Savory Vegetable Loaf Cake (Terrine)

A savory vegetable loaf cake brimming with summer squash, zucchini and carrots.

vegetable loaf recipe

If you’re anything like me, when you see a recipe with the word “cake” in the title, you probably think “sweet” and “dessert”, but this is not that kind of cake.

This particular cake is filled to the brim with vegetables. Now, granted, there are plenty of vegetable cakes that fall into the sweet territory — like carrot cake and zucchini bread — but this is not one of them. This cake is entirely savory fare.

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I’d say it straddles the line between a frittata and a terrine. Ribbons of zucchini, summer squash and carrots are layered and bathed in an egg-based custard that’s baked in a loaf pan to create a sturdy loaf that slices like a cake but works as a main course.

What makes this dish different from a frittata is the addition of coconut flour that gives the loaf substance and heft and makes it slice with ease.

Thinly sliced zucchini, carrots and summer squash are briefly cooked down in a mixture of butter and garlic. While the vegetables are doing their thing, you make the custard of eggs, kefir (or coconut cream) and coconut flour flavored with a generous handful of fresh basil leaves. The two meet up in the oven and less than an hour later you have yourself a meal.

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Endlessly versatile, this vegetable cake is equally good hot, at room temperature or cold straight from the fridge. Serve a few slices with some salad greens on the side or pack it up for a picnic. Make one for lunch or dinner today and wrap up the leftovers for breakfast tomorrow.

Have you ever had a savory vegetable cake?

Savory Vegetable Loaf Cake Recipe (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegetarian, Paleo)

Yields 1 loaf

A savory vegetable loaf cake brimming with summer squash, zucchini and carrots.

35 minPrep Time

45 minCook Time

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Ingredients

  • 4 medium carrots, peeled
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 2 medium yellow summer squash
  • 2 Tablespoons butter or coconut oil
  • 1 large or two small garlic cloves, finely minced
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt divided
  • 1/8th teaspoon ground pepper
  • 6 large eggs
  • ¼ cup/60ml kefir or coconut milk
  • ¼ cup/28g coconut flour , sifted
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 small handful of fresh basil leaves, chopped (about 2 to 3 Tablespoons)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 cup, 9x5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Cut the carrots, zucchini and summer squash in half lengthwise and then into thin slices on a mandolin or with the slicing blade on a food processor.
  3. In a large skillet or sauté pan heat butter or coconut oil. Add the minced garlic and stir until fragrant then add the sliced vegetables and season with ¼ tsp of salt and all the pepper.
  4. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in a small bowl , sift together coconut flour, remaining ¼ tsp of salt and baking powder, set aside. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, kefir (or coconut milk) and whisk in flour mixture until fully incorporated and slightly thickened.
  6. Fold in the cooked vegetables and basil. Scrape mixture into prepared pan.
  7. Bake until light golden brown on top and set in the center, about 40-45 minutes. Remove cake from oven and let cool in pan 10 minutes.
  8. Remove from pan, and serve warm or let cool on a wire rack and serve at room temperature. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Notes

Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Paleo, Vegetarian

http://gourmandeinthekitchen.com/2013/vegetable-loaf-recipe/

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  1. says

    This looks divine. I am a big fan of coconut and vegetable combination. Loved the clicks as always (PS – I already scrolled up and down the screen several times – cant get enough of your clicks!!!)

      • says

        I find mine at whole foods but you can also order it online at Amazon. As for substituting regular flour you can but the proportions would be different as coconut flour absorbs more liquid than wheat flour. I haven’t tested it with wheat flour so I can’t say how much you’d need to substitute.

  2. LS Gourmet says

    Fabulous looking and I can’t wait to try the recipe. Quick question though can I substitute almond flour for the coconut flour? I have the almond flour in the pantry already.

    • says

      You could try but it wouldn’t be a 1:1 substitution since coconut flour is much drier and absorbs significantly more liquid you would have to use a much larger amount of almond flour. I haven’t tested it with almond flour so I couldn’t say how much you’d need to replace it.

