I made this little cake as an ode to the unsung hero of nut-free butters -- pumpkin seed butter! I must admit I totally neglected, and even laughed at pumpkin seed butter over the years... until I had a little health miracle related to it that totally changed my point of view. Since then, pumpkin seed butter and I have been inseparable.
Don't let the funky greenish brown color fool you, it can definitely hold its own in the dessert department. Anyways, after featuring all kinds of nut-free raw(ish) cakes on the blog and in Unconventional Treats over the past year, I realized that pumpkin seeds haven't gotten their own spotlight just yet.
The time has come :)
The cake turned out really delish by the way. Pumpkin seed butter + maple syrup + cinnamon + chocolate chunks, vanilla, and a hint of salt is a super simple lovely flavor profile.
This cake also happens to be coconut-free and doesn't have any added oils, which I know is a big bonus for some of you..
It has a really creamy, soft, smooth, and totally satisfying texture, which was my favorite part.
One thing I worried about a bit from the get-go was the color... because let's face it, pumpkin seed butter isn't exactly the prettiest looking out there. But somehow with the unexpected addition of some lovely pale roses and chocolate chips, the cake turned out a pretty khaki color and I totally loved it. A chocolate drizzle topping could have been nice too, but I left it as is because I loved the "functional khaki + girly floral pink" combo.
Last but not least, this recipe is for a tiny 4" cake (which gives me 6 tiny servings, or 4 bigger ones, or 2 "normal" size slices). I'm loving the tiny cakes wave because of the variety -- I make so many cakes that it'd be hard to keep up with finishing so many giant cakes (my freezer is only so big after all), but if you're planning on making this for a larger occasion, be sure to check out the cake pan conversion chart at the bottom of the page to help you size it up.Print
Pumpkin Seed Butter Ice Box Cake
Creamy, soft, nut-free raw cheesecake with chocolate chunks and a totally satisfying texture. Vegan and gluten-free, made without added oils.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 4" cake
- Category: Cake
- Method: Raw
- Cuisine: Dessert
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- 2 soft medjool dates, pitted
- ½ tbsp maple syrup
- ½ cup pumpkin seed butter
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup almond milk
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp raw ground vanilla bean (or 1-2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract)
- ⅓ tsp salt
- ¼ cup chocolate chips or chopped chocolate bar of your choice
- a few pumpkin seeds, chocolate chips or chunks, edible rose buds
- Process all crust ingredients in a food processor into a sticky crumble. Transfer to a 4" springform pan and press down into a flat crust. Freeze while working on the next step.
- Blend all filling ingredients, except the chocolate chips, in a power blender into a smooth consistency. Fold the chocolate chips into the filling batter with a spoon. Pour the filling into the pan over the crust and smooth out the top. Decorate with desired toppings.
- Freeze for 5-6 hours or overnight. Thaw out slightly, slice and enjoy! (Keep leftovers frozen).
This got rave reviews from my husband! He is now planning to make it for “Cribbage Night with The Boys”. I made my own pumpkin seed butter and used cacao nibs and goji berries for the topping. The bright orange-pink of the goji berries is fun with the khaki brown of the cake. I may toast up some coconut for the crust next time...
That sounds wonderful, Stephanie. So glad the cake was a hit. Thanks for the lovely feedback! :)
dana bader says
I've been making this for sometime, I even ordered a cake mold with the same size. I love it
I'm so glad you're enjoying this cake, Dana. Thanks for sharing! :)
Yay! No oats, nor coconut! I bought a mini pan specifically for this recipe, what do you think is a good substitute for chocolate chips? (I hate chocolate) lol
Hey Dana, you could just leave them out altogether -- they're not crucial. Or use something else that's crunchy/flavorful -- for example pieces of chopped roasted nuts, buckinis (if those exist where you are - they're hard to find here for some reason). If you like cacao nibs, can use that (I know it's part of chocolate, but not sure if those are out for you too since their flavor is a bit different. I'd say chopped nuts is your best bet.
I'm still warming up to pumpkin seed butter - something about the flavor bothers me - but this gorgeous cake has me intrigued. About time I learned to love this ingredient :)
Hehe. So happy to hear from you Lucie -- I was actually thinking about you yesterday! :) It's tricky with the pumpkin seeds butter, but if it's flavored right it's quite good.
It's true that pumpkin seeds aren't the most favorite in our home too, but I always try to add/hide some everytime I have this occasion, as they are really healthy! Thank you for this lovely recipe, Audrey, looks so creamy and it makes me think of the hemp seeds bars of yours!
Yes, I love their nutritional specs too + their affordability, and the fact they look like little leaves on top of cakes doesn't hurt ;)
Natalie | Feasting on Fruit says
This is one nut butter I've neglected so badly I honestly don't think I have ever had it? But I like pumpkin seeds and I like every other ingredient here, so I think we will get along. Ha it totally is khaki colored! With the pop of pink it looks totally gorgeous though, plus taste > color and I'm pretty certain it tastes amazing?
Well, if you're not used to it... it might take some adjusting ?? but with cinnamon + maple it's really nice.