Recipes from a Vegan Gluten-Free Kitchen

Easter Simnel Cake

Vegan Gluten-Free Simnel Cake


For around the past 8 years I have made an Easter Simnel Cake for Easter weekend. I’m not a huge fan of fruit cake but if there’s marzipan involved it’s a different matter completely.

This recipe isn’t my own, it’s from The Guardian. I’ve tried several over the previous years and have found this one to be by far the best. I’ve simplified the method slightly as lazily I threw most ingredients into the blender. It doesn’t make a difference in my opinion and it saves time which is always handy.

Easter fact – the 11 marzipan balls on top represent the 11 apostles!


Vegan Gluten-Free Simnel Cake Cut Open

Easter Simnel Cake

March 30, 2018
: 10
: Medium


  • 50g glace cherries
  • 200g sultanas or raisins (or a mix)
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 500g natural or golden marzipan
  • 50g dairy-free sunflower margarine
  • 50g dark muscovado sugar
  • 3 tbsp marmalade
  • 1 banana
  • 100g gram (chickpea) flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 2 tsp gluten-free baking powder
  • 100ml apple juice
  • 1 tbsp apricot jam
  • Icing sugar, for dusting - optional
  • Step 1 Pre heat oven to 140 fan.
  • Step 2 Prepare an 18cm/7inch cake tin by lining it with baking paper.
  • Step 3 Roll out the marzipan to make 2 circles around 2-3mm thick. Save enough for the 11 balls.
  • Step 4 Rinse the cherries in water, dry and chop into small pieces.
  • Step 5 Mix in with sultanas/raisins and add the mixed spice.
  • Step 6 Mix together and set aside.
  • Step 7 In the blender add the margarine, sugar, marmalade, banana, gram flour, ground almonds, apple juice and baking powder.
  • Step 8 Blitz until a smooth batter.
  • Step 9 Add the cake mix to the spiced fruit and cherries.
  • Step 10 Put half the mixture into the tin.
  • Step 11 Add one of the marzipan circles.
  • Step 12 Put the rest of the cake batter on top.
  • Step 13 Bake for 1 hour 40 minutes.
  • Step 14 When the cake is cool, melt apricot jam and add the marzipan circle and 11 balls to decorate.
  • Step 15 You can sprinkle with icing sugar or you can sear the top of the cake under the grill – be careful not to burn it!

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