Vegan Simnel Cake Recipe

This cake is based on the usual teacake recipe I use and quite forgiving so you can mix and match ingredients if you don’t have everything!


For the marzipan
180g ground almonds
140g brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
3 tbsp water

For the cake
300g dried fruit (raisins, sultanas, etc.)
260ml hot tea (about one mug of tea)
40ml juice and grated peel of 1 orange
1 banana (optional)
Handful chopped apricots (optional)
250g wholemeal flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground clove
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
100g brown sugar
1 tbsp apricot jam

  1. Make the marzipan by mixing together all the ingredients in a blender, squeeze into a ball and cover put in an airtight container in the fridge.
  2. Place the dried fruit in a bowl and pour over the hot tea, orange juice and grated peel. Cover and leave for at least 3 hrs or overnight. (A)
  3. Preheat the oven to 170C, grease a 20cm or bigger round cake tin. If you use a 20cm tin, there will be enough mix left over for a small teacake 🙂
  4. Roll out the marzipan and use the cake tin as a template to cut two marzipan circles about 1/2 cm thick
  5. Sift the flour, baking powder and spices into a bowl. (B)
  6. Add the chopped apricots, sugar and squeeze the banana through your fingers into to A (raisin mix).
  7. Add B (flour mix) to A and carefully stir in. If the mixture is dry add a little water, tea or soya milk.
  8. Put half of the mixture in the cake tin, smooth over and add a circle of marzipan. Cover the marzipan with the remaining mixture and level out the surface.
  9. Bake for approx. 1 hour 20 mins, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. If it looks like the top will burn, cover with foil.
  10. Leave to cool in the tin for about 10min, then turn out and cool on a rack.
  11. Once cooled, spread the top with apricot jam and press on a marzipan circle. Decorate with 12 marzipan balls and/or anything else you like! If you have marzipan left over you can make small balls and roll them in cocoa powder to make little treats.

Marzipan recipe based on: 😊🙏

This cake appeared with us in NHK’s グレーテルのかまど「英国 春を告げるシムネルケーキ」and we were also in グレーテルのかまど「朝吹真理子のスコーン」making scones and in グレーテルのかまど「英国カリスマ主婦のトライフルのレシピ」making trifle.