Spiced Pumpkin / Squash Cake

This cake is a great way to use up leftover pumpkin from Halloween Jack o’lanterns, but also benefits from more flavoursome eating squashes.

Makes two loaf cakes, two stacked cakes or one large cake


350g pumpkin / squash puree
150g wholemeal flour
100g self-raising white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
6 cardamom pods
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon mixed spice
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves
100g granulated sugar
100g light or dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
240ml ‘light’ olive oil or rapeseed oil
4 eggs


1.      Preheat the oven to 180C / gas 4 and lightly oil a large cake tin or two loaf tins.

2.      In a pestle and mortar, crack open the cardamom pods, remove the seeds and discard the tough outer pods. Crush the seeds to a powder.

3.      In one bowl, mix the flours, baking powder, salt, spices and sugars.

4.      In another bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, squash puree and vanilla together until combined. Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir well.

5.      Scrape the batter into prepared pans and bake for 30-40 minutes, until a toothpick or knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.

6.      Tip: it the top is browning too quickly, lay a sheet of greaseproof paper or aluminium foil over the cake.

7.      Remove from the oven, run a knife around the edges of the tin and leave to sit for 10 minutes, then turn it out to cool on a wire rack.