Low Carb Italian Pear Cake
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I made this low-carb Italian pear cake with the addition of cranberries at Christmas, but it can made at any time as long as you can find pears. Cranberries add that little holiday feel, but aren’t totally necessary. Since Fall is on the way, this is the perfect cake to open the new season.
When I took a cooking class in Italy, we made an Italian apple cake. It’s very simple, made with melted butter and slices of apples. This is the Pear version using mostly almond flour with a little bit of added cardamom for that Christmas flavor profile.
2020 has been one of our most stressful times in many decades. 2021 isn’t looking very bright either. Thanks heavens for cake!
Now it’s 2021 and it’s not much better, as the news about Afghanistan is quite distressing.
One of the hardest things for me has been a diminishing social life. I live in a county that is more free than most. Our gyms and restaurants are open. Yet, it still feels odd when everything is at low capacity or everyone is wearing a mask, making conversation, connection stilted.
It was sad at Christmas, as many people were unable to carry on their yearly traditions, the fun, the travel, the parties, the things that make short days and the dark cold of December palatable.
I’m happy we can still bake. It’s not just therapy, it turns the kitchen into amazing heartwarming smells.
I don’t usually bake with too many pears because pears have a lot of sugar. But with one big pear in the cake, it’s still only 5 net carbs.
I rely on my wonderful recipe that makes 12 muffins. You can bake muffins or a 10 inch cake. If you only have a 9 inch pan, just make a few extra muffins.
What are the ingredients for a low carb Italian pear Cake?
Almond flour, coconut flour, sour cream, eggs, almond milk, baking powder, pears, fresh cranberries, cardamom, salt and xanthan gum. You can switch out the cardamom for more vanilla extract.
Is this cake gluten free?
Yes, the only flours used are almond and coconut flour.
Is this cake sugar free?
Pears have a high sugar count at 27 carbs each. However, one slice of cake is one slice of pear. The sweetener used is Swerve, a powdered erythritol, which does not spike blood sugar. Read more about why I use Swerve here.
What fat is best for this cake?
I used melted unsalted butter and it was incredible. The cake is moist, tasty and flavorful However, I have formerly used avocado oil in a similar recipe and that works so well too.
How to know when an almond flour Cake is done?
Baking with almond flour and coconut flour is different than baking with wheat flour. It’s not as easy to tell when a cake is done. Your tester can come out clean and the cake is not done. To remedy this I always take the cake’s temperature. It should measure 210 degrees F. in the middle of the cake. I’ll take it out once it reaches 207.
Tips for Baking
- Use Parchment Paper.
- Don’t over-mix, once you put dry ingredients in.
- Use spices you love. I used cardamom, but you could flavor this cake with cinnamon or maple extract.
- Cut pears with skins on. Use fresh cranberries.
- Cake is done when inside is 210 degrees F. 98 C.
Play Around with this Recipe: Use Apples instead of pears. Use cinnamon instead of cardamom. Use berries instead of cranberries or skip the berries altogether.
If you like this recipe, you’ll love these from Spinach Tiger:
Low Carb Pear Cake
Dry Cake Ingredients
- 2 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
- 2 tablespoons coconut flour
- 1 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup granulated swerve
- 5 eggs
- 1/2 cup avocado oil
- 4 tablespoons sour cream
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 pear
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. (180 C., Gas 4)
- Line 9 or 10 inch cake pan with parchment paper and spray with baking spray.
- Mix all dry ingredients together including Swerve. Set aside.
- Slice pear thinly. I didn't bother to peel.
- Mix eggs on high for about 3 minutes until very well blended.
- While mixer is still running. stream in oil slowly.
- Mix sour cream, vanilla and almond milk together in separate bowl. Stream into mix.
- Add dry mix on low just until mixed. Over-mixing makes cake tough.
- Add cake batter to cake pan. Smooth out top with offset spatula.
- Arrange pears on top. Add cranberries in between the pears.
- Bake in lower rack of the oven for about 35 minutes. Cake will be able to bounce when touched. Inside middle should be at 210 degrees F. It will depend if you use a 9 inch pan or ten inch pan.
- Allow to cool completely before removing cake. Use a knife to go around the sides.
- Cake can be kept in refrigerator up to one week, can be frozen.
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Thanks for this recipe!!! I’ve already tweaked it to make a cinnamon roll cake and also an orange cranberry Walnut cake! The recipe for the batter is the BEST and so very versatile. Next I’m going to try lemon blueberry. Thanks so much for a gluten-free, dairy free, sugar free, low carb alternative that is actually tasty with “normal” baked goods texture! XOXOXO
I love all your ideas. Thanks for letting me know.
I didn’t have any milk or sour cream, I have used greek yogurt instead. Also added walnuts instead of berries 🙂 Batter was too thick so added some water too. It tastes great, it’s so hard not to eat it all. I have frozen some slices, I think it should work.
Batter should be fairly thick. How did it turn out?
The ingredients say granulated swerve but the directions say powdered swerve. Can you please clarify?
The confusion is that even granulated is considered powdered erythritol. I changed it to be more clear and just say Swerve. Use granulated.
I was confused when you said “place batters in pan” as if there were two bowls of batter. I’m sure this cake will be fantastic .. there’s 14 more minutes on my timer 🙂
I fixed that. It’s one batter.
About how long did you cook this. I don’t have a thermometer
The recipe says 35 minutes. If you are going to continue baking with alternate flours, I highly recommend purchasing a food thermometer. It really helps.
We ended up cooking about 10 minutes longer. I put a pie ring around to keep from getting too dark on the outside. Then left in the oven turned off about 10 more minutes. It is our new favorite cake!!
Thanks so very much! Oh the ‘we’ I’m referring to is my 95 year old mom!
She wants to bake some to freeze.
Have you ever froze them?
Barbara I love that idea.
Do I have to use xanthan gum?
You can get away without using xanthan gum.
Absolutely love this cake!!
Thanks for letting me know.