Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Cranberry Nut Cake, Gluten Free Cranberry Nut (Pecan) Cake Recipe, Cheater's Version

Delicious Cranberry Nut Cake!

A couple weeks ago when our grandson was staying the week, we went to Carla's (of The River Flowing Blog fame) so that he could meet her two boys. They are such nice, intelligent, and fun  young men!  I had a hard time dragging our grandson away, believe me.


While we were there, Carla gave us some Cranberry Nut Cake, which, it turns out, is her younger son's favorite cake. Hmmm.  I took a bite of that cake....

I think it is now my favorite too. At the very least, it's a tie between this and my Williamsburg Orange Cake.

Fresh cranberries, a gift from Carla!

Anyway, please urge Carla to post the recipe for her delicious Cranberry Nut Cake. I decided to try to make it gluten free, but then ran short on time, not to mention my natural bent toward laziness, and went with Hodgson Mill yellow cake mixes instead.

Gluten free cake mix manufacturers have it all figured out that if they put the amount necessary to make a 13x9 cake in their box, you'd never pay what they're going to charge for it. So, they put just enough to make an 8x8 or 16 cupcakes. That will certainly not do. Who wants just a mere taste? So I bought two of them and realized that I could then make a 13x9 and have enough batter left over to make 3 mini cakes. So that's what I did.

Chopped Fresh Cranberries

Gluten Free Cranberry Nut (Pecan) Cake Recipe:  (cheaters' version)

Makes one 13x9 and 3 mini cakes (2x5 cakes, appx.)

Two boxes of Hodgson Mill Yellow Cake Mix
1 c. butter, softened
4 large eggs
2 c. buttermilk
    OR, if you don't have buttermilk, you can substitute 3 T. white vinegar and enough whole milk to make 2 cups. Wait 15 minutes. (Emeril's recipe)
2 t. vanilla extract
1 t. almond extract

(The boxes got pitched, but I'm pretty sure that the ingredients listed above are simply what was listed on the box, times two.) The following ingredients were included because Carla had fresh cranberries and pecans in her cake and that makes all the difference!)
2 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, chopped (pulsed in the food processor and tossed with 1/4 c. sugar)
2/3 c. chopped pecans  

In your mixing bowl, whip the butter. Add cake mixes and mix until well mixed. (Good grief, there's got to be a better way to write that!)

Add eggs, buttermilk, and extracts. Mix on low and then on medium-high until mixture is fluffy. 
Fold in nuts and cranberries. 

Spray a 13x9 cake pan and 3 mini (2x5) pans with non-stick cooking spray. 

Pour enough batter into the 13x9 pan to make it 1/2-2/3 full. It made the baked cake nearly level with the top of the pan. Just enough room for frosting. Divide remaining batter among the three mini pans.

Place all cakes in the 350 degree oven.

Take mini cakes out after approximately 32 minutes, 13x9 out after 43 minutes (not 43 additional, but 43 total). Do test the cakes with a wood pick to make sure they are done. Cool on baking racks.

Frost cakes (optional, of course).


Some butter, some confectioner's sugar, a bit of milk, and a wee bit of vanilla and an even weeer bit of almond. You'll have to wing it for I don't remember how much of anything I put in. But start with 2-3 T. soft butter and go from there. You don't want the frosting so thick that it's unspreadable or rips up the top of the cake, and you don't want it so runny that it doesn't have any body.

Cranberry Pecan Cake - so moist!

So if you're looking for a delicious gluten free cake recipe, look no further.  If you'd like to make it the usual way, please visit Carla and ask her to post the recipe. You can tell her I sent you to pester her. :-)

I served this cake at our recent hymn sing. I'm pretty sure that not a soul would have guessed that it is gluten free. I guess that's a good thing, considering that some people seem to know instantly that if it's gluten-free, they don't want anything to do with it. I won't mention my son's name here.


This post is linked to


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Mike@Bit About Britain said...

Well, this caught my eye - it's getting close to lunchtime. Looks yummy! I should bake more, but I'm bound to get my mixes mixed or maybe not mix the mixes as they should be mixed...

NanaDiana said...

OH! Gotta love that! Yum! I am the ONLY person in my whole family that likes cranberries. That is crazy! They ate them when they were little-but- as adults decided they don't like them.
I love the cranberry fields in the western part of the state.
I didn't realize you lived that close to Carla. I just love her! xo Diana

Preppy Empty Nester said...

