vegan frosting

(gluten + dairy free) chocolate layer cake w/ cacao macadamia mousse + coconut whip by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

as the second year mark approaches for this here blog's existence, i find myself (as i mentioned in my last post) thinking more and more about why i began writing and creating here in the first place.  originally, i began documenting gluten-free and dairy-free recipes, both to have for myself, but also for others seeking a similar way of life.  i loved creating recipes, going back to them, seeing what worked - what didn't - and importantly, what felt good.  there was, and sometimes still is, a lot of confusion for me when it comes to meals, eating, digestion, and i find myself back in the midst of self-discovery and evolution at the moment where i'm re-learning and/or un-learning certain behaviors and food practices.  each day is a more intentional look at food and what it means for my entire body to digest a meal or snack, how different kinds of food grouped together can actually confuse the stomach and cause fermentation, or the fact that our gut has its own nervous system! i'm taking it all in and fascinated by the interconnectedness of it all!  

well, it's hard to segue from digestion to cake, but i'm super excited about this cake here!  it's one of the more luscious cakes i've ever made, but it's also really balanced in the sweetness department.  i'm pretty sure this is the first cake i've ever eaten without getting a crazy sugar high/low from, and you would never know it because this chocolate baby doesn't lack in richness.  the cake recipe was adapted from sarah's, the chocolate cake, and while i just added an additional egg for binding purposes and swapped in some dairy-free items, i'm pretty sure this cake can proudly stand up to the original. oh, and that cacao macadamia mousse...oh baby! it's one of the more exciting kitchen revelations over here as of late, and i'm super pumped to share the recipe.  whether you eat the entire bowl with a spoon, or mound it between two chocolatey layers of cake, you can't go wrong!  the macadamias add their lovely flavor, but also a super creamy and velvety texture that i was more than excited about.  i finished off the cake with a naked-ish coconut whip frosting that added (as my husband pointed out) a cookies 'n cream kind of flavor to it all - total bonus!  so here's to celebration, self-discovery, being adventurous and curious, and to CAKE!

**last week i had the privilege of speaking with Celine from Pure Green Magazine on their podcast; we chatted about my beginnings and what led up to me starting dolly and oatmeal, food, photography, tips, and some extra special news for the future!  you can listen to it here.

chocolate layer cake w/ cacao macadamia mousse + coconut whip (gluten + dairy free) 

cacao macadamia mousse (vegan)

i love the taste and texture of the macadamia mousse here, but if you don't have them or don't want to purchase them, cashews will work just as well in their place.  as mentioned below, the mousse needs to refrigerate for at least 3 hours or preferably overnight, so this is a great step to make the day before.

  • 3/4 cup raw macadamia nuts, soaked overnight

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder
  • 2 ounces dairy free chocolate (about a heaping 1/4 cup), melted
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened plant-based milk
  • 1/4 cup grade B maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted 

chocolate layer cake (gluten + dairy free) adapted from sarah

as sarah notes, the batter will quite thin, but not to worry, it will bake up just fine.  if you are making this cake for children, i would suggest replacing the 1 cup brewed coffee for 1 cup hot water.  as mentioned below, the cake layers benefit from a couple of hours of refrigeration before frosting it; they can also be refrigerated for a 2-3 days if you want to make them ahead of time.

  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour 
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or coconut oil (if using coconut oil make sure it is melted)
  • 3 large free-range eggs
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee 

coconut whip

the coconut whip will stay white for the first day, but will continue to blend with the chocolate, so if you are not planning to serve immediately, wait to frost with the whip until ready to serve.

