Unbeetable Chocolate Cake

Unbeetable Chocolate Cake

Beetroot Chocolate Cake

The secret of this unbeetable chocolate cake is beetroot! It makes this cake incredibly moist and gives it an earthy sweetness. The beauty of this recipe is that there are so many icing options; chocolate ganache, cream cheese icing, cardamom icing – the choice is yours!


  • 200g (about 2) beetroot bulbs, washed
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1/2 cup (firmly packed) brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup liquid honey
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 eggs, lightly whisked
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted

Cardamom frosting

  • 1 cup pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 4 1/2 tsp milk
  • pinch ground cardamom

Cream cheese icing

  • 1 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 125g cream cheese

Chocolate ganache

  • 250g chocolate, chopped
  • 250ml cream

Pour the cream into a medium pot and heat it until it is almost but not quite boiling. You’ll know it’s ready when bubbles start to form around the edge of the pot. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Stand for 2 minutes, then stir until the chocolate is fully melted into the cream. Whisk until smooth and glossy. When you start to stir it, you think it won’t come together, but it will.


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Brush a 21cm round spring form cake pan with the melted butter to lightly grease. Line the base with non-stick baking paper.
  2. Peel the beetroot bulbs, then use a grater to finely shred. Set aside.
  3. Place the cocoa and hot water in a medium bowl and stir until smooth. Add the sugar, honey and eggs, and use a wooden spoon to beat until smooth. Mix in the beetroot.
  4. Combine the milk, oil and vanilla essence in a jug. Use a large metal spoon to fold half the flour and then half the milk mixture into the beetroot mixture until just combined. Repeat with the remaining flour and then the remaining milk mixture.
  5. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 55-60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Set aside for 5 minutes and then turn onto a wire rack to cool.
  6. To make the frosting, use a wooden spoon to mix icing sugar, cardamom and milk in a small bowl until smooth. Spread over top of cooled cake and set aside for 15 minutes.


Why not grow your own beetroot? Click here for our beginner’s guide to growing beetroot.