Home / Food & Fitness / Cake for Dinner: 1 Keto Mug Cake, Multiple Ways

Cake for Dinner: 1 Keto Mug Cake, Multiple Ways

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that part of the reason so many of us needed to switch to a keto diet was because of an insatiable love of sweets.  I’ve made no secret of the fact that my Southern upbringing accustomed me to pancakes, biscuits & jelly, a parade of apple and pecan pies, blackberry cobbler, Mississippi Mud Cake, ooey gooey campfire s’mores, and platters of cookies.  And usually you’d eat some of that right at the end of every meal – or at least you’d have a piece of cornbread with honey drizzled on it, right?

Or maybe that’s just me and that’s just how I got fat.  But I’m betting some of my fellow ketopians can commiserate.

What if I told you that you could eat cake every day – and it’s a satiating meal in its own right, full of goodness and nutrition?  And it’s perfectly portioned so you can’t gorge out.  And there’s chocolate (chocolate optional).

Enter the mug cake.

keto mug cake

Well, more precisely, this is one mug cake, multiple ways.  As in – you can take the base recipe and customize it to change it to your favorite flavor.  I’m going to include several different recipes that I love below, but I want to urge you to go hog wild and come up with your own customizations!  Just imagine me as Marie Antoinette, screaming “LET THEM EAT CAKE” at all of you guys, except let’s put it in the context of me not being a rich aristocrat on my way to the chopping block and you guys not being impoverished peasants who are starving, okay?

Hold on, let me try again… I need a different pop culture reference here that doesn’t portray me as a hoity-toity snot.

This was a triumph.
I’m making a note here: HUGE SUCCESS.
It’s hard to overstate my satisfaction.

Anyway this cake is great
It’s so delicious and moist!

That’s better.

03-03-14-cake1

Base Ingredients

  • 3T almond meal/flour
  • 1T coconut flour
  • 2T butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2T Torani sugarfree syrup (or sweetener + extract to taste)
  • 1t baking powder

Melt your butter in the bottom of the mug.  I zap it in the microwave for 20 seconds.  Then add your dry ingredients – the almond and coconut flour and the baking powder.  Throw in any additional mix-ins (we’ll discuss those below).

keto mug cake

Add your egg last.  Trust me on this one.  If you plop your egg right down on the hot butter, it’ll start cooking… and that’s just something you don’t want to deal with, chunks of cooked egg in your cake.  Ugh.  The flours cool it down so it doesn’t instantly fry, lol.

Incorporate all your ingredients.  I use a butter knife and stir until everything looks well and truly mixed.  I especially make sure that there are no slimy egg trails tracking through the batter, because, again, you don’t want obvious bits of cooked egg in there.  I cannot emphasize this fact enough.

Put your mug cake in the microwave and nuke it in 20-30 second segments until it is done.

PLEASE NOTE:  this will vary with YOUR microwave.  Be very careful the first time, and err on the side of caution.  You do not want an overdone mug cake, yuck!  The magic time for MY microwave is 50 seconds.  Now that I know that, I just pop it in there for that time and it’s done.  This will take trial-and-error on your part.

keto mug cake

Another important thing to note is that the center of your mug cake may still look runny like this when it’s done.  The only thing that’s really cooking in there is the egg, and they cook at such low heat that this cake will actually continue cooking after you bring it out of the microwave.  You want it to look a little underdone when you pull it out.  See how the edges look crispy and finished, but the center still looks moist?  That’s perfect!

keto mug cake

This is that same cake moments later, after I unceremoniously dumped it out of its mug and into a bowl to show you the innards.  See?  Solid!  You can see the deliciously fluffy texture of it quite clearly in that photo.

Now, let’s talk flavors and ingredients.

If you’ve looked at any of my recipes, you know that I am a huge proponent for mixing flours.  This is because my husband and I have to do keto on a budget.  This blog is a hobby for me – a way to keep from going crazy by writing my thoughts – and I have a day job where I’m not a food blogger.  Any recipes you see here were created first and foremost for us, and if we like them enough, I share them with you.  So I try to cut costs wherever possible.  Almond flour is quite expensive, at least in my book – but I LOVE the flavor and texture it gives when cooking with it.  However, because of its price, I usually cut it with more inexpensive keto flours.

