No-flour chocolate cake

No-flour chocolate cake

Green Kitchen Travels

There are numerous stories floating around the internet on how the no-flour chocolate cake was invented. Many of them say that it was an unintentional mistake by a baker during the 1920s. Apparently he forgot to add the flour to an almond cake that he baked for a party. If it is true, it might be one of the most delicious mistakes of the century. We have tried various no-flour cakes and tortes in France and southern Europe and they are always spectacularly good. Most of the cakes use a base of ground nuts, dried fruit and eggs, which makes them moist, sweet and slightly crunchy. Our chocolate cake is quite classic, but with a Moroccan twist. Dates are the only sweetener, orange is added for the flavour and pomegranate seeds are sprinkled on top. The cake is perfectly moist and deeply decadent from the dark chocolate, cacao powder and ground hazelnuts. It’s a very popular cake in our family and we make it for all kind of holiday parties and birthday celebrations.


Quantity Ingredient
300g raw hazelnuts
or 300g nuts of choice
25 fresh soft dates, stoned and roughly chopped
or 25 dried dates, soaked, stoned and roughly chopped
5 eggs, separated
1 orange, finely zested and juiced
3 tablespoons raw cacao powder
or 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
75g butter
200g 70% minimum cacao dark chocolate

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
450ml cream, whipped
or 450ml thick yoghurt
100g pomegranate seeds
or 100g fresh berries


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a 20 cm springform cake tin with baking parchment.
  2. Place the nuts in a food processor and pulse until you have a fine-textured flour. Tip into a small bowl and set aside. Add the dates, egg yolks, orange zest and juice, cacao and bicarbonate of soda to the food processor and run at high speed until it has become a sticky mixture. Transfer it to a large mixing bowl.
  3. Melt the butter and 150 g of the dark chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water and pour it into the date mixture together with the ground hazelnuts. Stir until well combined. Use an electric mixer to whisk the egg whites until soft peaks have formed, then fold them into the rest of the batter. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake for about 1 hour 10 minutes, or until the cake is firm but not dry. Remove from the oven and leave until cold before taking it out of the cake tin.
  4. Spread the cake with whipped cream on top, or serve it with some yoghurt on the side. Shave the remaining chocolate over it and finish off with a large handful of pomegranate seeds or fresh berries. Serve immediately. The cake will keep in the fridge for 3–5 days.
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