e Poppy Seed Tea Cake
Ana Rusu

This Poppy Seed Tea Cake recipe is an excerpt from Ana Rusu’s cookbook New Vegan Baking. Ana is the pastry chef, recipe developer, and food photographer behind the plant-based platform Herbs and Roots. Ana is known for her creative, modern takes on classics and her food styling. Ana lives in Bucharest, Romania.

Deliciously flavored with citrus, this cake is fresh and light. Little sparkles of poppy seeds embroider the crumb and give the cake a lovely crunch while enhancing its flavor with a slightly nutty and spicy taste. Made with a mix of corn, rice and oat flour, the cake develops other secondary nutty aromas that complement the overall cake, which I absolutely love. More often than not, gluten-free cakes tend to get dry, so vegan cream cheese icing is here to give extra moisture to the cake, as well as to round things out with its creamy and tangy contrast. This Poppy seed tea cake is a truly joyful accompaniment to any hot drink, be it in the morning or afternoon!

Ingredients You’ll Need

Poppy seed tea cake

Raspberry cream cheese icing

  • Vegan butter
  • Vegan cream cheese
  • Confectioners’ sugar
  • Sea salt
  • Raspberries
  • Lemon juice
  • Zest from orange
  • Oat milk

How To Make This Poppy Seed Tea Cake

Step 1: Oven Preheat and Loaf Pan Prep

Preheat the oven to 370°F (175°C) and set an oven rack in the middle position. Lightly grease an 8 x 4–inch (20 x 10–cm) loaf pan with butter or nonstick cooking spray. Dust with flour, shaking off any excess.

To make the cake, mix the flour, xanthan gum, poppy seeds, light brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.

Step 2: Mixing the Liquid Ingredients, Baking, and Preparing Cream Cheese Icing

In a separate bowl, mix the orange juice, oat milk, oil, citrus zest and vanilla well to combine. Pour the liquid mixture into the flour mixture and mix using a spatula or wooden spoon.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack and let it cool completely before adding the cream cheese icing.

To make the icing, add the butter to a bowl. Give it a good mix using a wooden spatula until it becomes creamy. Add the vegan cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar and mix vigorously, until the sugar is dissolved and the icing becomes smooth.

Step 3: Raspberry-Lemon Icing and Serve

In a separate cup, smash the fresh raspberries and mix them with the lemon juice and half of the orange zest, keeping the other half for decorating the cake. Strain the raspberry mixture through a fine sieve then mix the puree with the vegan cream cheese mixture. Add the cold milk to make the icing more liquid, if needed.

Pour the icing over the completely cooled loaf cake and decorate with the reserved orange zest. Slice immediately, or refrigerate for 15 to 20 minutes to allow the icing to harden.

This cake will be kept for 2 to 3 days, refrigerated, and stored in an airtight container. Keep in mind that it tends to get drier after the first 2 days.

Poppy Seed Tea Cake – Recipe Card

e Poppy Seed Tea Cake

Poppy Seed Tea Cake with Raspberry Cream Cheese Icing

5 from 1 vote
Experience the zesty delight of this Gluten-Free Poppy Seed Tea Cake with Raspberry Cream Cheese Icing. A symphony of citrus flavors meets the delightful crunch of poppy seeds. Moist and tender, thanks to the luscious vegan cream cheese icing, this cake is the perfect companion to your morning or afternoon tea.
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Author: Ana Rusu
Servings: 10 -12 servings

Ingredients

Poppy seed cake

  • cups 150 g fine corn flour
  • ½ cup 75 g white rice flour
  • ½ cup 50 g oat flour
  • ¾ tsp xanthan gum see Note
  • tbsp 25 g poppy seeds
  • cup 135 g light brown sugar
  • tsp 7 g baking powder
  • tsp baking soda
  • tsp sea salt
  • tsp 25 ml orange juice
  • ¾ cup + 2 tbsp 210 ml sweetened oat milk
  • ¼ cup 60 ml sunflower oil
  • Zest from 1 orange
  • Zest from ¼ lemon
  • 2 tsp 10 ml vanilla extract

Raspberry cream cheese icing

  • 1 tbsp 15 g vegan butter, room temperature
  • 3 tbsp 40 g plain vegan cream cheese, cold
  • ¼ cup 35 g confectioners’ sugar
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • ¼ cup 35 g fresh raspberries
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Zest from ½ orange divided
  • 1 –2 tsp 5–10 ml cold unsweetened oat milk, if needed

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 370°F (175°C) and set an oven rack in the middle position. Lightly grease an 8 x 4–inch (20 x 10–cm) loaf pan with butter or nonstick cooking spray. Dust with flour, shaking off any excess.
  • To make the cake, mix the flours, xanthan gum, poppy seeds, light brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, mix the orange juice, oat milk, oil, citrus zest and vanilla well to combine. Pour the liquid mixture into the flour mixture and mix using a spatula or wooden spoon.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack and let it cool completely before adding the cream cheese icing.
  • To make the icing, add the butter to a bowl. Give it a good mix using a wooden spatula until it becomes creamy. Add the vegan cream cheese and confectioners' sugar and mix vigorously, until the sugar is dissolved and the icing becomes smooth.
  • In a separate cup, smash the fresh raspberries and mix them with the lemon juice and half of the orange zest, keeping the other half for decorating the cake. Strain the raspberry mixture through a fine sieve then mix the puree with the vegan cream cheese mixture. Add the cold milk to make the icing more liquid, if needed.
  • Pour the icing over the completely cooled loaf cake and decorate with the reserved orange zest. Slice immediately, or refrigerate for 15 to 20 minutes to allow the icing to harden.

Notes

  1. This cake will keep for 2 to 3 days, refrigerated, stored in an airtight container. Keep in mind that it tends to get drier after the first 2 days.
  2. In this recipe, the xanthan gum helps thicken and hold the gluten-free baked good together. It also keeps it from becoming too crumbly. I don't recommend skipping this ingredient.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Reprinted with permission from New Vegan Baking by Ana Rusu. Page Street Publishing Co. 2023. Photo credit: Ana Rusu.

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new vegan baking

About The Cookbook

These unforgettable vegan bakes celebrate the flavors of fruit, chocolate, booze, coffee, and more in approachable yet showstopping sweets sure to excite every plant-based eater’s palate. Plant-Based Baking Just Reached a Whole New Level of Flavor.

Reawaken your love for all things sweet and become a master of modern plant-based baking. Through this carefully curated and visually stunning recipe collection, Ana Rusu guides you in using vegan ingredients to create mouthwatering, ultra-satisfying baked goods and no-bake treats for you and your loved ones. Ana’s recipes pair rich flavors with delicate fruits and aromatic herbs for desserts with beautifully balanced tastes and luscious textures, such as:

  • Dulce de Leche Bundt Cake with Chocolate Glaze
  • Chocolate, Chili & Sea Salt Cookies
  • Lemon Posset Tart with Raspberry and Whipped Cream
  • Chantilly & Diplomat Cream with Tropical Fruit Cake
  • Gluten-Free Upside-Down Sour Cherry Cake with Crème Anglaise

While the flavors may sound advanced, Ana’s recipes use simple and easy-to-follow instructions, complete with home chef tips to help inexperienced bakers achieve success. With 60 spectacular vegan treats spanning six flavor-forward chapters—Chocolate & Caramel, Fruit, Citrus, Spice, Coffee, Nuts & Seeds, and Booze—plus stunning photography with every recipe, every page will fill you with inspiration to pull out the measuring cups and bring sweetness to your day.

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Poppy Seed Tea Cake

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