The coconut flour doesn’t really impact the flavor of the mug cake, but I never do more than a 3:1 ratio of almond:coconut flour because coconut flour sucks up moisture.  You would have to find some other way to inject liquid into this cake if it had more coconut flour in it.

Flaxmeal is another thing I usually cut my almond flour with, and I’ve made flaxmeal mug cakes before, but ultimately I just don’t care for the texture as much.  Flaxmeal is innately oily and chewy; if you like that you can definitely try a mix that incorporates it, but I think the 100% almond or 3:1 almond:coconut flour ratios make the truest, softest, fluffiest cakes.

Feel free to experiment – you should be fine if you keep to a total of 4T flours!

Now, as far as flavors go – this is one mug cake, multiple ways.  So far I’ve made Chocolate Chip Cookie, S’mores, Snickerdoodle, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Vanilla, and Salted Caramel.  I’m a self-proclaimed chocoholic, so Chocolate Chip and S’mores are undoubtedly my favorites (even though they are higher in carbs because of the actual chocolate content).

There are two ways to change up the flavors here.  What I tend to do is just use different Torani syrups as sweeteners.  I have a local World Market, and I buy the bottles when they go on sale for half off ($3.50 for a large size, woot!).  We originally started using the syrups as ways to flavor our bulletproof tea, but I soon figured out I could cook with them (see my Cheesecake Fluff for a totally delicious example of flavoring desserts with them).

You can also use a combination of spices and other add-ins to change flavors.   I’ve done both, and here are some of my favorite recipes:

keto mug cake

Chocolate Chip Cookie

use base recipe, but make sure that you incorporate

  • 2T Torani sugarfree Vanilla syrup (or French Vanilla)
  • 1 square of dark chocolate, chopped (or half a serving of chocolate chips)

S’mores Cake

use base recipe, but make sure that you incorporate

  • 2T Torani sugarfree S’mores syrup
  • 1 square of dark chocolate, chopped (or half a serving of chocolate chips)

Snickerdoodle

use base recipe, but make sure that you incorporate

  • 2T Torani sugarfree Cinnamon & Brown Sugar syrup (or Belgian Cookie)
  • a couple of dashes of cinnamon, straight from the shaker

Mounds / Almond Joy

  • instead of butter, use 2T coconut oil
  • 2T Torani sugarfree Vanilla syrup (or French Vanilla… or chocolate maybe?  I haven’t tried that one yet)
  • sprinkle of unsweetened coconut
  • 1 square of dark chocolate, chopped (or half a serving of chocolate chips)
  • a few almonds, if going for Almond Joy

Chocolate Peanut Butter

use base recipe, but make sure that you incorporate

  • 1T natural peanut butter – melt this when you melt the butter,  so it’s pliable
  • 1T cocoa powder

Please note that for some strange alchemical reason (dude, I don’t know, I just throw shit together), this cake gets GIANT and you probably need to set the mug on a saucer or risk a messy microwave.  And it’s incredibly filling and has a higher fat/calorie content, so I’d share this one.  Or store half to eat later.

03-03-14-cakenut

So, let’s briefly discuss nutrition.  The base recipe comes in at a whopping 424 calories with 40g of fat, 12g of protein, and 4g of net carbs.  That essentially means that this dessert is an entire meal in its own right (well, if you’re a girl like me who doesn’t usually intermittently fast – most of my meals come up around 500cal).  You could, of course, split it and have a more reasonable dessert.  That’s up to you.

My husband doesn’t care for this recipe as much as I do, because he’s never really been a sweets eater and because he says it seems like I’m cheating when I eat cake for lunch.  But let’s be real here.  This cake is composed entirely of nuts, butter, and egg… and aren’t those things the cornerstone of keto?  This ain’t my momma’s cake, made with white flour and sugar – this thing has substance and nutrition.  And as long as I treat the add-ins with moderation (ie: I don’t go overboard on the damn chocolate), I feel like this cake can be a healthy part of the keto diet.  Just make sure you keep into account the nutritional value of additional ingredients you incorporate into the base recipe!

I hope you like this recipe.  Let me know if you come up with different winning combinations!

