Sunday, February 25, 2024

Pistachio Cake – Sugar Spun Run

My pistachio cake is made WITHOUT any pudding mixes or emulsions! As a substitute, we’ll mix pistachios, almond extract, and browned butter (my secret ingredient) to create an unimaginable taste and crumb. Recipe features a how-to video!

Cross section of a pistachio cake made with three layers of green cake and a swiss meringue buttercream frosting.

Pistachio Cake From Scratch

It took loads of trial and error to get the flavour of this pistachio cake excellent. Since I didn’t need to use pudding combine or emulsions (which will be costly, onerous to search out, and inconsistent), it was necessary for me to create an genuine taste in a easy, attainable method.

The answer? Brown butter!

Similar to in my butter pecan cake, brown butter provides a nutty, effectively rounded, deep taste to this cake. When paired with the intense taste of almond extract and loads of chopped pistachios, we really completely nail the pistachio taste. It’s unimaginable!

Slice of pale green layer cake made with pistachios on a white plate with one bite missing.

Why you’ll love my recipe:

  • Makes use of the reverse creaming technique, which yields a plush crumb AND avoids the danger of over-mixing the cake. This cake really melts in your mouth!
  • Made totally from scratch with no synthetic flavors, emulsions, or boxed mixes of any sort.
  • Pairs effectively with many frostings (strategies under!), however I particularly adore it with my swiss meringue buttercream.

That is nothing like these vibrant inexperienced, pudding-filled pistachio cake you’ve made previously–it’s remarkably higher!

What You Want

My pistachio cake recipe makes use of principally primary components, however there are a number of wildcards. You have to:

Overhead view of ingredients including buttermilk, pistachios, almond extract, and more.
  • Buttermilk. Buttermilk is essential for taste, tenderness, and moisture on this pistachio cake recipe. Yours needs to be at room temperature while you add it for straightforward combining (and on that observe, you have to be utilizing room temperature eggs too!).
  • Brown butter. In case you haven’t made brown butter earlier than, don’t panic! I am going over this in my video under and still have a complete publish on the right way to brown butter in case you want much more pointers. Make sure that your butter cools down utterly earlier than including it to the recipe; it doesn’t need to be solidified, however it shouldn’t be in any respect heat.
  • Almond extract. Whereas we’re utilizing a small quantity of vanilla extract, we are going to add much more almond extract to essentially carry out the pistachio taste.
  • Pistachios. Use salted, dry roasted pistachios and finely chop them (I like to make use of a mini meals processor for this). In case you can’t discover salted pistachios, use unsalted pistachios and enhance the salt within the recipe to 1 teaspoon.
  • Meals coloring. Meals coloring is clearly non-obligatory, however if you need your pistachio cake to have a greenish hue, you will want so as to add it. I discuss extra concerning the model and colours I like to make use of within the recipe notes under.

SAM’S TIP: Do NOT over-bake this cake! Whereas the crumb is smooth and tender, the crumb will seem a bit extra crumbly as a result of finely chopped pistachios (similar to my butter pecan cake). If baked correctly, it received’t be; nonetheless, if the cake is over-baked, it would truly be dry.

Bear in mind, that is simply an outline of the components I used and why. For the total recipe please scroll all the way down to the underside of the publish!

Find out how to Make Pistachio Cake

Four photos showing cake batter being prepared with brown butter and salted pistachios.
  1. Brown the butter – soften the butter over medium warmth, then scale back the warmth to medium-low and cook dinner, stirring ceaselessly, till brown bits kind within the pan. Pour the brown butter right into a heatproof bowl and let cool utterly earlier than continuing.
  2. Mix the dry components in a big bowl, then regularly stir within the cooled brown butter till included. The combination might be dough-like at this stage; that is regular!
  3. Whisk collectively the moist components in a separate bowl (or massive measuring cup), then regularly stir them into the butter/flour combination till the batter is uniform.
  4. Fold within the pistachios till evenly distributed.
Four photos showing cake batter being portioned into pans, baked, and stacked with frosting.
  1. Add meals coloring, if desired, and stir to mix.
  2. Evenly portion the batter into three greased, floured, and parchment lined pans. Bake at 350F for 25 minutes or till a toothpick inserted within the middle comes out with a number of moist crumbs. Bear in mind, don’t over-bake!
  3. Let the desserts cool of their pans for quarter-hour earlier than inverting onto cooling racks to chill utterly.
  4. Degree the desserts if wanted, then beautify with icing. I’ve a publish on the right way to beautify a cake if you wish to hone your adorning expertise!

SAM’S TIP: Most ovens bake erratically, so take a look at every cake individually in case you are baking all three on the identical time. In case you can solely match two layers on the middle rack of your oven on the identical time, simply let the one sit on the counter whereas the others bake.

Overhead view of a cake decorated with a border of chopped pistachios around half of the cake.

Ceaselessly Requested Questions

Can I exploit all-purpose flour as an alternative of cake flour?

Cake flour makes for a smooth, tight crumb right here that works completely with the chopped nuts. Cake flour is my suggestion, however in a pinch all-purpose flour will be substituted, simply be sure you substitute correctly and observe the feel is not going to be as smooth or plush.

