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10 Alternative First Birthday Cakes {Pumpkin Fudge Recipe}

Alternative Birthday Cakes

When is a cake not a cake?

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Pumpkin Fudge Recipe

  • Author: Katie Kimball
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 10 mins
  • Yield: serves 4-8 1x
  • Category: dessert



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  1. Soften coconut cream by placing it near the stove while cooking or in a bowl of warm water (in the tightly closed jar).
  2. Measure all the ingredients into a food processor (or Vitamix or Blendtec Twister jar).
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Scoop/pour into muffin tins, small cake pans, or small bread pans.
  5. Freeze for a few hours.
  6. Let sit for 10-15 minutes to soften in order to slice into cubes (if you used a rectangular pan). The muffins cups will pop right out with a little warm water on the bottom.
  7. Store leftovers in the freezer.


* Thanks to Purely Twins for the great inspiration!

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I don’t know the real answer to what surely sounds like an 8-year-old boy’s favorite joke, but my answer is this:

When it doesn’t have any flour or sugar.

Flour and sugar – often more sugar than flour – define the art of baking a cake. As much as I desire great pictures for my babies’ first birthdays, flour and sugar just aren’t on the list.

In fact, with baby no. 4 here, a big part of me just wanted to skip celebrations and not add anything else to my to-do list. He wouldn’t know any different, right? But Mommy Guilt kicked in and I realized that he’d be on to me when he was older because there would be no pictures.

So JUST to get pictures of a one-year-old birthday cake on a high chair tray, we had close family and godparents over for a “party.”

Which meant I had to figure out a “cake.”

Baby Gabe hadn’t had grains yet, since his gut doesn’t have the enzymes to digest them. (We start our babies off with real food, but simple.) He seemed to have an unfortunate reaction to eggs multiple times, so I’m still scared to feed those to him! (I just haven’t had a day where I wake up and think, “Yeah, today I’d be totally cool with a vomiting baby for 24 hours. I got nothing better to do…”)

He had done dairy, but I didn’t see the point in giving him much sweetener if any.

Even though I’ve been talking with Catherine Clinton of WellFuture, one of our sponsors, about how new research says not to worry about introducing allergenic foods early, I can’t seem to shake the habit from what I was told ten years ago with baby number one.

I was on the hunt for the perfect, allergy-free first birthday “cake” and found just the recipe!

Related: Beginning a Gluten and Dairy-Free Diet

First Birthday Celebration with Grain free Sugar free Healthy Fudge Cake

It made for a darling photo shoot, both with and without Gabe. Winking smile

And SO so yummy.

1st Birthday Cake Alternative Dairy Free Egg Free Grain Free Pumpkin Fudge
First Birthday Cake Alternative Dairy Free Egg Free Grain Free Pumpkin Fudge

For the main “cake” with the candle, I topped it with a probiotic frosting made of homemade yogurt cheese, a splash of vanilla or almond extract, and a tiny bit of maple syrup (although none for Gabe, why bother?). That would obviously make it not dairy-free, but it totally didn’t need it (see above). Those little circles made in muffin tins were also delish!

Eating Frozen Pumpkin Fudge a healthy treat for a first birthday party

The best part of the night was when he was holding a chunk and it got too cold for his hands and he didn’t know what to do! He just cried but kept a tight fist on the fudge! Everyone was cracking up.

If serving something frozen to your baby sounds a little cold-hearted (it’s funny! Really!), the same mush would go awesome into a Squooshi pouch and be delicious and nutritious.

For the Record…

It wasn’t always this “clean” at the KS house.

It wasn’t always the “KS” house! This is my oldest son’s food coloring laden birthday cake, from a box mix:

Pumpkin Fudge Recipe

Ok. So not that. Established?

More Allergen-Friendly First Birthday “Cakes”

I asked blog colleagues of mine if they had any ideas for healthy birthday treats for a one-year-old so that you all have more than just one to choose from, and they delivered!

Alternative Birthday Cakes

Grain, Nut, Egg & Refined Sugar Free Cupcake

Pumpkin Fudge Recipe

Wow! Recipe from Raising Generation Nourished

Grain-Free Brownies

10 Alternative First Birthday Cakes Pumpkin Fudge Recipe

Recipe from Natural Fertility and Wellness

Nectarine Squash Pops

Nectarine Squash Pops Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Recipe from Just Take a Bite

Homemade Gelatin or Gummies

Homemade Jello in a School Lunch

You could totally stick a candle in this, or a “bowl” of fruit gummies!

