Grow Your Own Cake by Holly Farrell {book review}

"Finally, although there is no scientific way of proving it, the satisfaction of eating something you have grown yourself makes it taste 10 times better." - Holly Farrell Grow Your Own Cake

There might not be any scientific proof, but I believe this is 100% true not only when you've grown your own food, but when you've used that grown food in something tasty like a cake or biscuit or pie!

I should start with stating that I am not much of a gardner myself so, the information in the chapter 'In  the Garden' was very inspiring and makes me want to get out some pots and soil and plant my own garden! Since I have yet to start gardening I'll have to hit up my father-in-law or the local farmers market for my ingredients!

The 'In the Kitchen' chapter was a nice refresher, but stated a lot of baking things I already knew.  It's still worth a read through as it's particular to how our author Holly Farrell bakes and therefore essential to know when you try out her recipes.  If this is the part you have less experience in give it a read though it's very informative.

The rest of the book is broken down into seasons, events, puddings, and savoury bakes. These cakes still have sugar, butter, and flour so can't claim to be healthy, but as they are full of fresh ingredients from a garden I'd say they were better then mass produced cakes. 

When I first saw the title I was like here we go carrot cakes and beetroot brownies and though there are recipes for both of those there is so much more! I like how the recipes are basic, practical, and use fresh ingredients. These recipes are a refreshing change from the other baking books I own. 

Overall, as I already said I found this book different from other baking books out there and if you're looking for something a little different then look no further! It's full of lovely full page coloured pictures of plants and baked goods!

Here are a few of the recipes I can't wait to try - just need to get gardening first! 

Gooseberry & Elderflower Cake
Rhubarb Crumble and Custard Cake
Beetroot Cake (Because there isn't any chocolate!)
Sweet Potato & Marshmallow Cake
Toffee Apple Cupcakes (we have an apple tree)
Strawberry & Basil Cupcakes 
Mint Choc-Chip Cupcakes
Chilli Chocolate Mudcake
Fig Tart (I'd love a fig plant!)
Pumpkin Soda Bread
Spinach & Cheese Muffins 

Oh I forgot to mention that in-between the recipes are tidbits about different ingredients and how to grow them. So, right in front of the Gooseberry & Elderflower Cake recipe is a bit on growing gooseberries. Same for the Spinach & Cheese Muffins just before we learn how to make the muffins we learn all about spinach - the best varieties, planting (the when and where), maintaining the plant, and harvesting it. Which I think is great! If all that information was in the intro we the readers would have been overwhelmed! 

Who I would recommend this book too: those with gardens, allotments, green grocers, those who shop at green grocers/farm shops, and those who want to start gardening or baking!

notes: Grown Your Own Cake by Holly Farrell, photographs by Jason Ingram is available now online, from any good booksellers or from the publishers. A copy was provided for me to review by the said publishers Frances Lincoln Ltd. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own. Please see my contact/policy page above for more information. 


  1. What an interesting way to create a cook book! I love the idea of cooking all my own ingredients before making the food - sadly, I'm not a very good gardener, or cook! Enjoy the lovely looking cakes! xx

    1. I'm not much of a gardener! But the baking recipes sound really good!

  2. Sounds like such a fab book! I would love to be able to grow my own ingredients but sadly I don't have the garden to do it. I really love the sound of the Spinach & Cheese Muffins!

    Laura x x x

    1. I need a garden too!! I would love to grow strawberries and other berries.


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