Coffee Cake (Grain Free, Gaps, Paleo, Primal)

There’s a lot going on in the background here at Deliciously Organic. We’re constantly testing recipes, taking photos, editing, and doing further reading and research. The girls help with new ideas, hold props for photos, and offer their opinions of the results. Several members of our household edit each post and meal plans. We read each of your comments and feel like we know many of you. It’s become a family affair.

Last fall, I came to a place where I was able to hire an assistant. I was trying to keep afloat while answering emails, writing posts, responding to comments, writing weekly meal plans, and maintaining the “background” of the site. One day I looked at Pete and said, “I need help!” A sweet lady walked into my life and she was the perfect match. She’s a spunky go-getter who’s continually pushing the envelope (in a great way). I value her opinion and we’ve learned a lot from each other.

She recently commented that many of you ask similar questions. She suggested I give you a post which includes links to various topics I’ve covered over the last 3 1/2 years. Over time, the content gets buried and many of you ask about why I cook the way I cook, what ingredients I like to use, etc.

So here’s an FAQ of sorts to help answer your questions:

“Why do you use so much fat in your recipes?”

Click Here, and Here

“What is the caloric content of this recipe?” “Do you know how many calories are in this recipe?”

Click Here

“Why do you use Celtic sea salt?”

Click Here

“Do you have any tips for buying organic on a budget”

Click Here

“Why do you use meat in your recipes?” “What are the health benefits of eating organic, pastured meats?”

Click Here, and Here

“Didn’t you mention you have Hashimoto’s?”

Click Here

“Why grain free?

Click Here, and Here

“What kind of almond flour do you like to use and where do you buy it?”

Click Here

“Do you have tips for baking with coconut flour?”

Click Here

“Why do you soak and dehydrate nuts? Can I get the recipe?

Click Here

“Do you have any good lunch ideas?”

Click Here

“Will you ever eat grain again?”

I hope to! As my body heals, I hope I’ll be able to tolerate traditionally prepared grains one day. I don’t see myself eating much wheat, though.

“Where do you buy all of your ingredients?” “What are your favorite brands?”

Go to the Deliciously Organic Facebook page. Click “like”. Then click on “Favorite Sources” to download the pdf.

“I’m just getting started. I don’t know where to begin!”

Take it slow. Just make one change a week. Also, if you need some ideas for meals using only unprocessed ingredients, a subscription to the Deliciously Organic meal plans, or reading my cookbook Deliciously Organic can help.

Lastly, I want to share with you a grain-free coffee cake. Not too sweet. Moist, with a crumbly topping. The kids helped me test it a few times recently, and we all participated in the production of the post. A delicious, organic breakfast suggestion, from my family to yours.

Coffee Cake (Grain Free, Gaps, Paleo, Primal)

Serving Size: Serves 9

Coffee Cake (Grain Free, Gaps, Paleo, Primal)

This cake can also be made without the topping for a simple snack cake. Also, if you prefer a sweeter cake, you can increase the honey to 3/4 cup.


  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 8 large eggs (organic and pastured preferred)

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 cup plain whole yogurt
 (use strained plain, coconut milk yogurt for Paleo)
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted

  • 1/2 cup honey (I used clover)

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups nuts (almonds, pecans, cashews, etc.)

  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

  • 4 tablespoons honey (I used clover)

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil, cold, cut into tablespoons


Preheat oven to 325ºF and adjust rack to middle position. Place all the batter ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Pour batter into a buttered 8 x 8 - inch baking dish. Wipe out food processor bowl with a paper towel or cloth. Place nuts, cinnamon, honey and butter in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until nuts are coarsely chopped and ingredients bind together. Drop spoonfuls of topping over batter and then using a butter knife, swirl the topping into the top layer of the batter. Bake for 40-45 minutes until golden brown. Let cool for 20 minutes. Cut and serve. Coffee cake is best served the day it is prepared.