Hello Judy!! I live in cranberry country so this is the perfect recipe for me. I will make it over Thanksgiving when the girls are home. Thanks. Have a great week!

podso said...

It looks good. And I recognize the hymnal I "grew up on." (or with) ..

Unknown said...

Oh, yum! That looks awesome! I'm sure the cake was appreciated!

The Charm of Home said...

Lovely Judy! I love cranberry anything. I will have to try this soap out. I have been wanting to get some soap from you! Thanks for stopping by. You must have know I was thinking about you! Have a great week.

A Grandma’s Blessings said...

Ooo that looks so good, I love anything with pecans in it!

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Oh my Judy this looks delicious. What a great cake to serve with afternoon tea! ♥

Heide at ApronHistory said...

A couple of weeks ago I made a gluten-free cranberry pound cake. It was a recipe from pinterest (I will have to try and find it). I also loved that the recipe was dairy-free. It had almond flour and coconut flour, which was nice as I only had to go out and buy two flours instead of a whole kitchen full. It was quite good. Since the cake wasn't very sweet, I think cherries or slightly sweetened fresh fruit on top would be better next time.

Lowcarb team member said...

Looks extremely YUM and how nice to meet with Carla.

Hope the week is going well for you.

All the best Jan

Nonnie said...

What beautiful treats. I never thought about cranberry cake. I love cranberry relish and cranberry bread. I just never think of them at any time except around Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

That sounds yummy. Thank you for the recipe.

Anonymous said...

This cake sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

L. D. said...

I think it all looks so delicious. It was a fun discovery. All cake is good to be but those ingredients do sound like a great addition.

Empty Nester said...

That looks delightfully delicious! I think cranberries are beautiful, but that could be because red is my favorite color. :) How's your weather? We're still too dang hot during the day. I heard there was a winter storm brewing in the plains states. I wanted to go. Of course, I'd probably wish I hadn't once I got there. LOL

Chatty Crone said...

Oh my goodness you sure do know how to make someone hungry!! Hey no Hodgepodge today. Hope you are okay.

Terri D said...

That cake sure does look (and sound) delicious! Yum!! Seems like a regular yellow cake mix and your recipe would work for those of us who don't need gluten free.

Denise said...

I love cranberries.

wildirishrose said...

This sounds delicious! Thank you for sharing!

Barbara said...

The cake looks wonderful, and yes, I'm gluten-intolerant. Funny how people think GF recipes are yucky. They are good -- except for store-bought GF burger buns. I haven't found one yet that I like. But then, I don't eat beef much, so it's not really an issue. You should make this your official "signature dessert" due to the Cranberries!!

Louisette said...

Hummm...Nice recipes cakes

Unknown said...

I am a fun of cranberries,

Jean | said...

Looks really good, Judy! So funny (but true!) what you said about the gluten-free cake mix: "Gluten free cake mix manufacturers have it all figured out that if they put the amount necessary to make a 13x9 cake in their box, you'd never pay what they're going to charge for it." One company wanted me to try their gluten free pie crust mix. I could tell by looking at it, there simply wasn't enough of it. The woman insisted it was enough for a 9-inch pie. Maybe she uses a 9-inch flat *pizza* pan for her pies!

Sandra said...

oh yum oh yum oh a chuckle out of the icing recipe.. my mom cooked everything that way...

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

I don't think I've eaten any gluten free baking and lucky for us I don't have to. The vegetarian in the family is easy to feed and she's the only dietary concern. It amazes me how for years GF people had to make things from scratch or search high and low for their own bread. Now, our grocery store has one side of an aisle dedicated and the Bulk Barn foods carries many products as well.
Cranberries are a favourite to add to recipes I already make but I'd still like to see your blogging friend's cranberry nut loaf.

Wendy said...

Your post has made me feel very hungry. They all look delicious gluten free included!

deb @ frugal little bungalow said...

This looks delicious and great for the holidays. Cranberries are a favorite of one of my sons so I may have to try it out though luckily for us we don't have to worry about gluten.

Carla from The River said...

Hi Judy,
Wow, that looks delicious! I think you did just wonderful with your version. :-))
I will let Atticus know you frosted yours. He loves frosting.

Debbie said...

looks yummy!!! i don't like cranberries alone, but any kind of bread or cake with cranberries i love!!!!

carrie@northwoods scrapbook said...

That looks and sounds delicious Judy!! Flavors I absolutely love - especially this time of year. :)


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