Baby’s First Birthday Cake (Smash Cake)

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If you’re looking for a healthy cake without added sugars or oils for baby’s first birthday, this is your recipe! This cake is cute, tasty, whole grain, and perfectly smashable.

baby's first birthday cake with strawberries

Here’s the dilemma. You want your baby to have an adorable, memorable time squishing his chubby little hands in a colorful smash cake on his first birthday.

But you’re not crazy about the idea of your tiny precious human gorging himself on a cake that has enough sugar, butter, and artificial colors in it to give even YOU a tummy ache.

Good thing you can have it all! This small, simple homemade cake is moist, light, tasty, and irresistible to smash. And it’s made from simple whole food ingredients like fruit, whole milk, and whole grain flour.

You won’t find any added sugars or oils in this cake, either. It’s the perfect recipe to help you keep fun traditions while avoiding ingredients you’re not ready for your baby to taste yet.

birthday cake for baby with whipped cream frosting and no sugar added

Five Reasons to Love This Cake

  • This birthday cake is the perfect size for baby to have a WHOLE CAKE all to herself.
  • It has no added sugars, oils, refined flours, or artificial dyes.
  • It’s easy to make and can be prepared ahead of time (with a special frosting trick–see below)
  • You can customize the decorations on this birthday cake to match the theme and colors of your baby’s party.
  • It tastes great!
birthday cake with strawberries for baby

How to Make Baby’s First Birthday Cake

This cake is easy to make! The basic concept: mix the wet ingredients in one bowl, the dry ingredients in another, then stir them all together to finish the batter.

There’s one unconventional ingredient in this recipe, and that’s the fruit puree. Use your food processor to blend a banana with half a cup of sliced peaches. It’s OK to use frozen (and thawed) peaches here. Fresh also works, and you can leave the skin on if you like. Just make sure you blend it well.

When it comes to the size and shape of your cake, you’ve got options. We used two six-inch diameter pans to make a mini layer cake. But you can also pour the batter into a standard-sized cupcake tin to make cupcakes.

Keep in mind that the batter is for a baby-sized cake. So the amount of batter you get with the recipe will only fill half a standard-sized muffin tin. You should double the recipe if you want to make a full-sized sheet of cupcakes.

Bake the cake until a toothpick comes out clean from the center, than cool on a rack.

The frosting is simply whipped cream! Use a stand-mixer or hand beaters to whip heavy cream, then spread it onto the cake.

There! So Pretty.

no sugar added cake for birthday

Tips for Decorating Baby’s First Birthday Cake

Now’s the fun part. Indulge your creative impulses! Here are a few fresh and fun ideas for dressing up your baby’s first birthday cake:

  • Decorate with fresh berries. Cut strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries make this cake naturally beautiful.
  • Get a “1” candle, or another themed cake topper. Is your party nautical? Elmo-themed? Unicorns? Dinosaurs? Check Amazon for cake toppers that match your baby’s bash.
  • Add 1-2 teaspoons of corn starch to the whipped cream frosting if you’re assembling your cake ahead. This prevents the frosting from melting and losing its shape while you’re waiting to serve it.
  • Put a dash of dye-free sprinkles onto baby’s cake. We like the pretty pastels of this brand.

More Healthy Cake Ideas

Baby’s First Birthday Cake

If you’re looking for a healthy cake without added sugars or oils for baby’s first birthday, this is your recipe! This cake is cute, tasty, whole grain, and perfectly smashable.

4.15 from 7 votes
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Baby’s First Birthday Cake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients

Fruit puree

  • 1/2 cup sliced peaches peeled
  • 1 banana

Batter

  • 1/2 cup fruit puree
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or milk + 1 tablespoon lemon juice (let sit for 5 minutes to make “buttermilk”)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Frosting

  • 1 cup organic cream
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup optional for guests

Instructions

Fruit puree

  • Blend fruit together in a food processor until liquefied.  This gave us 1/2 cup of fruit puree.

Batter

  • Whisk your fruit puree, milk, egg, and vanilla together.
  • In a separate bowl, combine whole wheat flour, baking powder, soda, and salt.
  • Slowly pour your liquid ingredients into the dry, and mix until the dry ingredients are all wet.
  • Pour your batter into a greased 6 inch round pan (Double ingredients to make a double layer).
  • Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes, or until you can stick a knife through the center and it comes out clean.

Frosting

  • Frost your cake or cupcakes and top with fruit.

