SO SO delicious. A light polenta cake which is so beautiful when decorated with toasted flaked almonds (any nuts are perfect!) along with grated orange peel OR any fruit or berries, to give different textures and flavours.

Contributed by chef @lottiebrook from

This is the perfect Valentine’s Day treat that your loved one will thank you for.

If you can, cook the night before so it sets – but if short of time, this should be good if given a couple of hours to cool, set and hold together.

Nutritional Insight

Polenta is corn, and therefore a useful ingredient for gluten free (GF) baking. Be sure to check that the baking powder is GF too.

With almonds and coconut adding to the healthy fat profile of this cake, these also give the cake a richness such that a small piece goes a long way.

Alongside, the oranges give it a lovely delicate taste and add to the antioxidant profile of the cake.

Remember to buy organic oranges (lemons could be used instead) as citrus fruits are some of the most heavily sprayed crops and often waxed too.

Organic and unwaxed is important whenever the zest is being used.

Orange Polenta Cake

Serves: 8-10

Time to create: 2 hrs

Time for personal effort: 20 mins




150ml Light olive oil

200g Coconut sugar

120g Dry fine polenta

80g Desiccated coconut 

100g Ground almonds

1 1/2 tsp Baking powder

3 Eggs (large)

1 1/2 Oranges (large) zest


1 1/2 Oranges (juiced)

100g Coconut sugar

To decorate 

Toasted flakes almonds

Toasted nuts

Extra desiccated coconut

Any fruit or berries


  1. Heat your oven to 180c and prepare your tin by greasing with a little olive oil and line the bottom with baking parchment. 
  2. Mix together the light olive oil and coconut sugar in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix the polenta, almonds, baking powder and desiccated coconut.
  3. Add 1 egg and a third of the dry mix to the sugar and oil, mixing well each time. Add your orange zest and a splash of almond milk. Mix again.
  4. Spoon into your tin and bake for 25-35 minutes until the sides are just coming away from the tin and it is springy to the touch. 
  5. While the cake is cooling, make your cake syrup by melting the coconut sugar and orange juice together over a medium heat in a pan, until the sugar has dissolved. Simply, prick holes all over the cake and pour the syrup over the top of your slightly cooled cake, leave it in the tin, about 10 mins post bake is good.
  6. Leave to cool completely in the tin, preferably overnight. 
  7. Carefully remove from the tin and transfer to your chosen plate. Top with flaked almonds  grated orange skin.

Per Serving
% Daily Value *
Total Fat28g ( 43% )
– Saturated Fat9g ( 45% )
– Monounsaturated Fat14 g
– Polyunsaturated Fat3 g
– Trans Fat0 g
– Cholesterol70 mg ( 23 % )
Sodium120 mg (5 % )
Potassium27 mg ( 1 % )
Total Carbohydrate55 g ( 18 % )
– Dietary Fiber1 g ( 4 % )
– Sugars42 g
Protein5 g ( 11% )
Vitamin A( 3 % )
Vitamin C( 22% )
Calcium( 53% )
Iron( 2% )

Lottie Brook

Beautiful soul who is addicted to traveling worldwide, which is a spear for her dishes, primarily cooks with plant based ingredients, does delicious dishes for all platforms, including those carnivores. Her focus is on sustainable eating and bringing seasonal produce to its rightful glory.

She hosts seasonal dining events, scampering around London and beyond, raising money for charities and showcasing nature’s bounty. Check out for future events on her site. Or contact her to create your own!

Wholesome World provides digital access to healthy lifestyle information and medical research. It is approved by the National Health Service (NHS) and features in the app library. Download the app here and follow us on Instagram.

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