  3. says

    Frittata or cake, I want some in my belly! This looks so gorgeous, and I love that it’s completely bad stuff-free lol. Those are some gorgeous colours you’ve got there, this is what I love about this season’s vegetables- all these beautiful colours! WIll be making this soon as I have a courgette and some baby carrots from the market to use up. x

  4. says

    This reminds me of my North African friends vegetable soufflé/quiche/terrine, etc that we call Pashtida. It’s the kitchen sink baked ‘fritatta’. 🙂 Come to think of it widely popular in every household in Israel, though not in mine growing up it was strictly Indian. 🙂

    • says

      Thanks for catching that, you add the basil into batter at the same time as you fold in the cooked vegetables. I’ve updated the recipe to reflect that step now.

  5. gktraina says

    I made this over the weekend and not only is it beautiful, it full of flavor! There is a hint of coconut but it doesn’t over power the vegetables. I thin sliced it and served it at room temperature.
    Thank you for this wonderful recipe!

  6. says

    This is the answer to all of my summer squash abundance that I continue to deal with. A few late weeks of warm air sent them into overdrive once more, and I love that these pack for lunches so easily.

    • says

      This recipe makes one loaf which I think would be 8 to 12 slices depending on how thick you slice them. I’d say about two slices would be a serving if you were serving it with a side.

  7. Annelieke says

    Love this recipe. Only 1 problem for me. I’ve never seen yellow summer squash here. Can I substitute it for something else?

  8. says

    This is such a great way of using whatever is in the fridge! They look pretty sturdy, which I wouldn’t have thought possible with coconut flour.

  9. M damo says

    This is a wonderful recipe! I made half the quantities and substituted with butternut squash. It looked beautiful and tasted amazing! Definitely one we’ll make again.

  10. Yasemin says

    This was delicious! Any suggestions on how I can make this more of a loaf and less like a quiche? Less egg and more flour (almond maybe)?

    Thanks!

  11. Sarah says

    I made this with a few modifications and my husband and I loved it. I halved the recipe (since it was for two). Greased and floured the small round casserole I used since I don’t have parchment paper. I probably didn’t need to flour it. (Because of the pan, maybe, I baked it a bit longer until it got nicely browned). I didn’t have coconut flour so I used all purpose, same amount as specified in the recipe, no problem. Didn’t have fresh basil so I used the fresh dill and fresh mint I had on hand. Looked beautiful, smelled and tasted fabulous. Served with chicken, mashed sweet potatoes and Israeli salad (cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, parsley, lemon juice & olive oil).

  12. says

    This was delicious! Thank you for sharing! I was out of coconut flour and substituted whole wheat flour instead (I put a little more than 1/4 cup in). I look forward to trying it with coconut flour next time.

    • says

      Hi Heather,

      You could omit it altogether if you’d like, it just makes the loaf a little lighter but isn’t essential since the eggs offer structure and lift. Your loaf may just not rise quite as much. Hope that helps!

  13. Terri says

    I am planning an 80th Birthday party for my Mother the first week of October. This is a nice event, more like a church reception with finger foods only. I think this dish would be perfect and different, but my idea is to slice thinly and use a music note cookie cutter for cutouts.. In looking at the height of the slice, it does not look like I would get more than one cutout from each slice which is not enough yield. 50 people are invited. Can you advise if this can be doubled and baked in some type of vessel that would allow me a high yield? The thickness of the slice does not matter. The cookie cutter is about 4-5 inches tall and 2 inches wide. Thanks for your help on this! The recipe really does sound delicious.

    • says

      Hi Terri, Yes the recipe can be doubled but you would have to split it and bake in two loaf pans. However I don’t think this particular loaf will lend itself well to being cut out with a cookie cutter since it’s more of a frittata-like texture and therefore a bit moist.

  14. Priscila says

    Hello.
    I just made this cake but with some changes. I used 1/2 cup coconut flour and 1/2 cup corn starch. I used only 4 eggs and 1 cup of milk. I also used 1 teaspoon of baking powder. Maide the filling with carrots, pumpkin, mince meat, pepperoni and spices. It was delicious !!! Thank a lot.

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