Parsnip Spice Cake

There’s no need to scoff at parsnip cake, like certain husbands did. It may not have rainbow layers or funfetti or an animated character airbrushed in icing but it’s super moist, homespun, and perfect for breakfast or an after-school snack. I was going to make one for Violet’s birthday next week, but Malcolm made me feel like a lame mom for proposing a cake made from carrot’s colorless cousin.

If you frosted this with cream cheese it would totally be a party cake, you know, the kind of cake that leaves its panties at the door. Without the cream cheese, it’s perfectly respectable, but still totally fun to be around, like your spring break friend who danced on the bar at Senor Frogs and now has two kids and a split level house in the suburbs.

You’re gonna have game night with this cake. You could invite this cake to a wine and cheese colloquy with colleagues. This cake would not feel like a harlot at a bake sale. This cake never gets in the fountain on Memorial Day. But it’s still a very good dessert.

Parsnip Spice Cake


Parsnip Spice Cake

  • Yield: Serves 6 1x


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup almond meal flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups grated parsnip (about 2 large)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled


  1. Preheat oven to 325. Grease a deep ceramic baking pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flours, coconut, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and salt. In another bowl, combine parsnip, sour cream, maple syrup, honey, granulated sugar, eggs, vanilla, and butter, mixing well. Stir wet ingredients into dry, until just combined. Pour into greased 8×4 cake pan and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Jillian Bedell

Jillian Bedell is a writer and mother living in a farmhouse in Cushing, Maine. She is very good at talking about herself in the third person. She is co-author of Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.