26 of the best summer baking recipes

From wedding cakes to picnic pies, summer berry tarts to cheesecake sponges – baking is a year-round pursuit but the fantastic ingredients available in summer make it the perfect time to experiment with recipes…

Raspberry ombre cake

The idea of an afternoon baking session may seem less appealing when the sun is beaming outside. But as summer is all about rainbow fruit and vegetables sprouting in abundance, it’s actually one of the best times to reach for the mixing bowl. And besides, you need something to do on those woefully common rainy days….

Our favourite summer bakes... 

Wedding cakes

Frances Quinn's wedding cakeSummer means weddings, and weddings mean cakes – and very grand ones at that. Creating a stack fit for such a ceremony is a brave but rewarding undertaking. One of our favourites for this year is Frances Quinn’s sensational ‘naked’ cake.

Frances Quinn’s Summer’s day wedding cake

More wedding cake recipes...  


Picnic pies

Pork and pistachio piesDon’t reserve your pastry skills for rib-sticking winter pies – picnics are the perfect opportunity for a veritable pie showcase. The filling for our summer 2014 pork pie recipe is studded with fruit and nuts... 

Pork, apricot & pistachio puff pastry pies

More picnic pie recipes... 

Summer drizzle cake

Summer fruit drizzleTana Ramsay’s lemon drizzle cake is the most popular bake on bbcgoodfood.com by a country mile, and we have plenty more drizzles besides.  For summer, we like this loaf sponge with a topping of crunchy berry sugar drizzle. 

Summer fruit drizzle cake

More drizzle cake recipes... 

Party puffs

Creamy asparagus puffsA roll of puff pastry will see you right whatever the season. These simple puffs require zero tucking and twiddling, saving you precious minutes to spend al fresco, plus seasonal asparagus lies beneath the buttery pastry duvet.

Creamy asparagus puffs

More puff pastry recipes... 

Perfect pavlova

Cherry rose pavlovaThis cloud-like retro dessert has stood the test of time. Bring it up to date by baking in a rectangular tray and using modern ingredients like rose water and edible flowers. Scatter it with summer fruit to avoid any mention of 70s dinner parties. 

Cherry, rose & pistachio Pavlova traybake

More Pavlova recipes... 


Cherry brownie cakesChocolate brownies work well with all manner of summer fruit – go for strawberries in white chocolate ‘blondies’, raspberries in milk chocolate brownies or cherries with dark chocolate brownie cupcakes.

Cherry brownie babycakes

More brownie recipes... 

Ombre cake

Ombre cakeWe reckon 2014 is the year of the ombre cake. We’ve been seeing a pique of interest in these intricate layered sponges with graduated coloured icing and we're big fans too. This stunning version combines summer raspberries with delicious toffee and a pastel buttercream frosting.

Raspberry caramel ombre cake

More ombre cake recipes... 


lemon cheesecake with baked plumsPerennially popular, cheesecake works with most fruit, but one of our favourite versions is this late-summer baked plum cheesecake with fresh fruit topping…

Lemon cheesecake with baked plums & blackberries

More cheesecake recipes... 

… Or, cheesecake sponge

Cheesecake spongeTwo dessert Titans collide in this quintessentially summery cake recipe. The dots of cheesecake nestled into the sponge melt during cooking to create pockets of creamy loveliness.

Strawberry & almond cheesecake sponge



pastiesThere's no joy like snaffling a beef pasty on a sunny beach in Cornwall, but you can try and replicate the good feeling at home. Use traditional ingredients by picking up authentic beef skirt or chuck. And don’t be scared to get your mitts stuck into lard pastry…

Cornish pasties

More pasty recipes... 

Savoury tarts

Pea and bacon tartIdeal for summer lunches, picnic baskets, garden parties and more, a layered quiche or savoury tart is the perfect way to up your vegetable intake in a most indulgent fashion. This version contains beautiful broad beans and sweet peas.

Pea, bean & bacon tart

More quiche and savoury tart recipes... 


Super scones

Lemon drizzle sconesOutdoor afternoon tea just might have the edge on the indoor version. Pile your cake stand high with cucumber sandwiches, delicate cakes and mandatory scones – this new recipe utilises the winning lemon drizzle technique.

Lemon drizzle scones

More scone recipes... 


Picnic loaves

Tear and share stuffed deli rollsGet creative with a packet of bread mix by rolling the dough into twelve buns, stuffing them with antipasti ingredients then baking together into one crowd-pleasing cob.

Tear-and-share stuffed deli rolls

More picnic bread recipes...


Ice cream cake

ice cream cakeThis sensational layered sponge is easier to achieve than you might think. Once you’ve baked your sponge, use the same tin to layer it up with homemade mascarpone ice cream – there’s no need for a churner either…

Peach & red berry ice cream cake

More ice cream cake recipes…


Fruit tart

Strawberry tartWhether you like yours with a neat patisserie-style crispy base, encased in hearty puff pastry or somewhere in between, fruit and pastry is one of the most beautiful pairings in the food world. This year, we’re going down the super-simple route…

Rustic strawberry tart

More fruit tart recipes... 

Arctic roll

Arctic rollEver wondered how to send people off from your house with a smile on their face? Serve them a healthy slice of homemade Arctic roll filled with clotted cream ice cream and summer fruit.

Clotted cream & raspberry ripple roll



Vegetable cake

frosted courgette and lemon cakeRound about June, courgettes start billowing out of control. In fact, these cucurbits are a mainstay search term on bbcgoodfood.com throughout the summer. We have lots of ways to use up your glut, and we like them in a moist, light cake.

Frosted courgette & lemon cake

More garden glut cakes...


Layer cake

Berry spongeThe most simple layer cake can be easily spruced up by scatterings of mixed summer berries. This four-tier stack by Paul Hollywood contains minimal ingredients put to use with professional panache.

Paul’s berry sponge

More layer cake recipes...


Sausage rolls

Chorizo sausage rollsThe ultimate emergency picnic addition – try experimenting with extra flavours like herbs or cheese. Even the type of sausage used is up for interpretation…

Chorizo & apple sausage rolls

More sausage roll recipes... 


Summer fruitcake

Strawberry cakeIf the term ‘fruitcake’ conjures up images of dense festive bakes, push the image to the back of your mind and experiment with light sponges and sunshine fruits.

Polka dot strawberry cake
Cherry blossom cake
Rhubarb & lemon curd cake
Blueberry & pistachio cake with cardamom cream
Blackberry & apple cake
Peach, pistachio & white chocolate pound cake
Gooseberry coconut cake

More summer cake recipes

Does the baking happen all year round in your kitchen? We'd like to hear some of your warmer weather recipes... 

Comments, questions and tips

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Be the first to comment...We'd love to hear how you got on with this recipe. Did you like it? Would you recommend others give it a try?
1st Aug, 2014
Where is the recipe for the cake in the main picture? It looks fantastic - the only reason I clicked to see this page and I can't find it! Rosie
goodfoodteam's picture
4th Aug, 2014
Hi Rosie, sorry about the confusion. The slice of cake comes from this ombre recipe: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/raspberry-caramel-ombre-cake - enjoy!
18th Aug, 2014
Yay thank you! Looks wonderful, next on my list to bake for a big family bbq :)
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