This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.
Now this is a stunning cake! This chocolate beet cake is just as decadent as it is gorgeous, and you'll never ever know there are beets in it. It makes the perfect chocolate birthday cake, Valentine's Day cake, or a fun cake to make with the kids.
Table of contents
Before we go any further, it needs to be said again – there is absolutely no beet taste to this beet cake whatsoever.
So why incorporate beets at all?
It's not to try and make this some kind of health food cake. If that's what you're after, you should try this healthy chocolate cake. In this chocolate beet cake recipe, the beets serve a purpose other than sneaking veggies into your diet. We've all had cake that incorporate veggies into it, like carrot cake or zucchini muffins! Adding beets to this cake allows it to stay light and fluffy while being moist and tender. It also gives it that wonderful, rich dark chocolate color!
Even the icing has some beets in it for that all-natural, glorious pink shade!
So don't worry if you're serving this to people who are on the fence about beets, if you don't tell them, they won't know!
Why this chocolate beet cake recipe will be your new favorite
Here are 3 compelling reasons why you'll be singing the praises of this chocolate beet cake:
- It has a rich, chocolate flavor that's nothing shy of satisfaction on a plate.
- If you have leftover beets you couldn't sell to your family for dinner even if you wanted to, roast them and turn them into a big deal cake instead!
- Moist – the number one thing you want from a chocolate cake – and this beet version has it in spades. This will go down as the most moist cake you've ever had. Bold statement, so now you have to try it for yourself!
How to prepare beets for chocolate beet cake
For this chocolate beet cake recipe, you're going to be roasting the beets and then shredding them – this will help them stay undetectable in the cake.
Beets can be tricky to handle since they have tough skin. But as soon as you get passed it, you'll be into the bright-red inside that will inevitably turn your hands red. Be warned, beets will stain your clothes. If you get any on you, act before the stain dries for the best chance of getting it out!
Start by peeling the beets and cutting them into quarters. Then place them in an oven-friendly dish, add the water, cover, and bake until fork-tender. When the beets are done, cool them completely. When they're cool enough to handle, shred them using the small holes of a grater. Don't forget to reserve any of the leftover water to make the pink frosting!
How to make a chocolate beet cake
We talked about preparing the beets above. While the beets are cooling, you can make the rest of the cake by following these steps:
For the cake:
- Prepare the cake batter: In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars. Then, beat in the eggs and vanilla and slowly beat in the cold coffee.
- Combine the dry ingredients: In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, sea salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Add this mixture to the liquids in 2 parts, beating well between each. Beat in the grated beets and then stir in the chocolate chips.
- Bake: Pour the batter into cake pans and bake.
- Cool: Let the cakes cool in the pans briefly, and then invert them onto a wire rack to cool completely.
A quick note on the coffee: coffee is included in this recipe to enhance the chocolate flavor. Once the cake is cooked, however, you won't be able to taste it.
For the all-natural pink frosting:
- Combine the ingredients: In a large bowl, beat the butter, powdered sugar, and half of the reserved beet juice. Add the vanilla extract and cream or milk, and beat the icing well.
**Tip: If you want the icing to have a deeper pink color, add some more beet juice. If you want a softer color, add more milk or cream.
The full list of ingredients and recipe instructions are in the recipe card below.
Can I use a different frosting?
Absolutely! An idea to consider is taking the cream cheese frosting recipe from this carrot cake and slathering it over the top of the chocolate beet cake – the result will be an enhanced version of red velvet cake!
Is chocolate beet cake good for you?
That really depends on how you define “good for you.” It's hard to call a cake healthy, but there are some health benefits to baking with beets. They're a nutrient-rich vegetable! This cake is “good for you” in the sense that it's delicious and will make you happy! If you're looking for a healthy beet recipe, try this beet smoothie – it's also delish and a unique way to add beets to a recipe!
Can you make chocolate beet cake vegan?
You absolutely can with a couple of substitutions. Instead of the butter and eggs, you can use vegan butter and flax eggs. For the frosting, you can also use vegan butter and a dairy-free or milk alternative instead of the milk/cream.
Popular cake recipes
- 2 medium beets
- 2 tablespoons water
- ¾ cup butter (softened)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup brown sugar (packed)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- 1 ¼ cups cold coffee (see notes)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- Sprinkles for decorating (optional)
All-Natural Pink Frosting
- 1 cup butter (at room temperature)
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons reserved beet juice
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 4-6 tablespoons cream or milk (can use dairy-free milk)
- Turn the oven to 425 degrees. Butter and flour the insides of two 8" or 9" cake pans.
- Peel and quarter the beets then put them in a small baking dish with the water and cover the dish tightly. Put the beets in the oven (you don't need to wait for it to preheat) and let them bake for 25-30 minutes, or until they can be pierced with a fork. Remove the beets from the oven and turn the oven temp down to 350 degrees. Check to see how much liquid is in the pan and if there is less than two tablespoons add a little bit of water. Let the beets cool, covered. Once they are cool enough to handle, grate them with the small holes of a grater. Reserve the liquid left in the baking dish.2 medium beets, 2 tablespoons water
- While the beets are cooling, prepare the rest of the cake. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Slowly beat in the cold coffee.¾ cup butter, 1 cup granulated sugar, ¾ cup brown sugar, 2 large eggs, 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla, 1 ¼ cups cold coffee
- In a second bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, sea salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Add this mixture to the liquids in 2 parts, beating well between each. Beat in the grated beets then stir in the chocolate chips.2 cups all-purpose flour, ½ cup cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 1 teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon baking powder, 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- Pour the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool for 10 minutes in the pans. Carefully invert the cakes onto a cooling rack and let them cool completely, for at least 1 hour.
All-Natural Pink Icing
- In a large bowl, beat the butter, powdered sugar, and 1 tablespoon of the reserved beet juice. Add the vanilla and 4 tablespoons of cream or milk and beat the icing well. Add the remaining tablespoon of beet juice if you want more color and the remaining cream or milk if you would like a softer icing.1 cup butter, 3 cups powdered sugar, 1-2 tablespoons reserved beet juice, 1 tablespoon vanilla, 4-6 tablespoons cream or milk
Assemble the cake
- Place 1 cake on a flat plate or cake stand and cover the top of it with a thick layer of icing, focusing on the edges. Top with the second cake and spread the remaining icing over the top. Add a few pretty sprinkles if you like.Sprinkles for decorating
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.
For more inspiration, check out all of our cake recipes!