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Pecan Cake with Sweet Potato Frosting

A deconstructed sweet potato casserole in the form of cake: wholesome, gluten-free pecan cake is layered with a smooth frosting made out of sweet potatoes and topped with broiled marshmallows.
Servings 1 6-inch layer cake
Calories 231kcal


  • For the pecan cake:
  • 2/3 cup pecan meal or a scant 2/3 cup of pecans, ground into meal
  • 2/3 cup oat flour gluten-free if necessary
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder gluten-free if necessary

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons buttermilk or runny yogurt

  • For the sweet potato frosting:
  • 3/4 cup roasted sweet potato OR filling from a leftover sweet potato casserole
  • ~6 tablespoons milk of your choice*
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar or maple syrup more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon brown butter optional; I'm curious if butter extract would work here to keep this vegan
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest optional

  • ~1/2 cup mini marshmallows for topping


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease your cake pan of choice: I baked two layers separately in a 6-inch round cake pan, but you could also make this a one layer cake in a 8- or 9-inch cake pan and adjust the baking time accordingly.
  • Whisk the pecan meal, flour, cornstarch and baking powder together in a bowl.
  • In another bowl or glass measuring cup, whisk the eggs until frothy, yellow and thick. Add the brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla and buttermilk and whisk until combined.
  • Fold the wet into the dry until just combined.
  • If using the 6-inch pan: bake half the batter for 18 minutes, or until cake springs back lightly when touched. Let cool for five minutes, then release cake from pan and set aside to cool. Re-grease the cake pan (I didn’t wash it in between) and bake the rest of the batter for another 18 minutes until done. Set aside to cool while you make the frosting.
  • If using a 8- or 9-inch pan: pour all the batter into prepared cake pan and bake until cake springs back lightly when touched. I'm guessing this will take around 30 minutes, but check on the cake early and often since I haven't tried it this way; the cake may need more or less time.
  • For the sweet potato frosting:
  • Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend until very smooth. In my blender, it was hard to get a smooth blend with the small amount of volume. If you double the recipe, you will have lot of leftover frosting, but it's so healthy and delicious, you can eat it with a spoon! Or over yogurt or whatever. OR you can save it for another special frosted recipe coming this week! hinthinthint
  • *You will need to eyeball the amount of milk you use depending on how much water your sweet potato has or how liquidy your leftover sweet potato casserole is. Add enough milk so that your frosting is easily spreadable but not runny. I started with 1/4 cup of milk and added more a tablespoon at a time until I reached a consistency I liked.

  • To assemble: Frost baked, cooled cake layers. Top with mini marshmallows and turn on broiler. Once broiler is heated, put the cake on a baking tray and broil for 30-60 seconds, or until marshmallows start to brown. Watch your cake the ENTIRE time because it is incredibly easy to scorch marshmallows under the broiler. Remove from oven and eat!


Cake adapted from here; frosting inspired from here.

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