This recipe for starts with a moist, chocolatey cake. It's then coated in a layer of walnut frosting and a layer of rich and fudgy date chocolate caramel. By taking one bite of this cake, you experience the amazing combination of nutty coconut, chocolate, and caramel. Once you experience it, you'll find yourself craving this cake regularly.

Samoa Layer Cake [Vegan, Gluten-Free]



For the Cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa flour, or all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup packed soft Medjool dates, pitted, soaked in water for 30 minutes, and 1/2 cup of the water reserved
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

For the Frosting:

  • 1 1/4 cups pitted Medjool dates, soaked in water for 30 minutes, and 1 cup of the water reserved
  • 3/4 cup raw walnut butter or raw almond butter
  • 3/4 cup cacao powder
  • A pinch of sea salt

For the Caramel:

  • 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
  • 3 tablespoons raw pecan butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • 1/3 cup filtered water
  • 3/4 cup finely shredded, dried coconut
  • 1/4 cup chopped vegan dark chocolate


To Make the Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and position rack in center of oven. Line the bottoms of two 6-inch diameter cake pans with 2-inch high sides with parchment paper. Coat parchment paper and pan sides lightly with oil so that the cake doesn't stick.
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt in a large bowl to blend well. Place dates, reserved water, oil, water, and vanilla extract into a blender, and blend until smooth, then whisk this blended mixture into the flour mixture until well blended.
  3. Whisk in the cider vinegar until bubbles form. Transfer cake batter to prepared pans and bake cakes, until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool cakes completely in pan on rack, about 1 hour. Cut around sides of pan to loosen. Turn cakes out onto platter and peel off the parchment paper. Let cool completely.
To Make the Frosting:
  1. Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender, and blend until smooth. Since moisture content in dates varies, and nut butters may vary in runniness, if it seems too thin, add a little more cacao powder, too thick, a little more water. Set aside.

To Make the Caramel:

  1. Combine all ingredients but the coconut in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Stir in coconut until well combined.

To Assemble:

  1. Place one cake layer on a plate, and spread frosting 1/2 inch thick over it, then half of the caramel. Place the other cake layer over that, then spread the remaining frosting on the top and down the sides of the cake. Spread the remaining caramel over the top of the cake.
  2. Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler, then drizzle over the caramel on top of the cake. Place in the refrigerator until the chocolate hardens.


If you would like a 2 layer 9-inch cake, double this entire recipe and bake in two 9-inch cake pans.