Last week was my Birthday and I would love to share with you the recipe for my Plantbased Birthday Cake today. I can’t remember my Birthday cake from last year and so I’m making sure that I’ll remember this one by dedicating this post to it.
I’m hoping it’ll bring me some lovely memories in years time and that getting one year older can be great if you have a good cake and some wonderful people around to share it with.
This cake is a mix of all of my favourite ingredients – beetroot, carrot, buckwheat, teff, cinnamon, cardamom, coconut and walnuts. I’ve used the same frosting as in my most popular Blueberry Cake with Coconut Frosting recipe. It’s super wholesome and got some great reviews from my friends and family, so it can’t be that bad!
For decoration I wanted something girly and simple and have used few blackberries, thyme sprigs and pansies to top the cake. One thing worth mentioning is that the pigment from the root vegetables seem to come through into the frosting after some time and the white part of the frosting became peachy after few hours. I thought it looked pretty, but you might not like that.
The cake on the pictures is three layer cake, but the recipe below is for two layers, because I wanted to make it easier for you if you only want to bake two layer cake or have two 6″ tins. Happy baking & let me know what you think!
Plantbased Birthday Cake (gluten-free & vegan)
- 200g mixed beetroot and carrot, grated (1 1/4 cup packed)
- 1/2 orange, zest
- 95g teff flour (3/4 cup)
- 70g buckwheat flour (1/2 cup)
- 50g ground walnuts (1/2 cup)
- 50g desiccated coconut (1/2 cup)
- 75g coconut sugar (1/2 cup)
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1tsp cinnamon
- 1/2tsp cardamom
- pinch of sea salt
- 2tbsp ground flaxseed + 6tbsp water
- 80ml olive oil (1/3 cup)
- 60ml almond milk (1/4 cup)
- 60ml orange juice (1/4 cup)
- 2tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1x 400ml can full fat coconut milk (refrigerated overnight)
- 250g coconut yoghurt (1 cup)
- 1/2tbsp blueberry powder
- fresh thyme sprigs
- edible flowers
- Place the can of full fat coconut milk into a fridge, preferably overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F)
- Grease and line 2 x 6" round cake baking tin.
- Peel and roughly grate beetroot and carrots, stir in orange zest and set aside.
- Mix 2tbsp of ground flaxseed with 6tbsp of water and set aside to thicken.
- In a large bowl whisk together teff flour, buckwheat flour, ground walnuts, desiccated coconut, coconut sugar, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, cardamom and salt. Set aside.
- In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, almond milk, orange juice, apple cider vinegar and flax eggs. Set aside.
- Stir the beetroot mix to the dry mix and now add the wet mix and mix until combined. If the mixture is too dry add extra almond milk to achieve moist muffin consistency.
- Evenly divide the mixture between the two cake tins and level out the surface.
- Bake for about 30min or until a cocktail stick comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven once ready and leave to cool down for 30 min before carefully moving onto a wire rack.
- To make the frosting scoop the solid part of the coconut milk into a bowl, add coconut yoghurt and whip until smooth and thick. You can add 1/2tbsp of sweetener if you like. Keep in a fridge until you're ready to frost the cake.
- Once the cakes are completely cool, place one layer onto a cake stand and spread with some coconut frosting, top with the other layer. Using spatula frost the top and the sides of the cake. Place about 2tbsp of frosting into a small bowl, add the blueberry powder and mix well. With spatula add the purple frosting to some parts of the cake as you like. You can add more white to other parts.
- Finish with fresh blackberries, thyme sprigs, edible flowers,...
- Store in a fridge and enjoy!
This recipe is for 2 layer cake. If you like to make 3 layer cake like the one on the pictures, please increase the ingredients by 1/2 the amount and use three 6" tins.. The frosting will be just enough for 3 layers.
Dear Hana, your cakes are super yummy and super awesome, but as much as I”ve tried and tried and tried, well, i just can’t stand buckwheat taste in any form, sweet or savoury, unfortunately it just disgusts my tastebuds to the point that it puts me off food…everything else i’m absolutely fine with, so, please, any suggestions? So far whenever there was buckwheat in your recipe i just substituted it with more of any other flour that was in the recipe….i just wanted to share this with you as may be, there’s someone else with my buckwheat predicament…thank you for being such an inspiring girl !