As always, if you enjoyed this recipe, would you pretty please consider liking my Facebook page? You could also follow me on Instagram. And I love comments here – let me know how you like a recipe, and/or how you tweak it to make it your own!

 

 


41 comments

  1. I think this recipe has certainly sealed the deal on making a keto cake. I’m trying to limit my sweets and like you, I’m a slave to the desserts. The cake looks fluffy enough to satisfy my needs. Next step is to fully go Keto lifestyle. Just not ready yet. When did you make that decision to fully commit?

    • Z, is that you? MY Z, and not some strange internet Z? :D

      Darren and I decided to go keto back in October. I browse Imgur once a day, and I saw a before-and-after picture of a couple that looked like us when they started. It linked back to the Reddit keto forums, so I went and read everything there. I showed Darren, and he was way more gungho about it than I was. I was concerned because I always thought grains were healthy. However, I liked the idea of high fat because all of the other diets I’d tried before just felt so limiting on foods I enjoy (nuts, cheese, butter… you know, the good stuff). So we decided to give it a try pretty quick. We jumped in right away, probably less than a week after I saw that picture.

      Really, what convinced me wasn’t the rapid weight loss, but how much better I feel. I know now that I DEFINITELY have some sort of gluten sensitivity. Let’s just say there’s a big difference in how my stomach feels and the frequency in my bathroom trips now that I’m not eating that crap. I’ll still eat a moderate amount of it – we eat low-carb wraps a few times a week – but that doesn’t really bother me. But dude, if I get something like Chicken Critters at Texas Roadhouse (which I LOVE and are still moderately low carb), I definitely feel it later.

      If you decide to give it a try, just jump right on in. I can’t recommend the reddit keto pages enough – http://www.reddit.com/r/keto/ and http://www.reddit.com/r/xxketo. Just don’t be afraid of fat (I eat 70% fat, 25% protein, 5% carbs daily) because that’s the good stuff. Give it at least a month to see how you feel, because most people tend to get “keto flu” (carb withdrawal) as they detox in the first week. It works and I feel great. You can do it too!! <3

      • So funny!!! Yes I am YOUR Z!! I will set a date and jump right in. I’ll let you know my progress. Thanks and keep on writing!!! I love it!!!

  2. Every two weeks, I make a keto splurge purchase and I guess the next one will be almond flour.
    Which brand of whipped cream do you use or did you buy one of the expensive homemade whipped cream dispensers? I was using a whipped cream that had some corn syrup in it, minimal amounts but I kept getting blood sugar spikes just from it.

    • I usually just use Reddi-Wip, because it’s fairly cheap and low carb. It does have some added sugar in it, but it has never caused me problems. By far the BEST whipped cream, though, is homemade. I don’t have one of the homemade dispensers, I just whip heavy cream + sweetener in my KitchenAid or even in a blender (hand mixer or immersion blender would work wonderfully too, and you can of course just whisk it… but that’d take forever…)

  3. Just had a chocolate chip/vanilla mug cake with strawberries and whipped cream for breakfast, absolutely awesome way to start the day.
    Thanks for the recipe, it’s brilliant.

    • I’m so glad you like it, that sounds like a winning combination!! Thank you for stopping by to let me know! :)

  4. Whyyy have you not included the ingredients for salted caramel?? :( It is a crazy obsession of mine. Sweet caramel goodness accentuated by a salty contrast. PLEASE enlighten me. Or maybe don’t because I’m afraid the ease and likely deliciousness of this episode may be my next obsession!! hehe

    • I’m sorry!! Salted Caramel is the easiest! Just flavor the cake with the Torani Salted Caramel syrup :) I think you can buy it at World Market online if you don’t have one nearby. It’s SO good and I love to drink it in my tea, too.

      Thank you for stopping by and commenting on my blog! My lawyers advise me that I need to inform you that I cannot be held liable if you explode after eating too many salted caramel mug cakes.

      • Whoops, pardon the silly question! I’m not in the US so I wasn’t aware of what flavours are available. Had a small hope it wouldn’t rely on a syrup… I will look into it. Thanks! :)

  5. This..was..soo..good! I made it in a small square tupperware dish, slid in 2 squares of 90% dark choc. and sprinkled some coconut and pecans on top..the best mug I’ve had..thanks!!

