Blackberry Basil Cake with Honey Whipped Cream

A fragrant, elegant cake that plays with both sweet and savory.

I love this cake. It’s a beautiful olive oil based recipe that’s not too sweet, embraces the relationship between berries and herbs, and has whipped cream piled on top. What more do you need?

This is a cake for all occasions- bridal shower, brunch, or an at-home date night. The blackberry basil pairing might be unusual , but the earthen sweetness created is one of a kind.


  • You will taste the olive oil. Use a lighter, fruitier oil for a more subtle approach. I’m into bold flavors so I went with a full strength EVOO.
  • Important– make sure to beat the eggs and sugar really well; at least 4 minutes. It gives the cake a fabulous lightness.




  • 6 oz blackberries
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 6-8 large basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 3 large brown eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 cup milk

Whipped Cream

  • 1/3 cup whipped cream
  • 1 Tbsp local honey
  1. Preheat oven to 400. Combine blackberries, lime juice, and basil in a small saucepan. Heat until berry juice is released and mixture is fragrant. Stir in cornstarch and set aside.
  2. Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Beat eggs and sugar until pale and fluffy( about 5 minutes) then add olive oil and honey.
  3. Alternating between wet and dry, add milk and flour mixture. Mix well.
  4. Add half of batter to a 8 or 9 inch cake pan followed by half of blackberry basil mixture. Repeat- swirling berries on top with a fork if desired.
  5. Bake at 400 for the first 15 minutes, then lower to 350 for the remaining 15-20. Cake is done when a knife inserted in center emerges crumb free. Invert and cool.
  6. When ready to serve, combine whipping cream and honey in a mixer and whisk until fluffy (2-3 mins). Use a spatula to dab a generous amount of whipped cream and garnish with berries and whole basil leaves.


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