Chia Seed Sponge Cake

Poppy seeds were never something that appealed to me as a child. Lemon poppy seed muffin? I’ll take cinnamon struesel, thanks. Poppy seed cookies? Give me a chocolate chip. Nothing about those little black dots screamed “tasty” to me, so they were never something I looked forward to. As I’ve gotten older, poppy seeds are more appealing to me, but I prefer them in salad dressing. In baked goods? Not so much. However, chia seeds, looking very similar to the unappealing specs in my muffins, I adore.

When I got the baking itch last Friday, I knew I was going to use the bounty of fresh local blueberries that were in season. But I couldn’t think of what else to use. I’d already done the blueberry-lemon combination, as delicious as it was, I wanted something new and fresh. So in lieu of poppy seeds, I chose to use chia seeds for a little extra texture and a boost of healthy fats.

This cake, like all of my recipes as of late, is completely grain-free. It’s also high protein and refined sugar free, making it almost healthy. I hear it makes a good breakfast… just sayin’. It’s moist and fluffy, and though it is soft it holds it’s shape fairly well without being dense like many other almond flour treats I’ve found. At first I was a little put off by the moistness of the blueberries (most of them sunk to the bottom in my first batch) but I found myself sneaking little bites here and there throughout the day, and realized just how good my little creation was.

I liken the texture to a moist sponge cake, more of a fork-and-plate cake than a grab-and-go kind of cake, the kind you sit down with and enjoy every last bite… and then lick the plate.

Blueberry chia seed cake

2 cups blanched almond flour
2 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
3 eggs
3/4 cup honey, melted
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2-1 pint fresh blueberries*

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 88” pan and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk almond flour, chia seeds, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, honey, applesauce and vanilla. Slowly add wet to dry, stirring well to combine. Stir in blueberries.

3. Pour batter into greased pan and smooth out top. Bake in preheated oven for 40-60 minutes until cake is firm and golden.

*The amount of blueberries you use is determined by how moist you prefer your cake. More blueberries will result in a moister, eat-with-a-fork cake, less will result in a more snack-friendly cake.