cookin' says:

    Your baby girl is gorgeous! Birthday wishes to both Celia and your dad. I love nutty desserts, and a light, airy, low-carb torte that looks this delicious is something that I can get behind – esp. with coffee flavored whipped cream!

  42. Chef Dennis says:

    your walnut torte looks so very very good!! and your little angel is precious! Thank you so much for sharing such a beautiful picture with us!

  43. Delicious-I made this yesterday-so easy and very, very good!

  44. Green Girl @ A little bit of everything says:

    Happy Birthday to your beautiful Celia and you dad! She is just so cute! :) (sorry for the delay)
    I love walnuts too and your torte looks amazing.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hope you're having a wonderful week

  45. The Urban Baker says:

    this torte looks delicious. however, not as delicious as you little girl! i will take one just like her!

  46. Kim - Liv Life says:

    Oh, Carolyn, she is so sweet! What a lovely girl. My mom's birthday is shortly after Christmas, and yes, it is extra at this time of year, but we always do a big party between Christmas and New Years. And we always make sure that nothing is Christmassy at all, birthday all the way!
    Happy Birthday Celia!

  47. Love this recipe, but I’m trying to shop GMO-free. Erythritol is made from conventionally-farmed corn, so is very likely made from commodity corn, GMO’d. So you know of a brand that is certified Organic (therefore it would be sourced from non-GMO corn)?

  48. Hi, the recipe calls for 1 1/4 cups of walnuts, but seems to use only 1 cup (ignoring the garnish). Please advise – I’ve soaked and dehydrated my walnuts…….
    Thanks Carolyn – and Happy Canada Day to you from Burlington, Ontario!!

  49. spirals73 says:

    I was searching online to see if I could use ground walnuts as one does ground almonds in low-carb recipes. I am so glad you posted this! And even if one doesn’t subtract for erythritol, 10 grams for a dessert? That isn’t bad at all.

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