Fruitcake With Nuts, Dried Fruit, Applesauce

Perfect Christmas or Wedding Cake Recipe, Vegan or GF Vegan

Fruitcake GF Vegan

Fruit Cake: This is a vegan make-over of a traditional fruit cake recipe, with less fat and sugar, no candied peel, and gluten free option. Egg & dairy option in recipe tips.

Applesauce is the secret ingredient which guarantees a sweet moist cake while using half the usual amount of fat and sugar, and no eggs.

Traditionally, fruit cakes have liquor added, and are wrapped in liquor soaked cloths for up to 3 months, then covered in almond paste. We find all that completely unnecessary, and get down to devouring the deliciousness the day after baking.

Total prep & cook time: 2 hr

36 Servings

Nutrition Data Per Serving, 56 g: 150 cal, 49 fat cal, 24g carbs, 6g fat, 132mg sodium, 13g sugars, 2g fiber, 2g protein, low Cholesterol, good source Manganese. Estimated glycemic load: 13

Use a 10 inch spring form pan, or 2 large loaf pans, or 4 mini loaf pans for this recipe

Fruit & Nut Mix Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups mixed dried fruit: dark cherries or cranberries, golden or dark raisins, black currants or black mission figs, pitted deglet dates, apricots (sulphured or not)
  • Grated zest of one large orange
  • Grated zest of one lemon
  • Juice of 1 large orange
  • Juice of 1 lemon
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  • 1/2 cup sugar (coconut, sucanat or light cane sugar)
  • 1/4 cup light molasses
  • 1/4 cup agave or maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup thick unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup slivered blanched almonds
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • Optional: 1 tsp rum extract OR 1/2 cup rum

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached white flour (substitute half whole wheat or spelt flour if desired)
  • Gluten Free Option: 2 1/2 cups All Purpose GF flour mix (see below) + 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
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  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cloves

All Purpose GF Flour Mix: Based on the recipe in the Naturally Sweet and Gluten Free cookbook by Ricki Heller

  • 6 cups sorghum or millet flour or combo
  • 2 cups tapioca starch
  • 2 cups garbanzo bean flour
  • 1 cup organic corn starch or potato starch
  • 1 cup extra fine white rice flour or sweet rice flour

I've used this gf flour mix for many different gluten free desserts, such as apple pie, vegan butter tarts, cranberry orange nut muffins, and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. I make a big batch so I always have some on hand and don't have to mix it up every time I bake.

Wet Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp egg replacer or 2 Tbsp gr. flax seed
  • 1/2 cup melted veggie spread or coconut oil OR sunflower oil
  • 1 cup plain unsweetened soy or almond milk
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Prepare fruit and nuts 6 - 8 hours ahead:

  1. Chop large fruit into small pieces. Soak raisins and|or currants in boiling water for 5 minutes, then drain well
  2. Chop the pecans
  3. Zest the orange and lemon, then juice them by hand
  4. Add all the fruit, nuts and zest to a large bowl
  5. Combine the sugar, molasses, syrup, applesauce, vanilla extract, rum extract or rum if using, and fruit juice. Stir that mixture into the fruit and nut mixture. Cover and let sit for 6 - 8 hours, stirring occasionally if possible

After soaking the fruit:

  1. Stir the egg replacer or gr. flax seed into the 1/2 cup water and let stand for 15 minutes
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Oil the pans, and line the bottoms of the pans with a double layer of parchment paper
  4. Measure and combine the flour, spices, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl - big enough to mix the whole cake
  5. Combine the egg replacer mixture with the melted veggie spread or coconut oil and non-dairy milk. Blend well with a whisk, electric mixer, or blender
  6. Combine the wet with the dry ingredients to make a smooth batter
  7. Fold in the fruit and nut mixture until thoroughly mixed with the batter, using a sturdy wooden spoon or spatula.
  8. Add the fruit & batter mixture to the pans a spoonful at a time, spreading and pressing down evenly as you go, until the pans are 2/3 full
  9. Bake for 40 - 60 minutes depending on the size of the pan, at 350 degrees F
  10. Bake longer if needed, until the cake is risen and firm to the touch in the middle. A 10 inch cake will take 1 hour and 15 - 30 minutes to bake
  11. Cool in pans on wire rack, for 15 minutes. Turn out on rack upside and cool completely, removing the parchment paper
  12. To store, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, then in a tightly sealed plastic bag or tightly sealed storage container
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Recipe Tips:

This fruitcake recipe has 36 servings as it is very rich and a little goes a long way. Don't try to make a meal of it - just sayin'.

If you can find unsweetened dried fruit, so much the better, but I was not able to find it where I live.

I don't use commercial candied fruit and peel because it's loaded with ingredients I avoid, such as dyes, flavoring, preservatives, corn syrup etc.

Same with adding rum or brandy - I wouldn't buy a bottle just to make fruitcake. Feel free to add those things if you feel that your fruitcake just won't be the same without them.

Of course I can't imagine why you would want to, but if you do want to make your fruitcake with eggs & dairy, substitute 4 beaten eggs for the egg replacer + 1/2 cup water, use butter instead of vegetable spread or coconut oil, and dairy milk instead of non-dairy.

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