Serves a Crowd

Spiced Sweet Potato, Cranberry, and Pecan Cake with Orange-Cinnamon Glaze

December 22, 2009
0 Ratings
  • Serves 12-16
Author Notes

I created this recipe last Thanksgiving when I had loads of leftover mashed sweet potatoes. Like bananas, they add both moistness and sweetness to baked goods. I have made the cake a couple more times since, tweaking here and there as I go in an effort to create an all-purpose holiday cake. With cranberries, pecans, cloves, and orange, it smells and tastes just like Christmas. —Food Blogga

What You'll Need
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups mashed red-skinned sweet potatoes or garnet yams
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, plus 2 tablespoons for optional garnish
  • 1/2 cup chopped Medjool dates (or prunes)
  • 2/3 cup frozen, unthawed cranberries, coarsely chopped if large
  • zest of 1 orange (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • several droplets of milk
  1. Place rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter or coat with cooking spray a 9-10-inch Bundt pan.
  2. In a large bowl, stir the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.
  3. In a separate bowl, add butter and sugars. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and sugars. Add the sweet potatoes and eggs and beat. Add milk, honey, and vanilla, and beat. Add the flour mixture in small batches, beating after each, until just incorporated. Stir in pecans, dates, cranberries, and orange zest.
  4. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and a cake tester inserted deep into the center comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for 10 minutes before unmolding. Cool at least 30 minutes before glazing.
  5. Icing: In a small bowl whisk 1 cup confectioners' sugar, orange zest, and cinnamon. Add a few droplets of milk, and continue whisking until the icing is smooth and thin yet clings to the back of a spoon. Using a spoon, drizzle the icing in the grooves of the cake. Garnish with a few orange zest curls and/or chopped pecans, if desired. Allow to set for at least 15-20 minutes before slicing.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • WinnieAb
  • AntoniaJames
  • Melissa

3 Reviews

Melissa December 12, 2017
This was great! I boiled sweet potatoes in order to make it. I used fresh cranberries as well. I will be making this again--so many compliments! I might experiment with different sugars like demerara and sucanat. The proportion of fruits and nuts was perfect--not too much. I will double the icing recipe next time (and I used orange juice in addition to the milk).
WinnieAb December 26, 2009
This sounds delicious Susan!
AntoniaJames December 22, 2009
Mmmmm, yum. This looks heavenly. I'm going to make extra sweet potatoes so I can try this over the holiday weekend!!