Walnut, date & honey cake

Walnut, date & honey cake

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(61 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 1 hr, 10 mins


Cuts into 8-10 slices
A tea-time treat - packed with sweet honey. A great way to use up those ripe bananas too

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving for eight

  • kcal440
  • fat24g
  • saturates13g
  • carbs54g
  • sugars25g
  • fibre1.5g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.7g
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  • 225g self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 175g softened butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 100g light muscovado sugar
  • 3 tbsp clear honey
  • 2 egg, beaten



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 2 medium, ripe banana, about 250g/9oz total weight in their skins



    Probably the best known, most popular tropical fruit, their name probably derives from the…

  • 100g stoned dates



    Dates are one of the oldest cultivated fruits - it's thought that they were a staple part of…

  • 50g pack walnut pieces



    Walnuts are one of the most popular and versatile of all nuts. When picked young, they're…


  1. Preheat the oven to 160C/Gas 3/fan oven 140C. Line the base and long sides of a 900g/2lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper, buttering the tin and paper.

  2. Tip the flour, cinnamon, butter, sugar, 2 tablespoons of the honey and the eggs into a large mixing bowl. Mash the bananas and chop the dates (kitchen scissors are easiest for this) and add to the bowl. Beat the mixture for 2-3 minutes, using a wooden spoon or hand-held mixer, until well blended.

  3. Spoon into the prepared tin and level the top. Scatter the walnut pieces over. Bake for 1 hour, then lightly press the top – it will feel firm if cooked. If not, bake for a further 10 minutes.

  4. Cool for 15 minutes, then lift out of the tin using the paper. When cold, drizzle the remaining honey over. Cut into thick slices.

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Comments (103)

Rozmc's picture

This cake is wonderful. I also used 50g of dark muscovado and 50 g of caster sugar and mixed the walnuts in and it has rave reviews from all who I have shared it with!

misslongbody's picture

Five stars. Easy to follow, very tasty. Good way of using up old bananas. It did need longer to cook but just waited until the knife came out clean. (My oven is a fan oven). It did rise properly too.

sarahlouhughes's picture

Love this recipe. Almost followed to the letter but had to make a couple of tweaks due to what I had in my cupboard. I didn't have any light muscovado sugar so used 50g dark muscovado and 50g golden caster sugar. My self raising flour had weevils in it :( so used plain flour with 2 tsp of baking powder (as instructed by bbcgoodfood). Used medjool dates. I also put the 50g walnuts in with the mix and then sprinkled more on the top. No need for milk as some reviewers have said (probably why it didn't bake properly for them). I left in the oven for 10 mins longer than stated but as all ovens vary then check before taking out of the oven! Just use a skewer, if there's batter on there then leave in for longer. Turned out perfectly, nice and moist. Always better the following day once its had time to cool and set properly (will be very crumbly when first out of the oven). Still tasted fresh after 3 days (probably would've lasted longer but we'd ate it all by then) Will make again.

barbara-gibbs's picture

Have made this cake and followed the recipe almost exactly. It is so moist an delicious that I will be making it again. One of the best cakes I have ever made. The only changes I made was to use gluten free flour and a splash of milk because gluten free cakes need more liquid so they do not dry out. I found that it cooked in the time stated and at the temperature recommended.

Sarah.Chatfield's picture

I would say I'm a reasonably experienced bakery but have struggled very much with this recipe the first time, following the instructions , the loaf came out uncooked and sank monumentally ,miso taking note of the previous comments I tried again, with equally disastrous results. The is the first time I have produced and uncooked sunken cake. What a waste of time and ingredients could someone let me know where I have gone wrong

Sarah.Chatfield's picture

I would say I'm an experienced baker but this recipe has defeated me, the first time I baked it the cake came out practically raw and stodgy so reading the previous comments and taking note I retried only to have the same disastrous effects only. Please could someone enlighten me where I am going so wrong thank you

Sarah.Chatfield's picture

I would like to thing I had a bit of experience baking but this recipe has defeated me, my first attempt came out practically raw, so after reading previous comments posted I have had another attempt with the same disastrous results what a waste of time and ingredients. Please could somebody at BBC Good Food check the recipe many thanks

Gracefjenkinson219's picture

Love this. Mine came out more moist than it looks on the picture which I liked. I added a splash of milk to the mixture and cooked for 1 hour 30 because it was still soft in the middle. Very tasty and lovely with a spoon full of Greek yogurt !

