Annika Eats

Sweet Potato Maple Cake

This sweet potato cake is filled with the best fall inspired flavors of maple syrup, pecans, cinnamon, brown sugar and nutmeg. The crumble topping not only adds for texture but a nutty and earthy flavor. A simple cake that can be prepared in no time. 

I know fall/autumn is all about Pumpkin everything. But when I say this Sweet potato cake is at par or even better than a pumpkin cake I am dead serious. Sweet potatoes are easier to find and definitely add a sweetness like no other. When baking with sweet potatoes, there are a few points to keep in mind. Some recipes will ask you to have the potato boiled and mashed (like this one) while other will ask you to keep it raw but grated. This cake gets its tender crumb structure from the sweet potato. 

I like to boil the potatoes whole – yes this does take longer but it is totally worth it. After it totally soft, I peel and mash it into a fine puree. Don’t leave any lumps as it will not allow the cake to rise evenly once mixed into the batter. There are many kinds of sweet potatoes and you can use any you can get your hands on but you are looking for a deep brown color to your cake then you need to use the orange colored sweet potatoes or yams. 

The cake is so simple as everything gets mixed into a bowl until you’ve achieved a smooth batter. We start with the wet ingredients and I would recommend using a whisk to get a smooth mixture but you could use a wooden spoon or even a food processor to mix the batter together. In another bowl add the dry ingredients and stir together until combined. Then we alternate the dry ingredients into the wet with the sweet potato puree. 

To make the crumble topping all the ingredients are mixed together using a fork until lumpy. Now when it comes to baking I like using an 8/9 inch round tin to bake this cake. The batter is quite a lot hence it makes for a good bundt cake as well you can use a loaf tin as well if you like but you might need to use two loaf pans as the cake does rise quite a bite. I would recommend a 9inch loaf tin and a smaller once like a 6/7 inch tin to bake off the rest of the batter.

The icing we make is very simple but effective. It has a beautiful drip and as it sets the top hardens while it stays soft underneath. The perfect addition to every bite of cake you will have. Also it makes the cake look very pretty. 

Let us talk about substitutes:

Sweet potato – You can use any sweet potato you can get your hands on. I have also used pumpkin puree and  mashed banana here. However if you do substitute the sweet potato in the cake, it is not a sweet potato cake any more. 

Brown sugar – I personally love the flavor of brown sugar in this cake, you could use a mixture of light brown sugar and dark brown sugar. You could use either or entirely. You could use a mixture of white sugar and brown sugar as well. I have used coconut sugar, palm sugar, jaggery powder and raw cane sugar in this recipe and it all works well. 

Demerara sugar – The crumble needs a granulated sugar of any sort. This is what gives it the crunch. 

Icing sugar – To make the icing you need powdered sugar or icing sugar. It is also confectioners sugar in some places. But you cannot make this icing without it. 

Eggless – You can substitute the eggs with egg replacer powder, flax seed eggs or 90gm full fat yogurt. 

Oil – I have used olive oil in this recipe but I’ve made it with coconut oil and regular vegetable oil as well. 

Maple syrup – This is a sweet potato maple cake hence it needs the maple but honey is a great addition as well if you can access maple syrup. It not only adds sweetness but a special flavor to the overall cake. 

Flour – I used all purpose flour you can use cake flour, self raising flour, gluten free flour mix. 

Spices – I love the flavor fo cinnamon and nutmeg in this recipe and it pairs well with the sweet potato, you can leave it out if you don’t fancy spices but a little goes a long way. You could use all spice powder or pumpkin spice as well. Find my pumpkin spice recipe here.

Pecans – This recipe works well with pecans but you could use walnuts or a mixture of nuts you like including almonds, cashews and peanuts. 

Once the cake is baked you can store it at room temperature for 3 days while it lasts in the fridge for up to a week. Ideally you can slice up the cake, wrap each piece in cling film and store it in the freezer for up to a month. It tastes better with time as the spices develop in flavor. Serve it with a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy. 

Let us make some crumble cake. Happy Baking Ninjas!

Sweet Potato Maple Cake

This sweet potato cake is filled with the best fall inspired flavors of maple syrup, pecans, cinnamon, brown sugar and nutmeg. The crumble topping not only adds for texture but a nutty and earthy flavor. A simple cake that can be prepared in no time.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Course Cake, Dessert, High Tea, Sweet tooth, tea time
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Fork
  • 9inch Round Cake tin
  • Baking paper


Cake -

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cups sweet potato boiled & mashed
  • 1/4 cup pecans toasted

Crumble -

  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp oats
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 2 tbsp Pecans chopped

Icing -

  • 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • Pinch of salt


  • To make the cake, preheat the oven to 180℃.
  • Add the sugars, maple syrup, oil and eggs in a large bowl and whisk until smooth.
  • In another bowl add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, pecans and stir to combine.
  • Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients in 3 parts. Alternating with the mashed sweet potato. Keep whisking until smooth.
  • Line a 9 inch round cake tin with a little baking spray and baking paper. Pour the batter into the tin.
  • To make the crumble: Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl until lumpy but combined. Sprinkle over the cake batter.
  • Bake the cake for 1 hour. Check the cake after 45 mins by poking a knife into the center. If it comes out clean it is baked, if not then bake it some more. The knife should come out clean.
  • Once the cake is baked remove it from the oven and let it cool completely. Ideally on a wire rack.
  • To make the icing: whisk all the ingredients together until smooth. If the icing is too thick add a drop of water to thin it out. If it is too thin add a tablespoon of icing sugar to thicken it up.
  • Drizzle the icing over the cake, slice and serve. Enjoy with tea or coffee.


  • Boil your sweet potatoes with the skin on, once it is totally soft, peel and mash until its a puree. Make sure there are no lumps.
  • I like to sift the dry ingredients a couple of times before incorporating into the batter.
  • Check the write up above for substitute details.

2 thoughts on “Sweet Potato Maple Cake”

    1. Hello Alaina, thanks for your comment. You can bake this in a 9×13 inch tin, I would recommend baking it for 30-32 minutes. However, do a tooth pick test to make sure it is baked all the way. Happy Baking!


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