Old Fashioned English Tea Loaf

I’ve always been a big fan of tea loaf. I think soaking dried fruits in cold tea overnight, really, really brings out the fruit flavours. I admit to being one of the few people I know who actually likes old fashioned fruit cakes. Dundee Cake in particular. Well, I’m just a bit of an old fashioned human, it seems. As a child I was not encouraged to eat candy, so a fruit cake was a sweet treat. Christmas cake was a particular feast, once I had pulled the icing off. I did not like icing, I still don’t in actuality. Anyway, I digress. Back to the tea loaf.

I’m sharing a recipe from A Bit of the Goodstuff because it’s a vegan adaptation, dairy free, egg free.


  • 250 ml / 1 cup strongly brewed black or green tea
  • 225 g / 1½ cups mixed dried fruit
  • 113 g / ½ cup unrefined cane sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1 TBSP marmalade or apricot jam
  • 227 g / 1⅔ cups fine wholemeal (whole wheat pastry) or chapatti flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon or mixed spice
  • 3 TBSP water


  • Soak the dried fruit in the brewed tea for 4-5 hours (can be left overnight).
  • Grease a 2lb loaf pan and line the bottom with non-stick baking paper (or use a non-stick loaf liner).
  • Pre-heat the oven to 160C (160C for fan also) / 325F.
  • Tip the dried fruit and any remaining tea into a mixing bowl. Stir in the sugar and marmalade/jam. Sift in the flour, baking powder and spice. Tip any remaining wheatgerm from the sieve into the bowl. Add 3 TBSP water and stir until thoroughly combined.
  • Tip the mixture into the prepared tin and level the top.
  • Bake for 1¼ hours, or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave to rest in the tin for 30 minutes or so, then transfer to a wire rack until completely cooled.
  • Stored in an airtight container, the loaf will keep for up to five days in the fridge. It also freezes well.

Can’t wait to see if you try it and also go visit A Bit of the Goodstuff a really great resource for vegan recipes. It’s a fabulous site for plant based nutrition.

Thanks for reading. Cheers!

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