Homey and healthy vegan chickpea flour banana cake that is grain-free and gluten-free! It is ready, start to finish, in 30 minutes.
Banana Cake Made with Chickpea Flour
Yes, you need another banana cake recipe, and lucky for you, I have got one that is well worth trying.
It’s neither fussy nor precious, but it does have a special ingredient that makes it unique: chickpea flour!
What is Chickpea Flour?
Chickpea flour (aka garbanzo bean flour, ceci flour, chana, besan and gram flour) is made from finely ground dried chickpeas. It is naturally gluten-free, grain-free, easy-to-use, inexpensive, and incredibly versatile for making both sweet and savory eats.
Chickpea flour has a subtle nutty flavor and packs a bonus punch of protein, too. It is gaining in popularity in North America, but it is anything but faddish. Finely ground chickpeas have been around for centuries and are used in myriad cuisines from the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Northern Africa and Southern Europe.
This banana cake is a great choice for giving chickpea flour a try. It is perfect for the lunch-packing season ahead since it can be made at the drop of a hat, is not-too-sweet and travels well.
- Vegan (egg-free, dairy-free)
- Quick and easy to prepare
- Frugal (chickpea flour is inexpensive)
Vegan Chickpea Flour Banana Cake Ingredients
The exact amounts of each ingredient are indicated in the recipe card at the end of the post.
- nondairy milk (e.g., almond milk, cashew milk, soy milk)
- lemon juice
- chickpea flour
- baking powder (certified GF, as needed)
- baking soda
- ground cinnamon
- natural cane sugar (or granulated sweetener of choice)
- mashed very ripe banana
- melted coconut oil (or vegetable oil of choice)
- vanilla extract
- Optional: 1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
How to Make the Cake
Note that the complete directions are also in the recipe card below.
- Preheat oven to 375°F (190C). Line a 9-inch (22.5 cm) square metal baking pan. lightly grease or coat with nonstick cooking spray
- Combine the nondairy milk and lemon juice in a small bowl. Let stand 5 minutes to curdle.
- In a large bowl, whisk the chickpea flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Make a well in center of flour mixture.
- Add the sugar, banana, oil, and vanilla to the curdled milk mixture, whisking until well blended. Add banana mixture to the flour mixture in large bowl, stirring just until moist. Stir in walnuts, if using. Spread evenly into prepared pan, smoothing top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 18 to 22 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool cake in the pan 10 minutes on wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.
Can I Leave out the Walnuts in the Recipe?
Yes, you can leave out the walnuts in the cake.
I can go either way with the addition of walnuts. I love their toasty flavor, but I think the cake is smashing without them, too. My husband holds fast that banana breads and cakes MUST have nuts to qualify for eating, but my sister and others believe the exact opposite.
Go with your own tastes, or by what’s on hand for the add-ins. You can also swap in chocolate chips, chopped dried fruits, or other types of nuts, or seeds, in place of the walnuts.
Can I Use A Different Flour, Less Sugar or Less Oil?
Leaving the walnuts out of this cake is one thing, but changing the primary ingredient (chickpea flour) and the ratios of sugar, oil and liquid is something else altogether.
I do not recommend any other flour for this particular recipe; stick with chickpea flour. Further, use caution with substitutions and proportions here. Chickpea flour is not all-purpose flour, so changes in the amount of sugar, oil, banana, etc. will likely require some experimentation before achieving the right balance.
More Grain-Free & Vegan Chickpea Flour Cakes & Baked Goods to Try:
- Chickpea Flour Chocolate Cake
- Chickpea Flour Carrot Cake Bites
- Chocolate Chickpea Flour Muffins
- Chickpea Flour Gingerbread Bundt Cake
- Chickpea Flour Banana Bread
- 1-Bowl Chickpea Flour Brownies