This light and airy Italian Pistachio Cake with white chocolate chips and cardamom is simple to make and loaded with pure pistachio flavor!
As a big pistachio fan, I'm always looking for new ideas and ways to incorporate pistachios into new recipes! This Italian Pistachio Cake is a slight twist from the classic Italian recipe.
Loaded with pure ground pistachios, dotted with white chocolate chips, and slightly spiced with cardamom, this cake is light, airy, and bursting with flavor!
This cake is simple to make and does not require any special techniques. Don't let the lack of buttercream or frosting fool you, you'll be surprised by this cake's simplicity and deliciousness!
Ingredients and Substitutions
Pistachios - The main ingredient for this cake, you will need a little over one cup of raw or roasted pistachios.
These will be finely ground to make "pistachio flour", giving this cake it's pure pistachio flavour and vibrant yellowish-green colour.
Alternatively, you can use store-bought pistachio flour.
Flour - Use cake flour or all-purpose flour. As in other baking recipes, I recommend weighing flour using digital kitchen scales.
Baking Powder - Leavening agent.
Ground Cardamom - This spice pairs beautifully with pistachio. You'll need just half a teaspoon for a flavorful twist.
Salt - to balance the sweetness.
Butter - Use unsalted butter softened to room temperature.
Sugar - For this cake, you will need granulated or caster sugar. You can adjust the amount of sugar to your liking.
Eggs - For binding and texture. You will need 3 medium-sized eggs for this cake.
Milk - Use semi-skimmed or whole dairy milk.
White Chocolate Chips
Icing Sugar - For dusting the cake before serving.
How to Make Italian Pistachio Cake
Preheat the oven to 180°C (356F).
Line an 8" (20cm) round springform cake tin with parchment paper.
Make Pistachio Flour
Place raw or roasted pistachios in a food processor and pulse until finely ground.
The mixture should resemble flour, but be careful not to pulse too much or your pistachios will turn into butter!
Mix Dry Ingredients
In a medium-sized bowl, sift and mix the remaining dry ingredients - flour, ground cardamom, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Make the Batter
In a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, place butter and sugar and mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy (1-2 minutes).
Use a spatula to scrape any ingredients from the side of the bowl.
Then, add the eggs, one by one, and mix well (1-2 minutes) after each addition. Add the milk and mix to incorporate.
Add the dry ingredients, alternating with ground pistachios and mix until just combined - do not overmix at this point!
Fold in the white chocolate chips using a spatula.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
The surface of the cake should be a nice golden brown.
Let cake cool for 5 minutes in baking tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Dust the cake with icing sugar, slice, and serve.
What to Serve with this Cake
This Italian Pistachio Cake makes a great tea-time treat. Serve it with a cup of tea or coffee.
In summer, you can serve this cake with a scoop of vanilla or white chocolate ice cream, or even a dollop of whipped cream.
Making Ahead and Storing
This cake can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Make sure that the cake has cooled down completely before storing.
Yes, you can.
However, I always like to make my own - the process is simple and you know you're using real ingredients without any additives, and it's probably cheaper too!
Other Recipes with Pistachio
Pistachio Muffins with White Chocolate Glaze
Italian Pistachio Cake with White Chocolate and Cardamom
- 150 g pistachios raw or roasted, finely ground (approx 1¼cup)
- 100 g flour cake or all-purpose (approx. 1 cup minus 1 tbsp.)
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. ground cardamom
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 112 g unsalted butter softened (½ cup)
- 200 g granulated sugar (1 cup)
- 3 medium-sized eggs
- 2 tbsp. milk semi-skimmed or whole
- 40 g white chocolate chips (¼ cup)
- 1 tbsp. icing sugar for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (356F) and line an 8" (20cm) round springform cake tin with parchment paper.
- Place pistachios in a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Set aside.
- Sift and mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, ground cardamom, salt) in a medium sized bowl and set aside.
- Place butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (you can also use a handheld electric mixer). Mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Use a spatula to scrape any ingredients from the sides of the bowl.
- Add eggs, one at a time, and mix well after each addition (1-2 minutes). Add the milk and mix to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients, alternating with ground pistachios, in two additions and mix until just combined. Do not overmix. Fold in white chocolate chips (if using) using a spatula.
- Pour batter into prepared cake tin and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean and cake surface is golden brown.
- Let cake cool for 5 minutes in baking tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar, slice, and serve.
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