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  1. Karen

    Oh, my…this looks devine! I’m on day 12 of GAPS (intro) can’t wait til I get to make something like this. Thanks for your new FAQ, it really helps to have it all in one spot. I also want to say “thanks” for the list of your favorite sources, that opened a window for my world. :o)

  2. Hi Carrie,
    great coffee cake recipe. Although this cake would have less calories without this topping, it probably wouldn’t taste the same without it. I will certainly follow complete recipe, I love this honey, nuts, cinnamon combination. :)

  3. Lindsey

    Thanks for the FAQ page Carrie!!
    I’m such a HUGE fan- I drool over every single one of your recipes :-)
    Your blog along with and organic spark have helped me transition to a MUCH healthier way of eating…thanks! I was able to turn down a donut that a rep brought into work, just seconds ago, because of the information I’ve gained from yours, Molly and Lisas blog :-)

    • Deliciously Organic

      Coconut flour soaks up a ton of moisture, so this is why you need 8 eggs. I’ve tested recipes with coconut flour using a minimal amount of eggs and the flour was bone dry. It’s such an interesting ingredient!

  4. J Uhler

    Thanks for the great recipe, Carrie! I’m always looking for another great coconut flour recipe! I’ve been talking to a lot of people lately about being grain-free (people keep asking me what I’m doing because my body keeps shrinking!), and these conversations have really been challenging folks to pay attention to how their body responds to all foods. Everybody’s body is different, I’m just thankful that I have FINALLY discovered what kinds of food have a positive/negative impact on mine! I give you the credit for introducing ‘Wheat Belly’ by Dr. William Davis to your readers back in September. Your review was so timely that I quickly purchased the book, and my life has been forever changed! Keep up the great work! BTW, love your new photo at the top of the page – you are simply glowing!

    • Deliciously Organic

      I’m so glad you’ve seen such great results! It’s such a relief when we figure out what works best for our bodies! I’m thrilled that I was able to help you on your journey. :)

  5. marian

    Can I substitute the yogurt if I am not doing dairy? What would you suggest? Love your new photo- BEAUTIFUL!
    I made the grain free granola bars this this week and they are a huge hit! Thank you tons for the delicious inspiration!

    • Deliciously Organic

      I haven’t tested it, but I don’t see why you couldn’t. I recommend replacing the butter for yogurt 1:1. Make sure and use a whole yogurt or the cake will probably end up very dry.

      • marian

        I don’t want to use yogurt- I’m okay with butter though…..
        Could I use applesauce or coconut milk instead of the yogurt??? Is it the moisture you are looking for from the yogurt or the flavor- or maybe both?
        Thanks again!!!!

        • Deliciously Organic

          A really thick coconut milk would probably work well (just the thick part on top…I use Native Forest organic coconut milk). Or you could try substituting with all butter. The yogurt gives it a nice texture and flavor, but I think substituting with all butter should work well too.

  6. betsyd

    Hi Carrie! I’ve made your creamer a couple of times, and have always wondered why you combined whole milk and heavy cream instead of going with the middle of the road: half and half. Ha! Thanks for this FAQ page; I now know that half-and-half is processed. :)

  7. Shannon

    I have Grave’s Disease. The opposite (kind of) of Hashimoto’s. I’m thrilled to have found this website and your story. I have been on a mad hunt for answers since I was diagnosed 3 months ago. My endo. wants to kill my thyroid with radiation. How does that help? I’m not doing that. So, I had a blood test to check for food sensitivities. I was told to avoid gluten, eggs and dairy among other things. Oh no. So, to cut my long story short, I’m happy to have read your encouraging story of healing your body through your diet. I’m prayerful that I will have a success story and answers to share with others too. I’m excited to check out your recipes.

  8. Alexis

    Can you make this with all purpose, whole wheat or cake flour? If so, how many eggs would you put in? I saw a previous post indicated the coconut flour required more moisture/eggs.

    • Deliciously Organic

      My recipe for whole wheat coffee cake is in my cookbook. Since I developed this recipe specifically for coconut flour, I don’t have a quick substitution that I know would work (without testing it first).

    • Deliciously Organic

      You could melt down the butter and whisk in the honey and cinnamon and then pour it on top of the cake. I’d use a knife to swirl the butter/honey mixture into the batter.

  9. Michelle

    Absolutely delicious! Mine didn’t turn out as pretty as yours (the topping sunk to the bottom while cooking), but it tasted incredible. And I love how easy it is to make!

  10. Amy

    My naturepath put me on a grain free, sugar free diet. I can use stevia. So I’m new to grain free cooking. Everything I bake is spongy. Is this normal? I miss the consistency of chewy cookies. I haven’t tried any of your recipes yet, but I might cheat and use honey so I can try this one. Thanks!

