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Cashew Cake

This is my all-time favorite "healthy-ish" cake. Cashew Cake is made with roasted cashews and old-fashioned oats. This cake is dense, moist, and pairs perfectly with the reduced-fat cream cheese frosting -- yum!
Course Brunch, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American, Healthy, Vegetarian
Keyword Cashew Cake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 16 bars
Calories 167kcal
Author Chelsea Lords
Cost $7.82


  • High-powered blender (Vitamix or Blendtec)
  • 8x8-inch pan, parchment paper, nonstick cooking spray



  • 1 cup cashews (Note 1)
  • 3/4 up to 1 cup light brown sugar (Note 2)
  • 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon each: ground cinnamon, fine sea salt
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons corn starch (Note 3)

Optional Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (softened to room temperature)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1-3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • Optional: additional chopped cashews to top


  • PREP: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (162 degrees C). Line an 8x8-inch baking pan with parchment paper and lightly grease with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • CAKE: Add the cashews and brown sugar to a large powerful blender (Blend-tec/Vitamix) and blend until cashews are broken down and incorporated with brown sugar, 20-30 seconds. (Don't blend too long-- we don't want to make cashew butter!) Add in the cubed butter and pulse to break it down. Scrape down the sides of the blender and add both eggs, milk, and vanilla extract. Blend until smooth and creamy. Add in the oats, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and cornstarch. Blend until batter is completely smooth, stopping and scraping down edges as needed, about 90 seconds.
  • BAKE: Pour completely smooth batter into the prepared baking pan, using a spatula to scrape out every bit into the pan. Smooth the top with the spatula and bake for 37-43 minutes or until the cake is lightly browned at the edges and set in the middle of the oven and bake until done--toothpick should come out clean when inserted in the middle.
  • FROST: Meanwhile, place softened cream cheese in a large bowl. Using a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese with the vanilla and salt until smooth. Slowly add in the powdered sugar, beating between additions, until smooth and creamy and to your desired consistency. Add milk and beat until smooth.
  • DECORATE: Frost the completely cooled cake with the frosting. If desired, top the frosting with chopped cashews. (See Note 1.)



Note 1: Cashews: We love dry roasted and lightly salted cashews best — more flavor without any extra effort on your part. (Here's what we use in this cake).
Note 2: Light brown sugar: Make sure the sugar is soft and fresh for the best possible cake texture. If you are used to healthier treats, use 3/4 cup brown sugar, but if you'd like a sweeter cake, use 1 cup. I usually do 1 cup!
Note 3: Corn starch: This is an important ingredient since we aren't using flour and need some additional support and thickness.
Nutrition: Calories do not include the optional frosting. With the optional frosting, one serving has 227 calories.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 167kcal | Carbohydrates: 15.9g | Protein: 2.8g | Fat: 10.4g | Cholesterol: 38.5mg | Sodium: 16.6mg | Fiber: 0.8g | Sugar: 9.6g