Kirbie's Cravings

4 Ingredient Healthy Chocolate Cake (No Flour, Refined Sugar, Butter, or Oil)

This chocolate cake is moist and chocolatey. It is just 4 ingredients and doesn’t contain any flour, added sugar, butter or oil. The cake texture is just like regular chocolate cake and will satisfy your chocolate cravings.
a slice of healthy chocolate cake on a white plate.

After a few weeks of indulgent desserts, I wanted to make something a little healthier. This cake is still rich and chocolatey but it doesn’t contain any added sugar, flour, butter or oil. It only takes about 15 minutes to prepare and then it’s ready to go in the oven.

Ingredients

  • Cocoa Powder
  • Baking Powder
  • Eggs
  • Dates

Cocoa Powder: This cake gets its rich chocolate flavor from cocoa powder. I used dutch processed for an extra rich chocolate flavor but natural cocoa powder should also work.

Eggs: The eggs help provide structure for the cake, as well as adding moisture and fat to the recipe.

Dates: The cake is naturally sweetened with medjool dates. The dates also help create the texture of the cake, so it can’t be substituted with just any other sweetener.
overhead shot of a sliced cake.

How to Make Healthy Chocolate Cake

  • The dates are first blended until they form a smooth date paste. date paste in a food processor.
  • Then add in the cocoa powder and blend. Then add in the baking powder and eggs and blend until a batter forms. Everything can be blended in a food processor. The batter is then ready to go in the oven to be baked. cake batter in the food processor.

Healthy Chocolate Cake Texture

This cake bakes up similarly to a regular chocolate cake though the crumb is a little denser. The cake is sweet but not overly sweet. It can be enjoyed plain, but I enjoyed it even more with the frosting.
close-up shot of the cake.

More Healthy Dessert Recipes

4 Ingredient Healthy Chocolate Cake

Servings: 10 slices
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
This healthy chocolate cake will still satisfy your chocolate cravings. It doesn't contain any flour, added sugar, butter or oil.
5 from 10 votes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (295 g) pitted medjool dates
  • 6 tbsp (42 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp (9 g) baking powder
  • 3 large eggs

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Grease the interior of a 6 inch springform pan and then line with parchment paper.
  • Add dates to a food processor and blend until a smooth paste forms. The dates should pull away from the sides of the food processor and form a ball. See photo in post for reference. See notes section regarding possibly needing to rehydrate the dates before blending.
  • Once date paste forms, add in the cocoa powder and blend until fully incorporated.
  • Add in baking powder and eggs. Blend until smooth. You will need to scrape down your batter a few times and you may want to alternate between pulsing and processing to make sure all of the dates are blended. It can take several minutes to make your batter smooth. Very tiny bits of dates can remain but you don't want too many date pieces because then you'll just taste the dates in your cake.
  • Pour cake into prepared pan. Bake for about 30-35 minutes. A toothpick inserted should come out mostly clean. It's okay if your batter is not fully set. You don't want to overbake the cake. Let cake cool completely before serving. The cake will deflate slightly as it cools. If desired, you can frost the cake before serving. See notes section for the frosting I used.

Notes

  • If you are using a fresh package of very soft mejdool dates, you can just blend them as they are. If your dates feel a bit firm or dry, you will need to rehydrate them before using. To do so, soak them in warm water for about 15 minutes. Then lightly pat dry and use.
  • Make sure to remove pits from your dates before measuring.
  • You want to make your date paste as smooth as possible because it will be difficult to blend the dates once you add in the other ingredients. A few tiny pieces of dates is okay but you don't want too many because then you will taste the dates in your cake.
  • Even though this cake does not contain added sugar, it is not a low sugar recipe because the dates contain a lot of natural sugar.
  • For the chocolate frosting in the pictures, I used 3 tbsp coconut oil (melted), 6 tbsp cacao powder, and 3 tbsp pure maple syrup. To make the frosting, add oil and cacao powder to a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth. Your mixture should look like melted chocolate. Add in maple syrup. (Do not add maple syrup until the end. The maple syrup will thicken the mixture. If you add it with the other ingredients, it will make it very difficult to mix.) Whisk until smooth frosting forms. Please note this frosting does not work with dutch processed cocoa powder. I don't know if it works with natural cocoa. 
  • If you don't have these ingredients on hand for the frosting, another frosting idea is to make a ganache out of dark chocolate and heavy cream. 
  • This cake is quite rich and heavy so I recommend small slices. I usually cut mine into 10 slices. For the photos, I made the slices slightly bigger.
  • The estimated nutrition does not include frosting.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 115kcal, Carbohydrates: 23g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 2g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 85mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 19g, NET CARBS: 20g

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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64 comments on “4 Ingredient Healthy Chocolate Cake (No Flour, Refined Sugar, Butter, or Oil)”

  1. Did not use a springform. Just an ordinary cake pan with parchment paper. Came out no trouble whatsoever. The taste was absolutely to die for. Can’t believe there’s no oil, butter, or flour. More like a brownie texture, simply superb and so so simple. My new go-to chocolate “cake” recipe.