  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight 
  • 2-3 tablespoons grade B maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pomegranate seeds for decoration

cacao macadamia mousse

  • drain nuts and place in blender (preferably high-speed) along with cacao powder, melted chocolate, milk, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt.  blend until smooth adding more milk (about 1 teaspoon at a time) if you have trouble getting everything moving.  add the coconut oil and blend again for a couple of minutes, until smooth and creamy.  chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.  remove from refrigerator 1 hour prior to use.

chocolate layer cake

  • preheat oven to 350°, grease two 8-inch round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.  set aside
  • in a large bowl, whisk the 8 dry ingredients together until mixed (break up any almond flour or cacao powder clumps) and set aside.  in another large bowl, mix together the coconut milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla, until pale yellow.  mix the wet ingredients into the dry until thoroughly combined; gently stir in the hot coffee.  evenly divide batter between cake pans and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.  transfer cakes to a rack and let cool for 30 minutes; turn out from pans and let cool completely; once cool wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight

coconut whip

  • turn can upside and open from the bottom; carefully pour the coconut water from can (reserve for smoothies, etc.,) and scoop out the hard coconut cream from the bottom.  place in a bowl and add 2 tablespoons maple syrup and 1 teaspoon vanilla; beat with an electric mixer until stiff and fluffy.  taste and adjust sweetness.  cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to use

assemble cake

  • remove cake layers and coconut whip from refrigerator (mousse should be out and coming to room temp. already).  spread the mousse over top of one cake layer, about a 1/2-inch thick.  place remaining cake layer on top and spread the coconut whip over top and sides of cake using an offset spatula.  decorate with pomegranate seeds and serve immediately


hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote + (vegan) cream cheese frosting by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

today i turn a year older, an occasion mostly met with celebratory cake, birthday cards, and random birthday wishes from high school acquaintances on facebook; but it's also a day i like to take in, see where i've come, and concoct some notion of where i'm going, or where i'd like to be.  and i'm super-duper lucky because i get to share it all with my insanely awesome husband who's birthday was just a few days before mine.  so, mid-september has become somewhat of a birthday blowout with multiple cakes, family, and birthday songs, candles, mini weekend trips and love...always tons and tons of love.   

last year was all about my husband's favorite combination of sweets, but this year i'm going fruity with it! end of summer fruit is just simply beautiful, with all those purple-y, violet, almost red wine hues going on.  so, i wanted to celebrate those colors here, and add some figgy flavor to an otherwise creamy, toasted hazelnut cake.   i wasn't wanting an overly sweet cake either, so the addition of cream cheese in the frosting set a perfect balance to keep it from creeping over to an overly sugary dark side - i guess it's more of a grown-up cake :) 

wishing you all the loveliest of weeks! xo

hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote + (vegan) cream cheese frosting (gluten + dairy free)

| makes a 2 layer, 6 inch round cake |


hazelnut cake

  • 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup hazelnut meal (ground from toasted and shelled hazelnuts)
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup all natural cane sugar (or coconut sugar)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (soft, not melted)
  • 2 free range eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

fig compote

  • 1 cup ripe black mission figs (roughly 12 ounces), cut into quarters
  • 1 tablespoon grade b maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • pinch of cardamom (optional)

(vegan) cream cheese frosting

  • 12 ounces vegan cream cheese (i like Tofutti or Follow Your Heart)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons organic palm shortening
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons organic powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • leftover figs, cut or whole
  • elderberries, champagne grapes or whatever you have on hand


hazelnut cake

  • preheat oven to 350° and line the bottoms of each cake pan with parchment paper.  then grease and flour pans, set aside
  • in a large bowl, whisk together the first 5 ingredients, set aside.  in another large bowl, combine the sugar and coconut oil with an electric mixer, beat on medium until light and fluffy.  add the eggs one at a time until incorporated; then add the vanilla and milk; mix again for about 30 seconds.  turn down the mixer to medium-low; a little at a time, add the dry ingredients to the wet
  • divide batter evenly between the 2 cake pans (this technique of using a scale has always helped me get 2 totally even layers!) and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean
  • transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool for 20 minutes; then remove layers and rest on rack until completely cool.  wrap each layer in a separate piece of plastic wrap and place in refrigerator; allow to rest for at least 1 hour or up to a day

fig compote

  • place cut figs in a medium saucepan; add the syrup, lemon juice and cardamom (if using).  place over a medium flame and stir frequently until figs soften and juices release.  allow the figs to fall apart, stirring every so often, use the back of spoon to break them up a bit.  once the compote has thickened a bit - about 15-20 minutes, remove from heat and let cool.  store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use

cream cheese frosting

  • in a large bowl, cream the cream cheese and shortening until fluffy.  add the vanilla and powdered sugar a little a time and mix until combined (if not using right away, cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator)


