Chocolate and beetroot mud cake with caramelised baby beets

Give your chocolate mud cake an earthy edge with the use of this not-so-secret ingredient.

  • 1 hr 25 mins preparation (plus cooling)
  • Serves 8
  • Print


  • 120 grams dark chocolate (70% cocoa), chopped
  • 1½ cups (240g) coconut sugar
  • ½ cup (125ml) coconut oil
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature, beaten lightly
  • ½ cup (60g) almond meal (ground almonds)
  • 2 cups (300g) coarsely grated fresh beetroot
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups (160g) quinoa flour
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • 250 grams marscapone
  • ¼ cup (60ml) pure maple syrup
Caramelised baby beets
  • 3 baby beetroot (beets)(75g)
  • ½ cup (80g) coconut sugar
  • 1 cup (250ml) water


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 170°C/340°F. Grease a deep 20cm (8-inch) cake pan; line base with baking paper.
  • 2
    Place chocolate, coconut sugar and coconut oil in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don't let base of bowl touch the water); stir for 3 minutes or until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Remove bowl from pan; stand for 5 minutes to cool slightly. Stir in eggs, almond meal, beetroot and vanilla.
  • 3
    Sift flour, cacao powder, baking powder and mixed spice into a medium bowl. Gently fold into chocolate mixture. Spoon mixture into pan; level the surface.
  • 4
    Bake cake for 50 minutes or until a few crumbs cling to a skewer when inserted into the centre of cake. Leave cake in pan for 15 minutes; turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
  • 5
    Meanwhile, make caramelised baby beets.
  • 6
    Combine mascarpone and maple syrup in a medium bowl. Spread over cooled cake. Top with caramelised baby beets and some of the syrup.
Caramelised baby beets
  • 7
    Cut each beetroot into six wedges. Combine sugar and the water in a medium frying pan; stir over low heat, without boiling, until sugar dissolves. Add beetroot wedges; bring to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until beetroot is tender.


You will need 2 large beetroot for the cake. Uniced cake improves in flavour and texture the day after it is made. It can be made up to 4 days ahead; store in an airtight container.

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