Notes

Makes one 6 inch cake (20-30 Minute cooking time), 12 mini cupcakes (10 minute cooking time), or 6 regular size cupcakes (~15 min cooking time)
Tried this recipe?Mention @SuperHealthyKids or tag #SuperHealthyKids!
Baby's First Birthday Cake | Healthy Ideas and Recipes for Kids

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139 Comments

I would suggest Organic Products and Spelt flour with almond flour instead of wheat. Too many people have developed gluten sensitivities (which also includes soy, corn as well). Or, how about brown rice or kamut flour? Have you tried using these?

@Erica- I agree with lupe- any fruits will work. Just get 1/2 cup of fruit puree, and the recipe shouldn’t change much at all.

what can be used instead of a dairy based milk for the cake and cream for the icing? I have a daughter allergic to dairy based products.

can other fruits besides peaches be used with the banana?

WHat can be used to replace the whipping cream?

Cans are lined with metals and plastics. I wouldn’t suggest using canned foods. We want to eliminate toxins in our environment not add more.

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Is the cooking time and temperature the same for regular size cupcakes? Thank you…I can’t wait to try this recipe for my little one’s birthday!

Sorry Lisa- the cooking time is for the small cake itself. Muffins I would only cook for 15 minutes. Thanks for noticing, I’ll edit that to be more clear.

Fantastic recipe! Will be trying tomorrow, fingers crossed my baking skills are up to it! When you say “vanilla” in what way do you mean it? Do you take a vanilla pod and remove the seeds? Is there another format I don’t know about? Sorry, but I’m no expert at baking or cooking! 🙂 Thanks a million!

I like the valuable info you provide in your articles. I will
bookmark your webllg and check agaiin here regularly. I’m quite sure I will learn plenty of new stuff right here!
Best off luck forr the next!

Can I use regular unbleached flour instead of wheat flour? I’m wondering if the cooking time and ingredient ratios will all stay the same.

Trying this in Feb for baby 6…..I always felt I was making a healthier choice making carrot cake (still has too much sugar) for their first cake but this looks AWESOME, thanks for sharing this recipe!

Hello. This looks very yummy and looking forward to giving it a go.

…but I have a question for you. You mention that cakes have processed oils in them and it has stumped me to work out what oil people are putting in cakes. My basic vanilla cake recipe has flour, baking powder, butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla and milk.

I am not trying to suggest My recipe is sugar free or anything just curious about the oil comment.

Thank you for clearing that up. I was thinking I had been making cakes wrong all these year. I don’t use packet mixes due to cost and who knows what goes in to them!

Must admit I am a bit biased to give up sugar though – 3rd generation sugar cane farmer here!! But I have tried your cake and it was delicious. I have a choc brownie recipe that uses apple puree that my children love so I will give it up occasionally.

I had looked around for a while for a recipe for my son’s first Birthday and when I came across yours knew it was perfect. Lachie loved it so did we and his Grandparents!

It was such a success that I am making it for my husbands Birthday so Lachie can join us for cake too!

Thanks for the great recipe 🙂

Hi Amy! I need help asap. Next week i want to bake this cake again but for a bigger crowd and i’ll assemble a bunny. I need two 7 inch pans and one 8 inch. How can i get this amount of batter? Thanks! PLEASE be quick replying!

Wow, I know I’ve come across some recipes that have great reviews but they just do not turn out. This was not the case! WOW so good, I absolutely loved it! It is perfect . My only regret is not doing this for my daughters 1st birthday, but now she’s gonna have a great 2nd birthday cake 😉 thanks for the great recipe!!!

Has anyone tried an alternate flour with this (baby and I are celiac-ies)? Curious if coconut flour works or if I should just use GF flour? I’m guessing almond will be too moist and just fall apart…Thanks in advance!

Hi ladies, just a quick one, for the cream frosting, how did you get it to ‘stick?’ I mean, is it a special type of cream or just the normal double cream? Or is it whipping cream? Because I guess normal cream won’t ‘stick’ to the cake as its liquid? Thanks!! KimX

Amanda- I’m not too efficient in the freezing baked cakes category, but I definitely wouldn’t freeze the frosting! I’d only prepare this one day in advance and no longer.

I’ve tried this recipe twice for in preparation for my son’s first birthday but the inside of the muffins always seem like it’s uncooked even though it’s been in the oven for 30 mins. I put it casing like the ones in your picture and put it in the oven at 180 degree Celsius for 30 min and it’s still doughy inside.
Am I doing something wrong?

This would be perfect for any age birthday. Think I’m going to make this for my daughter’s 7th birthday next month. But strawberries instead of peaches. How many strawberries or size of frozen strawberries package should I use? And could I use all purpose flour as that is all I have.

Hello
I am so glad i found this.
My sons first birthday is coming up,so this will be perfect.

My question is : did you used the same mixture for the cake and muffins ?