What flavors go along with pistachio?

Chocolate, raspberry, almond, cherry, citrus, apricot, honey, cardamom, and rose are just some flavors that pair effectively with pistachio. In case you’re wanting to boost this cake, attempt including my raspberry cake filling or pastry cream between the layers, or swap the icing with white chocolate buttercream or whipped cream frosting. A chocolate ganache drip and garnish of dried rose petals or fruit would even be beautiful right here!

Are you able to freeze pistachio cake?

Sure you possibly can. Simply be sure that to wrap it tightly earlier than freezing in an hermetic container or freezer-safe ziploc bag. This cake will maintain for a number of months within the freezer.

Slices of pistachio cake on white plates.

I critically LOVE this pistachio cake recipe, and I’m so excited to listen to the way you prefer it!

Take pleasure in!

Let’s bake collectively! I’ll be strolling you thru all of the steps in my written recipe and video under! In case you do that recipe, be sure you tag me on Instagram, and you can even discover me on YouTube and Fb

Cross section of a pistachio cake made with three layers of green cake and a swiss meringue buttercream frosting.

Pistachio Cake

My pistachio cake is made WITHOUT any pudding mixes or emulsions! As a substitute, we’ll mix pistachios, almond extract, and browned butter to create an unimaginable taste and crumb. Recipe features a how-to video!


Course: Cake, Dessert

Delicacies: American

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook dinner Time: 25 minutes

Complete Time: 50 minutes

Servings: 12 servings

Energy: 465kcal

Forestall your display screen from going darkish


Brown the Butter

  • Soften butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium warmth.

    1 cup (226 g) unsalted butter

  • Lower warmth to medium-low and cook dinner, stirring and scraping the underside with a heatproof spatula, till brown bits kind on the underside of the pan (butter will sizzle, foam, and pop then it will gradual earlier than it browns). Pour right into a heatproof bowl and permit to chill till not heat to the contact earlier than continuing.

Make the Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350F (175C) and grease 3 8” (20cm) spherical baking pans with baking spray. Line the bottoms with rounds of parchment paper to make sure the desserts received’t stick.

  • In a big mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer), whisk collectively cake flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

    3 cups (333 g) cake flour, 2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ¾ teaspoon salt

  • Add (cooled) browned butter and use an electrical mixer to stir on low-speed till completely included.

  • In a separate, medium-sized bowl or massive measuring cup, whisk collectively buttermilk, eggs, and extracts till well-combined.

    1 ½ cups (354 ml) buttermilk room temperature most well-liked, 2 massive eggs room temperature most well-liked, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ¾ teaspoon almond extract

  • With mixer on low-speed, regularly drizzle the buttermilk combination into the flour combination. Scrape the edges and backside of the bowl to make sure the batter is uniform (it’s alright in case you discover small lumps within the batter).

  • Add pistachios and use a spatula to stir till effectively included.

    1 cup (145 g) dry roasted salted pistachios

  • Add drops of meals coloring, if desired. Stir till uniform in colour.

    Inexperienced meals coloring

  • Evenly divide batter into ready pans and bake within the middle rack of 350F (175C) oven for 25 minutes or till a toothpick inserted within the middle comes out clear or with moist crumbs.

  • Enable desserts to chill of their pans for quarter-hour earlier than working a knife across the fringe of the cake to loosen it from the pan then rigorously invert onto a cooling rack to chill utterly. Muffins have to be utterly cooled earlier than adorning.


  • Degree desserts if wanted (I linked to my favourite cake leveler within the “Gear” part above) and beautify with frosting. I did a easy, semi-naked protecting for the edges of the cake with thicker frosting in between layers and on high of the cake, however you possibly can utterly cowl your complete cake with a single batch of Swiss meringue buttercream. If desired, high cake with further chopped pistachios.

    1 batch Swiss Meringue Buttercream



Pistachios will be measured earlier than or after chopping. In case you can’t discover salted pistachios, enhance salt within the recipe to 1 teaspoon.

Meals Coloring

Non-compulsory, cake is not going to be inexperienced with out meals coloring. I favor to make use of Americolor gel meals coloring. I exploit a small drop every of “Mint” and “Avocado” although both one would work high-quality. A little bit goes a great distance, pistachio needs to be a pale inexperienced.


Swiss Meringue Buttercream is my desire. Different choices embody marshmallow frosting, cream cheese frosting, white chocolate buttercream, or actually any buttercream from my frosting library.


Retailer in an hermetic container at room temperature for as much as 24 hours or within the fridge for as much as 5 days.


Serving: 1serving | Energy: 465kcal | Carbohydrates: 60g | Protein: 8g | Fats: 22g | Saturated Fats: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fats: 2g | Monounsaturated Fats: 7g | Trans Fats: 1g | Ldl cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 262mg | Potassium: 193mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 36g | Vitamin A: 605IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 1mg

Dietary data is predicated on third-party calculations and needs to be thought of an estimate solely. Precise dietary content material will range based mostly upon manufacturers used, measuring strategies, cooking technique, portion sizes, and extra.

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