Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Chocolate Beetroot Cupcakes

I've heard about putting beetroot in chocolate cake, but never quite understood how or why you would. A couple of days ago I made cupcakes which may just change the way I make chocolate cupcakes henceforth.

With limited internet access on this trip, I'm becoming quite intimate with the May Issue of Recipes+ which I bought before leaving home. This issue has a recipe for Chocolate Beetroot Cake with Fudge Frosting. The recipe calls for fresh, boiled beetroot. I'm in the Pilbara, and the supermarkets I find myself relying on up here are lucky to have two different types of fresh fruit, let alone fresh beetroot so I went for the canned variety. I also substituted white self-raising flour with wholemeal because using white flour in anything makes me squeamish these days. I really have become a health conscious hippy. If I wasn't saving my last little bit of wholemeal spelt four for another batch of Breakfast Muffins, I might have even used that. Other than those two amendments, I kept the ingredient list the same as the original. The method however, I completely made up. Without an electric mixer I had to ad lib, so here is my method.

450g tin whole baby beets, drained and grated
150g butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs at room temp (or at 35C as the case was)
1 3/4 cups wholemeal SR flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1/3 cup milk
100g dark chocolate, chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 180C (160C fan forced) and line a 12 hole muffin tray with paper cases, plus a 12 hole mini muffin tray (this mix makes a lot of cupcakes).
  2. Melt butter and chocolate in small saucepan.
  3. Combine sugar, flour and cocoa in a large bowl.
  4. Add milk, melted butter mixture and beetroot and mix as hard as your arm allows with a wooden spoon until combined. The batter will be fairly thick, something like a brownie batter.
  5. Spoon into paper cases and bake for 20-25 mins or until they spring back lightly when touched.
Fudge Icing
3 cups icing sugar
2 tbsp cocoa powder
100g butter
80g dark chocolate
1/3 cup milk

  1. Sift sugar and cocoa into a medium bowl.
  2. Put butter, chocolate and milk in a small saucepan and heat gently until melted and combined.
  3. Stir chocolate mixture into dry ingredients until smooth. I used a whisk to eliminate any clumping of my not-very-well-sifted icing sugar.
  4. Refrigerate for half an hour or so to set a little.
  5. Spread on cupcakes.
These cupcakes were so moist you could eat them without the frosting, but this frosting really is very tasty. They have a beautiful deep red/brown colour due to the beetroot and the wholemeal flour (and probably the lack of electric mixing) adds a texture that I really enjoyed. This recipe made so many that we shared some with the family camping next to us that night and they loved them too. Definitely a recipe I will make again.


  1. Yum I love chocolate beetroot cake but have never made it, thanks for sharing the recipe Pam!!

    1. They are so good Blair! And my "throw everything in and mix" method makes the process so much easier! :)

  2. Thanks for sharing Pam! Something to tweak to make GF & DF for my little one :) They sound yum!