    • That sounds really good!! Where do you buy your coconut? I’ve had the hardest time locating unsweetened locally… I may have to give in and order it online.

  6. Hi Brit, Made your Keto mug cake tonight. It’s the 3rd low carb baked thing I have made (first thing from your blog). The first thing I made was a failure. The second thing turned out ok, but I didn’t like it. This I actually liked. Yay! I made it with the vanilla syrup and added 5 raspberries and a Tbsp of sugar free choc chips. It had a bit of a bitter aftertaste. Do you think that’s the chips? Ate half and put the other half in the fridge for breakfast. Wonder how it will be cold?

    Thanks for all the great recipes. I love the humor in your posts and how straight forward your recipes are.

    • Hi Trudi, thank you for stopping by and commenting. I’m so glad you liked my mug cake!! Keep on baking – it takes awhile to get into the swing of things when it comes to low carb. It’s been almost a full year for me and I still haven’t figured out a good cookie recipe.

      I’m not sure if the chocolate chips could have created a bitter aftertaste for you. I don’t think my cakes have one. I’m not really a fan of sugar free chocolate, though… I’d rather just eat really dark chocolate and deal with the higher carb count. That’s the only thing I could think of that would give it a funky aftertaste, unless maybe the raspberries weren’t quite ripe. I haven’t tried adding fruit into mine yet!

      How did the cold cake taste?

      • It was just as good cold. I made another one. I left the raspberries out and used a piece of Ghiradelli intense dark chocolate broken up. Very good.

  7. Has anyone made this with stevia powder or drops? I can’t do the syrups. I’m Assuming I would add an equivalent amout of liquid, such as coffee or unsweetened almond milk, to replace the syrup.

    • I think the stevia would work fine if you replace the liquid. I think the almond milk would be good! Let me know if you try that, and how it turns out.

  8. I just had your mug cake for dinner because I was at an utter loss what to have and didn’t feel like going out and getting something, and let me tell you this is the best low carb mug cake recipe I’ve had yet. I used Lindt 90% dark chocolate in mine, just two squares, rather than the semi sweet chips I had in the cupboard, and they were good, but to be honest, I would eat the base recipe by itself no problem. Mine wasn’t quite as low carb as yours, since I don’t have any low-carb sweeteners in the house like erythritol (I really need to pick up some more) so I used Coconut Secret Raw Coconut Crystals, which honestly aren’t terrible all things considered. My cake, with the coconut crystals and dark chocolate, came in at 21g net carbs. Not ideal, but not horrible, especially if you have it at the end of a particularly low carb day (which I did). I’ve been doing low carb on and off for about 3 years now. I love it but I am bad with temptation and often go off for months (this last time really a year) at a time, but I am determined this time to stick with it. It’s the only thing that’s really worked for me weight-loss wise and made me feel great. I will definitely be coming back to your website for more recipes!

    • I’m so glad you liked it!! And I’m happy to hear you’ll be stopping back by :)

      What brand of erythritol do you use? I’ve never used it before, though I know a lot of low carbers do.

  9. I made my 1st mug cake yesterday. I added sweetener but didn’t add enough but it was so cool! I was craze-balls amazed at how wonderful the texture turned out. I went to World Market today and got 5 bottles of the smaller sized SF syrups.

    I’m not too sure just how to calculate my foods I’m eating and the percentages. I figure if the load is mostly fat w/ medium protein and very low carb… then that’s what I should be aiming for? I’ve been intermittently fasting for a couple weeks (i eat breakfast and dinner) and I love it how i feel, the money and planning of food that I save. Would it be okay to have a mug cake for an appetizer as I cook dinner and then say a burger patty with the LC fixin’s and HF guac/mayo etc with an italian soda with 1/2c of HWC? I’m mostly nervous I won’t get my fat intake needed daily, so I always try to have a side of something fat with each meal. Your input is appreciated!

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe!! And I bet you’ll love those Torani syrups. Let me know what your favorite flavor is :)

      Think of keto like this: meet your protein goal (.8-1g per pound of lean body mass), stay under your carb limit (usually 20-30g net), and eat fat to satiety. Don’t worry about pushing too much fat. Just eat it when you feel hungry. Butter your veggies. Eat fatty cuts of meat. Have heavy cream in your tea or coffee. You don’t have a fat goal/you don’t need to hit a certain amount of fat – just eat fat to satiety.

