A reader asked if I had a recipe for a lemon cake. Indeed, I do! This is one of my favorites of the many variations on the rich, moist, basic Yellow Cake from Nourished. All are low-carb, sugar-free, gluten-free, and delicious.

¾ cup (3 ounces or 85 grams) almond flour
¾ cup (3 ounces or 85 grams) coconut flour
¼ cup (2 ounces or 56 grams) granular erythritol, another sweetener with bulk, or a blend
1 teaspoon baking powder
A pinch of salt
½ cup (4 ounces or 1 stick) butter, softened to room temperature
4 ounces whipped or regular cream cheese, softened to room temperature
High-intensity sugar substitute equal to ¾ cup sugar, ie: stevia, monk fruit, or liquid sucralose
6 eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons lemon extract
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
¾ teaspoon xanthan gum (for better texture)
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
Lemon Glaze, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 350º F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan, line with a circle of parchment paper, and grease the paper also. Dust with coconut flour and tap out the excess. Put almond flour, coconut flour, erythritol and/or any other dry sweetener, baking powder, and salt in food processor. Process for about 2 minutes until well mixed and erythritol, if using, is very finely ground. Alternately, grind erythritol in a spice or coffee grinder and whisk with flours, baking powder, and salt. Reserve.

Beat the butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add one egg and beat until incorporated. Blend in extracts and any liquid sweetener. Sprinkle xanthan gum over butter mixture, a little at a time, and beat in. Add remaining eggs, one at a time, alternating with reserved flour mixture, and beating until smooth after each addition. Beat for an additional minute. Scrape batter into prepared cake pan and level the top. Bake at 350º F for 45 to 55 minutes or until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted near the center tests clean.

Set cake on a rack to cool for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge to loosen. Turn cake out of pan and place, right-side-up, onto a cake rack. Glaze cake while still slightly warm, Serve with Whipped Cream, if desired.

Makes 10 servings.
Per serving with zero-carb sweeteners;
Net carbohydrate: 3.3g; Protein: 7.8g; Fiber: 4.2g; Fat: 21.6g; Calories: 249

A sweet, tart glaze, perfect over my Lemon Cake. Docking the cake with a fork or wooden
pick before glazing will make it extra moist.

6 tablespoons (2¼ ounces or 67 grams) polydextrose
2 tablespoons (¾ ounce or 24 grams) granular erythritol (erythritol crystals)
1/8 teaspoon salt
¼ cup lemon juice (amount from 1 large lemon)
High intensity sugar substitute equal to 2 tablespoons sugar or to taste
3 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
¼ teaspoon grated lemon zest

Whisk polydextrose, erythritol, and salt in a microwave-safe bowl until well blended. Stir in lemon juice and high-intensity sweetener. Microwave on high for about 4 minutes or until it bubbles and forms a thick, clear syrup. (Can also be cooked in a small saucepan on the stovetop.) Add the butter and zest and stir until butter melts. Pour over whole cake or warm individual slices in microwave and glaze with 2½ teaspoons each when ready to serve. Dock cake with a fork or wooden pick before glazing, if desired. Refrigerate glaze and reheat as necessary.

Makes ½ cup or 10 servings of 2½ teaspoons each.
Per serving (glaze only)—Net carbohydrate: 0.9 grams; Protein: 0.1 grams; Fiber: 5.7 grams; Fat: 3.5 grams; Calories: 39

Notes about sweeteners: 
Polydextrose is not very sweet but it has the texture and mouth feel of sucrose and adds missing bulk in recipes made with high intensity sweeteners, like stevia, monk fruit, or sucralose. It also browns and caramelizes like regular sugar, but it behaves like soluble fiber when ingested. It is widely used in commercial products to allow a reduction in the amount of sugar or fat needed and to add beneficial fiber. It has a total of 27 grams of carbohydrate and 25 grams of fiber for a net carb count of 2 grams per ounce. I used Sta-lite III polydextrose from Honeyville Grain* to test some of my recipes. Netrition* also sells polydextrose; their Life Source Foods PolyD Fiber is similar to the one from Honeyville Grain. Polydextrose is extremely cheap compared to similar sweeteners with bulk. It is composed of glucose molecules and a small amount of sorbitol, whereas the ones made from oligofructose are all fructose.

Erythritol comes in granulated form (called crystals) or as a powder. Although all the packages I have seen say they weigh the same by volume, the powdered form really weighs about half as much as the granulated. If you start with powdered erythritol, it is better to measure by weight than by cups to get the proper amount. If you start with the granular form, you may measure by weight or cups, but you will need to grind it in a food processor or a coffee or spice grinder before using in baking, as it does not dissolve easily.

A combination of sugar substitutes has advantages over any one alone. Erythritol has no calories or carbs, unlike most of the other sugar alcohols, however, it has two significant disadvantages. First, it has an odd, cool taste if used in quantity. Second it has a tendency to recrystallize, producing a grainy texture. Using a second sweetener, such as sucralose or stevia, helps; using a third would be even better. You may find that adding a packet of another sweetener, such as monk fruit or acesulfame K (Sweet One or Sunette) to the mix improves the taste.

~“Nourished; a Cookbook for Health, Weight Loss, and Metabolic Balance” is available in print or as a Kindle with a $2.99 Matchbook offer from Amazon > http://tinyurl.com/mq42koa
“Nourished,” is also available in Nook format from Barnes and Noble > http://tiny.cc/94t2jx

(c) 2014, Judy Barnes Baker, www.carbwars.blogspot.com

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Judy Barnes Baker

The working title for my first book was, “You’ll Never Know What You Are Missing.” It summed up my goal: to make eating for health synonymous with eating for pleasure. Once you discover the secret, you will find that the very best food for weight management, longevity, the treatment and prevention of disease, and over-all health and happiness is also the most sumptuous, satisfying, and indulgent way of eating the world has to offer. You are invited to the feast. Enjoy!
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6 years ago

I love this cake, it reminds me of the lovely lemon drizzle cakes that I became so fond of visiting little tea houses in the UK. I couldn’t find anything like it here until I came upon this recipe. I’d love to make a version without coconut flour due to allergies in our home. Can you suggest an adaptation using only almond flour? Many thanks for a fab recipe!