Raw Cacao and Hemp Seed Cake

Welcome to the wonderful world of dairy free sweets  – how marvelous especially for all of us like me who have been diagnosed as being lactose intolerant. When I was a child there wasn’t much on the horizon in terms of non – dairy desserts, cheesecakes, biscuits, slices and cakes and really the only alternative would be margarine for butter and soy for milk. Add being gluten free into the mix and there is even less. Luckily, there has been a wave of healthy living options with creative vegan, raw and vegetarian chefs, and home cooks whipping up some absolutely delightful wholesome desserts and sweet treats.

This little gem is full of healthy protein with the addition of hemp seeds and the added bonus of cacao chocked full with magnesium and other feel great goodness. Hemp seeds have only just come onto the market in Australia but these little seeds of vitality have been eaten in other countries for centuries. They contain no THC the psychotropic component of marijuana so no getting ‘stoned’ on this ‘cheesecake’ though you may feel a wonderful natural high from all the goodness pulsing through your body.

Hemp seeds are a simple dry fruit with a hard shell and taste like sunflower or sesame seeds. They have a mild, nutty flavour. They are sold hulled and ready to eat in most good health stores. They can be eaten raw, sprouted, or in powder form. Hemp is a natural plant protein with a full amino acid profile.

Here are just some of their benefits:

Healthy omega-3 fatty acids. 30% of hemp seed nutrition comes from quality, healthy fats. Containing both omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids these fatty acids are essential to good skin health, and healthy brain!

Plant-based protein. 25% of hemp seed nutrition comes from plant-based protein is super easy to digest and contains all the essential amino acids.

Heart health. Contains Amino acid arginine that dilates blood vessels and decreases hypertension.

GLA. Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) is present in hemp seeds and this helps the production of prostaglandin which in turn supports the management of the emotional and physical effects of prolactin (which can cause PMS symptoms). Thus, GLA helps to balance hormones and can reduce the symptoms of menopause.

Healthy digestion. An abundant source of soluble fibre, unhulled hemps seeds can aid digestion, keep gut flora variable and healthy, and manage blood sugar levels.

Let’s get processing!



  • 1 cup raw hazelnuts
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of organic cacao powder
  • 1 1/4 cup sultanas


  • Pulse the hazelnuts in a food processor into a crumbly.
  • Add the cacao and sultanas.
  • Process until the mixture begins to stick together.
  • Press it into the bottom of a 22cm paper-lined cake pan and place it in the fridge.


  • 1 1/2 cup raw cashews (soaked – 3 to 4 hours)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup hemp seeds
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder
  • 1 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup melted cacao butter
  • Cacao nibs & fresh fruit for garnish


  • Process all the cake ingredients except the cacao butter in a food processor until smooth  and silky
  • Add the cacao butter in last and process again.
  • Spread evenly onto the base and refrigerate for at least 4 hours – overnight if possible.