Lemon & Poppy Seed Cake
Member recipe

Lemon & Poppy Seed Cake

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(11 ratings)

Member recipe by


Serves 8

A moist drizzle loaf cake that compliments a nice cup of tea!

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  • 50g poppy seeds
  • 185ml warm milk
  • 220g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 200g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 lemon, rind grated, juiced
  • 300g icing sugar
  • 20 x 10cm (base measurement) loaf pan


    1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Lightly grease loaf pan.
    2. Combine the poppy seeds and milk in a bowl and set aside for 15 minutes.
    3. Combine the caster sugar and 185g of the butter untill light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs. Fold in the flour gradually, alternate with the poppy seed and milk mix. Finally stir in lemon rind. Alternatively add the ingredients to an electric mixer. Beat on high for 5 minutes until the mixture is pale and thick. Pour into the pan and bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
    4. Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter and place in a bowl with the icing sugar and lemon juice. Beat with an electric beater until smooth, then drizzle over the cake.

Comments, questions and tips

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Clare Pauley's picture
Clare Pauley
2nd Sep, 2018
This worked a treat. Swapped regular sr flour foe Doves Farm sr gluten free flour and cooked at 180 (fan oven) for 45 min. I doubled the recipe to fill two loaf tins and had enough mix left to make seven mini muffins. Tastes fantastic, I didn’t make the drizzle so added the lemon juice into the cake mix too.
Joe Harris's picture
Joe Harris
28th Dec, 2017
15th Aug, 2017
I have made this cake many times now and it always goes down a treat! However, I have made a few tweaks: - Reduce the milk to 150 ml - Use 2 lemons: Add grated zest of both lemons to cake mixture, along with the juice of 1 of the lemons; save the juice of the second lemon for the icing In my oven (very small and not fan assisted), this cake takes around 1 1/2 hours (so probably about 1 hour 10 in a fan-assisted oven). After about half an hour I place a sheet of foil lightly over the cake so it doesn't burn on the top. Check with a skewer after about 1 hour 15 (or 50 minutes if using a fan oven) - if the skewer comes out clean take the cake out, if not give it another 10 minutes or so (depending on how much mix was left on the skewer. Once the cake is cold: For the icing, use the juice of the remaining lemon mixed with 250 - 300g icing sugar (enough to form a thick icing), and coat the top of the cake, allowing some to overflow down the sides. I often decorate with some lemon zest. With these adjustments, the cake has always come out really nicely and I've had nothing but compliments about it! Hope this helps! :)
6th Mar, 2017
This is a terrible recipe! My semi cooked cake, although it had twice the coking time suggested, is now in the bin. The timing is completely wrong, the amount of lemon is inadequate and the amount of icing far too much. You could alter all these yourself, see below for hints, but it would be quicker and safer to find a different recipe.
13th Feb, 2017
The timing is wrong. Tried it twice, varied the cooking time on the second attempt but still raw in the centre. With the lemon content suggested in the recipe, the cake is very bland. I'll give up on this one and try another tomorrow; the bin won't go hungry tonight! Hey-ho!
11th Jul, 2016
What a lovely cake this turned out to be! Not too sweet, not too tart, just perfect and light! I don't have a problem with the poppyseed volume and wouldn't use less. The icing amount could probably be halved as I had plenty left over (quite thick so a little water added to loosen it to spread). I read the other comments and did the following with fan assisted oven:- 40 mins at 150 C 15 mins at 120 C Still very wet at this point so turned heat up to 170 C for 15 mins. Done! Will definitely make this cake again, lovely!
1st May, 2016
I tried this recipe today and the cake came out amazing. I used a loaf tin and did a cream cheese icing which was a good combination. The baking time was a bit longer than the suggested time but it's worth always checking irrespective of what a recipe suggests. I also added 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. My family only had compliments.
29th Oct, 2014
I've baked this cake several times and find the best method is to Half the ingredients and bake in a loaf tin . It's delicious , lovely texture and a family favourite
5th Sep, 2014
I am not an experienced baker so when I took this cake out of the oven after 40 minutes I freaked out when I saw that the middle was still sopping wet. That's when I realised I should have read the comments before starting out! So I put the cake back in for ANOTHER 40 minutes at 160 degrees and it eventually came out fine - the top didn't get overcooked and it stayed moist. There is clearly too much icing sugar in the frosting part, you could probably get away with 200g but I added Limoncello to the mixture to loosen it up a bit and that worked a treat. Overall this recipe works if you add 30-40 minutes to the cooking time.
27th Jul, 2014
My 10 year old daughter made this today and its great! Used 2lemons zest anD rind and put 1/4 of the juice in the mix. Cooked at 180 for 1/2 hr then temp down to 150 for another 1/2 hr as was not cooking as expected. Result was delicious! Fitted the loaf tin perfectly too.


Natalie Campbell's picture
Natalie Campbell
7th Dec, 2017
Can anyone tell me how I find the method please?
8th Mar, 2019
Next to the ‘ingredients’ tab is the ‘method’ tab :)
Joe Harris's picture
Joe Harris
28th Dec, 2017
My drizzle needed about 3 desert spoons of boiling water for it to get to the right consistency to drizzle it. But it is great