    • Deliciously Organic

      Most recipes with coconut flour are spongy. I try and get my grain-free recipes to taste just like the foods we are used to. These waffles are soft, but I liked the texture with the cream and berries. It kinda tastes like strawberry shortcake. :)

  11. sandra

    My hubby usually makes coffee-cake on Sunday for brunch. But since I’ve gone grain-free I haven’t been able to have any. I found this page while searching for a coffee-cake that I could eat for him to make on Mother’s Day. This looks like it might be just the thing. Thanks.

    And, I’m adding your blog to my feed. This looks like a keeper.

  12. jess


    Thanks for sharing the recipe!! Question:: if I use whole wheat flour instead of the coconut, and soak it beforehand, can i still use the recipe? Any idea on how I would do it?


  13. Jackie

    Aside from being gluten intolerant- I’m also lactose intolerant and normally, I can figure out the dairy substitutions for your recipes (which always turn out just as great), but for this I’m wondering if I can use coconut yogurt? I know it might not be grain free… but just for baking purposes? Maybe a better question is what purpose the whole yogurt has… I’m assuming you might not have tried the coconut yogurt since you can have dairy.

    Also, I’m considering going on gaps to hopefully reverse my lactose intolerance (which came along about 5 years ago).. are you familiar with anyone going on gaps dairy free/ if so what kinds of gaps-approved substitutions are widely used? I feel like the dairy is quite a staple in the gaps diet.


  14. Lisa

    I’m about to make this but I’ve read the recipe several times and it doesn’t include the ingredient coffee! Is this a mistake or is it just that the ingredients listed create a ‘coffee’ flavour?

    • Deliciously Organic

      A coffee cake doesn’t actually contain coffee. Here is the exact definition: A cake, often cinnamon-flavored, with a drizzled white icing or crumb topping, and usually eaten with coffee. Enjoy!

  15. Kate

    Maybe this is an American thing? In the Southern hemisphere (well, NZ and Australia), a coffee cake is a cake flavoured with coffee. Now I’m on the lookout for a paleo coffee cake by our definition! :)

  16. Lindsay

    I made this last night and subbed 3 of the eggs for a chia seed/water mixture. It worked wonderfully, albeit my coffee cake was a little darker. Mine did take about an hour to cook, so not sure what went wrong there. This was really delicious and helps me stay GF!

  17. Francesca

    Hi Carrie, I just made this today. I used chestnut honey, which I know not everybody likes it ( I love it!)
    The cake is really delicious, maybe my taste buds adjusted to very little sugar and it was a little too sweet for me, next time I’ll decrease to 80 ml honey. Definitely a keeper recipe, thank you!

    • Deliciously Organic

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it! And, it sounds like your taste buds have adjusted to very little sugar (that’s great!). If you reduce the honey in the recipe, I would increase the amount of yogurt or honey to make up for the moisture from the decreased honey. If you don’t, the cake will most likely be a bit too dry.

  18. faith

    Just made this. OMG. I couldn’t do the topping (major nut allergies) but just sprinkled some coconut sugar on top and it was STILL amazing. My kids are devouring it and barraging me with compliments!!! Just pre-ordered you..r book since this was such a hit. Can’t wait!!!

  19. Claire

    Am I missing something… where is the coffee in the ingredients?! The cake looks delish so I have made it & I added some decaf coffee to it & upped the coconut flour a little to accommodate the extra moisture… I hope it turns out ok. For me a coffee cake is a cake flavoured of coffee! Thanks for the recipe (the title is rather misleading as it’s not a coffee cake but more of a nut coconut cake).

      • Claire

        Ah, this is where our cultures differ. I am English, and you have a different term in the US:
        UK a cake that has a coffee flavour
        US a type of sweet bread made with nuts or fruit.
        At least I know now to not expect something else! Oh, and I live in France where Paleo is virtually unheard of, and the French people who tried the cake LOVED it & the fact it was gluten & sugar free! The honey was a winner for them.

        • Deliciously Organic

          I figured you were from outside the US, because I’ve had several readers from Europe and Australia mention the fact that it doesn’t contain coffee. I’m so glad you and your guests enjoyed the cake! :)


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