Ever since I was a kid, eating local fruit was a way for me to get to know a place. I didn’t know it then, but the apples, oranges, peaches and blueberries of my childhood would leave me longing for truly fresh fruit for the better part of the last decade. In the last few years, I’ve traveled a long way from where I came from — first Boston for 10 years and Puerto Rico for just a little over one, which brought along a whole lot of life and many different fruits.
One of my favorite parts about my last move, other than the warmth, was getting to try new fruits that I couldn’t easily find to in the states. From passion fruit to breadfruit, Puerto Rico has all kinds of food treasures — everything from sickeningly sweet to starchy.
One fruit in particular, dragon fruit, stuck out to me because of its bold exterior color that is home to tasty white fruit. Aside from chopping up and eating dragon fruit raw, I also love to make dragon fruit cakes. Inspiration is a funny thing, especially when it comes to food, it can be found in all kinds of places.
Now that I’m 5,000 miles away from the island — I miss a lot of things, food, warm weather and arguably a big group of friends that became my family. So when I’m feeling like I need a pick up, or just nursing a sweet tooth, here are the dragon fruit cake recipes that bring my energy and appetitive back to life.
PInk Pitaya and Rose Cheesecake
Even though this isn’t a traditional sponge cake, nothing says decadence to me like pitaya, rose water, cashews, dates and maple syrup. Using pink pitaya powder, this rich, 4” cheesecake is creamy and delicious. Coconut oil gives this dragon fruit cheesecake its texture, which can be split up into several personal-size cakes. And any dessert that is similar to a smoothie is on my short list as something that I can eat for breakfast.
Vegan Dragon Fruit Cheesecake Bars
If you’re looking for something healthier for dessert, then these vegan dragon fruit cheesecake bars might just be the perfect option. Walnuts, dates, cocoa, dragon fruit and raspberry are all wrapped together into these super tasty bars. Whether you want to enjoy these as a dessert or as a snack, this dragon fruit cake recipe is perfect to keep on hand.
Dragon Fruit Cupcake Recipe
Grown on the cactus plant, dragon fruit is the perfect option to pair with your next big cupcake bake. These decadent cupcakes are a mix of almond milk, fresh dragon fruit and super toasty cocoa powder. The balance of the two with buttercream frosting makes the perfect dessert to pair with a cup of tea.
Dragon Fruit Cake
Where most dragon fruit cakes wow you with their unique color, this simple recipe is all about flavor. As one of the more understated cakes on this recipe list, its simplicity gives way to unique flavors. The combination of kumquats and dragon fruit come together in what could be classified as a light coffee cake. With less than 10 ingredients, this is a dragon fruit cake recipe anyone can make at home.
Dragon Fruit & Strawberry Cake with Ombre Frosting
For the gluten-free, this dragon fruit cake recipe is for you! Aside from being incredibly delicious, dragon fruit is filled with magnesium, fiber, B2 and Vitamin C. Arguably one of the most spongy and decadent dragon fruit cakes on the list, this unique recipe even incorporates avocado oil, cashew milk and deep red beet powder.
Get the full recipe for Dragon Fruit & Strawberry Cake with Ombre Frosting on Nosh & Nourish.
Red Dragon Fruit Cakes
If you’re looking for a tea cake, then dragon fruit might just be the perfect option. As a light and fruity alternative to tea biscuits, these dragon fruit cake bites are incredibly simple to make. Lemon juice and vanilla extract make a nice complement to the more mild-tasting dragon fruit. You can store these away or serve them the next time your friends come over for tea.
Dragon Fruit and Berry Ice Box Cake
Another great option gluten-free option, this tiered dragon fruit cake is full of nutrients and tasty bites. As the Editor in Chief of Go Gluten Free’s Summer 2015 Magazine, Meg van der Kruik made this recipe to celebrate her own love for color. Aside from its deep pink hue, this cake is unique for its combination of gluten free rolled oats, sweetened coconut, vanilla bean paste, agave, lime juice and organic strawberries.
Easy Red Dragon Fruit & Banana Cake
Since I’m not the biggest fan of decadent frosting, simple loaf or bundt cakes are my favorite. Drizzled with a little honey or agave and you have yourself dessert! The mixture of bananas and dragon fruit in this simple cake recipe makes for the perfect tropical flavors. With an afternoon cup of tea or bedtime slice of ice cream, this dragon fruit and banana cake recipe is versatile and delicious.
Chocolate Dragon Fruit Raw Pecan Cake
It’s common to find vanilla or dates mixed together with dragon fruit, but chocolate is something that’s on a whole new level. This dark chocolate, raw crust is made from incredibly simple ingredients — coconut flour and oil, black cocoa and pecans. The tasty dragon fruit layer uniquely mixes together soaked cashews, dragon fruit and lemon juice for a balanced sweet and sour topping.
Raw Vegan Raspberry & Dragon Fruit Chocolate Mousse Cake
There are no shortage of gluten free and vegan dragon fruit recipes, but this rich mousse cake stands out from the rest of them. If you’re hosting friends for a dinner party or simply want a healthy dessert alternative, then this is sure to impress. This delicious mousse cake is made from pitaya, raw cashews, coconut cream, himalayan sea salt and so many more tasty treats. Drizzle with a mixture of dark chocolate and coconut oil for a decadent finish.
And there you have it – my favorite dragon fruit cake recipes that are sure to make you smile. Whether you’re gluten free, vegan or love to have sweet and spongy cakes — there is a dragon fruit cake that is right for you.
Do you have a dragon fruit cake recipe that you enjoy making? I’m always look for suggestions and would love to hear from you in the comments below!