  2. Loved this recipe. Came out super tasty.
    I used shop bought date paste to the weight you mentioned in your recipe and beat eggs one at a time. Really fluffy and light consistency. Like magic without any butter or oil !!

  3. Thank you for the recipe
    My question is; we don’t need flour in this cake ?

  4. Lovely recipe and so simple to make. 
    I made it into small cupcakes and made a ganache topping with plain chocolate and water.
    Tasted like fudgy brownies.

  5. I haven’t made it yet…I can’t find a 6” springform pan.  Can you double the recipe for a bigger springform?

  6. Thank you for your delicious recipe!!! Can you substitute the dates with date sugar?

  7. To know hw to bake has been my dream.

  8. Absolutely delicious – I was so surprised with the ouctome! Moist and tasty, super easy to make too! Thanks so much for a fabulous chocolate cake alternative!

  9. I am diabetic and these recipes are just what I need when I have a sweet tooth but are still healthy.

  10. Great, great recipe! Dates are awesome to use for sweetening in baking but you do have to choose something that will either mask or complement the taste of dates. Anything chocolate is an excellent choice!
    For frosting chocolate pudding is nice & not heavy, good for this cake which is heavy & rich. The instant pudding is easy & works well if the cake will be eaten within a few days. Otherwise the cooked pudding still only takes a few minutes to prepare. Both can be made with coconut milk, unsweetened Silk is best.
    Another option for frosting is fresh whipped cream, either plain or chocolate. To make chocolate, add powdered cocoa powder before whipping but make sure to sift it in so it will dissolve well. After cocoa is mixed in well but cream is not completely whipped, add powdered sugar to preferred level of sweetness.
    These two options for frosting work well for any cake, not surecabout anybody else but I just can’t stand that type of frosting that is practically solid sugar! Ugh. It just kills the beautiful butter in it, too bad!

  11. A question about the frosting: is cacao powder different from cocoa powder? I have Hershey’s cocoa powder, a Dutch process cocoa powder, and cacao nibs. I understand that the Dutch process powder won’t work for the frosting, but would the Hershey’s? Or do I need to make a powder from my cacao nibs? 

    Thanks for the help! I am excited to make the cake and frosting this afternoon!

    • Cacao powder is different from cocoa powder. It is very close to raw, processed minimally at a lower temperature. Hershey’s is natural cocoa powder. It might work, but unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to test it yet. Once I do I will be sure to update the recipe card.

  12. Is there any vegetarian alternative to eggs?

  13. Hi, a 6inch baking form seems to be a very small one. Are you sure?

  14. It’s excellent healthy recipe

  15. Hi Kirbie! Just wondering if I could use raisons instead of dates? Sweet enough? Thank you!
    By the way.. you’ve helped me alot with your recipes, and mainly you discriptions and explanations!!

    • It might work but it’s harder to turn raisins into a paste. You might still have some bits of raisins in the cake

  16. Thank you, these recipes sound so good,I can’t wait to enjoy them !

  17. Awesome and Magnificent

  18. Great

  19. want to try this cake

  20. Nice

  21. Yummy I will try the recipe .

  22. Your note on the frosting says it doesn’t work with Dutch cocoa and you don’t know if it works with natural cocoa. So what cocoa did you use?

  23. I will try this seems good for me to make and easy.

    Thanks.

  24. It is a nice tip of the week. I will like to have more. And thanks for the update.

  25. I love this recipe, easy to bake and also easy ingredients.

  26. Looks very delicious 

  27. I do not have a food processor what can I use instead?

    • A food processor works best to make the date paste. You can try a blender or chopping and then grinding them by hand with a mortar and pestle (I would definitely soak the dates first so they are super soft). We haven’t tried it so can’t say for sure how it will work since you need a very smooth batter for the cake. Sorry we don’t have a better option for you!

  28. Yummy

  29. I Like these recipes and Ingredients used ….I enjoy baking. Thank you

  30. Do you have to use Mejdool dates, can you use other dates?

    • Medjool dates work best because they have more soft flesh. You can use other dates but it’ll be harder to get the dates into a smooth paste

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