Parsnip cake.

We went straight from Zucchinipalooza to Carrotextravaganza around here this fall.  While I had only a modest harvest of carrots from my community garden plot this year, the farm that provides us with our CSA share baskets had a positive bumper crop, and so for quite awhile now, we’ve been pretty much swimming in carrots.  It’s not a bad problem to have – we’ve had various carrot breads, soups (click through to see my purple carrot soup), and a cake with cream cheese filling.  My hubby, the avowed Meatatarian, will actually eat carrots, so we’ll get through the rest of them with little trouble.

The parsnips are another story.

I didn’t grow parsnips this year (nor have I ever – they’re on my list of Crops to Plant One Day in the Nebulous Future).  But our CSA baskets have been FULL of them.  According to the owner of the farm, this is only the second year they’ve grown parsnips, but their success was “amazing.”

Of course, my hubby won’t touch them with a ten foot pole.  He won’t even eat them roasted, glazed with a bit of butter and brown sugar, which is really my favourite way to prepare them.

So I took a cue from the carrot madness we have going on and baked a cake.

Parsnip Cake

3/4 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup pure maple syrup (you could use agave syrup if you don’t have maple, but maple tastes best)

3 eggs (if you wish to substitute a flax gel* in place of 1 egg, you could)

2 cups all-purpose flour (you could sub out 1/4 cup of white flour for whole wheat, if you prefer.  I’m also thinking of experimenting with almond meal)

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp cardamom

3 cups parsnips, peeled and grated

1 apple, peeled and chopped finely

Juice of 1 orange

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease two loaf pans and line with parchment.

Melt butter and cool slightly.  Add sugar, maple syrup, and eggs, and mix thoroughly.   Add flour, baking powder, and spices and combine.  Fold in parsnips, apple, and orange juice and stir until evenly distributed throughout the batter.  Pour into prepared loaf pans and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

(*To “make” an egg out of flax, mix 1 tbsp. ground flaxseed in 3 tbsp. water and let sit until it gels, about 5 minutes).

Handy Conversion Calculator


And that is how you get someone to eat their parsnips.  😉

Do you grow parsnips in your garden?  More importantly, do you EAT parsnips?  What are your favourite parsnip recipes?

Related posts – Parsnip Cake (From Sewing Room to Potting Shed)


    • Ha ha, so true! Better to let them think it’s made from carrots, or apples…. 🙂 I love the idea of your zucchini frozen yogourt – why not? It would be so refreshing! (I will have to try that recipe out next year when I get fresh zucchini!).

  1. We grew parsnips this year and they did quite well. They were nicer than store bought. I roast them with carrots, onion, garlic, olive oil and rosemary. I also put them in stews. They are a family favorite, especially with my 8 year old daughter.

  2. I adore parsnips; roasted (sometimes with a touch of curry powder); boiled with carrots and pureed together with a little butter and cream; and parsnip cake is grand too. I have tried and failed to grow parsnips. They are supposed to taste better after they have been exposed to frost.

    • I’ve read that as well, about the frost – that’s something I’ll have to remember if I try to grow them myself. The owner of the farm where we get our CSA share from also mentioned that they take so long to germinate that by the time the seedlings emerge, they’re sometimes completely overrun with faster-growing weeds.

      I definitely have to try the addition of curry powder – that’s a flavour combo I hadn’t ever thought of and it sounds delectable!

      • They do take forever to germinate! My great grandmother used to make parsnip wine; so I am told. And it was good; so I am told. I am not sure I know what your CSA share is, by the way. Do you have shares in a community farm or something like that?

        • Parsnip wine – that’s very interesting! I wonder how that would taste…parsnips are rather sweet, so I think it would be quite lovely.

          CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture…there are a few farms in the province that provide shares of their total harvest for purchase on an annual basis. Those of us who participate buy shares at the start of the growing season and the farmers deliver produce when it is available throughout the year. In the summer we usually get baskets every week, and in the winter, every two weeks. (Some farmers do not provide a winter program, though). Some farms will offer shares in chickens and ducks, eggs or milled grains. I love the variety of veggies we get in our baskets, and it’s a great way to support local growers!

          • Ah yes, I thought CSA would be something like that. A great scheme to belong to and, as you say, a great way to support local growers. Not sure if anyone does that in our neighbourhood.
            I don’t think I have ever tasted parsnip wine. I would if it were available.

  3. Oh yummy! I love parsnips! Cake is a great idea! I don’t find parsnips very easily around here, which I find strange, since so many other root vegetables are grown locally. If I get some I add them to soups, curries and stews and love roasting them too.

    • Mmmm, I never thought about adding them to a curry…that sounds fantastic! It is rather interesting that you can’t easily obtain parsnips, I would think that they would be widely grown there. You have a longer growing season than us, too, which would really work for parsnips.

  4. Hhhmmm, that looks so delicious! I love parsnip but I never had them in a cake. I add them to mustard or garlic cream soups or roast them and than serve it with a little cheese sauce. And thank yuo so much for convention calculator. Have aGreat weekend

    • Oh wow, I never thought to put cheese and parsnips together, which is really very silly as I’m a huge cheese lover! And parsnips will now be an ingredient in the next garlic cream soup I make (I just have to be sure not to tell my hubby about the “secret ingredient”). 😉 Sounds super yummy!

      Have a delightful weekend!

  5. Interesting tip about the egg substitute. I am allergic to eggs. I can eat recipes baked with one or two eggs but no more. I have to really watch it. This tip may open up some possibilities to try recipes with higher egg content. ~Thea

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