Rose Pistachio and Cardamom Loaf Cake

My rose pistachio and cardamom loaf cake was inspired by the stunning flavours of India. Here, earthy pistachio, fragrant cardamom, and floral rose come together in this eggless bake create an incredible stunning cake that is truly out of this world.

rose pistachio and cardamom loaf

Inspired by my roots

Many of you may already know or have worked out that my family originates from India. As you can imagine, growing up in an Indian household was such brilliant inspiration for me. All those vibrant and stunning smells that wafted from our kitchen would leave me salivating

Fast forward a few years, and now as an adult I still find myself being inspired to play with colours, flavours and spices in all my culinary creations. This often results in my mixing it all up to create amazing fusion dishes that are truly unique.

So what inspired this particular bake? Well, the flavours were actually a combination of kulfi, which is a type of Indian ice cream using pistachios and nuts, and gulab jamun, which are delicious balls of dough soaked in a sweet and fragrantly spiced sugar syrup. As a result of these two desserts encompassing so many memories of my childhood sweet treats, it was easy to see why I needed to put this into a cake!

rose pistachio and cardamom loaf

What ingredients do I need to make this eggless rose pistachio cardamom cake?

  • Unsalted butter: a plant based butter is needed for this recipe. Make sure to use the block butter found wrapped in foil, not the spreadable sort in a tub. For best results, use butter at room temperature.
  • Caster sugar: for sweetness in your bake.
  • Vanilla extract: enhances the sweetness in your loaf cake.
  • Yogurt: keeps the cake moist and tender. 
  • Water: makes up part of the liquid requirements for this cake. 
  • Flour: I use plain flour for this cake as it allows me to have control of the amount rising agent used in my bake.
  • Baking powder/bicarbonate of soda: just for a little bit of help with rising for this loaf cake.
  • Salt: to enhance the flavours in this bake. Don’t worry, you won’t taste it!
  • Green cardamom powder: all about the flavour! You can buy this pre-ground, or grind at home if you can’t find it. Should you decide to grind your own cardamom, half the quantity you use, as freshly ground cardamom is more potent than a shop bought powder.
  • Pistachios: for that beautiful earthy flavour.
  • Icing/powdered sugar: used to make the drizzle as it dissolves more easily than caster or granulated sugar, so ensuring the drizzle isn’t grainy.
  • Rose water: gives your glaze a delicate floral scent and flavour.
  • Milk: used to make your glaze.
  • Red/pink food colouring: since rose water isn’t naturally pink, so this gives the colour to your glaze for all the pretty!
  • Edible rose petals: for decoration, but totally optional.

What equipment do I need to make a loaf cake?

  • Loaf tin*: to bake your cake in.
  • Loaf tin liners*: for lining your tin. However, you can use parchment paper too, if you wish, but I find liners a much easier option.
  • Digital kitchen scales*: whilst I do provide cup measurements for all my recipes, I always recommend using scales to weigh your ingredients out instead. Weighing out your ingredients is much more accurate than measuring by volume, as you do when measuring with cups, and will ensure better results.
  • Measuring spoons*: for measuring smaller quantities such as tablespoons (tbsp) and teaspoons (tsp). I would definitely recommend getting a set of dedicated measuring spoons to use in baking. This is a far more accurate measurement than using your everyday eating spoons, which can vary greatly in size.
  • Sieve*: to remove lumps from your dry ingredients, ensuring it all mixes together evenly.
  • Stand mixer*/electric hand mixer*: I would highly recommend investing in a good electric mixer. Either a stand mixer or hand held electric mixer is a great help with your baking. Having these tools makes it much easier, not to mention quicker, to do your baking.
  • Jug*: to mix together the wet ingredients before combining them with the dry.
  • Spatula*: for mixing and smoothing the cake batter, plus scraping down the bowls during mixing to ensure all ingredients are combined.
  • Whisk*: for mixing up your glaze so it’s lovely and smooth.
  • Small mixing bowl*: just a little one needed to make your glaze in.

How to make eggless rose pistachio and cardamom loaf cake

This cake is actually relatively easy to bring together, there are just a couple of steps along the way. First, we need to make the loaf itself, then the glaze and finally the decoration on top.

