Not A Traditional Cake, not just for women, but good for you, your gut microbiome & your hormones (natural HRT!)
The HRT Cake Recipe (Vegan & Vegetarian)
This is what works for me & my own nutritional & dietary ideals, but you can always tweak it, just be careful not to add too much sugariness to it or you will lose all the benefits. Although this is a cake to help perimenopausal & menopausal women with their symptoms & be a natural form of HRT, I actually discovered through entering the recipe in my Zoe Health & Nutrition app (for more info on this see my Zoe Personalised Health & Nutrition Blog) that it scores really well in my app. It registers as 85/100 on their scale of foods which means I can eat it freely/every day.
This particular recipe is good for my blood sugar with low blood sugars resulting in good blood sugar control & will cause a lower rise in my blood fats resulting in good blood fat control. I should mention that this is based on my own test results as I have both good blood sugar & fat control but, setting aside that I don’t know how you personally react to food, the ingredients are pretty good for you!
Gut Health & Your Microbiome
Where it is a good all-rounder for everyone is that it is excellent for the health of your gut microbiome, containing gut health boosters to feed your good bacteria, medium levels of fibre, very low levels of processing & is low in sodium with no added salt & little sugar. Best of all, it’s ridiculously easy to make & doesn’t take long to bake – albeit it won’t win any prizes in the Great British Bake Off for looks. Please also don’t expect a traditional cake, it contains hardly any sugar, no fat, dairy or eggs so it’s not your luscious luxury cake, but it does fill a hole very nicely thank you, and is excellent if you’re craving something sweet but don’t want the calories or the sugar addiction.
- 50g each of: wholemeal or seeded flour (you can use any non-wheat or gluten-free flour as well), soya flour, oats (ideally whole jumbo oats) & ground flaxseed
- 25g each of: flaked almonds, pecans (but you can substitute any nuts you like), sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds (again, you can pick your favourite seeds here)
- 50g soft prunes chopped (you can use other dried fruit but you really lose the benefit as apricots, cranberries etc are not as good for you)
- 1 large or 2 small fresh apples, skin left on (that’s where all the good stuff like flavonoids are, for a quick listen on how good apples are for your health & how they can reduce your risk of dying by 35%! listen to Just One Thing with Michael Mosely, a 15 mins quick listen) chopped as big or small as you like or grated if you prefer, but I love big juicy chunks. Again you can get creative, I may try with fresh raspberries or cherries
- 1/2 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon & ground ginger – feel free to experiment with other flavours, you may like to add or turmeric or your favourite spice mix. Mixed spice would also work well.
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean extract or paste
- 1 teaspoon of natural sugar of your choice, I use Biona organic Coconut Blossom Nectar as it was in the cupboard from another recipe, but you could use honey or maple syrup
- 250mls soya milk, again you can use any plant milk, or dairy milk if you don’t want it to be vegan
You’ll like this. You may notice I’m none too precise but I don’t find you need to be!
- Preheat your oven to gas mark 6/200° electric oven/180° fan oven
- Line a square or rectangular tin or baking tray with greaseproof paper, or a reusable non-stick baking sheet, ideally the size is around 26cm by 22cm but that’s because my baking tray is around that size, you can make it as thick or thin as you like. If it’s thicker it will just take longer to bake.
- Combine everything except the milk & vanilla bean extract in a mixing bowl & mix thoroughly. Add the milk & vanilla bean extract & mix throughly to combine.
- Leave for about half an hour so it all soaks in a bit. It should be firm but of a dense dropping consistency, if it’s really thick add a bit more milk but these quantities work for me.
- Spoon it into your tin or onto your baking tray, smooth out, mine is an about 1-2cm thick but you may prefer it thicker.
- Bake for c. 30 mins at the size I have given. Check & see if it’s nice and brown on top, if it is it’s probably cooked, take it out & check it to be sure. If it’s thicker it may need longer & how crispy or soft you like it is up to you. There are no eggs etc so it doesn’t take long to cook.
- The size of the portions is up to you. I cut it up into 24 little squares as I find that works for me and is only 80 calories per portion, if you like bigger portions do that!
- The nutritional information is based on the Zoe app which I think works it out quite accurately
- Cool on a wire rack, eat & enjoy! 🙂
- As this contains fresh fruit it won’t keep as long as if you use all dried fruit such as dried apples, but so far I’ve successfully kept it in an airtight tin for 5 days. Frankly, it didn’t go off, we just ate it all before then!
Per portion – based on cutting into 24 portions
Total Calories: 80 cals Net Carbs: 6.5g of which sugars: 2.7g (44% excellent & 18% good glycemic index)
Fats: 4.7g (79% excellent & 7% good fats)
Proteins: 3.1g Fibre: 1.8g Sodium: 5mg (low)
In Total – so just divide by your own number of portions
Total Calories: 1920 cals Net Carbs: 156g of which sugars: 64.8g (44% excellent & 18% good glycemic index)
Fats: 113g (79% excellent & 7% good fats)
Proteins: 75g Fibre: 43g Sodium: 120mg (low)
Who knew about an HRT Cake or that it could be good for your gut microbiome?
Apparently HRT Cake is a thing, but it was not a thing that I had heard about. Even though I started the perimenopause (albeit only slowly) at 42 & spent the next 3 years trying all sorts of natural methods to help with the symptoms, & was regularly giving advice to clients, it simply was not on my radar. Then back in December I was having my regular Smear & HPV test (if you’re a woman between 25-64 you should be invited for this cervical screening test to check the health of your cervix) &, as I do, got chatting to the nurse. I mentioned about being perimenopausal & how HRT has helped me. She told me that she was going through the menopause without HRT but that she swore by her HRT Cake.
I was naturally fascinated by this as I love diet & nutrition solutions to health issues (ask me about how I recovered post-Covid with a temporary low histamine/anti-inflammatory diet) & she kindly printed off the recipe she used – Linda Kearns HRT Cake Recipe. I tried this & will happily recommend it but immediately started tweaking it for my own specific nutritional needs, specifically swapping out raisins, which are very high in sugar, for prunes and fresh apple (although dried apple is also good & has less sugar).
The reason for these changes is the subject of another blog – on my Health & Nutrition plan from Zoe – the personalised nutrition program from the world’s largest nutrition-science study, which aims to help you understand how food affects your body & helps you to eat yourself healthier in a huge variety of ways. This includes cognitive mental health, emotional health & physical health so that you’ll learn how to eat for your body as a lifestyle change. To read more about this, how it could help you, & if you’re interested, how to join & partly by-pass the 250,000 waiting list with my pre-order access code please – read my Zoe Personalised Health & Nutrition Blog.
I also figured that this was a nurse at my local GP surgery & she had probably looked into some of the research behind it as well as giving me her anecdotal advice of how it helped her – I was hooked! Having eaten & enjoyed it, I have tweaked it & will continue to do so. My next plan is to add fresh raspberries to the apples (I love that combination) or maybe try an all-dried fruit version with delicious dried apple from The Refill Leighton Buzzard so I will let you know. The main thing is it’s a really good combination of healthy fats, nuts, seeds & fruits with soy so has higher levels of phytoestrogens – plant-based foods that mimic oestrogen. However, whatever you’re using it for it’s pretty healthy for you & your gut microbiome. Play around with your own ideas & enjoy the yumminess! 🙂
For more articles on a huge range of topics from bereavement to vitamin D & about treatments or to help with your health see my blog