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Healthier Black Forest & Cherry Cake

Imagine the lightest chocolate sponge cake in-between layers of fluffy whipped cream and cherries – perfect for both a valentine’s date night or Galentines celebration. Our Healthier Black Forest & Cherry Cake is nothing short of a show stopped, yet is SO EASY to make!

What makes this cake so fluffy and moist?

Lifeway Kefir’s farmer cheese! While you may be familiar baking with ricotta cheese, whole milk kefir and farmers cheese are actually amazing alternatives – and a bit healthier too! They are loaded with protein, adds great depth and richness to the overall flavor, as well as develops the texture to absolute perfection.

Healthier Black Forest & Cherry Cake (Valentines-Inspired)
Healthier Black Forest & Cherry Cake (Valentines-Inspired)

This post is sponsored by Lifeway Kefir’s Farmer Cheese. As always, all opinions are mine.

What is Farmer Cheese?

Lifeway Kefir’s Farmer Cheese is a low calorie, reduced fat culture soft cheese that is made using their Old World recipe. It has tangy flavor that adds amazing richness to almost any dish! On its own, it’s packed with 12 live and active probiotics, as well as plenty of nutrients.

It’s also up to 99% lactose-free, making this cake lactose intolerant friendly! In addition, each serving has 13g of protein and is high in calcium, AND is gluten-free… can it get any better?!

Also, you can check out the easy process of making this cake in our Instagram reel recipe video @brightmomentco (instagram.com/brightmomentco)

How do I store a Black Forest cake?

I think this cake is actually even better the day after – making it perfect for prepping a day in advance! In this case, just cover and store at room temperature for 1-2 days, then refrigerate for up to 1 week. Same method goes for those tasty cake leftovers! 🙂

Now, it’s time to grab our aprons and begin baking deliciousness!

Healthier Black Forest & Cherry Cake (Valentines-Inspired)

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Servings: 8

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 1 1/4 cup Lifeway Kefir Farmer Cheese, a little less than one container (for shopping reference)
  • 3 large Eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups Boiling Water
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 3/4 cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Cane Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt

For the frosting:

  • 1 1/2 pints Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1/3 cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1-2 tsp. Maple Syrup, to taste
  • 1 tbsp. Cherry Liquor or Juice (optional)

For the cherry layer:

  • 2 1/2 cups Cherries, halved and pitted (if using frozen, make sure you thaw and drain the cherries first + save 2 tbsp. of the juice)
  • 1/3 cup Granulated Cane Sugar

Instructions

For the cherry layer:

  • Add the cherries and sugar with 2 tablespoon water/cherry juice into a saucepan over medium high heat. Let it cook to reduce into a syrup for 10 to 15 minutes. Optional: blend the cherries for a smoother texture. Let it cool completely while you prepare the cake.

For the cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil and line 3 6" cake pans or 2 8" cake pans.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder.
  • In a separate mixing bowl, beat the eggs, olive oil, and farmers cheese on medium speed for 2 minutes, until creamy. Add in the vanilla extract.
  • Working fast, pour the boiling hot water into the olive oil mixture to mix until well-combined, then gradually add in the flour mixture on low speed just until combined.
  • Evenly distribute the batter into the prepared baking pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the frosting:

  • Add the heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer to beat onmedium high speed until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Fold in the maple syrup and (optional) cherry liquor/juice.

To assemble:

  • Place one cake layer on your cake stand, then add a generous scoop of the cherry syrup to evenly spread out, then a heaping cup of frosting. Evenly cover the layer with the frosting, and repeat until all cake layers are used. Garnish with fresh cherries, chocolate shavings, chocolate ganache, and/or a caramel drizzle. Enjoy!

I truly hope you all enjoy this scrumptious Valentine’s Day-inspired cake recipe that has nestled its way into our hearts here in the ABM kitchen! ’till next time… xxL

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If you loved this delicious recipe I would truly appreciate it so much if you would give a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #abrightmoment and tagging me @brightmomentco. It always makes my day seeing y’alls creations!

For more great A Bright Moment recipes, be sure to follow me on PinterestFacebookYouTube and Instagram.

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“So do not fear, for I am with you;
    do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)

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