Ingredients needed to make this eggless cake: unsalted butter, caster sugar, vanilla, yogurt, water, flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, cardamom powder, pistachio nuts, icing sugar, rose essence, food colouring, milk and rose petals for decoration

For the loaf cake

Step 1: Line your loaf tin with parchment paper (grease the tin to help it stay better if using parchment) or a loaf tin liner and set it aside. Preheat your oven to 160C/320F while you make your cake batter.

Step 2: In a large bowl or your stand mixer, beat your butter and sugar together until completely combined, pale and fluffy. Add vanilla and mix in.

Step 3: In a small separate bowl, place the yogurt and water and mix until combined. Tip this mixture in with your butter mixture and beat well to mix in. Don’t worry if it looks a little split/curdled at this stage, it will all come together in the end!

Step 4: Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda (baking soda), salt and cardamom powder into your large mixing bowl and beat well until completely incorporated. Finally, tip in the pistachio nuts and fold them in.

Eggless rose pistachio and cardamom loaf cake batter ready to go in the oven

Step 5: Pour your cake batter into your prepared loaf tin and bake in your preheated oven for 60-75 minutes. I bake mine for an hour, then check by gently shaking my tin. If it moves, leave it in for another 5 minutes. When the wobble has gone, use a toothpick or wooden skewer (using a wooden tool is better than a metal skewer, I find) to check if your cake is done. The toothpick inserted into the cake should come out clean or with just a couple of small crumbs. Remove from the oven and cool completely before decorating.

Baked eggless loaf cake with rose glaze and pistachio decoration

For the glaze and decoration

Step 6: Once your cake is cool, it’s time to decorate. To make the glaze, stir the sugar, rose water and 2 tbsp milk together in a small bowl, adding more milk as needed to get the consistency you want. Add a little bit of pink or red food colouring at this stage if you want to colour your glaze as I did. When you are satisfied with your glaze consistency, pour your glaze over your cake, smoothing out over the top and allowing it to drip lazily over the edges. Leave to set for a few minutes, then garnish with additional pistachio nuts and some edible rose petals if you wish.

rose pistachio and cardamom loaf

What can I do if I don’t have any loaf tin liners?

If you don’t have any liners for your loaf tin, you can make your own. Simply cut a piece of parchment paper about 6 inches larger on all sides than the base of your loaf tin. With your loaf tin in the middle of the parchment, use a pair of scissors to cut slits from two opposite sides all the way to each corner of your tin. Place the parchment into your lightly greased tin and press into the corners to encourage the parchment to remain in place. Fill with your cake mixture and bake as per the recipe.

How do I know when my eggless loaf cake is done?

You can tell your loaf cake is done because it will be beautifully golden, firm on top and risen. It will also feel springy when lightly pressed. I would also suggest using a toothpick or wooden skewer, poked into the middle of the cake: you should have nothing come out sticking to this if your loaf is baked. If you find your cake is browning too much on top before it’s baked, simply cover it loosely with some foil to stop the top browning further whilst the middle bakes more.

How long does this rose pistachio cake last and how do I store it?

This cake should be stored in an airtight container and will be fine kept at room temperature for 2-3 days.

Can you freeze a loaf cake?

Absolutely! Most loaf cakes will freeze well for up to three months.

How to freeze your eggless cake

I would recommend freezing this loaf cake without the decoration on top. Once baked, leave the cake to cool completely. When your cake is completely cool, remove from the tin and wrap it tightly with two layers of cling film (plastic wrap), leaving the parchment your loaf was baked in around the cake. Then wrap snugly in a layer of foil and freeze.

How to thaw your loaf cake

This cake will thaw fairly quickly. Depending on the temperature of your room, it can normally be completely thawed in 4-5 hours. To thaw your cake, remove the foil and both layers of cling film and place on a cooling rack, brushing off any ice crystals as you do. Once your cake has thawed, remove the lining paper and decorate with your glaze and toppings. Store in an airtight container as before.

rose pistachio and cardamom loaf

Can I make this pistachio rose cake gluten free too?

Absolutely! Should you wish to, you can substitute your plain/all purpose flour for a gluten free flour, but do add an additional ¼ tsp Xanthan gum if you can tolerate it.

