Extra Virgin Chocolate Cake (gluten-free)

I am not a sweet-tooth so I don’t really go in much for desserts, but my-oh-my this amazing cake blew my mind while on my trip to Tuscany this year.

It’s definitely a “sometimes” recipe as opposed to an always one, but well worth making if you’re in the market for a great cake.

The recipe below is an adapted version of the original by the amazing chef Antonella La Macchia. She holds cooking classes over in Italy, complete with the most insanely incredible Tuscan view. We couldn’t take home the view, but we did bag a whole heap of delicious recipes which take us straight back there. Buon appetito!


50g raw cacao powder, sifted

1 sachet of Juice Plus+ Chocolate Complete (optional)

125ml warm water

1 tsp natural vanilla extract

200g coconut sugar

3 eggs

150ml extra virgin olive oil

150g ground hazelnuts

½ tsp baking powder

Pinch of salt


Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease a springform tin and line the base with baking paper.

In a jug, whisk together the cacao, Chocolate Complete (if using), the warm water and vanilla until you have a runny paste.

In a big bowl, whisk the coconut sugar, eggs and olive oil until fluffy and pale.

Add the cacao mixture and finish with the ground hazelnuts, baking powder and salt, folding gently.

Transfer the batter to the tin and bake for 40 minutes.

Serve warm on its own, or with some coconut gelato and warm fruit.



The pic is from my cooking class over in Italy. Antonella served the cake with a peach sauce. My food editor Kami says, if you’d like to make something similar, just cook down some peaches in a saucepan. Then, once they’re cooked, add rice malt syrup to taste and blitz in a blender. You can pass your sauce through a sieve, if you’d like it really nice and smooth.

You can substitute the vanilla extract with a teaspoon of Vanilla Juice Plus+ Complete if you like.

This would also be delicious with almond meal in the place of the ground hazelnuts.

Let me know what you think and check out Antonella’s website and Facebook and Instagram should you be planning any European trips and looking for an authentic Italian cooking class.