I've only become a recent lover of beetroot. Up until a few months ago, it used to taste like dirt to me. However, after reading up on the benefits, I forced myself to eat it repeatedly, and now I love it. Persistence is key, guys. 

That doesn't mean I wasn't adverse to using it in a cake recipe though. It is a vegetable after all, and one that not too long ago, tasted like the ground to me. I never understood why people ate chocolate beetroot cake when they could just have regular chocolate cake - right? Recently however, I needed to make a red velvet birthday cake but couldn't bring myself to use a whole bottle of red food colouring. Beetroot seemed the only way to go to get that red colour in.

If you haven't tried beets in cakes, the first thing you'll need to know is you can't taste them. Promise. As well as giving this cake an awesome, natural red colour, beetroot also adds great texture. Moist, light and fluffy with a subtle chocolate flavour, this cake is right up my alley. And you'll be getting in a serving of veg too!

adapted from Kim Severson


For the cake:
1x 450g can beetroot, drained
170g butter, room temperature
1/2 cup plain unsweetened yoghurt
1/4 cup milk
Juice of 1 large lemon
2 tsp white vinegar
1 ยฝ tsp vanilla extract
2 cups (200g) flour
3 tablespoons (24g) cocoa powder
1 โ…› tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
ยฝ tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cup (300g) granulated sugar
3 eggs

To serve:
Cream cheese icing

  1. Dice beets and process in a food processor. This should yield about 1 cup of beetroot puree (remove excess if more).
  2. Mix the yoghurt with the milk and add to the food processor with the beets, lemon juice, vinegar and vanilla until all incorporated. Set aside.
  3. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt and baking soda.  
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy (5 minutes).
  5. Beat in eggs one at a time.
  6. Alternate adding flour mixture and beet mixture to butter mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, and beating for 10 seconds after each addition. 
  7. Divide batter between two cake tins.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove pans from oven and cool completely on a wire rack. 
  9. To assemble, sandwich the cakes together with the cream cheese icing. Top and cover the sides with the rest of the icing.