Additional tips for making this eggless rose pistachio and cardamom loaf cake recipe

  • Always make sure you’ve prepared your tools and ingredients before you start mixing. In other words, line your loaf tin, preheat your oven and get your ingredients out ready to use before you start. Trust me, it’s easy to forget something once you get going!
  • Take time to read through the recipe so you are familiar with what steps come next. Don’t skip details and instructions given as it could affect the results of your final bake.
  • Get some loaf tin liners! I used to line my loaf tins using parchment I would cut up myself, but it can be such a hassle! Having the liners are so easy, it makes prep for making any loaf cake a breeze!
  • Make sure you use butter, milk and yogurt at room temperature. This helps them blend better with the other ingredients, making for a better bake!

Troubleshooting

If you have any other questions about this loaf cake recipe, please use the comments below to ask away and I’ll do my best to help! And if you made and enjoyed this, I’d love to hear from you too!

And don’t forget: if you make this recipe for pistachio rose cake, please do consider leaving a rating and review below, I would love to know how you enjoy making it and it really helps others looking for a recipe too! You could even post a picture on Instagram and tag me when you share it with the world, I’d love to see!

More recipes for you to enjoy

Please do check out these other recipes on my blog I think you’ll like too:

Vegan lemon drizzle loaf cake: this cake is totally and utterly delightful! It is all the things you want in a good lemon cake! It’s light, it’s fluffy, it’s packed with plenty of lemon flavour. And it contains no eggs or dairy produce.

Rose pistachio and cardamom shortbread cookies: my rose and pistachio shortbread cookies are buttery and delicious, packed with all the beautiful flavours of delicate rose, earthy pistachio and fragrant cardamom. Yum!

Eggless cinnamon sugar donuts: these donuts are utterly addictive! Light, moist and wonderfully cakey, these baked donuts are dredged in the most glorious cinnamon sugar and enjoyed by everyone!

Happy baking, my friends! x

rose pistachio and cardamom loaf

Recommended equipment and ingredients I used *

Loaf tinLoaf liners
Digital kitchen scalesMeasuring spoons
SieveStand mixer
Electric hand mixerJug
SpatulaWhisk
Small mixing bowlEdible rose petals
* If you purchase any of the products through one of the links above, I will receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you). Thank you so much for your support!

Rose Pistachio and Cardamom Loaf Cake (Eggless)

4.9 from 27 votes
Recipe by movers and bakers Course: DessertCuisine: British, Indian, FusionDifficulty: A little effort
Servings

12

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Baking time

1

hour 
Calories

431

kcal
Total time

1

hour 

30

minutes

Bursting with rose pistachio and cardamom, you will fall in love with this eggless loaf cake!

Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • For the loaf cake
  • 150 g (½ cup + 3 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • 230 g (1 cups + 2 tbsp) caster sugar

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 240 g (1 cups + 1 tbsp) plain yoghurt (I use Greek yoghurt)

  • 120 ml (½ cup) water

  • 320 g (2¼ cups + 1 tbsp) plain (all purpose) flour

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)

  • 0.5 tsp salt

  • 2-4 tsp green cardamom powder (freshly ground is best, but use 1-2tsp if fresh)

  • 100 g (1 cup) pistachios, chopped

  • For the glaze
  • 320 g (2¼ cups + 2 tbsp) icing (powdered) sugar

  • 1 tsp rose water

  • 2-4 tbsp milk

  • red/pink food colouring, optional but pretty!

