Pistachio Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

The rich, nutty taste of pistachio is made better with the delicate flavor of Plugrá. A decadent layer of buttery smooth cream cheese frosting brings this moist cake all together in a beautiful way.

Recipe Provided By: Minette Rushing Custom Cakes, Savannah, GA

Yield: 9 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes, plus cooling


Pistachio Cake

  • 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup (40 g) ground pistachio nuts
  • 2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 5 large eggs (250 g), separated
  • 3/4 cup (170 g) Plugrá® European Style Butter, unsalted
  • 1-3/4 cup (350 g) granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup (56 g) vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp. (14 g) pistachio paste
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (245 g) whole buttermilk

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1-1/2 cups (340 g) cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup (170 g) Plugrá® European Style Butter, unsalted, softened
  • 3 tbsp. (42 g) pistachio paste
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 6 cups (720 g) powdered confectioner’s sugar


Pistachio Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 3 8-inch pans.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, ground pistachio nuts, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Whisk together to incorporate.
  3. Separate eggs. Place the yolks into a small bowl. Place the whites into the bowl of an electric mixer.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter on medium speed for 2 minutes using the paddle attachment. Add 1¼ cups sugar and continue beating on medium for 3 to 4 minutes or until light and creamy.
  5. Add oil until just incorporated. Scrape down the bowl. Add egg yolks, one at a time. Beat until fully incorporated. Add pistachio paste and vanilla. Beat until fluffy.
  6. Add the flour mixture to the batter in three parts alternately with the buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour. Take care to not overbeat.
  7. In a separate bowl beat the egg whites on high speed using the whisk attachment until medium peaks form. Add the remaining ½ cup sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form.
  8. Stir ⅓ of the beaten egg white into the cake batter. Fold the remaining egg whites into the cake batter in 2 batches, until incorporated.
  9. Pour into prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  10. Let cakes rest for 15 minutes and turn out onto cooling racks. When they are still a little warm, wrap them in plastic wrap and let them finish cooling.
  11. Frost with cream cheese frosting (below). Store in refrigerator. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before serving. Return any leftovers to the refrigerator for storage.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Beat cream cheese and butter at in an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium speed until smooth.
  2. Add pistachio paste and vanilla extract, beat until blended.
  3. Gradually add powdered sugar. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth, scraping bowl occasionally.


To make 4 tbsp. pistachio paste, purée ½ cup of unsalted pistachio nuts with 1½ tsp. vegetable oil in a small food processor or electric coffee grinder.