Thank you ! 🙂

Hi, I’m going to try this for my daughger’s first birthday, sounds great! Just wondering if I could use a cream cheese frosting instead of whipped cream? Thanks!

Hi! New mom here and a novice baker. Do glad I found your recipe, can’t wait to try it for my son’s first Bday. Question: is there a way to naturally “color” the frosting?

Hi,

Great recipe it seems but I have had this cake (in a 6 inch pan) for over 45 minutes now and it has formed a crust all around it but the inside is almost raw… Can you tell me what I did wrong? Thank you. (Oven is at 350 F)

Hey! Cant wait to give this a go for my sons first birthday! Question : could i use coconut oil in place of butter milk? How much shoukd i use? Thanks!

Made this for my son’s first birthday and it was a HUGE hit. Thanks! Made it in 4 little person sized cakes and he loved the cake better than the cream and his favourite mandarin oranges that were on it! I’m going to make it again in a mini muffin tin for yummy snack times. ?

Hi! Thanks for the recipe. I tried baking this but the muffins turned out to be quite dense ?. I did not overmix..and the banana flavour was predominant.
Any tips?

Many thanks for replying Amy, and many thanks indeed for the recipe! I tried it and it was the first cake I’ve ever baked. I didn’t add the salt and it was a success, to my wife and I at least, coming out like a cake-like and light banana bread. Now just the real test at my son’s first birthday party to come!

Hi Amy! My cake turned out like one of the previous comments said: with a crust outside and raw-like on the inside 🙁 I used a puree of banana, persimmon and mango. I used the brown flour and followed all the recipe. I want to make it a second time. Did you use an electric beater or just hand whisking and mixing? Any suggestions? Thanks!

Ok, tried it again with an apple-banana puree (with a touch of cinnamon) and it’s freeking delicious ? Still didn’t rise much much it baked beautifully, light and fluffy inside, just the right crunch on the outside. A bit like a sweet bread. Soooo yummy! Nothing like NOT giving up. I’ll sandwich it and frost it with the same fruit puree because it’s for a bunch of small kids 🙂 Thanks all!

Haha!! Patricia!! Sorry for my super delayed reply!! I’m so glad you tried again. So many recipes don’t work out the first time, in my experience (especially breads!) Thanks for being a reader!!
-Amy

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Hi. Great recipe but can replace the buttermilk with almond milk alone or the almond milk still need to be mixed with lemon juice

Here’s how I tweaked the recipe for no dairy, gluten, or nuts:
Sub recipes flour for standard gluten free 1 to 1 baking flour any brand will work, I combined two brands cause that’s what I had
Frozen and defrosted peaches worked great
Used 1/2 cup coconut milk (refrigerated section not canned) plus 1 tablespoon of vinegar instead of buttermilk
For icing: can of coconut CREAM, pu in frig for an hour. Put mixing bowl and beaters in freezer. When solid, put just the solid coconut cream in bowl, don’t use any of the liquid in the can, and whip until stiff.

Turned out perfect and delicious all babies with and without food allergies lovedddd!

Thank you for this yummy recipe that allowed me the base to work off of! Hope these subs help others in need ☺️

Hi! So I just trialled this before my little girl’s first birthday next Monday, and it has come out really flat and with a “bubble” of over the surface!! What have I done wrong?!? Never seen cake look like this before!! Your help is much appreciated 🙂

Hi Sarah, sorry to hear it didn’t turn out for you! I’m not sure how vigorously you mixed the wet and dry ingredients, but it helps not to OVER mix the two. Over-mixing can make baked goods like this one turn out a bit flat.

Hi Gallie! We haven’t tried using other fruits besides banana; the cake might turn out a bit less sweet. But if you try it, please let us know how it turns out!

I’d Love to try this recipe for my little one’s 1st birthday party cake!! 🙂
Can the peaches be subbed out for another fruit (blueberries, apples or extra bananas?)

5 stars
So good used baby food pouch apple and summer peach Gerber organics brand since I couldn’t find peaches at the store. So good. I got store bought cake for the adults but everyone ate the cupcakes instead made 24. So good gonna make cake like this all the time. I used unbleached flour instead of whole wheat as well. Wish I could leave a picture not sure how to do this.

1 star
I made this cake and it was awful. Having to make another cake now using a better recipe. It puffed up full of air and had a thick shiny skin on the outside. No flavour apart from whole-wheat flour. Thanks for wasting my time.

