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Wholemeal Date and Walnut Cake

Makes 1 cake

A classic comfort cake that keeps well and is best enjoyed during the winter months.

Free from Soya, Dairy


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  1. Pre-heat the oven.
  2. Rub some oil around the inside of a 20cm/8” round deep, loose bottom cake tin or insert a baking liner.
  3. Put the dates and water into a saucepan and bring slowly to the boil.
  4. Remove from the heat, stir in the bicarbonate of soda and leave to cool.
  5. Break the eggs into a mixing bowl, add the sugar and beat together until light and airy.
  6. Mix in the oil followed by the self-raising flour.
  7. Break the walnuts into small pieces, reserve a tablespoon for later and add the rest to the mixing bowl.
  8. Add the prepared dates and mix everything together.
  9. Tip the mixture into your prepared cake tin and smooth the top.
  10. Sprinkle the reserved chopped walnuts over the top.
  11. Bake for 55-60 minutes.
  12. Allow to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.


20cm/8" round deep, loose bottom cake tin, saucepan and mixing bowl


180°C, Fan 160°C, 350°F, Gas 4

Cooking time

55-60 minutes
This is a delicious tried and tested recipe. Easy to make and has never failed me.
By Janie
04 Feb 2021
This is a fantastic recipe, easy to make and results in a very light flavoursome cake. I've made it as is & also tried replacing dates with raisins - the raisin version turned out just as good.
By alpen
25 Dec 2020
Lovely recipe! Come out perfect every time
By Lynn Marie Xerri
21 Jul 2020
Made this cake 5 times but due to lockdown could not get Doves flour until last week, so can honestly say the latest one with Doves flour was the best one made. So my advise get the proper Flour makes a lot of difference or have an inferior cake. But did take 55-60 min every oven different so check after 45 mims.
By Pam tasker
11 Jul 2020
I have made this cake several times using normal self raising flour rather than wholemeal, with great success..this last time I decided to try making it vegan and replaced the eggs with 'flax eggs'. The result was just as good and actually maybe even a little better. 1 flax egg = 2.5 tsps of ground flax seed and 3 tbsp of water. For this recipe I used 7.5 tsps of ground golden flax seeds and 9tbsp of water. Whisk the seeds and water together until thoroughly combined and then add the sugar. Whisk this together as per the recipe and continue as usual.
By Teresa
05 Apr 2020
So pleased this worked out using Dove's gluten free flour in exactly the same quantity. I only had plain so added 1.5 tsp baking powder, and it is lovely.
By Sue Goff
27 Mar 2020
Fabulous - don't be afraid to up the date content a little - and, of course, this is even better in slices spread with a little butter
By Dave Taylor
11 Jan 2020
I've made this twice so far and both times it was good to look at and very tasty. I used different flours each time but it still worked well. Going to try adding some spices next time.
By Ken Jones
12 Nov 2019
Brilliant recipe. Easy to make and tastes delicious. Made this several times using up nuts and dried fruit from my store cupboard. It also keeps well in tin and is easy to cut without crumbling .
By Helen Lee
26 Jul 2019
Lovely cake, thx for the great recipe! I made it into a friend’s birthday cake by adding extra walnuts and chopped stem ginger, sandwiched it with ginger jam and covered it in icing sprinkled with walnuts and ginger. Brilliant!
By Emma
18 Jan 2019
I made this cake for our charity cake stall at work, where GF cakes are often requested. I didn't have any wholemeal flour so used GF plain white instead and it turned out well and sold out. Not a stunner to look at but delicious.
By Jean
01 Dec 2018
I was looking for a quick easy cake recipe to use up an excess of dates in my store cupboard and tried this cake for the first time. I used white flour as I did not have any wholemeal and it was absolutely delicious. It had a lovely crispy top and was really yummy. I shall definitely use this recipe again.
By Dixie78++
19 Mar 2018

Nice cake, especially with the wholemeal texture!

Dear Christina, thank you so much for your lovely review.  We are so pleased you love this cake as much as we do.  Best wishes, Doves Farm.

By Christina
11 Sep 2017
I suggest cutting dates into quarters before bringing to the boil. Also I added a heaped teaspoon of mixed spice to the mixture with the flour which gave a delicious wholesome comforting taste.
By Molscat
13 Jul 2017
making this cake today looking forward to trying it
By Mrs ann haggerty
21 Nov 2015
I have made this cake several times now and it turns out consistently well. It is not too sweet and the wholemeal flour together with the addition dates and nuts make it a healthy treat. It is equally delicious using all white flour and rreplacing the oil with butter. For extra indulgence I have also dividedd the mixture between two deep sandwich tins (reducing the cooking time) and spreading buttercream between the two layers when cool.
By Mrs Susan Chambers
09 Nov 2015
I used DF gluten free SR flour, and swapped some flour for chicory. It tasted amazing.
By Mrs Pauline Kinsman
30 Mar 2015
So very easy and such a great result! Have made it several times now and each time it seems to get better (even adjusted recipe to fit 23cm cake tin and it worked well).
By Ms Linn Miles
10 Feb 2015
I have made hundreds of cakes but this is probably one of the most delicious cakes I've ever made! I used white self-raising flour but I will try wholemeal next time. It's so simple to make but absolutely yummy and perfect for when it's a cold snowy day outside.
By Miss Helen Verrell
04 Apr 2013
Simple to make and a light healthy and deliciious cake. Have just baked it for the 4th time but this one is for my 1 yr old grandaughter who is currently being tested for dairy intolerance. I have therefore omitted the nuts and increased the dates.
By Mrs Janice Bennell
05 May 2012
This was pretty easy to make, and turned out very well. It was surprisingly light for a wholemeal cake, and tasted delicious. A good recipe!
By Mrs Frances Smart
11 Jan 2012
This is blissfully easy and absolutely delicious - a real contender for my best cake ever! I'm making a big version of it for a ruby wedding party, I hope it is well received...
By Mrs Eleanor Hazlewood
06 Nov 2011
Recently made this for a friend, used special diabetic sugar, as well. All that tasted it didnt realise anything was different, really liked it will be making it again. very easy to do. Many thanks
By Mrs Mary-Anne Aitken
05 Dec 2009

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