Welsh Cakes

The size of English muffins, these Welsh cakes are dense, slightly sweet, and packed with golden raisins. They’re perfect for breakfast.

Welsh Cakes photographed on a white table with a purple hydrangea behind them.

The secret to perfect cakes is the bakestone, called a planc or maen in Welsh. Essentially a thick cast-iron griddle, it heats slowly and evenly. A cast-iron frying pan or even an electric griddle will work nicely in its place. Whatever pan you use, don’t overcrowd it; you’ll need the extra room to reposition the cakes during cooking to avoid burning them. Oh, and no need to say this, I’m sure, but I will: These are best served warm.–David Leite

Welsh Cakes

Welsh Cakes photographed on a white table with a purple hydrangea behind them.
The size of English muffins, these Welsh cakes are dense, slightly sweet, and packed with golden raisins. They're perfect for breakfast.

Prep 25 mins
Cook 25 mins
Total 50 mins
Breakfast
British
12 servings
189 kcal
4.86 / 7 votes

Ingredients 

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) chilled unsalted butter cut into 8 pieces
  • 1/3 cup sultanas or golden raisins
  • 1/3 cup dried currants
  • 1 large egg well beaten

Directions
 

  • In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt until thoroughly blended. Add the butter pieces, and process until powdery, about 15 to 20 one-second pulses.
  • Dump the mixture into a large bowl, add the dried fruits and the egg, and mix with a fork to form a firm dough. (If it appears dry, work it with your hands until it comes together.) Turn the dough out onto a clean surface, and knead it several times.
  • Lightly flour the surface and roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/2 an inch. Using a 2 1/2-inch cookie cutter, cut out the disks, pressing firmly to cleanly cut through the dried fruits. Gather any leftover dough, knead briefly, reroll, and repeat.
  • Heat a lightly buttered cast-iron frying pan or griddle over medium heat. Place 3 or 4 cakes in the pan and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, adjusting the heat and repositioning the cakes until they're an even pancake-brown. Flip and cook another 3 to 4 minutes. Continue until all the cakes are cooked. Let cool completely before serving. The cakes will keep for a week wrapped in plastic in a cookie tin.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1cakeCalories: 189kcal (9%)Carbohydrates: 26g (9%)Protein: 3g (6%)Fat: 9g (14%)Saturated Fat: 5g (31%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 37mg (12%)Sodium: 9mgPotassium: 178mg (5%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 11g (12%)Vitamin A: 272IU (5%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 49mg (5%)Iron: 1mg (6%)

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Originally published April 22, 2003

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Comments

  1. I made these in two double batches and used my Kitchen Aid to knead, then I cooked them all at once on my Blackstone. This made the cooking process go fast since I was able to get them all on my cooking surface without doing them in batches. I’m going to make them for Christmas like my grandmother use to do but I’ll be using the Blackstone so I can make a huge amount for our big family gathering.

    1. Kathryn, we are delighted you enjoyed these and had such an efficient way of making them! An all around win.

  2. 5 stars
    These were really good! Will definitely make these again. I did have a rough time getting the dough to come together, so had to add a couple teaspoons of water. Also, burnt the test one on medium, and it was still raw. On my stove I had to use low to get them done inside and not too brown outside.

  3. I’m having a traditional English afternoon tea party for 8-10 guests. In addition to cucumber sandwiches and cake, one usually serves scones. I decided to do Welsh cakes instead of scones. Do I have to make them in single batches, or can iI double or triple the recipe?

    1. Hi Judith, because baking recipes rely on the perfect balance of leavening agents, it is always safest to not double or triple a recipe. Another lovely recipe that you might want to add to your English tea is this Victoria Sponge Cake.

  4. I have a question, I recently came across a post for something called: Welsh Tea Bread. Do you have any recipes to share???? I’d love to try one, or two, or three… 🙂 Thanks.

  5. 5 stars
    Ok, an update on my rating and comments on this recipe.

    On Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016, I made 4 more batches of this recipe, for my husband to take to work. I decided to experiment a bit just for fun and try different types of dried fruits. Here’s what I did, and they all were great.

    (1) I did an original batch.
    (2) I did a batch using Dried Cranberries with White Chocolate Chips.
    (3) I did a batch using 2 different types of raisins.
    (4) I did a batch using Chocolate Nibs with Pecans. (This tasted really good, but, it really needed more Chocolate Nibs than what I had on hand. Don’t be shy to try this, but I would recommend using about 3/4 cup of Chocolate Nibs and 3/4 cup of Chopped Pecans, for these to taste awesome). (I had about an 1/8 of a cup of Chocolate Nibs on hand)

    So, there you have it. This recipe is very versatile and everyone at my husband’s work loved them. Said they were much better than anything they ever had from Starbucks. And since they do breakfast biscuits and fruits on Friday mornings, I won’t be surprised if these end up being a regular requested item. And my hubby passed the recipe out to a few people who wanted it. 🙂 Love this recipe.

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