What vegetables work well in sweet bakes?

If you're looking for new and innovative ways to minimise your vegetable waste, then using vegetables in sweet bakes are a great option.


If you're lucky enough to have your own allotment or vegetable patch in your garden, vegetable cakes are a great way to use up your garden glut, too. Use parsnips or courgettes for a super moist cake that will rival any classic sponge, and beetroot makes a great addition to a rich chocolate cake or gooey brownies.

Hidden vegetable bakes are also an easy way to sneak in yours and your kids' five-a-day as an afternoon pick-me-up or sweet dessert.

For more vegetable inspiration, be sure to have a look at our hidden vegetable recipes and our guide to using up surplus ingredients.

Our best vegetable cakes to use up your veg

1. Carrot cake

carrot cake with a slice cut out on a cake stand

You can't go wrong with a classic carrot cake. Filled and topped with deliciously smooth icing and decorated with chopped nuts for a bit of crunch, this is the perfect accompaniment to your afternoon cuppa.

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Make our easy carrot cake.

2. Chocolate courgette cake

chocolate courgette cake on a board with a slice cut out

This chocolate courgette cake proves how easy baking with vegetables can be. The grated courgette gives a wonderfully moist texture and is sure to satisfy any chocolate craving. Treat yourself to more of our courgette cake recipes.

Try our chocolate courgette cake.

3. Beetroot brownies

beetroot brownies cut up with one square missing

These healthier brownies are still packed with sweetness and juiciness from the beetroot, and are just as good as a traditional brownie. For a pop of colour we drizzle a mix of beetroot juice and icing sugar on top so they'll really stand out.

Try our beetroot brownies.

4. Marrow & pecan cake

slices of marrow and pecan cake and a bowl of walnuts

If you want to switch up from your usual carrot cake, why not try this marrow and pecan cake? Combining marrow and chopped pecans in the sponge makes for a wonderfully moist cake with a bit of crunch. As always, be generous with the frosting!

Make our marrow & pecan cake.

5. Pumpkin caramel cake

pumpkin and caramel cake on a black cake stand

This vegetable cake cuts corners by using canned pumpkin purée and spice rather than fresh pumpkin, which makes this bake a little bit easier. The end result is deceptively impressive and makes a great show-stopping bake if you've got guest over. Have a look at some of our other pumpkin desserts.

Have a go at our pumpkin caramel cake.

6. Parsnip and maple syrup cake

parsnip and maple syrup cake with two slices cut out

Use up any leftover parsnips that didn't get picked for the Sunday roast for this delicious carrot cake-style bake, filled with cream cheese and dusted with icing sugar. It's the perfect bake for your next coffee morning. Find other ways to use up your parsnips.

Make our parsnip & maple syrup cake.

7. Leftover veg and orange cake

leftover veg and orange traybake cake on a cooling rack

This easy traybake makes use of a range of your garden glut, including carrots, parsnips and swede. Mixed spice and orange zest and juice makes for a moreish and citrussy vegetable cake that you'll want to make again.

Try our leftover veg & orange cake.

8. Carrot & soft cheese cupcakes

five carrot and cream cheese frosted cupcakes on a cake stand

Turn a crowd-pleasing carrot cake into cupcakes that would be perfect for parties and kids. Make sure to dollop a generous amount of soft cheese icing on top and decorate with orange sprinkles.

Make our carrot cake cupcakes for your next event.

9. Courgette, lemon & thyme cake

courgette lemon and thyme cake with a slice cut out

This courgette, lemon & thyme cake might take a little longer to make, but the result is an impressive four-tiered masterpiece, decorated with candied lemon slices and crystallised thyme for that final flourish. This hidden vegetable bake would make a brilliant celebration cake.

Have a go at our courgette, lemon & thyme cake.

10. Allotment cake

allotment cake with a slice cut out, four layered cake

This allotment cake alternates between layers of carrot and courgette cake which makes for a visually stunning slice when you cut into it. Smother the top and sides with cream cheese frosting for the ultimate afternoon indulgence.

Make our allotment cake.

Feeling inspired? Have a look at some of our other creative baking content...

Vegetable cake recipes

Healthy baking recipes


Our best ever apple cake recipes

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