Healthy lemon and cardamon drizzle cake (recipe) goes to a party!

Healthy cakes and snacks

Me and my little cake are off to an online party – yipee!  Look, healthy cake!  Have another slice.  It’s sunshine in a moist fluffy sponge with the tanginess of lemon warmed up by cardamon hovering in the background.  So are you game for this fast and easy sugar-free Lemon and Cardamon  cake made with spelt flour? Are you dancing around right now, waving your arms and shouting ‘Finally!  A healthy cake I can make in less than an hour!’?  Everyone sing along ‘We all love a healthy healthy cake, healthy healthy cake, healthy healthy cake’ (to the tune of ‘Yellow submarine‘)!  S0092017A couple of chickens on the tea-towel seem to be walking away from the cake, but pay no attention to them.  Hmm, might tell you about our family tea towel fetish one day… want to see my collection later?

But back to the Lemon Drizzle, which was inspired by fellow bloggerettes Fimnora (Quantum Hermit) and Michelle (Caffeinated Musing) who both recently mentioned it as a favourite cake of theirs, with Fimnora specifying a sugar-free one.  Well, I happen to luuuv citrus cake and I’m on healthy cake week so was delighted to adapt and play around with Amber Rose’s recipe (from ‘Love, Bake, Nourish’) to produce a cake that’s ‘good for you’ but also lemonly decadent.  Magic.

Inspired as it was by my bloggerette friends, it seems fitting I should take it along to the online anniversary Friday Fiesta Party hosted by the Novice Gardener.Everyone takes a little something along.  As a newbie I realise my offering should be some super duper multi-layered creation, but I’m taking this cake because it can be scoffed by partygoers with high cholesterol (me!) or with an aversion to that monster of all monsters:  sugar (yum! Sorry, just kidding).  And it’s made with spelt flour so should be easier to digest, which means you can eat more of everything else.  You see how my mind works.

Now there’s a little problem.  You might have noticed it’s not very ‘celebratory’ and a bit of a plain cake (sorry cake!) and we’re both a bit nervous about turning up underdressed but not very good at getting dolled up.  You can see our sorry effort further down the page and might feel the urge to help us out with makeover tips.  But next time I go to a Friday Fiesta Party I’ll be accompanied by a ‘wowy’ cake.  Okay, now I’m giving my truly delicious lemon drizzle cake a complex so I’ll stop (sorry again cake! I know, you’re ‘wowy’ on the taste buds).  And yes, I speak to my cakes.

Anyway, enough faffing around mate (said with British accent).  Let’s have that recipe!


Pre-heat your oven at 180°C (static, non-convection oven) or 160°C (fan-assisted oven).

Butter and flour a loaf tin or line a silicon tin with greaseproof paper.



To be beaten together in the big bowl (but start with just butter in the bowl) – all at room temperature:

  • 94g unsalted butter (softened)
  • 130g maple syrup (the good quality 100% natural stuff – a bit pricey, sorry!)
  • 98g beaten egg (you can have 1 egg yolk and the rest as egg white)

Green cardamon pods – the black seeds are taken out and ground.

Whisk together in a smallish bowl:

  • 110g white spelt flour
  • 21g ground almonds
  • 1 generous teaspoon baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 to 3 green cardamon pods – grind the seeds – optional

To add near the end (all at room temperature):

  • 20g (about 1 and a half tbsp) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • grated zest from one lemon
  • 25g (about 1 and a half tbsp) oatmilk – or any other kind of milk

Drizzling syrup

  • 28g (about 2 and a half tbsp) lemon juice
  • 22g (about 2 tbsp) maple syrup

Lemon icing (optional)

  • 25g ground xylitol (sugar substitute) – or icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice


The sponge

  1. Beat then whisk the softened butter till it has a nice creamy consistency. S0731439
  2. Add the maple syrup and whisk patiently till it’s absorbed and the mixture is cream-like again.  If it starts curdling it might be the 2 ingredients were at different temperatures, so heat it a little while you whisk (eg. over a gas flame or bain marie).  It should become creamy again in around.. er.. 5 or 10 seconds.  Keep whisking if it needs longer … it will happen eventually!  S0751444
  3. Add the beaten egg little by little, whisking between each addition.  If it looks like it’s curdling, add a spoon or 2 of the flour mix and keep whisking.  S0761445
  4. When the mixture is light and fluffy and the egg all combined (it might look a little dodgy but that’s okay), fold in the flour mixture (flour, ground almonds, baking powder, salt and cardamon) with a rubber spatula and figure of eight motions.   S0781449
  5. It will be a bit dry but when the flour is more or less combined you can add the lemon juice, zest and oatmilk.  Keep folding gently to combine all the ingredients but don’t overfold – the mixture should have a ‘dropping consistency’ so when it’s held up in the air with your spatula, it should start dropping down with a ‘ploof!’. S0841456
  6. Pour gently into your prepared loaf or cake tin and smooth down evenly with the back of a metal spoon.  Place in the oven and bake for around 25 to 30 minutes (don’t open the oven door to check it before the 25 minutes are up!).  S0871461
  7. While the cake is in the oven make the drizzling syrup:  just warm the maple syrup and lemon juice together in a saucepan on low heat, then leave to cool a little.
  8. When you think the cake is ready, insert your cake tester skewer in the middle and if it comes out clean give your cake the all clear to leave the oven.  It should also spring back a little if pressed with your finger. S0961472
  9. Leave the cake to cool 20 to 30 minutes in the loaf tin.  Then skewer holes all over the cake and pour your syrup over it as evenly as possible with a spoon.  Leave to soak in for a while until the cake is cool then turn out of the tin.
  10. If you want lemon icing on your cake too, mix the ground xylitol and lemon juice to make a smooth paste.  You can put the icing it in a disposable pastry bag, cut the tip to make a small hole, and pipe lines across your cake.  S0242044S0292054
  11. Eat the cake!

