Beets. Ginger. Organic extra virgin olive oil. Berries. Avocado. Raw Cacao. All of these everyday superfoods come together in a delicious gluten free and vegan Chocolate Beet Cake with Avocado Frosting.
Last week I said I’d be sharing some simple, larger than life, healthy, plant-based recipes that could potentially feature on your Christmas menu.
This cake is a pimped up version of the classic chocolate cake shared some time ago here on the blog, and it certainly fits the above brief.
- Easy to make
- Full of everyday superfoods
- Les sugar (and no refined sugar) than a conventional chocolate cake
- Family sized (if you follow the suggestions to double the recipe, layer it with berries and frosting, then ice the whole thing)
- Can be enjoyed by all, no matter their dietary preferences
The cake itself is softy and moist, made with a blend of buckwheat flour and almond meal. Your traditional chocolate cake will have between 1½ to 2 cups of refined sugar, whereas this recipe uses just over half a cup of pure maple syrup, and a ½ cup of Medjool dates. The dates of course are a whole food wrapped up in fibre, helping slow the release of sugars into the bloodstream. Both natural sweeteners contain some minerals as an added bonus.Gluten free & V Chocolate Beet Cake with Avocado Frosting: delicious recipe here! Click To Tweet
The frosting is next level. It perfectly mimics the texture of your regular chocolate icing. And no need to chill this baby prior to using – it’s ready to spread thick and rustic over your cake as soon as it is made (and it will stay that way too!). A wee hint – soft but not overly ripe avocados are the best here.
As for the everyday superfoods hidden inside:
- Beetroot – also providing some natural sweetness here, it is a great food for cardiovascular health. It contains compounds called nitrates, which the body converts into nitric oxide – a potent vasodilator, meaning it helps to expand the blood vessels and consequently promote healthy blood pressure. Tip: don’t throw away the beet leaves – wash them, remove the tough inner stalk, and add them to your smoothies.
- Ginger is perhaps my most favourite ingredient – this aromatic is warming and promotes circulation. It is a fantastic remedy for digestive ailments and promotes gut motility.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil is often overlooked but in my books it is an absolute superstar. It is rich in anti-inflammatory phenolic compounds that can down-regulate production of inflammatory cytokines, such as C-reactive protein and interleukin-6. There is also evidence to suggest that olive oil might exert beneficial effects on the lining of the blood vessels. It is possibly a key contributor to the cardio-protective effects of the Mediterranean Diet.
- Raw cacao powder contains antioxidants that help neutralise free radical damage, is rich in minerals – particularly magnesium, and may even act as a prebiotic in the gut
- Berries are another everyday superstar – low in sugar and packed full of antioxidants. I try and buy organic strawberries when budget allows as they tend to be highly sprayed and feature at the top of the Environmental Working Group’s ‘Dirty Dozen’
- Avocado is a fantastic source of heart healthy mono-unsaturated fats and believe it or not is a good source of dietary fibre. Because avocados are a rich source of fat, eating them with plant foods that contain fat-soluble vitamins and nutrients (such as vitamin A, E, K and carotenoids) will help with their absorption. Try and scoop out the flesh as close to the skin as possible – this is where some of the nutrients in avocado are most concentrated.
Pretty cool right? All hiding in one scrummy cake!
Before you go on to read the recipe – note that the cake in the photos is actually two batches of the same recipe made in a larger tin, with frosting and fresh berries in between layers, and a thick lick of frosting over the whole thing to finish.
The recipe itself is for one smaller (but taller) cake, which is enough to serve a family. But definitely go ahead and make two batches if it’s for a larger gathering – it looks super impressive!
Enjoy – and please share your creations with me I’d love to see how they turn out!
Chocolate Beet Cake with Avocado Frosting
- 1 cup buckwheat flour
- 1 cup almond meal
- 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder source a gluten free brand
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon coarse sea salt
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 200 g grated beetroot about 2 cups – 2 medium beets
- 2 inch piece of ginger peeled and finely minced
- ½ cup 100g Medjool dates, pitted
- 2 scant tablespoons psyllium husks
- 1¾ cups coconut milk canned – full fat
CHOCOLATE AVOCADO FROSTING:
- ½ cup avocado
- ½ cup raw cacao powder
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup coconut oil melted
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 pinches coarse sea salt
- Pre-heat oven at 180˚C, lightly grease a 7½ inch spring-form cake tin and give it a dusting of cacao powder to prevent sticking. Place baking paper over the bottom.
- Soak pitted dates in hot water for at least 15 minutes to soften, then drain ready for use. Grate beetroot and press between a paper towel to remove excess juice. Peel and mince the ginger.
- Sift the buckwheat flour, almond meal, cacao powder baking powder and baking soda directly into a food processor.
- Add sea salt, vanilla, olive oil, maple syrup, beet and ginger.
- In a blender, whiz the psyllium husks and coconut for ten seconds and no longer. Pour this mixture into the food processor.
- Blitz everything together – dropping the dates down the chute one at a time. The mixture won’t be completely smooth due to the beets.
- Pour into cake tin and bake for 40 minutes (skewer should come out clean), then remove and let cool in tin for 10 minutes, before turning onto a wire rack. Add frosting once 100% cooled.
CHOCOLATE AVOCADO FROSTING:
- Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till thick and creamy. No need to chill - use right away! Will keep in the fridge for a few days in an airtight container.
- Once you have added the sweet stuff to the baking mix, mix it and get it in the oven quickly
- Avoid opening the over door until it is almost ready
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