I am sitting in my kitchen eating a Katharine Canfield Cookie, waiting for my cupcakes to finish baking. Pure joy? Yuh-huh. Ok, so about the recipe: I was introduced to this recipe by a friend in New York when she made them for a Harvest Party. The idea was to make delicious food using all or mostly all local ingredients. The cupcakes used beets, butter and eggs from the Union Square Market, and the dry ingredients came from Whole Foods’ organic section. So not only was it healthy, it was also organic! I remember gawking over their unique flavor- it’s a cross between chocolate and zucchini flavors- so I tweaked the recipe and came up with this baby. And best of all, these cupcakes prove it is totally possible to make a delicious dessert while also being both sustainable and nutritious. The cupcakes themselves have virtually no fat aside from the fat from the two eggs and teensy bit a chocolate. This being said, I need a little butter-lovin’ in my life, so I opted for a full-fat frosting recipe 😉

For the cupcakes:
3 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder
1 cup beet puree

For the frosting:
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon instant coffee powder
1/3 cup whole milk
1 stick unsalted butter, softened

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a double broiler, heat the chocolate over low heat, stirring until melted. Then, in a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set both aside.

In a large bowl combine the eggs and sugar, beating until the mixture doubles in size, about two minutes. In two batches, beat in the dry ingredients, then the beat puree and melted chocolate.
Using an ice cream scoop, dollop the batter into paper cupcake-cup lined cupcake tins (woah tongue twister) so the batter is spread evenly into 16 molds. Bake for roughly 25 minutes, until knife comes out clean when inserted into the cupcakes. Let cool completely.

While the cupcakes are baking, make the frosting. In a large bowl combine the butter, sugar, cocoa powder, coffee powder, and milk. Mix at first with a spoon as to prevent the dry ingredients from poofing up in your face, then switch to a beater. Beat on medium-high speed for a minute or so, until the frosting is just whipped. 
Frost the cooled cupcakes as you wish. I chose to use a butter knife to spread around my frosting, but if you have a piping mold, that would work wonders here!



These look and sound, in a word, magnificent! I adore beets raw and roasted, so why not in cupcake form? Bookmarked!

Lauren at KeepItSweet

This recipe is definitely intriguing! Do you make the beet puree in a food processor?

Sarah Fennel

yes, exactly! i boiled the beets first, then blended them togeths

Stealing Spoons

Wow – great idea! Excited to make them 🙂

Question – do you squeeze out moisture from the beets before you add them in?

Sarah Fennel

For me there wasn’t any liquid after pureeing the beets. They had the consistency of apple sauce, which I proceeded to add in!


Fantastic, I’m so gonna try these!

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