Testing and makeover

Yum yum?  My trusty new cake tester number one helped out here.  And also encouraged me to further develop the courgette and apple cake (on the table down there).  Thank you!

You can see our makeover attempt in the photo:  putting a few blueberries on the cake!  Pathetic I know but great tastewise as they go well with lemon.


The next attempt was drizzling lemon icing over the cake.  Ahem.  Must practice, as xylitol icing is a bit tricky to work with, but it’s most delicious.  I think it will do.  Off to the party taking one cake with icing and one without!

Party time

Join me at Fiesta Friday and we can sing our ‘We all love a healthy healthy cake’ song again.  The party lasts till Wednesday, if you want time to make a little something to bring along!  Or have your own private party at home with this cake.

The end is near on our Blogging 101 course – last day today and we’re winding things up this weekend.  It’s been a brilliant course. I’ve learnt a lot, created a better blog, met loads of excellent people and read masses of inspirational stuff.  We should all finish up with a big online party!!!  Stay in touch fellow bloggers and friends, and hope to see some of you on the Blogging 201 course!  🙂

And to all of you, including non-bloggers and visitors who’ve just come over from my new facebook page (welcome and nice to see you!):  ‘Live long, prosper, and bake!’, as Spock’s mother always said.

More healthy and unhealthy cakes are on their way, all muttering ‘Why couldn’t we go to the party too?’

Till next time, happy baking or drooling! 🙂

P.S.  Oops, forgot to show you my tea towel collection – another day…

Posted by

Baking on Sundays with my French mum was a lovely part of my childhood. Later I experimented with baking books or internet recipes and did the pâtisserie course at Le Cordon Bleu Paris. Still trying out new recipes and inventing cakes with influences from all around the world, including some healthier ones. Yes, love cakes!!! Hope you'll love them too and have fun baking. :)

26 thoughts on “Healthy lemon and cardamon drizzle cake (recipe) goes to a party!”

  1. Pingback: First Fiesta Friday Anniversary (Part 2) | The Novice Gardener

  2. Oh Lili! That looks mouthwatering great! I will try to get all the ingredients at the store. Right now I only have whole wheat, but I’ve seen the spelt flour in the store! I’m uncertain what cardamom is. Will have to find it in the store as well. Does it have a flavor? This will be perfect for next week, when I can try out making the cake for an extra treat after dinners! I will let you know how it all comes out after I do it.

    On the baking ‘tin’ I have glass loaf ‘pans.’ Will that still work? Otherwise, I can use a very old bunt-like pan I use for banana cake (the only cake I can successfully make lol). I do have parchment paper, so that will work in the loaf pans if needed…

    Thank you so much for this! *happy dancing here* 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s great Finmora! Hope you like it… and you’re welcome. I’ve been thoroughly enjoying eating (testing) lots of cake that’s ‘healthy’! More happy dancing here too 🙂

    I’ve added a photo of the green cardamon pods in the ingredients section – they are optional but add a slightly peppery savoury background to the lemon. You can also make it a straightforward Lemon drizzle cake with no Cardamon if you prefer.

    I think the glass loaf pan might be tricky – need to change oven heat etc. You could use the bundt pan if you butter and flour it well or maybe invest in a loaf or cake tin?

    Yes, please let me know how it goes! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “I do love a healthy healthy cake, healthy healthy cake, healthy healthy cake!” Seriously, this is a lovely combination of flavours that I really must try! Thank you for bring it to the party to share!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for singing along Julia! 🙂 You’re welcome… and hope you enjoy the cake. Loved your blog and looking forward to trying out your recipes too!! Hopefully see you at the next party!


  5. Thanks Elaine! Glad you enjoyed the cake… I’m looking forward to making loads of healthy stuff from your blog – will check it all out but already very attracted to the crackers!
    My first Fiesta Friday was brilliant …very excited to connect with all these food bloggers!!!
    Hopefully see you at the next one! 🙂


  6. Lemon and cardamon? Mmm…yes, please! It sounds positively delicious! If cakes are your thing, you should up at Fiesta Friday at the perfect time (The BIG anniversary party) with the perfect dessert. 🙂 Welcome to the best blog party around, Lili! Hope to see you back next week…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks Nancy! Yes, even though it’s healthy it’s a yummy cake!! Just had some for breakfast.. Really looking forward to the next Fiesta Friday party – will bring more cake 🙂 – and meeting more great guests and their food! Just checked out your site and it’s lovely – contemplating the éclair torte amongst other recipes! 🙂


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