Superlegumes Recipe: Mandarin, pistachio and chickpea cake


16 Apr Superlegumes Recipe: Mandarin, pistachio and chickpea cake

Thought I would share one more recipe from my new book, superlegumes, to help inspire you to be cooking with legumes!
This would have to be one of my absolute favourite recipes in the book, a delicious whole mandarin and chickpea cake…. that’s right, a cake made with chickpeas! You will not believe how delicious it is, and the combination of nutty chickpeas with the Middle Eastern flavours of pistachios and mandarins is simply quite amazing. I promise you will not be disappointed.

It will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Mandarin, pistachio and chickpea cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Chickpeas in a cake may sound strange, but this cake is absolutely delicious. The chickpeas add a nutty taste, texture and body, and the cake does not contain any oil or butter. It will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Recipe type: Cake
  • 3 mandarins, unpeeled
  • 150 g (51⁄2 oz) pistachio kernels, plus 1 tablespoon extra, coarsely chopped, to garnish
  • 400 g (14 oz) tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed (see tips)
  • 165 g (53⁄4 oz/3⁄4 cup) caster
  • (superfine) sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 75 g (23⁄4 oz/1⁄2 cup) plain (all-purpose) flour (see tips)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Icing (confectioners’) sugar, for dusting
  1. Place the mandarins in a large saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil, then drain. Cover with cold water again, return to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes, adding a little more water to the pan as necessary. Drain mandarins and set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F). Lightly grease a 22 cm (8½ inch) round cake tin and line it with baking paper.
  3. Cut the mandarins into quarters and remove the seeds (discard). Process the pistachios in a food processor to fine crumbs. Remove; set aside. Add the chickpeas to the food processor and process to fine crumbs. Add the mandarins and process until smooth.
  4. Use an electric mixer to whisk the sugar and eggs in a large bowl until thick. Add the mandarin mixture and fold in until well combined, then add the ground pistachios, flour and baking powder and stir until well combined. Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with the back of the spoon.
  5. Bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out with a few moist crumbs. If the cake browns too quickly, cover the top loosely with foil. Set aside to cool for 20 minutes, then carefully remove from tin and cool completely on a wire rack. Serve dusted with icing sugar and garnished with extra chopped pistachios.
For a gluten-free version, replace the flour with gluten-free plain (all-purpose) flour.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 12


  • Rosie
    Posted at 01:26h, 13 June Reply

    The first line of a Instructions – point 1 seems to be missing??

    • Chrissy Freer
      Posted at 02:08h, 13 June Reply

      Great pick up, Rosie! THANK YOU! We have amended and the recipe is good to go now :)
      -Team Chrissy

  • Sherrill
    Posted at 00:05h, 20 June Reply

    Umm… that first line of the Instructions is still incomplete, and there are 2 references to ‘tips’ in the Ingredients section which are missing.

  • Sherrill
    Posted at 00:24h, 20 June Reply

    Whoops – just noticed the missing line turns up as point number 6 in the Instructions. Now I get it, & plan to make the cake in the next few days – looks divine!

    • Chrissy Freer
      Posted at 08:24h, 22 June Reply

      Thanks so much for the pick up, we are fixing it right now!

  • Karen
    Posted at 06:53h, 28 July Reply

    When you say 3 mandarins, unpeeled – do you mean leave the entire skin on or are you saying take the outer skin off and keep the inner skin on?

    • Chrissy Freer
      Posted at 09:04h, 28 July Reply

      Hi Karen – mandarins are with their entire outer skin on, hope the helps!

  • Heather Tavener
    Posted at 08:22h, 30 July Reply

    I am making this cake now. Not sure how long to cook it? At top of recipe it says cook time 1 hour 50 minutes, but in directions says 50 minutes?

    • Chrissy Freer
      Posted at 08:48h, 30 July Reply

      Hi Heather

      The cooking time for the cake in the oven is 50 minutes as per directions. The cooking time at the top of the recipe (in this circumstance 1 hour 50 minutes) is always the the complete cooking time it takes to make the recipe (including cooking the oranges etc).Hope that all makes sense now… Chrissy.

  • Valentina
    Posted at 12:23h, 08 August Reply

    Hi! Just made your cake! It should be moist inside or I undercooked it? I left it in the oven for 1 hr and the toothpick came out clean.. Many thanks xx

    • Chrissy Freer
      Posted at 20:25h, 08 August Reply

      Hi! The combination of chickpeas and whole mandarins make this cake really moist and quite dense, similar in texture to say a flourless whole orange cake. It should definitely be moist so sounds like it is perfect! Chrissy x.

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