5 stars
This is a really delicious cake! I baked it for my daughter’s first birthday last year and I’m going to bake it again this year! I prepared everything three times and then baked it like I did last year to have enough for the party guests. Everyone loved it! I loved knowing that I was feeding my daughter something healthier than a cake full of sugar. The only thing I did differently was I used coconut cool whip to frost. I haven’t been able to make the coconut milk work as a frosting for me. But, I will try the coconut frosting again! Thank you for the recipe!

4 stars
I made this last weekend as a trial for my son’s first birthday without the topping. I used frozen peaches because peaches are not in season now and a very ripe banana. It took twenty five minutes longer to bake than advised – not sure why but that’s when the toothpick came out clean. To me, it doesn’t taste like cake but more like a healthy breakfast bread. I’m sure with the whipped maple cream topping it would be sweeter. That said, my son loved it and I’m glad it is not bad or too sweet for him. It’s also not bad for us so my husband and I didn’t feel bad about eating the leftovers either. I’ll be making it again for his party but getting traditional cake for the adults.

Hi Emma, sorry for the mixup! We made some big updates to the site last week and a few of the recipes got a little glitchy on us. The full recipe should be back now. Thanks for your patience!

Hi Kim! Great question. Whipped cream starts to separate if you make it too far in advance. It’s best to make it fresh if you can, however I have had success adding a pinch of corn starch to whipped cream so it holds up when made ahead.

Hey. I am planning to use this recipe to make a 2 layered smash cake for my son’s first birthday day after tomorrow. Can I bake 2 of these cakes and stack them with frosting in middle and would I need to double the frosting amount too? Also can I make it 24 hours earlier including the frosting and if yes would you recommend to store it in fridge or room temperature ? Looking forward to your reply.Thanks a lot!!

Hi Anna! Yes, you can make two of these cakes and stack them. It’s also OK to make this recipe ahead of time and refrigerate. I would wait until the day of the party to frost the cake, and double the amount of frosting just so you can be sure to have enough for the double-layer cake. I hope this helps. Happy birthday to your son!

5 stars
Thanks for this recipe!
I made this cake for my two years old birthday this weekend.
Tripled the recipe;
I used banana and apricot puree (the fruits I add left!), added a little bit of erythritol and cocoa powder to make it chocolaty.
Frosted it with a dark chocolate ganache (which is basically chocolate whipped cream).
The family loved it, the teenagers went for seconds and the banana-haters never guessed there was banana in it.
The cake was moist, super tasty and, to top it all, looked good!
Too bad I can’t add a picture!
Thanks again for this recipe.

Can I make this chocolate? I like your chocolate cake recipes, but I’m looking for one like this that has no added sugar for my baby boys first birthday….

Hi Alicia! You could try adding a few tablespoons of cocoa powder, though cocoa powder does have a bitter taste on it’s own and it may reduce the sweetness of the finished cake. It still sounds like a good experiment! If you try it, please come back and let us know how it turned out.

4 stars
Made this for my twins first birthday this weekend. It tastes great and I love that there is not any sugar or oil added. Only complaint is that it did turn out a little dense. One of the twins dug in and the other was not a fan. Both loved the whipped cream icing and I added blueberries for color.

I want to make this for my son’s first birthday. I’m just a little confused, the peaches and banana fruit puree is this then used in the batter? Sorry I don’t bake cakes often and I want to get it right the first time.
Also could I Subaru something else for the peaches?
Thank you in advance.

Hi Ciara! Yes, the puree is part of the batter. After you puree the fruits, mix them together with the other wet ingredients. Then combine the wet and dry ingredients just before baking. As for the peaches, I think you could substitute another favorite fruit in its place and the cake would still turn out. Mango would probably be great!

I’m so thankful I found this recipe for my son’s first birthday cake. I would like to make it as a two layer cake. I noticed the cake in the photo is also two layers. Does the recipe make enough to layer or should I double it? Thank you in advance!

5 stars
I made this. And was too dense. I didn’t measure the purée after liquifying it. Tasted a lot like banana. I substituted whole milk for oat milk to make the buttermilk, and used spelt whole wheat flour. I will try again for baby’s party. This was a practice batch.
Also made a dairy free whip topping.
Used coconut milk cream
1/4 tsp coconut sugar
1tbs vanilla
And whipped it and topped the cake.

I am making this for my daughters first birthday. I want to make it in an Extra deep 6in pan that would result in a two layer cake. Do I double the recipe? Also any suggestions for bake time?
Thanks! I am a bit worried it won’t turn out, but would prefer not to have to make the two layers separately

Hi Melissa, based on what you describe then yes, I would try doubling the recipe. I’m not sure about the bake time but it would definitely be at least 5-10 minutes longer. I hope this helps!

If I wanted to make this cake a tad sweeter, would the addition of maple syrup or brown sugar completely ruin the consistency of it?