  • small handful pistachios, roughly chopped

  • edible rose petals, optional

Directions

  • Line your loaf tin with parchment paper (grease the tin to help it stay better if using parchment) or a loaf tin liner and set it aside. Preheat your oven to 160C/320F while you make your cake batter.
  • In a large bowl or your stand mixer, beat your butter and sugar together until completely combined, pale and fluffy. Add vanilla and mix in.
  • In a small separate bowl, place the yogurt and water and mix until combined. Tip this mixture in with your butter mixture and beat well to mix in. Don’t worry if it looks a little split/curdled at this stage, it will all come together in the end!
  • Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda (baking soda), salt and cardamom powder into your large mixing bowl and beat well until completely incorporated. Finally, tip in the pistachio nuts and fold them in.
  • Pour your cake batter into your prepared loaf tin and bake in your preheated oven for 60-75 minutes. I bake mine for an hour, then check by gently shaking my tin. If it moves, leave it in for another 5 minutes. When the wobble has gone, use a toothpick or wooden skewer (using a wooden tool is better than a metal skewer, I find) to check if your cake is done. The toothpick inserted into the cake should come out clean or with just a couple of small crumbs. Remove from the oven and cool completely before decorating.
  • Once your cake is cool, it’s time to decorate. To make the glaze, stir the sugar, rose water and 2 tbsp milk together in a small bowl, adding more milk as needed to get the consistency you want. Add a little bit of pink or red food colouring at this stage if you want to colour your glaze as I did. When you are satisfied with your glaze consistency, pour your glaze over your cake, smoothing out over the top and allowing it to drip lazily over the edges. Leave to set for a few minutes, then garnish with additional pistachio nuts and some edible rose petals if you wish.

Recipe Video

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23 Comments

  1. Sahla Trew

    Hi there! Just curious to know if i can sub dairy free yoghurt to the greek yoghurt to make this cake vegan?

    • I haven’t tried substituting the butter and yoghurt with dairy-free alternatives, so I couldn’t say for sure whether it would work or not. However, I see no reason why it wouldn’t! Please do let me know if you try it and how it turns out for you with the substitutions. Thanks for commenting and happy baking! 😊

  2. Thank you for this lovely recipe! I made it last night and it worked perfectly! Moist and fragrant, and not overly sweet, will definitely make again.

  3. Julia Grochal

    I love this recipe, it’s easy, tastes great and looks beautiful. Rose and pistachios create a wonderful combination. It’s definitely one of my favorite recipes now. 🙂

  4. Julia Grochal

    I love this recipe, it’s easy, tastes great and looks beautiful. Rose and pistachios create a wonderful combination. It’s now one of my favorite recipes. 🙂

  5. Loved this recipe! I’ve made it and recommended it to friends to make.
    It’s super tasty and a little bit different.
    Definitely one to impress with 😁

    • Hi Farida, I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed this recipe, and have shared it too! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave me a rating and review 💕

  6. Nadine W

    So happy with the beautiful combination of flavors. It’s a unique take on a tradtional pound cake/loaf cake. And the vibrant aesthetic – pink glaze and green pistachios…gorgeous!

  7. Hello
    This loaf cake looks so good, I have not tried yet but will do soon!
    Just quick question before I try it, 320 gram of flour is equivalent to 2 cups? I thought one cup of flour is equal to 125 gram? I am little bit confused with the flour measurements.
    Thank you ♥️

  8. Hi, looks fab can’t wait to try, is the overn 160 not fan…what do you suggest for fan?

  9. Karishma

    Really really yummy cake! Moist, tasty and everyone loved it! The best thing about it was that there was more batter than the one loaf tin so I had another 6” cake to dig into the next day! Can’t wait to use this eggless recipe base and experiment with other flavour combos too!

  10. This recipe went beyond transcendental- My family, neighbours…everybody couldn’t stop gushing at how good it was! I made a few substitutions to suit allergies- non gluten self raising flour [ I omitted the baking pdr but kept the bkg. Soda) . Rice bran oil instead of butter, soya yoghurt instead of dairy and almond milk instead of milk. As we prefer less sweet, especially with a glaze, I used 190 gm of sugar instead of 250. Still, only needed half the quantity of glaze from the recipe.
    It was still amazing. All the flavours of Kulfi and barfi …I’ve been smiling for 2 days at how well this turned out! I had made your vegan lemon drizzle earlier and that was divine as well. I am now a huge fan of your cakes. Thank you!

    • Nafisa! I am beyond delighted you and your loved ones have enjoyed this recipe so much! I love this cake too, certainly one of my favourites! So glad I can share recipes you love, thank you for leaving such an amazing comment and review! 🥰

  11. if I was to bake it in a round cake tin, what size would you suggest?

  12. Hi can we replace water ?

  13. Swetha Ram

    Hi,
    I am beginner in baking. Could you please let me know if this recipe can be made in 8″ baking pan?

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