Vegan Rose, Lemon and Pistachio cake

vegan rose pistachio and lemon cake

(AD) There are a couple of things I have struggled with since trying to attempt a mostly vegan/plant based diet. One of those things is cake. I love cake and trying to find delicately light, fluffy cakes that taste amazing can be a challenge. 
A friend of mine gave me a very basic vegan cake recipe consisting of 5 ingredients. These ingredients were self raising flour, baking powder, sunflower oil, water and sugar. From this base I realised that I could add whatever I wanted to the recipe to create gorgeous cakes that were full of flavour and still vegan. I had been experimenting with different flavours and when Buy Whole Foods Online got in touch to ask to send me some products, I jumped at the chance to experiment with cakes and bakes.

Buy Whole Foods Online are based in Kent and was started by two cousins who had a passion for organic, whole, healthy foods and a dream to make them easily accessible and more affordable to customers. They now employ over 50 staff with a warehouse brimming with stock including dried fruits, chocolate, nuts and even aromatherapy and supplements. The pricing is competitive and there are multiple size options so you don’t need to purchase more than you need. I love this as it cuts down on waste, packaging and cost. 

I asked to be sent dried rose petals as rose is one of my favourite flavours. Light, delicate and floral, it reminds me of spring. Paired with pistachio and lemon, it is subtle and reminds me of Turkish delight. If you like this flavour combo, you will love this cake! You can also use the petals in tea along with other baking recipes. You could even use them as 100% natural and compostable confetti!

vegan rose pistachio and lemon cake

Vegan Rose, Lemon and Pistachio cake


For the cake

275g Self raising flour

200g Caster sugar

1 tsp Baking powder

100ml Vegetable oil

40g Pistachios, crushed

1g Dried rose petals

Zest and juice of one unwaxed lemon

160ml Water

2 tbsp Rose essence

For the topping

Juice of one lemon

50g Caster sugar

1 tbsp Rose essence

3 tbsp Icing sugar

10g Pistachios, crushed

A pinch of rose petals


Heat a fan assisted oven to 180° and line your loaf tin with baking parchment.

Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and lemon zest in a bowl. 

Add the vegetable oil, lemon juice, rose essence and water and mix. 

Add in the rose petals and crushed pistachios and fold in gently.

Place in the centre of the oven for 40 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean. Poke the skewer multiple times through the top of the cake to create holes. Cool on a wire rack.

For the topping firstly mix the sugar and lemon juice in a pan over a medium heat until the sugar dissolves. While warm, pour over the cake allowing it to seep into the holes. This will make the cake lovely and moist.

Mix the rose water with the icing sugar and loosen with a little water to make pourable icing. Pour this over the cake and immediately decorate it with the remaining crushed pistachios and rose petals. The icing will help the decorations to stick to the cake.

vegan rose pistachio and lemon cake

There you have it, my vegan rose, lemon and pistachio cake. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. It looks beautiful and is even more beautiful in real life. You could even add cardamom to the flavour to create a vegan version of a Persian love cake.

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23 Comments Add yours

  1. Evelyn says:

    Hiya, will this recipe make enough for two round cake tins or do we need to scale it up? Thanks

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      I used a 2lb loaf tin for this recipe so it really depends on the size of your cake tins. I’d recommend to double the mixture to ensure you have enough, and you can always use any remaining mixture to make a few cupcakes x

  2. meenu says:

    hi can i use any plant based milk instead of water? will that make any difference in the cake? thanks

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Hi, I haven’t actually tried. The water works perfectly. Let me know if you try it though please!

  3. Dee says:

    Hi, this recipe sounds amazing! Can you use rose syrup instead of rose essence and if so, same measurements?

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      I’ve not tried with syrup but I don’t see why not. Rose syrup is sweeter than essence so I’d try with half the amount initially! Good luck and I hope you like it x

  4. Akanksha says:

    Hi , id love to make it for my dad for father’s day . Could u please mention the ingredients in cup/ tbsp servings

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Hi! Thanks for your message. I’m in the UK, did you want it in UK cups or in US cups? I can convert them for you!

  5. entrepreneurwomendaily says:

    Oh wow this cake looks absolutely amazing! I will save it and make it sometime, I also love the presentation of it! well done 🙂

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Ah thank you so much! I’m trying to step up my photography and learn while we are in lockdown haha xx

  6. Anosa Malanga says:

    This sounds delicious and looks beautiful! I have been looking for an easy but tasty basic vegan recipe as we are trying to become vegan in our house but like you said, sacrificing cake is difficult! I will definitely be giving this cake a go!

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Please let me know if you make it! It really is delicious. Also play around with flavours too! X

  7. WOW this looks amazing, the presentation is very pretty. Ideal for a family party or summer snack. I bet it tastes fab too xx

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Thanks so much! It tastes beautiful, if you like florals and delicate flavours I think you’ll love it. X

  8. Rebecca Smith says:

    This looks like such a tasty cake! It looks almost too pretty to eat but I’m sure I could manage a slice or two…or three, haha!

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Ha thank you for the kind words I promise it tastes even better than it looks… if that is even possible!

  9. Kara Guppy says:

    That looks so delicious, I am not a vegan but it sounds really tasty

  10. Oh my, this sounds delicious. I’ve not tried the flavour combination before but one to try.

  11. yummyyemi19 says:

    OOH! I will have to share this with my daughter. She is vegan and has a new found love of cooking and baking!

  12. This looks incredible! Going to try in the week if I can get all the ingredients.

    1. willflirtforfood says:

      Thanks so much. Let me know if you make it x

  13. Sarah says:

    This looks delicious. I don’t think I have ever eaten anything with dried rose petals in it. Nor do I recall if I’ve ever had pistachios. I will have to give this a try, as I’m quite curious as to what this cake will taste like.

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