Date Cake, A Festival Treat

by Paromita Datta last updated -

On the surface, a date cake seems like a pretty simple deal, nothing fancy or Insta-clickable. But one bite and you realize that there is more to it than meets the eye. The moist richness of dates gives this cake a complexity that a regular sponge cake does not have. There are layers of flavor here, a rich moistness, and a mellow sweetness that makes this cake worth every bite. No wonder it’s a festival favorite, whether it’s Ramadan or Christmas.

The dates in the cake also make it a healthier alternative to butter and sugar-rich cakes. Dates are rich in nutrient qualities. A Harvard Health Publishing article found that the glycemic index of dates (42) is lower than glucose (103), honey (61), or sucrose (65). This makes it preferable for those looking for weight loss diet options. People with diabetes are also advised to go for food with a lower glycemic index whenever possible to maintain glucose control. In fact, a study published in Nutrition Journal found that consumption of dates by people with diabetes did not result in noteworthy postprandial glucose excursions. [1] [2]

How to Make a Date Cake?

The date cake may seem like a dressed-down version of the more decadent sticky toffee pudding, but that is like saying a sponge cake is any less than the fashion-crazy cakes on social media today. The date cake has its own special place in the cake pantheon, perhaps older than most cakes. It is richer than the average cake with a layered flavoring. We would argue that it does not need lashings of caramel sauce to make it any more special.

Date cake on a white wooden background

Date Cake Recipe

The dates in the recipe give this cake a mellow richness. This is a cake fit for a festival treat. 
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British, Middle East
Keyword: Date Cake
Appliance: Hand mixer
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 10 people
Author: Paromita Datta


  • 1 1/4 cups dates pitted and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 150 ml water hot
  • 1/2 cup muscovado sugar
  • 75 grams butter
  • 2/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 egg


  • Heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line a cake or loaf tin. 
  • Add the bicarbonate of soda to the dates in a bowl. Pour over the boiling water and keep it aside. 
  • In a large bowl, cream the sugar and butter together with a hand mixer till its fluffy. For this quantity, you can also do it by hand. 
  • Break the egg into this mix and whisk briskly. Add the nuts and mix again.
  • Fold the flour into the cake and date mix. Make sure all the flour is incorporated, but do not overbeat it. Bake this in the oven for about 1 hour 15 minutes. 
  • The cake is done when the top springs back when pressed gently. Take out the cake from its tin and let it cool on a wire rack. 
  • Enjoy your cake with friends and family!
    Homemade date and walnut loaf cake isolated on white background


You can add spices like ground nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger for a festive touch.
For a decadent treat, serve this with caramel or toffee sauce. 
If you don't have muscovado sugar, use any other brown sugar. 

If you have your favorite date cake recipe, tell us about it. If have you tried our recipe, we’ll love to hear how it turned out. So, leave a comment below. Protection Status
About the Author

Paromita Datta covers the latest health and wellness trends for Organic Facts. An ex-journalist who specialized in health and entertainment news, Paromita was responsible for managing a health supplement for The New Indian Express, a leading national daily in India. She has completed her post-graduation in Business Administration from the University of Rajasthan and her diploma in journalism from YMCA, Delhi. She has completed an e-course, Introduction to Food and Health, from Stanford University, US.

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