Sweet Potato Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

Think of this recipe as carrot cake with a twist. I use sweet potatoes to make soup and fries, but it didn’t occur to me to sneak them into a dessert until I came across this recipe on foodgawker. Sweet potato is a vibrant vegetable hiding behind a matte peel. The deep copper shade of the cake is reminiscent of autumn colours, making this a perfect seasonal slice. The fragrant spices add that touch of warmth. The tangy cream cheese icing balances the natural sweetness of this nutritious main ingredient.

The most important tip about baking is to know your oven intimately. Every oven is unique. I need to set mine 50 degrees lower than what the recipe calls for in order to get the right temperature. I highly recommend you place a thermometer in your oven to help you achieve the best results.

Originally, this recipe stated that I should bake the cake for 45 to 50 minutes at 325F. When I checked on my cake, it was nowhere near ready. I decided to hike up the heat to 350F. I ended up leaving my cake in the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes! So this is just a reminder to adjust recipe times according to your oven’s whims.

Bon appétit!

Recipe adapted from Kitchen Confidante

Yields 12 portions

2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups canola oil
3 cups peeled and grated sweet potato (about two sweet potatoes)
1/2 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

1) Preheat the oven to 350F. Coat a 9inch round spring form pan with butter and flour. Tap out excess flour.
2) Using an electric stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the eggs until light and airy.
3) Pour in the vegetable oil.
4) In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
5) Delicately fold the flour mixture into the eggs with a spatula.
6) Incorporate the sweet potato, stir only until well combined.
7) Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake the cake for 1 hour 30 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. (Again, the original recipe called for only 50 minutes, so do regular check-ups)
8) Remove cake from the oven and let cool completely.
1) Using an electric stand mixer, whip the butter and cream cheese together.
2) Pour in the vanilla.
3) Carefully add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. Whisk well.

Store the cake in the refrigerator.

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