Friday, 8 April 2016

Chocolate and Sweet Potato Cake

I love sweet potatoes roasted, in salads or mashed as a topping on a shepherd's pie. My boy likes to eat them in chocolate cake. So, when we dug up a few sweet potatoes from the garden last week, it was cake we decided to make!

Love this cake!

The sweet potato in this chocolate cake adds sweetness and keeps the cake soft and moist. There's no need to ice this cake (though you could if you wanted to) but it is lovely served with freshly whipped cream, vanilla ice-cream or thick yoghurt. 

The recipe I use is based on Hazel Key's recipe for Clever Chocolate Cake in her book, The Clever Packed Lunch. 

This is how I make it at our place:

Chocolate and Sweet Potato Cake

180g mashed and cooled sweet potato
juice of two oranges
1 cup of medjool dates, pitted and chopped
100g melted butter
1 1/2 cups wholemeal spelt flour
1/2 cup dutch processed cocoa powder 
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup coconut sugar 
1 cup milk 

Peel, steam and mash sweet potato. Cool.

Melt butter. Add orange juice and dates.
Simmer until dates are soft. 

Whisk flour, baking powder, cocoa. 
Mix in the sugar.

 Blend sweet potato, date mixture and milk until smooth.

Pour blended mixture into dry ingredients.
Mix gently until just combined. 

Pour mixture into lined cake tin. 
Bake in a moderate oven for approximately 45minutes.
*Check if it's cooked by inserting a skewer and checking that it comes out clean.*
Cool on a wire rack.

I've found this cake is ideal for freezing. Once it has cooled completely, slice and place a single layer on a lined baking tray, cover with plastic wrap and freeze. When frozen, transfer slices to a labelled plastic clip-lock bag or air-tight container. Return to the freezer and defrost as needed for special guests or hungry children!

I hope you'll have time to bake yourself a cake this weekend!



  1. Oh Meg, could you please do a post on how you grow sweet potato?
    I just bought a plant from my local nursery, planted it in the veggie patch and then tried to figure out how you grow it! So me!!
    It seems you snip off tendrils and replant them, is this how you do it? Or do you just let it ramble and grow and it sprouts more sweet potatoes? Any advice would be appreciated, or a post!

    1. Hi Cheryl, I have grown sweet potatoes in my wicking barrels and also in the ground. The area where they grow in the ground is very wide and so the vines can ramble happily. The soil there is deep and free draining. I mulch around them too. I have started new plants off by using the tubers. If I've got a sweet potato that has sprouted (before I've had time to eat it:) I simply cut off a section with the beginnings of a tendril and plant this in the ground. You can also plant the whole tuber in the ground, cover it with delicious soil and it should produce tendrils. If you've planted yours in your veggie patch, it should produce tubers because they are so easy to grow. However, I tend to think of them as warm weather plants as they love the heat! Also, the vine can be very prolific so it might take over your veggie patch. Hope that info helps. Meg:)

  2. Is this the cake that you shared at the Culture workshop? I've just written the ingredients down on my shopping list. Yummo!

    1. Yes, I've baked it and shared it many times and everyone thinks it's delicious. I never ice it so that really keeps the sugar content down. Freshly whipped cream instead is perfect! Sometimes, if it's not for the school lunchbox, I will add nuts to it. Chopped walnuts are nice:) Thanks for visiting, my lovely friend. Meg Xx

  3. I would love to be able to grow sweet potatoes but it is just too cold here :(. This sounds like the perfect chocolate cake recipe, moist and low sugar.

    1. Hi! It's a shame that you can't grow sweet potato as they are such a versatile plant. I used some to thicken up a stew yesterday, along with some pumpkin, and it was delicious and full of flavour. What can you grow where you are? I expect there'll be something that I wish I could grow here but would be unable to because of the climate. Thanks for visiting. Meg:)