Posted in HyggeBox

Gluten Free Coffee & Cardamom cake with used Coffee Grounds

We’re really getting in to living more naturally and finding ways to take small steps to lessen our impact on our flora and fauna. One of the things we’ve been thinking about is our huge consumption of coffee; what cups, what coffee and where to put the grounds!

We’ve come up with 14 great ways to use Coffee Grounds and we’ve also created this gorgeous Coffee & Cardamom cake, which is also Gluten Free — Happy Coeliac Awareness Week everyone! 

We used Bird and Wild coffee for this cake and it tastes wonderful with the cardamom buttercream, most coffee cakes use chocolate but we didn’t add it, we wanted a much more intense and pure coffee flavour.

Coffee Cake Recipe:


110g unsalted butter
35g black treacle
25g white sugar
120g dark brown soft sugar
145ml milk (semi skimmed)
4 level tsp instant coffee
8 tablespoons of used Coffee Grounds (we’ve used Bird and Wild Seasonal Blend)
2 cardamom pods
170g plain Gluten Free flour (if you want to make it non-GF then just add normal flour)
1 level tsp ground cardamom (you could increase this if you wanted more cardamom flavour in the cake itself, or drop in a few seeds)
Pinch salt
1 egg (beaten)
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda


  1. Heat the oven to 150 & grease a deep cake tin. Mine is a springform one and is 8 inches diameter, 2.5 inches height.
  2. Melt together the butter, treacle & sugars. Stir and make sure everything is thoroughly melted. Leave to cool a bit — room temperature is ideal if you have time.
  3. Put the coffees, milk & cardamom pods into a small pan. Bring gently to the boil to infuse the coffee flavour then take off the heat & leave to cool til lukewarm.
  4. Weigh out your flours and add in a pinch of salt & a level teaspoon of ground cardamom (I buy mine ready-done, or you can grind your own, but it needs to be very fine). Mix thoroughly.
  5. Mix the dark melted treacle etc into the flour — needs a bit of elbow grease!
  6. Add 1 beaten egg and mix it all together. No fancy mixers needed, just a spoon.
  7. When the coffee milk mix is cooled to just about the temperature of your finger (the all important finger test!) then take out the cardamom pods. Measure out your bicarb into another bowl and pour the coffee mix onto it. Stir and see it foam up. This is what will help the cake to rise evenly so you need to ensure it works or your cake will sink a little in the middle (although it will still taste great).
  8. Add the coffee mix to the cake batter, making sure to scrape in all the coffee grounds as these disappear into the crumb and give the cake its signature dark flavour. Mix thoroughly and you’re ready to go.
  9. Pour into the cake tin and pop in the oven.
  10. Bake for 1 hr. Check after 45 mins — don’t open the door if you can help it, just peep through and see if it still looks wobbly. Test the middle of the cake with the tip of a clean knife, or a thin skewer, when you think it’s done. If it comes out clean (with a few crumbs) then it’s ready.

The cake itself is beautifully dark and soft. I kept it to a single layer because the flavour is intense!

Cardamom Buttercream

This part is really simple to make. It is buttercream made by whipping butter, adding icing sugar and a drop of milk. However, as a guide, I used 2 tsp of ground cardamom in a big batch of icing and could’ve actually added a little more. I also added a small pinch of salt and a couple of drops of good vanilla essence to round out the flavour. I whipped it till it was really light and added a little bit of teal & yellow colouring for a pale mint green colour.

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