Beet and Pistachio Loaf Cake

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 My son and daughter loves beet root, and without doubt is among the vegetables she loves a lot. Nowadays she also tells me what menu she wants?  She loves only one menu a rasam(Spicy tamarind soup), beet root stir-fry with coconut and rice. Occasionally she loves to eat Sambar as well as Ethapazha pulissery (Plantain in spicy coconut sauce). She call it as banana, I can give pulissery two times if more it comes in the menu the third time she will say “no banana” . However Soupa(Rasam) can show her face as much times. I think they got my gene in that part; I am hardcore fan of Rasam which I would make once in week even I stayed alone. I also love Beetroot. I too love them, but hate the job of chopping it to small pieces.  Last week shopping we spotted a mega beetroot in a specialty store. I bought 2 of them, they are so big, and each one is equal to 3 normal sized beetroots, but it did make a tasty stir-fry.

So with the second one my hubby told me try to use only half for the stir fry and make use of rest in something else.  In the mean time I borrowed this book from the library Eric Lanlard’s  Cake Boy ; I got intrigued by the beetroot hazelnut cake. However I didn’t have hazelnut in my hand. So decide to substitute hazelnut with pistachio as it was calling my name in pantry. Suddenly I got health conscious; and decided to use whole wheat flour, reduced sugar, and also reduced the amount of eggs, added some extra species and made this delicious cake. Now you know star ingredient in this recipe is beetroot, it given a marvelous marble effect. I took pain to grate the beet root with my hand, without injuring my fingers.
If you want a tea or coffee time or breakfast  cake, go ahead a give it a try, earthy beetroot makes wonders in this  bread, at first I was little reluctant about the taste of this veggie in the cake. Even though I heard about their use in red velvet cake, it showed me its charm that I am very good in dessert too. If you are quick bread fan, and don’t want to use your kitchen mixer and then this cake is for you. Yes you need a grater also.
Here comes the recipe.

              Beet and Pistachio Loaf Cake
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 60 minutes
Serves: 6-8, 1 9×5 inch loaf


1 cup All purpose flour
1/2 cup Whole Wheat flour
3/4 cup Sugar (Increase the amount of sugar   to 1 cup)
1 cup Beets (freshly grated)
1/2 cup oil
3 tablespoon milk
11/4 teaspoon cinnamon (You can also reduce the amount)
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup roasted pistachios
1/4 teaspoon salt ( if you want use kosher salt increase to ½ teaspoon)
2 Jumbo eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder

  • Wash and peel and grate the beetroot, roast the pistachios in a baking sheet at 350F for 10 minutes or until it slightly change the color. Pulse or chop it into small pieces and set aside.  
  • Preheat the oven at 350F, grease and line 9 x5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a bowl, sift the dry ingredients, flours, salt, spices and baking powder.
  • In another bowl add sugar and oil and mix very well, and then add eggs and mix well to combine everything. 
  • Then gradually incorporate the dry ingredients in two batches, then add beets and milk and mix well with whisk and finally fold in pistachios. Keep aside few about 1 tablespoon to decorate on the top of the loaf.
  • Transfer the batter to prepared pan and top with rest of pistachios. Bake at 350F for about 60 minutes or until the toothpick/cake tester comes out clean.
  • Allow to the rest the cake in pan for about 10 minutes and remove and cool it in a cooling rack until its cools down completely.
  • If you wish you can also use any glaze of your choice.
  • Slice it and enjoy with or without butter.

This recipe adapted from Beet and Hazelnut cake by Eric Lanlard’s  Cake Boy


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  1. says

    A very interesting combination. Looks really colorful and sounds delicious. Kids are so funny with their choices, one week it’s only one that and the next it completely changes..

  2. says

    Beets add such a gorgeous color to anything! I always keep beets – either fresh or chopped in freezer to add to juice and raita, mostly.

    The cake looks good.

  3. says

    This looks so beautiful! It would be easy to convert to gluten free I think! What a wonderful combination of flavours :)

  4. says

    I love beets too but my other half is on the other end. So there’s not much of chance to cook beets at home. I just have one question about this recipe – do you squeeze out the juice from the beets before adding?

    The recipe is about mixing and incorporating and I should do well with it too. Beautiful colors and the pops from the pistachios.

  5. says

    wow !! glad that your kids love to eat these vegetables and rasam. my boys do like beetroot, but definitely not as curry. they like it just steamed..esp for its colour spreading all over their lips :) and this bread is just divine, Swathy.

  6. says

    What a unique and delicious sounding cake with the beetroot and pistachio! It makes for a beautiful slice of cake! Wish I could bring over a pot of tea to share.

  7. says

    Swathi, I have never made a cake with beet root, but after seeing your moist, colorful and delicious cake, I would love to make this. The ingredients are perfectly combined, and it’s not too sweet. With this yummy cake, you can get your veggies and dessert at the same time!

    Sorry for not commenting as often, I’ve been slacking in my own posts, and not going on facebook either.
    Your friend,