Sugar-free lemon drizzle cake

Sugar-free lemon drizzle cake

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(14 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 1 hr - 1 hr, 10 mins


Cuts into 8-10 slices
Sweetened with all-natural xylitol, this sponge has a dense, syrupy texture and keeps well for a few days

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal280
  • fat14g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs44.3g
  • sugars1.2g
  • fibre0.7g
  • protein5.4g
  • salt0.3g
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  • 225g self-raising flour, sifted
  • ½ tsp baking powder
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 225g xylitol (see tip below)


    Xylitol is an all-natural alternative to sugar. The substance derives from the fibres of plants…

  • 2 lemon, zest only



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 2 large egg, at room temperature



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

  • 125ml sunflower oil
    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    A variety of oils can be used for baking. Sunflower is the one we use most often at Good Food as…

  • 1 tbsp milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 200g 0% fat Greek yogurt


  • 1 lemon, juice only



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 50g xylitol


    Xylitol is an all-natural alternative to sugar. The substance derives from the fibres of plants…


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/ 160C fan/ Gas 4. Grease and line a 1.2 litre loaf tin (22cm x 13cm width, 7cm depth) with baking parchment. Mix together the flour, baking powder, xylitol and lemon zest in a large bowl.

  2. Mix the eggs, sunflower oil, milk and yoghurt together in a separate bowl or jug and stir them into the flour mixture.

  3. Spoon into a tin and smooth the surface. Transfer to the oven immediately, bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 1 hour – 1 hour 10 mins. Check after 50 mins, if the cake is becoming too dark, cover loosely with foil.

  4. Just before the end of cooking time, make the drizzle by heating the lemon juice and xylitol. Stir over a low heat until the xylitol has dissolved. Once the cake is cooked, take it out of the oven and pour over the drizzle.

  5. Cool in the tin before turning it out.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Comments (30)

trish12345's picture

just come out of the oven. still warm but couldn't wait any longer:) it's light and spongy, did rise nicely dropped a little now but it's still very very nice. First time ever used xylitol in my baking. Also, for this one used gluten free flour, had no yoghurt so used cream fraiche, and instead of sunflower oil (again, didn't have any) i put melted unsalted butter. worked well! will be trying more recipes from here, thank you!

dbartlett's picture

Very nice indeed. I'd say it needs bit more drizzle but overall lovely cake.

Zoeleanne's picture

Easy to make and nice to eat

jenny anne's picture

Absolutely brilliant cake, best lemon drizzle (with or without sugar) I have tasted. I used Quark instead of the yoghurt so even healthier - I would definitely recommend this recipe

lastresort's picture

I have been baking for years, this is truly the most disgusting cake I have ever baked, looked to rise beautifully, had the texture of a pancake when cut. Baked 2 and both went in the bin, what a waste!

HayLou82's picture

I was a little sceptical about trying this recipe after seeing the negative comments, but decided to have faith in the good comments (outweighed the bad)! SO glad I did. This is the nicest lemon drizzle cake I've ever had. You'd never know it was sugar free. So moist and lemony, I will definitely be making it again, and again.... ☺

Genavive's picture

This was hideous, completely inedible. I made it for a birthday but had to throw it away. It tasted like bitter soggy bread. Disappointing.

emmadavis79's picture

Great recipe! I didn't have any xylitol so I used 15g of Asda powdered sweetener. It turned out yummy

endeegee55's picture

This turned out nothing like the picture. The texture was like a 2 inch thick pancake and totally inedible.
I followed the instructions to the letter but that's how it turned out.

CurlysCooking's picture

For a sugar-free cake I thought this was great. I don't think unless you knew you'd be able to tell there was no sugar in it.

My version of the recipe can be found on my blog here -

mbell25's picture

This recipe was not what I expected, the sweetener completely ruined it and I have thrown the cake in the bin! Definitely not making again!

NorsB's picture

Anyone tried freezing this version? I want to do some batch cooking and would love to be able to make this version in advance.

darceywynter's picture

I have a huge sweet tooth and unfortunately it was starting to become increasingly obvious when I couldn't fit into my favourite shorts! So, I've tried to cut it out. However, cake is my weakness and so it is marvellous to find such a delicious recipe where I can still eat cake but for half the calories! Thank you for this amazing cake!

sbradley's picture

This cake was really good. I made it for my mum, who can't have sugar. She loved it. I haven't heard of xylitol before and managed to find some on line. The cake was as good as any I've made using sugar. Thank you Good Food.

emmaleg's picture

I recently started a sugar free diet for health reasons and I've found it difficult to find good sugar free alternatives. Xylitol tastes very similar to sugar and I've not had a tummy reaction to it yet so I was pleased to find this cake recipe. It's really scrummy! I used wholemeal SR flour to make it even healthier and it was fine. I'm so pleased - this will be a regular from now on. Please more recipes with xylitol!

Jacquie Stringfield's picture

anyone use low fat milk instead of yoghurt or creme fraiche ? and coconut flour instead of unbleached flour? if so what quantities would you use instead of the above please?

julese's picture

This is possibly the ONLY truly low sugar baking recipe on the entire website!
It's still not fully Sugar Free (there are 1.2g per small slice), but it's forgivable as it's as close as it can be to sugar free, using Xylitol and dairy.
More like this please, using Xylitol (which is 100% OK for Diabetics), and NOT agave syrup or honey (as some recipes mistakenly claim these are "low sugar").

saschlet's picture

AMAZING! Forget Tana Ramsay's version. You wouldn't know this was healthier! I used unbleached self-raising but I expect wholemeal would work ok. I also used rapeseed oil which worked brilliantly. Used creme fraiche as had no yogurt.

I dropped in some frozen raspberries before putting it in the oven and that gave a nice tang. Also, would possibly suggest zest of 3 lemons or a squeeze of juice into the batter. Would maybe do a little more drizzle too.

I will try this with limes next time. Yum and bring on more recipes with xylitol please!

jbariffi1's picture

Great Cake - added more lemon to the main mixture. The family loved it

fletchhelen's picture

This is incredible. I'm making this for the third time. You would NEVER believe it was sugar-free.

I also took out 75g of the flour and replaced with 75g of ground almonds to reduce some more carbs. So moist. Nom nom nom.


Questions (2)

kymberleyturpin's picture

Hi, a few questions, do you think I could use wholemeal self raising instead to try and be a bit healthier? and also if i cant get Xylitol is there another sweetner you recommend? taking part in a 5k with the women in my family this weekend and really keen to try this as a wee treat for us afterwards. is baking powder the same as bicarbonate of soda?

goodfoodteam's picture

Hi there, thanks for your question. You can try the recipe with wholemeal flour, it may be a little tougher though. The recipe was tested with that sweetner, you can try a different one but as we have not tested it with an alternative we can't guarentee it will work as well. Bicarb and baking powder are two different products. Good luck!

Tips (1)

ukulele123's picture

Use a Skewer to poke some holes in the cake just before pouring the drizzle on. That way the drizzle will run into the cake and make it even more moist.