Dairy-Free Chocolate Mousse

Creamy dairy-free chocolate mousse in a glass jar

Recipe from Naturally Loriel

Easy Apple Crisp

Homemade Baked Apple Crisp

My recipe – so easy – slow cooker, bake it, stove top, whatever! Free downloadable printable! Skins off for little ones but I’m usually lazy and leave them on…

Baked Apple Bread(less) Pudding

baked apple breadless pudding 1

Recipe from Simple Abundant Life (does contain eggs)

Grain-free Coconut Muffins

grain free cake for Johns 1st birthday

My recipe! We made a quadruple batch into a 2-layer cake! (does contain eggs)

Dairy-Free, Egg-Free Butterscotch Pudding

df ef butterscotch pudding

Recipe from Just Take a Bite

Neopolitan Ice Cream Cake (Grain-free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free)

Neapolitan Ice Cream Cake grain free dairy free nut free Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Recipe from Just Take a Bite

What did you do for your kids’ first birthdays?


Unless otherwise credited, photos are owned by the author or used with a license from Canva or Deposit Photos.

9 thoughts on “10 Alternative First Birthday Cakes {Pumpkin Fudge Recipe}”

  1. I’d be interested in your first foods for baby/ allergenic foods research. #5 is due in May and I’m always looking for information to keep my children healthy. =) We aren’t a sugar free, grain free, dairy free family. But, I think it’s good to learn about the options that are out there and do we try to eat as “real” as we can (i.e. organic, non-gmo, homemade, etc.).

    For our 1st birthdays: we’ve had homemade cupcakes (I didn’t want the birthday boy to have all the preservatives and food colors in a store or mix cake) and a store cake (for the rest of the guests) for the first child (it was a big party!); for #2, we had a store cake (the boys were 19 months apart, so I was looking for “easy” =)); for #3, a store cake (another big party!); for #4, it was a homemade cake like my Mom used to make for us. My homemade cake isn’t the healthiest, but I make it with as many organic ingredients as I can and we only have it for birthdays. It tastes so much better than cake from a box or store! =)

    2013, #3’s 1st birthday year, was the last “big party” year for us. 2014, I was expecting #4 and didn’t feel like having any big parties. We just had little family parties with homemade cake and frosting that year. 2015 (#4’s 1st birthday year), we were planning on have big parties again, but we were in the process of buying a house and my husband’s grandma passed at the beginning of the year so the whole family just kind of went their separate ways for all the birthdays and holidays last year. We still haven’t moved into our house, so we aren’t sure what this year will be for parties, yet.

    Your little man looks so cute holding his “cake”! =)

  2. Here-here! Ad-less would be great! I’m always on your site and it’s a bit disheartening lately to go on here. I have to close the ad at the bottom and pause the video on the right. The page seems to lock up on me often. I browse other sites and have no problems, unless they are blogs with similar ads. It says “ is not responding” and I have to “recover my web page”. Just giving feed back to my favorite blogger!

  3. I know it’s not totally allergen-free, but I made whipped cream (with real, pastured cream and a smidge of maple syrup) for my last baby’s first birthday. I don’t think I even put anything under it, just a mound of cream. Because the “frosting” is the fun, messy part anyway. 🙂

    Since then I’ve made “cupcakes” for my boys with watermelon slices and whipped cream, so maybe I’ll try something like that when this new little one turns 1, since it will be in the summer.

    1. And the pumpkin fudge sounds fantastic too! I’ll definitely be trying that one as a special dessert soon!

  4. Both my children’s first birthdays were celebrated with an applesauce spice cake–recipe from Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook but with whole-wheat pastry flour and 1/2 the amount of sorghum syrup in place of white sugar, so it’s those ingredients plus applesauce, egg, and spices.

    Pumpkin fudge sounds delicious! Unchilled, I bet it would make a great dip for apples.

    There is an ad for Prego spaghetti sauce right in the middle of your recipe in a not-very-different font. Awkward! Can you do anything about that?

    1. Ugh, that is weird Becca, sorry about that. The in-post ad was one I resisted for a long time and then it seemed everyone was doing it, so I succumbed. My dream is to get back to zero ads! It shows up after a certain number of characters unfortunately and I didn’t realize it would hit the middle of the recipe. 🙁 I think it doesn’t always – when I viewed it, it was lower down. Something will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and I’ll get rid of that ad altogether!

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