If there's a cake so versatile that it suits any time of day, it's this Sticky Toffee Date Cake! Perfect for breakfast, tea time or dessert - this cake is so soft and moist with a light yet substantial texture. It's not too sweet even with this unique homemade "toffee" sauce made from coconut milk and tahini. It can be served plain for breakfast, it's great with afternoon tea and can certainly be glammed up like this for dessert with warm toffee sauce alongside some vanilla ice cream!
WHY YOU WILL LOVE THIS RECIPE
- Easy to make - this cake can be made in one bowl with a whisk. You don't need a mixer!
- Moist sticky date cake - the cake is SO super moist! It is made with olive oil and has the softest texture and stays moist for days without drying out.
- Healthier creamy toffee sauce - the "toffee sauce" is so simple and you don't need a candy thermometer. It's made with healthier ingredients and isn't too sweet.
- No candy thermometer toffee sauce - you don't need a candy thermometer to make the sauce. Just combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk until smooth.
INGREDIENTS FOR STICKY TOFFEE DATE CAKE
- All purpose flour - regular unbleached all-purpose flour makes a wonderfully moist and soft date cake!
- Pitted dates - I use Terra Delyssa Organic Deglet Noor Pitted Dates which have a soft and sticky texture. For this recipe we'll chop them up and soak them in hot water to soften them even more.
- Orange - orange zest adds bold orange flavour that complements the dates so well. It is optional and you can leave it out if you prefer.
- Olive Oil - this is an oil-based cake. Although I LOVE BUTTER, oil makes cakes ultra moist since it is liquid at room temperature. This combination of olive oil, orange and dates is to die for!
- Cinnamon - a hint of spice is a classic addition to sticky date cake.
- Brown sugar - I love the hint of molasses flavour that brown sugar adds to this cake.
- Eggs - two whole eggs will provide structure and lift to this cake.
- Coconut milk - use full fat coconut milk for the "toffee sauce". It has the most luxurious texture and wonderful creamy flavour.
- Tahini - this non-traditional toffee sauce uses tahini as a base to add body and thickness without having to boil down sugar for several minutes and without the risk of crystallization. It's a cheat's version of caramel sauce and it's healthier too!
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS
This recipe is SO EASY and you can make it all with a bowl and a whisk -- no mixer required if you don't have one!
- STEP 1). Soak the dates. Place the chopped dates in a saucepan with the water and bring to a gently boil. Place a lid on and cock it slightly and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and mash the dates with a fork until it is a thick puree consistency with some soft chunks of dates. Set aside to cool for 5-10 minutes.
- STEP 2). Combine wet ingredients. In a large bowl, whisk together oil and brown sugar until blended. Whisk in eggs one at a time until evenly combined and it looks creamy.
- STEP 3). Combine dry ingredients. Sift flour baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt into a large bowl. Add dry ingredients to the wet mixture and fold them in gently.
- STEP 4). Add dates. Add the warm date mixture to the batter and fold in until well combined.
- STEP 5). Bake. Spread batter into prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Transfer pans to a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm or let cool completely and serve at room temperature.
- STEP 6). Make the toffee sauce. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and whisk until smooth. Place the saucepan over medium heat and simmer for 6-7 minutes while whisking constantly until thickened. Pour it into a clean jar and serve warm over the cake.
EXPERT BAKING TIPS
- Use fresh oil. Baking with rancid oil will only make the rancid taste more prominent.
- Mash the dates to a chunky consistency. I love the little bits of dates you get in this cake as it contrasts the fluffy crumb texture, but if you prefer a uniform, fine texture, then you can mash the dates until smooth.
- Do not over-mix. Just mix in the dry ingredients until well combined.
- Do not over-bake. The cake is ready when it springs back when pressed gently and a skewer comes out clean. Set a timer for the first time stated in the recipe and check with a skewer - it should come out clean.
- Serve warm! This cake is delicious served at room temperature or even cold, but it really shows off when served warm with vanilla ice cream on top!
Can I make this cake with any type of oil?
Olive oil really gives this cake great flavour but the recipe also works with any neutral cooking oil. I prefer sunflower oil for its clean taste.
Do I need to add orange zest?
The orange zest in this recipe is optional so feel free to leave it out or use lemon zest in its place.
How do I store this cake?
This cake is best stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days. To keep it longer, store it in the fridge for up to 1 week.
How do I serve sticky toffee date cake?
This cake is perfect as is with the coconut "toffee" sauce, but feel free to serve it with traditional toffee sauce, or caramel sauce. You can also serve it with a dollop of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream!
If you love cake, check out these recipes!The BEST Moist Chocolate Cake RecipeMoist Lemon Blueberry BreadOlive Oil Chocolate Bundt CakeBest Vanilla Cupcake Recipe with Chocolate Fudge FrostingChocolate Chip Banana Cake with Creamy Milk Chocolate FrostingBlueberry Peach Upside Down Cake
Sticky Toffee Date Cake with Coconut Caramel Sauce
- 1 ¼ cups 170g Terra Delyssa Organic Deglet Noor Pitted Dates
- 1 cup 240ml water
- 1 ⅓ cups 190g all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup 80ml Terra Delyssa Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- ⅔ cup 145g packed light brown sugar
- 1 tsp orange zest optional
- 2 large eggs
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup 150ml coconut cream
- ½ cup 110g packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoon 30ml tahini
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line the base of a 9-inch round cake pan with parchment paper.
- To make the cake, first prepare the dates. Place the chopped dates in a saucepan with the water and bring to a gently boil. Place a lid on and cock it slightly and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and mash the dates with a fork until it is a thick puree consistency with some soft chunks of dates. Set aside to cool for 5-10 minutes.
- Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, brown sugar and orange zest (if you're using it) until blended. Whisk in eggs one at a time until well incorporated. Sift in dry ingredients and fold them in gently. Add the warm date mixture and fold in until well combined.
- Spread batter into prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes until evenly golden and skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
- For the toffee sauce, combine all ingredients in a saucepan and whisk until smooth. Place the saucepan over medium heat and simmer for 6-7 minutes while whisking constantly until thickened. Pour it into a clean jar and serve warm over the cake.