Ultimate Guide to Making Delicious Cassava Cake Recipe

Cassava cake is a beloved dessert in many cultures, especially in Southeast Asia and Latin America. Made from grated cassava (also known as yuca or manioc), this cake is renowned for its unique texture, rich flavor, and versatility. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a novice in the kitchen, this comprehensive guide will walk you through every step of making a perfect cassava cake. Let’s dive in!

What is Cassava?

What is Cassava

What is Cassava

Cassava is a starchy root vegetable that is a staple food in many parts of the world. It is known for its high carbohydrate content and is used to make various dishes, including tapioca. Cassava is also gluten-free, making it an excellent ingredient for those with gluten sensitivities.

Ingredients Needed for Cassava Cake

Base Ingredients

  1. Grated Cassava (2 lbs): Fresh cassava is preferable, but you can use frozen grated cassava, which is available in many Asian or Latin grocery stores.
  2. Coconut Milk (1 can, about 400ml): This gives the cake its rich, creamy texture.
  3. Condensed Milk (1 can, about 300ml): Adds sweetness and a smooth consistency.
  4. Sugar (1 cup): Adjust to taste. Some prefer their cassava cake sweeter, while others might want it less so.
  5. Eggs (3 large): These help bind the ingredients together.
  6. Butter (1/2 cup, melted): Adds richness and moisture.
  7. Grated Cheese (1 cup): For the topping, which adds a delightful savory contrast.

Optional Ingredients

  1. Vanilla Extract (1 tsp): For added flavor.
  2. Evaporated Milk (1 can, about 370ml): For a creamier topping.
  3. Macapuno Strings (1 cup): These sweet coconut strings add an extra layer of texture and flavor.

Equipment Needed

  1. Mixing Bowls: For combining ingredients.
  2. Whisk or Electric Mixer: For beating the eggs and mixing the batter.
  3. Baking Pan (9×13 inches): To bake the cake in.
  4. Grater or Food Processor: If you are grating fresh cassava.
  5. Measuring Cups and Spoons: To ensure the right proportions.
  6. Oven: Preheated to 350°F (175°C).

Step-by-Step Recipe for Cassava Cake

Step-by-Step Recipe for Cassava Cake

Step-by-Step Recipe for Cassava Cake


  1. Preheat the Oven: Set your oven to 350°F (175°C) to ensure it’s ready by the time your batter is prepared.
  2. Prepare the Baking Pan: Grease your baking pan with butter or line it with parchment paper to prevent sticking.

Making the Cassava Cake Batter

  1. Grate the Cassava: If using fresh cassava, peel and grate it using a grater or food processor. If using frozen grated cassava, ensure it is fully thawed and drained of excess liquid.
  2. Mix the Wet Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut milk, condensed milk, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla extract. Beat until well mixed.
  3. Add Sugar: Gradually add the sugar to the wet mixture, whisking continuously to ensure it dissolves completely.
  4. Incorporate the Cassava: Add the grated cassava to the mixture. Stir well to ensure the cassava is evenly distributed throughout the batter.

Baking the Cassava Cake

  1. Pour the Batter: Transfer the batter into the prepared baking pan, spreading it out evenly with a spatula.
  2. Bake: Place the pan in the preheated oven and bake for about 45-60 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Preparing the Topping

  1. Combine Topping Ingredients: In a separate bowl, mix the evaporated milk and grated cheese. For added flavor, you can also mix in a bit of condensed milk.
  2. Add Macapuno Strings: If using, stir in the macapuno strings to the topping mixture.

Adding the Topping

  1. Apply Topping: Once the cake is baked, remove it from the oven. Pour the topping mixture over the hot cake, spreading it evenly.
  2. Broil the Cake: Return the cake to the oven and broil for about 5-10 minutes, or until the topping is bubbly and golden brown. Watch carefully to prevent burning.

Cooling and Serving

  1. Cool the Cake: Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 30 minutes. This helps the flavors to meld and makes it easier to slice.
  2. Slice and Serve: Cut the cassava cake into squares or rectangles. Serve warm or at room temperature. Enjoy as is or with a cup of coffee or tea.

Tips for the Perfect Cassava Cake

  1. Quality Ingredients: Use fresh, high-quality ingredients for the best flavor.
  2. Consistent Mixing: Ensure all ingredients are well mixed to avoid lumps of cassava.
  3. Watch the Broiling: The topping can burn quickly, so keep a close eye on it.
  4. Experiment with Flavors: Add different flavors like pandan extract, or mix in some sweetened condensed milk for an even richer cake.
  5. Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Reheat in the oven or microwave before serving.

Variations of Cassava Cake

Filipino Cassava Cake

The Filipino version is one of the most popular cassava cakes, often topped with a creamy custard layer made from condensed milk, coconut milk, and sometimes cheese.

Thai Cassava Cake

In Thailand, cassava cake (Khanom Man) is usually simpler, made with coconut milk and sometimes flavored with pandan. It has a softer, jelly-like texture.

Latin American Cassava Cake

In Latin America, cassava cakes are often more savory, incorporating ingredients like cheese and even meat. They are commonly known as “pan de yuca” or “bolo de mandioca.”

Nutritional Information

Nutritional Information

Nutritional Information

Cassava cake is a rich, energy-dense food, thanks to its high carbohydrate and fat content. Here’s a rough estimate of the nutritional breakdown per serving (assuming 12 servings):

  • Calories: 350-400
  • Carbohydrates: 40-50g
  • Protein: 6-8g
  • Fat: 18-22g
  • Fiber: 1-2g

While it’s not exactly a health food, cassava cake is a delicious treat best enjoyed in moderation.

Cultural Significance

Cassava cake holds a special place in the hearts of many, especially in Filipino culture, where it’s a staple during celebrations and gatherings. It’s a dessert that brings people together, evoking memories of family and tradition.

Celebrations and Festivals

In the Philippines, cassava cake is often served during fiestas, birthdays, and holidays like Christmas and New Year. Its presence signifies joy and abundance, making it a must-have in many festive spreads.

Modern Takes

With the rise of food blogging and social media, many modern twists on the traditional cassava cake have emerged. From cassava cupcakes to cassava cheesecake hybrids, the possibilities are endless.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

  1. Cake is Too Dry: Ensure you’re using enough coconut milk and butter. Overbaking can also lead to dryness.
  2. Cake is Too Wet: This can happen if the cassava wasn’t properly drained. Adjust the baking time if necessary.
  3. Burnt Topping: Always broil the cake with caution, keeping a close eye on the oven to prevent burning.


Cassava cake is a delightful dessert that is both comforting and versatile. With its rich history and cultural significance, making and enjoying this cake can be a rewarding experience. Whether you stick to the traditional recipe or add your unique twist, cassava cake is sure to be a hit at any gathering.