sara67's picture

This ended up in the bin. It needed more than 1 hr, in fact the centre of the cake was still raw after 1.5 hrs and singed around the edges. I won't bother with this recipe again.

rubseb's picture

This came out great. Followed the recipe to the letter, with the slight exception that I added a small splash of milk to the batter as was suggested by some of the previous comments. The cake was perfectly done after 1 hour at 160 degrees, no extra baking required. I did use a conventional oven setting (top and bottom heat without convection) on my fan oven, which I'd seen recommended in some other cake recipes/videos and would supposedly help the cake rise better - perhaps that made a difference?

kernowchick's picture

Fabulous recipe - agree with the previous post, follow the recipe (why wouldn't you for a first bake?!) and you should have no problems. I cooked it in my electric fan oven on 160 for 1hr 10 mins and it rose beautifully and no soggy middle. Super easy to throw together in one bowl and a good looking loaf cake - thanks!

ARankin's picture

I've been baking cakes for almost 20 years now and have probably used at least 50-100 cake recipes from this site alone. I've never really felt compelled to comment but today having baked this cake and read other comments, I've decided to add my two-pennies worth. This cake is lovely and moist and incredibly easy to do. If does cook properly in one hour if you RAISE the temperature to 180C or gas mark 4. Follow it to the letter and you'll be happy with the results ( assuming of course that your oven is calibrated correctly).

bijibags's picture

Fabulously scrumptious looking cake, utterly delicious too! Only had one banana but it was still great though would add the two next time for a little extra moisture. Thought this cake would need some cream as was expecting it to be dry but was pleasantly surprised as to its texture. Can't wait to make it again as definitely on my list of top 5 cakes I have ever made! 5+ stars!

jacqui1bones's picture

The cake tastes gorgeous I make my father a cake every week and was looking for a new recipe, is easy to make but does take longer to cook than stated about another 40-50 minutes I covered it with foil for the extra time. Will be making again. The honey I used has stem ginger in the jar. Take care with the bananas as the weight is with the skins on.

moremeat's picture

Made this the other day and followed the recipe to the letter. Like others it was nowhere near cooked after an hour, l loosely covered with foil to stop it burning and left it in the oven testing every 20 minutes. After 2 hours and 20 minutes it looked cooked so I removed from oven - it sank in the middle immediately. I think it has too much banana making the mix too wet. Complete waste of good ingredients. I shan't be making this again.

Salhasani's picture

Loved this recipe. I only used 160g of butter as all I had, and added 3tbs of milk based on other reviews and the cake was very spongy snd scrummy! I did add 1 tsp of baking powder, which I think is a must in any cake recipe. I baked at 160 (fan) for one hour, which was too long as it slightly over cooked, I think it really depends on your oven. Oh and I also used only one banana as all I had which seems like enough as taste has come through. Bake in a big rectangular Pyrex dish to ensure cooks through properly. Will def make again!

raihanmoi's picture

Went down a treat! Especially popular with the weight watcher (aka mum). Made a few adjustments, as was suggested by previous commenters:

-Reduced sugar to 30g. The dates, bananas and honey compensated for the rest. If however, after baking it, you find that it's a little lacking it sweetness, you can always drizzle more honey on top of the cake.
-Used 75 g of dates and 25 g of raisins.
-Added 3 tablespoons of milk.
-Added 1/2 teaspoon of mixed spices.
-Added 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Good luck!

Yorkshire Jeff's picture

Make one of these at least once or twice a month, soon as the word gets out my two daughters pop around for a brew.

Apteryx's picture

Lovely cake, although I did make some amendments based on other comments - I used 30g sugar and 100g butter, was perfectly sweet and moist enough due to the fruit content and honey. I used sultanas instead of dates as they were in the cupboard. I baked the loaf at 160C (fan) for 60 mins, then left loaf in turned off oven for 20 minutes. Was devoured by guests so must have been alright!

LuluT's picture

This loaf is so delicious and easy to make. I added 1/2 tsp mixed spices for more taste, 1 tsp baking soda for a better rise and 3 tbsp milk for fluffiness. I pressed the walnuts onto the top of the cake and they stayed there after baking and slicing. I baked it at 180C for 1 hour and further 30 min at 160C. I think banana cakes always take longer to bake due to the banana consistency itself.


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Tips (1)

jayjayem's picture

This cake looks good and is easy to make BUT like others, I must have baked in a fan oven for 90 mins. Frustrating to bake this way. Also, if you liberally sprinkle with chopped nuts, when you turn the cake out you lose half of them. I will be much less liberal next time.