Hi Ella, thank you for such a great comment! I can totally understand your buckwheat dislike, it’s rather strong flavoured and if you don’t like, you just don’t like it! I tend to use it mainly, because as a flour it’s reasonably priced and more available than some of the other high protein flours. I also don’t particularly like rice flour in recipes and personally prefer buckwheat. To substitute it in my recipes use some other protein flour like quinoa, millet, amaranth or teff. Sometimes ground nuts would work well too. In this recipe you could also substitute it with rice flour. Hope this helps & thank you so much for trying out so many of my recipes. Love H
Aimee | Wallflower Kitchen says
Hana, you are amazing. This is just beautiful! Hard to believe it’s made with such wholesome ingredients. Hugs x
Aimee, thank you so much!!! I did my best to make it super wholesome! Hugs xx
Can flaxseed be substituted with something else please
Hi Candy, I’ve made this cake without flaxseed, but it was a bit crumbly. You could use 2tbsp of chia seeds mixed with 6tbsp of water instead or possibly even 1tsp of psyllium husk or 60ml (1/4 cup) of aquafaba to provide more binding. Hope this helps:)
Teresa Franke says
I am so lucky and blessed to have you as my friend, dear Hana, and this incredible cake is every bit as delicious as it looks!! I wish you a beautiful year ahead full of wonderful, super healthy recipes! Happily I adore buckwheat (which is top of my list of good foods to eat right now – it has been found to support heart health while also protecting against breast cancer… So let’s drink to that! (…a green juice, or maybe some water kefir fizz?! ;-) :-)) I love you, Hana! Tee xxx
And so am I incredibly lucky to have such a loving and supportive friend like you Tee! Thank you so so much! I love you back!!! And let’s rock some water kefir fizz soon:) xxx
Gabriella @ Putumayo Kitchen says
This is SO beautiful – it’s hard to believe it’s made from nourishing, natural ingredients. Hope you had a beautiful birthday! xx Gabriella
Thank you so much Gabriella for this lovely comment! Yes, I did:) Thank you for stopping by. xx
Maikki | Maikin mokomin says
Super beautiful cake! (as always :) )
Thank you so much Maikki! xx
Sasha @ Eat Love Eat says
Beautiful cake Hana! I hope you had a wonderful birthday :) xx
Thank you so much Sasha! Yes, I had and this cake made it even better!!! xx
Hi love your recipes! Wanted to check if I could use something else other than teff flour since it is not available where we live..?
Thank you so much Monisha! You could substitute the teff with brown rice flour or any other of your favourite gluten-free flours. Something more neutral.
Hi! Can I use all Oat flour? :)
Hi Georgina, you can try and substitute the teff and buckwheat flours with oat flour, I think it should work fine.
I’m planning my birthday party, and this cake looks awesome! The site I found it on calls it a “blackberry cake” but I can’t find blackberries in the recipe except for in the toppings section. What does the actual baked dough part of this cake taste like?
Hi Elie, it’s a root vegetable cake. It tastes little like carrot cake with beetroot tones. I have lots of sponge cake recipes on the blog if you like something more simple. You can use this decoration on any of them. Have an amazing Birthday!
Kim Johnston says
Hi,love your cakes
Is the beetroot cooked or raw in this recipe
Hi Kim, I’ve used raw grated beetroot in this recipe.
Hayley Adams says
Help the coconut milk isn’t thickening for the frosting
Hi Hayley, I’m sorry to hear that! It’s frustrating, it just happened to me today too! I don’t know why, but it happens sometimes, even with the same brands. Choose coconut milk that is high in coconut, at least 50%. In an emergency just frost the cake with coconut yoghurt only. I had to do once quick emergency vegan butter – icing sugar frosting, that one is done right away! As much as I didn’t want to add the sugar, everyone loved it! Hope you’ve managed to sort it out :)
Hi Hayley, I’ve done some more research because had issues lately with the brand that always worked for me. Choose one with at least 50% coconut solids, ideally without preservatives, ensure the tin sits still in a cupboard for at least couple of days and do not shake before refrigerating, refrigerate overnight and up to 24 hours only. The coconut milk from Thailand is best for whipped cream. Hope this helps :)
Chantal Bérubé says
I love this cake, it’s absolutely beautiful. I’m new at the vegan cooking so I just have 1 quick question:
Under the instructions on how to make the cake, step 7 says: In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, almond milk, orange juice, apple cider vinegar and flax eggs. Set aside.
I dont understand what you mean by flax eggs. Could you please clarify for me? Thanks in advance, Chantal
Hi Chantal, by the flax eggs I mean the 2tbsp ground flaxseed with the 6tbsp of water that you prepare at the beginning. Hope you enjoy the recipe :) xx
Hi! I have just made it. I am testing the recipe for our vegan weeding. I really liked the picture of your cake as soon as I saw the picture. And beetroot and carrots and cardamom were the flavors I was thinking of.
It taste great!! However, unfortunately the dough was just enough for one and it grew only to 1.5cm tall. That’s not a problem I will double the recipe for each pan.
The frosting was my real problem it is just liquid. I think that part of the problem is that I can not find coconut cream or yogurts in my country so I made my own yogurt with creamy coconut milk and left another bottle in the fridge. How could I make the frosting more consistent? Agar Agar would make the trick. Is there another frosting you would like to suggest?
Thank you so much
Hi Adriana, I’m so pleased you’ve chosen this cake for your wedding :) Yes, the frosting would be too light for this occasion, I think you need to choose one heavier that will last well. It depends on whether you need the cake to stay at room temperature and for how long. Also, one thing to be aware of is that the pigment from the beets is quite strong and might pass through the frosting after a while.
You could certainly try adding agar and then whisking it, but it will still be quite a light frosting. Another one you could test try is the White Chocolate Frosting from my Yule Log recipe, that one is quite thick. But I think you could also consider just going with classic vegan frosting with vegan butter and icing sugar, this one would last well for a longer time at room temperature. I’ve used it once for an event because the cake needed to last few hours at quite warm room and it worked well (as much as I hated putting all that icing sugar in, everyone loved it). Hope this helps :)