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Sliced date and walnut cake showing the dates and walnuts in the cake.

Date and Walnut Loaf Cake

This spiced date and walnut loaf cake is moist, flavoured with sweet dates and dotted with crunchy walnuts. A thick slice goes perfectly with the afternoon cup of tea!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings12 slices


  • Loaf Pan (9x5 Inch - 23x13cm)


  • 150 grams dates (pitted and chopped)
  • 240 grams hot water (recently boiled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 125 grams butter (melted)
  • 110 grams light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs (medium/large)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoons mixed spice
  • ¼ teaspoons ground cloves
  • 100 g walnuts (roughly chopped)
  • 250 grams plain flour (all-purpose/standard grade)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon table salt (if using unsalted butter)


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F, place the rack in the middle of the oven. Grease and line a loaf pan with baking paper or parchment paper. Allow the paper to hang over the edges to allow for easy removal.
  • Combine the chopped dates and baking soda in a heat-proof bowl. Pour the hot water over the dates and allow to soak and cool for 5 minutes, stirring to combine.
    150 grams dates, 240 grams hot water, 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Combine the melted butter and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk together until well combined.
    125 grams butter, 110 grams light brown sugar
  • Add the eggs, vanilla extract, and spices to the butter mixture. Whisk through until well combined.
    2 eggs, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, ½ teaspoons ground nutmeg, ½ teaspoons mixed spice, ¼ teaspoons ground cloves
  • Add in the cooled date mixture and chopped walnuts. Stir through to combine.
    100 g walnuts
  • Toss in the flour and baking powder. Mix with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until you have a nice cake batter. Do not overmix.
    250 grams plain flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon table salt
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared loaf tin. Smooth the cake batter into the loaf tin with the back of a spoon or offset spatula. Then take a butter knife and create a score down the center of the cake. This encourages the cake to rise and make that beautiful crack down the center.
  • Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes. Or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean from the middle of the cake.
  • Allow the cake to cool in the cake pan for 15 minutes before lifting it out onto a wired rack to cool completely. When the cake is completely cooled, slice, serve and enjoy. For a little bit of indulgence, slather some butter on the slices.

All temperatures stated are for conventional ovens. Decrease the temperature by 20°C/25°F or gas mark 1 for "fan" or air-fryers.



  • You can leave out the spices if you want. 
  • Plain flour can be substituted with self-raising or self-rising flour, just leave out the baking powder. 
  • Walnuts can be replaced with pecans or almonds.
  • Don't overmix the cake batter. 
  • Use a butter knife to run a "slice" down the middle of the cake batter to encourage the cake to lift and split down the middle during baking.

Storage and Freezing

This date and nut loaf can be stored in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days. Alternatively, once baked and cooled, it can be sealed in plastic wrap and foil before being placed in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost the loaf in the fridge overnight before serving. Similarly, single slices can also be frozen.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 300kcal