Purple Velvet Torte

It’s amazing what you can do without any flour!  I made this gluten free chocolate cake using beets.  Being “Deceptively Delicious I fooled my husband.  While my children are game to eat pretty much anything I make, my husband is known as the “picky” eater around here.

Because of his strong critiques and my perfectionist bent, I often find myself testing a new recipe four, five or more times.  Though this one I nailed the second time, it was that easy.

As I whipped up beet cake 2.0, I did find myself thinking, “How can I hide this mystery ingredient from him?”  He had scoffed at beet cake 1.0, spitting it into the sink.  “How can I fool him?” I thought as I stirred the batter.  I guess that would make me Jessica Seinfeld to his Jerry.

Though unlike Ms. Seinfeld, I found myself sneaking beets in not to add nourishment (all of my recipes are fairly nourishing with high protein almond flour and low glycemic agave).  I was rather, trying to figure out a way to make a less costly cake.

Almond flour is fabulous to cook with, though pricey.  I wanted to come up with a cake that would be cheaper to make -though do keep in mind that this cake while cheaper, does not offer the same nutritional benefits that one made with almond flour would.

Here’s my “deceptive” purple velvet torte.  Enjoy!

Purple Velvet Torte

Print Pin Recipe
Servings 12



  • In a medium saucepan, heat the beets and agave to a boil, then cover
  • Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, until beets are soft
  • Transfer beet-agave mixture to a vitamix and puree on highest speed until smooth
  • Blend in eggs, oil, vanilla, almond extract, cacao and salt until thoroughly incorporated
  • Pour batter into a well greased 9 inch cake pan
  • Bake at 350°F for 30-35 minutes until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean
  • Cool and serve
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 10 mins
Total Time 1 hr 25 mins
Tried this recipe?Mention @elanaspantry or tag #elanaspantry!

flourless beet cake dessert

My older son has been steadily working away on this blog with me.  He is 10 years old and every week he discusses what “we” will be posting.  He often sneaks down after I put him and his brother to bed, for a blogging session during which we take photos or write copy here.

This week, as I was on a deadline for another project, he decided that he would be the one shooting the pictures of the purple velvet torte.  So, please welcome my new phototgrapher!  He took these pictures on his own as I proofread another document, knocking the camera over only once.  Besides that incident he was a total pro!  Really.

He was however, very disappointed as he “proofread” this copy that I used the word “sneaks” above.  He wanted me to say that we “work together,” and I must say, he is correct.  I guess that would make me Heather to his Leta (once her daughter starts reading dooce Ms. Armstrong may have her hands full).

Update: I’ve edited the cooking time in this recipe thanks to one of the comments below.  The one in the recipe above is now correct and my family is very happy since they are eating this gluten-free torte yet again (since I made it a third time to verify the cooking time).  As always, thanks for your comments!


146 responses to “Purple Velvet Torte”

  1. Michelle, thanks for your AMAZING comment and for letting me know this may be your new favorite “go-to” recipe :-)

  2. I haven’t tried a slice yet but this might be my new favorite “go-to” recipe! I’m the type who never ever eats the cake batter or cookie dough before it’s baked but I tasted a smidge to judge the sweetness and ended up licking the spatulas and mixing blades clean! I used the Instant Pot to steam my thickly sliced beets first and then I blended everything else up. I made some “cream cheese” whip inspired by a couple of the comments. We don’t do cow dairy so I used chevre, coconut cream, and a few spoonfuls of goat milk yogurt to make it smooth (sweetened with honey and added a splash of vanilla extract). I’m sure it’ll be amazing! Thank you, Elana, for your recipes!

  3. Amazing…. Moist, tasty, delicious… a perfect cake served with a simple cream cheese icing to glue the two half together… What an awesome cake.
    This cake was preferred over a store bought bakery cake from a very reputable bakery.
    I used Coconut Oil, and added a cup of frozen cherries, an extra half cup of Cocoa powder, an extra half cup of grated beets. I needed to bake longer but it was fudge gooey good!!
    Thanks for the recipe.

  4. Has anyone tried any egg substitutes in this recipe? I am sensitive to egg yolks and not egg whites. I’m considering trying either gelatin eggs or just egg whites. Has anyone tried either of these substitutions? Thanks in advance!

  5. Elena,
    Half of my immediate family love beets, half hate beets. I was currently juicing them and used the leftover fiber when I first saw your recipe. My first attempt at cooking this recipe was during this time. Half my family loved it, half kinda said “nice try on sneaking your cake in under my radar, but it’s a no go and can I spit out this mouthful?”
    Since that time, I cooked another cake. This time I washed the beets better and cooked them 3 times longer with the honey and added one more egg than what your recipe called for. It also baked for over and hour, maybe one hour plus 15 minutes?
    The cake was amazing! There was no taste of beets and it was an even bigger hit than before with both the beet lovers and haters of beets. It has been put on the “Forever” List for our family traditions and functions. So THANK YOU SO MUCH! from our family to yours!
    Tons of Food Love,

    • As long as they are not salted or pickled, yes. I made this with precooked beets (though they were the shrink wrapped type, not canned), and it turned out great.

    • Michelle, thanks for your comment! I just checked it and it’s working perfectly over here. You may need to update your web browser :-)

  6. Love this recipe, I make it for pretty much every bday! Curious if you think I could prep everything (beet/honey & mix batter) and refrigerate to bake later in the day? Would this compromise anything?

    • Ren, I haven’t tried that so not sure. Happy Birthday and thanks for letting me know you love this recipe :-)

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Recipes » Desserts » Purple Velvet Torte