      You can follow me on MyFitnessPal if you want (thewolfewalker). When I am doing IF, a typical day’s meal for me may look like… breakfast: 3 eggs scrambled in butter with two bacon strips and a slice of cheese; dinner: 6oz 80/20 hamburger patty topped with a bacon strip and cheese, a cup and a half of broccoli with a half tablespoon butter; dessert: a cup of chocolate CarbSmart icecream with Reddi Wip. That comes up to be 1250cal, 13g net carb, 93g protein, and 80g fat.

      I see absolutely no problem with eating a mug cake while you cook, and then following it up with dinner. Just play around with MyFitnessPal and make sure you’re not going under your protein goal / over your carb limit / over your calorie goal, and you will lose weight!

  10. This was soooo good! I’ve tried other low-carb mug cakes and they were too dry or had a strange taste. This was delicious.

  11. Thanks so much for sharing.This base is the best I’ve tried yet for mug cakes… and I have tried A LOT! I added sugar free maple syrup, cinnamon and nutmeg w/ a few walnuts….yum! Can’t wait to try more! Side note: Have you come up with anything close to good ‘brownie’ in a mug? I’ve been trying to get that brownie texture but haven’t yet. Anyway, thanks!

    • Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting!

      I have not yet really tried to make a brownie. I’ve used a couple of other recipes and found them lacking. Honestly, lately I’ve been trying to cut down on my sugar substitute use, and haven’t been making very many sweets (as evidenced by lack of new content here!) If you find something you think is awesome, please share with me!

  12. I tried the chocolate chip. Winner recipe! Thank you for sharing this.

  13. Just made this with 2 T of caramel (Lorraine) about 1/2 t of vanilla and a couple shakes of salt. I was going for salted caramel but what I got actually tastes like cornbread, kinda cool! Would be great with soup or chili!

    • That is REALLY interesting. What is Lorraine caramel? I’ve never heard of that. I’m assuming this tastes like the sweet kind of cornbread, not the buttery/salty traditional southern kind?

  14. YUM! Finally, a keto mug cake that actually tastes nice. I have made many in the past and the texture of coconut flour and almond meal is so gross! This recipe is perfect. I added fresh blueberries, a bit of cinnamon and vanilla, and poured cream over the top when it was cooked! YUM YUM YUM! Dinner and dessert done in five minutes.

    • I admit to also pouring some heavy cream over the top of the cake when it is done sometimes. It just adds a little something (and a lot of calories, lol!). But it is delicious, isn’t it?! I’m glad you liked the recipe and that it made rounding up dinner and dessert simple! :)

  15. Thank you, thank you, thank you. This is the ONLY mug cake I’ve made that’s turned out like an actual cake. And I’ve made a lot.

    • I’m glad you like it! That’s what led me to tinkering around and creating this cake… I went through an appalling number of appalling-to-me mug cake recipes. Different strokes for different folks! I appreciate you stopping by and commenting :)

  16. Just made this for the first time. With SF Salted Caramel Torani and 90% chocolate square.

    I don’t know you. But I might love you a little. So good. Thank you.

  17. This is the best mugcake cake I have ever had! Perfect texture, cannot tell its healthy. Bonus, it’s an excellent source of fat! Thanks so much!

  18. What app did you use to calculate calories and macros? MFP gave me 640 calories for 4 Tbsp of almond flour! Is that correct?

    • I use MFP. Unfortunately, since most of the entries are user-added, there can be some that are wrong. Bob’s Red Mill almond flour has 160 calories per quarter cup, so that info you have is definitely wrong!

  19. I haven’t tried your recipe yet, but it looks awesome! I love Torani syrups and have substituted them for my sweeteners in baking before so I’m excited to try these! I had to sign in though just to ask, has no one else even caught the Portal reference you made yet? XD

    • Thank you!! The Torani sweeteners are AWESOME for baking!! That’s what I use most of the time because I hate erithrytol and I’m mildly allergic to stevia!

      I love the Portal song :)

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