Foodie Friday – Healthy Baking Parsnip Cake

Foodie Friday – Healthy Baking Parsnip Cake

Move over carrot and courgette, parsnips are the vegetable of choice for this cake. This scrummy cake is topped with a honey cream cheese frosting and a sprinkle of toasted almond flakes.

parsnip cake recipe

The addition of parsnip to a cake always seems to draw gasps, but it is no more unusual than the addition of carrot. In fact, I would argue that the chewy sweetness of parsnips makes them even more of a kindred spirit to a dense and moist sponge cake – but I will let you be the judge of that.


  • 200g white spelt flour
  • 50g rye flour, or more spelt flour
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp mixed spice
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 230ml milk (dairy, rice or almond)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 180ml mild rapeseed oil or melted extra virgin coconut oil
  • 260g coconut palm sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 220g coarsely grated parsnip
  • 180g desiccated coconut
  • 100g raisins
  • 2 tsp extra virgin coconut oil
  • 75g toasted flaked almonds
  • 2 tsp maple syrup


  • 250g cream cheese or a dairy-free cream cheese alternative
  • 3 tbsp set honey
  • 40g extra virgin coconut oil, melted
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 23cm round springform cake tin
  1. For the icing, put the cream cheese and honey into a food processor and pulse on and off until combined; don’t overmix. Put the mixture into a bowl, and stir in the melted coconut oil and lemon zest. Cover and refrigerate while you make the cake. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/Gas mark 6. Grease and line the cake tin.
  2. In a bowl, sift together the flours, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, cinnamon, mixed spice and salt. In another bowl combine the eggs, milk, lemon juice, 130ml oil, sugar and vanilla extract. Add in the flour mixture, grated parsnip, desiccated coconut and raisins, and thoroughly combine.
  3. Pour the mixture into the tin, cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake for a further 25-35 minutes, until a skewer comes out mostly clean and the cake is firm to the touch. Remove the cake from the oven, leave to cool for 10 minutes then turn out on to a wire rack until completely cool.
  4. For the almond topping, put the 2 teaspoons of coconut oil into a pan and set over a medium heat. Add the toasted flaked almonds and maple syrup and fry for 2 minutes, until the almonds are coated and glossy. Remove from the heat and leave to cool. When the cake is cool, spread the icing over the top then scatter over the almonds.

HEALTHY BAKING / Nourishing Breads, Wholesome Cakes, Ancient Grains and Bubbling Ferments / Jordan Bourke / Published by Orion


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