Looking for a truly light and fluffy almond flour cake? Then this is the recipe for you! With a mild sweetness and a fine crumb texture, no one will believe it’s sugar-free and keto-friendly.
I am delighted to re-introduce you to the cake recipe that started it all. This, right here, is the recipe that made me realize that I could create keto cakes that rival anything made with flour and sugar. In both taste AND texture!
This almond flour cake was a watershed moment in my keto baking career. Back in 2012, I came across a cookbook on coffee cakes and one called Almond Crusted Butter Cake caught my eye.
When I set about modifying the recipe to suit my low carb lifestyle, I had no idea it would turn out so spectacularly well. And that it would become the base recipe for so many of my other creations, like Keto Victoria Sponge Cake or my classic Keto Birthday Cake.
Then I let the poor thing languish in obscurity for more than a decade as I went on to create other keto treats. But it’s such a fabulous recipe that I figured the time was right to bring it back to your attention!
What’s so special about this recipe?
So what makes this almond flour cake recipe so incredible? To put it boldly, it has the perfect cake texture, with a fine crumb and a light, fluffy consistency. In my experimenting, I somehow hit upon the ideal ratio of almond flour to the other ingredients. It just works!
And it doesn’t require separating the eggs or beating the egg whites. It’s a straightforward process of beating softened butter with granulated sweetener, then adding eggs and dry ingredients.
The simplicity of the cake itself belies its utter deliciousness. It may not be as eye-catching something more decadent, like a keto chocolate cake with tons of creamy frosting. But it’s sweet and lovely, and really needs no other embellishment or garnish.
It’s also easy to make and looks so elegant with the sliced almonds baked right in. Have it as coffee cake with your morning coffee, or serve it with some whipped cream and berries for dessert. It’s always superb.
Readers love this almond flour cake!
“So yummy!!! I made this in a couple small loaf pans and cut it in small slices, I topped it with whipped cream and strawberry syrup…the cutest and most delicious strawberry shortcake ever! This was also amazing as is????” — Megan
“This is soooooo good! it’s definitely one of my two favorite keto desserts! I’m picky too. I’ve always loved almond cake so I was so happy to find a recipe that tasted like the real thing! Amazing!” — Laurie
“Thank you so much for this recipe, it is the first truly successful almond flour cake recipe I’ve followed! Really pleased with the results, such a tasty cake and the flaked almond crust really works well.” — Colin
Ingredients you need
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- Almond flour: Using good quality almond flour is extremely important for almond flour cake. Many brands say that they are finely ground but you can see the grainy texture when you bake with it. I always recommend Bob’s Red Mill for the finest almond flour.
- Protein powder: Please don’t skip this ingredient. Protein powder helps simulate the protein in gluten, helping baked goods rise properly and hold their shape. And it’s part of what makes this almond flour cake so spectacular!
- Butter: Use unsalted butter and make sure you let it soften properly so that the sweetener combines well. You could use coconut oil for a dairy-free version, but make sure it’s softened but not melted.
- Swerve sweetener: You need a granulated sweetener for this recipe to help whip air bubbles into the softened butter. It helps give the cake a lighter, airier consistency. You can try other sweeteners but I don’t recommend allulose as it makes cakes brown too quickly and look (and taste!) a little burnt.
- Almond extract: I think almond extract is perfect in this cake, but you could use vanilla. You could also do lemon, orange, or something really fun like caramel!
- Eggs: Make sure the eggs are room temperature before you add them, and beat them in one at a time. This creates a lighter, fluffier batter, which translates into a better texture for the cake.
- Liquid: I often use almond milk but you can also do water. For a richer flavor, use half heavy cream and half water.
- Pantry staples: Salt, baking powder.
Step by Step Directions
1. Prepare the pan: Butter a 9×5 inch metal loaf pan very well. Sprinkle the sides and bottom of the pan with sliced almonds, pressing into the butter to help it adhere.
2. Whisk the dry ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, protein powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
3. Beat the butter: In a large bowl, beat the butter until smooth. Add the sweetener and beat until lightened and well-combined, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at time, scraping down the beaters and sides of bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Beat in the almond extract.
4. Add the dry ingredients: Beat in half of the almond flour mixture, then beat in the almond milk. Beat in the remaining almond flour mixture until well combined.
5. Transfer to the pan: Spread the batter in the prepared pan, being careful not to dislodge the sliced almonds on the sides. Smooth the top.
6. Bake: Bake at 325ºF for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top is deep golden brown and just firm to the touch. Let cool 30 minutes in the pan before flipping out onto a wire rack.
While this almond flour cake is easy to make, it’s important to follow the instructions carefully. I specify a metal loaf pan, because glass and ceramic bake very differently and don’t conduct heat nearly as well. So your cake will get brown on the outside but won’t cook through properly in the middle.
Protein powder is a critical ingredient in this recipe, as it helps create the ideal texture. I recommend whey or egg white protein powders, and some plant based versions may work as well. But I do not recommend collagen protein, as it will make the cake gummy and hard to cook through.
Let the cake cool in the pan for at least 30 minutes but don’t leave it too much longer. I’ve noticed that loaf cakes are nice and loose at 30 to 60 minutes, but then start to re-stick to the pan after that. If you have any doubts about your pan, consider lining it with parchment paper.
Do NOT over-bake this cake. Please watch my YouTube video on Keto Cake Baking Tips for my best tips.
Frequently Asked Questions
Used properly, almond flour can be used for baking wonderfully moist and fluffy cakes. But you do need to understand that it behaves very differently from wheat flour. It contains no gluten and far more moisture than wheat flour. I recommend reading Baking with Almond Flour for a better understanding of how it works.
Almond flour contains very few carbohydrates and has plenty of fiber, so it’s an excellent choice for people with diabetes. I find that baked goods made with almond flour do not spike my blood sugar.
This keto almond flour cake recipe has 7.3 grams of carbs and 3.4g of fiber per slice. Thus it has 3.9g net carbs per serving.
Almond Flour Cake Recipe
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- 3 cups almond flour
- ⅓ cup unflavored whey protein powder or egg white protein powder
- 2 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- ¾ cup Swerve Granular
- 3 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon almond extract or vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk or half heavy cream and half water
- Preheat the oven to 325ºF and butter a 9×5 inch metal loaf pan very well. Sprinkle the sides and bottom of the pan with sliced almonds, pressing into the butter to help it adhere.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, protein powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter until smooth. Add the sweetener and beat until lightened and well-combined, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at time, scraping down the beaters and sides of bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Beat in the almond extract.
- Beat in half of the almond flour mixture, then beat in the almond milk. Beat in the remaining almond flour mixture until well combined. Spread the batter in the prepared pan, being careful not to dislodge the sliced almonds on the sides. Smooth the top.
- Bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top is deep golden brown and just firm to the touch. Let cool 30 minutes in the pan before flipping out onto a wire rack.