  • remove cake layers from fridge and place on a cake stand or large plate.  using an offset spatula, put about 2-3 tablespoons worth of frosting on one cake layer, spread evenly.  spread roughly 2-3 tablespoons of fig compote over the frosting, leaving about 1/2 inch of space from the edge.  place the other cake layer on top and frost the rest of the cake.  garnish with extra figs - cut or whole - elderberries, or whatever other fruits you may have on hand 


valentine cakes w/ blood orange cream filling ❤ by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

for some reason valentine's day takes me back to the 80s, when i would wear scrunchy socks, neon colored clothing, acid-wash legging-jeans, and my favorite outfit was a shirt and matching skirt with big, red sponge-painted hearts.  i had pink rimmed glasses and almost everyday i wore a super side-swept ponytail.  i LOVED valentines' day because i knew i could wear my sponge-painted heart outfit with no shame in my game, but mostly because my school would have a huge bake sale. so, my mom and i would go to the grocery store, buy duncan hines white cake and chocolate cake mixes, white and chocolate frosting and goodies like conversation hearts to decorate.  my favorite part was mixing the red food coloring into the white frosting to make PINK frosting!  like, seriously, what was more thrilling than that? and as this recipe shows, i'm still thrilled by pink frosting even as an adult.  

these cupcakes are filled with a pink, cream cheese-y center, riddled with red pulp.  the chocolate shell is hard compared to the moist and fluffy cake, so when you bite in, it begins with a crack and crunch of the shell.  these are somewhat a play on the snack cakes of my childhood (ones my parents never let me eat!) but with more wholesome ingredients.  i made a similar recipe last year, and if you're looking for another valentine goody i can steer you in the direction of heart-shaped whoopie pies, also from last year!

***also, donations are still being accepted for the Feed South Africa campaign.  please follow the link and donate here

valentine cakes w/ blood orange cream filling

| gluten + dairy free |

makes 20 cupcakes



  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 3 free-range eggs
  • 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 blood orange, zested



blood orange cream filling

  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) tofutti cream cheese 
  • 3-4 tablespoons raw honey 
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tablespoons fresh squeezed blood orange juice, and some pulp too! (more or less depending on how vibrant you want the color and taste) 

chocolate shell + pink piping

  • 1/2 cup dairy free chocolate chips (i use Enjoy Life)
  • 2 teaspoons virgin coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed blood orange juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons almond milk


for the cakes

  • preheat the oven to 350° and grease/line 2 muffin tins
  • in a large bowl, whisk the first 6 ingredients.  in another large bowl, whisk the sugar and eggs until the sugar is dissolved - about 1 minute.  add the vanilla, oil and vinegar and mix to combine. add the hot water while whisking; add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix thoroughly until combined, add the orange zest and mix once more
  • divide the batter between the tins (i used about 2 1/2 tablespoons worth of batter for each cake).  place in oven and bake for 16-18 minutes, rotating halfway through for even cooking.  remove from oven and let them cool completely

make the blood orange cream

  • in a medium sized bowl, combine the cream cheese, honey, vanilla, and blood orange juice with an electric mixer .  mix until smooth and creamy and taste to adjust sweetness - you may want to add more or less juice as well depending on what shade of pink/red you want
  • using a spatula, pour the filling into a pastry bag, let the filling rest in the refrigerator until you're ready to use

assemble the cakes

  • turn cakes upside down and using the filled pastry bag, fill each one with cream (you will notice that they will get heavier and more plump when they have enough filling, don't squeeze too much in or they will burst) wash pastry bag if you plan on using the same bag for the pink icing
  • melt the chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water until melted and add the coconut oil. place cupcakes rightside up and either dip, or use a spoon to cover top with chocolate shell.  place cupcakes on a tray and refrigerate them until chocolate shell has hardened - about 15 minutes
  • combine the powdered sugar, blood orange juice and almond milk until it forms a malleable pink paste - you want it neither runny nor too stiff.  transfer to the pastry bag and decorate the tops of your cupcakes.  store at room temperature covered with parchment for up to 3 days

enjoy with the ones you love!