Date and walnut loaf is a really easy, low fat and delicious traditional Scottish teatime cake. It's a perfect bake for holidays and quick to whip up when you've got guests coming round!
Welcome to February Folks. And to this date and walnut cake recipe.
I know that you love cake loafs as much as I do so you'll love this date walnut loaf.
I mean the lighter lemon loaf cake recipe published last year was such a hit and as for the cherry bakewell loaf cake well that's already one of my most popular recipes!
So on that basis I though it was time for another of my favourite ones.
Now first don't you think that January was such a long month?
Well it certainly felt that way to my other half and myself and we're both glad to have got past it and moved a little further forwards towards the warmer part of the year.
The extra bonus with February too is that it's a shorter month!
We're both extremely glad that the January "watching what you eat after the Christmas indulgence" is over and we both feel that its most definitely time for some cake.
Not just any cake though.
Nope, a tasty fruity comforting date and walnut loaf classic bake well suited to these winter months and well within your healthy eating limits at only 179 calories per slice. If you still happen to be still watching that waistline after Christmas!
I've removed the traditional recipe requirement of treacle from the ingredients for this date and walnut loaf. Making it a healthy date loaf cake.
However, I promise that this date and walnut cake is just as delicious! It's still filled with crunchy walnuts and sweet dates.
Plus in doing that I've managed to reduce the overall fat and calorie content. The dates and walnuts are enough to sweeten this recipe.
The texture can only be described as deliciously moist. There's a satisfying nice crunch to each bite. If you've a sweet tooth, then this recipe is sure to satisfy.
I've made this date and walnut loaf many times over the years and it's never failed to come out right.
After publishing the original recipe I had people asking me if they could get a cream cheese recipe as an optional topping for this date and walnut cake.
So now I've updated this great recipe below with how to make a cream cheese icing topping.
Otherwise if you don't want to make the topping and just keep it as a healthy date loaf recipe then just follow the original instructions in the recipe card.
If you're feeling a little bit naughty then you could just spread a little butter on your slice. If not butter, then low fat spread is great too.
However you want to enjoy your slice of walnut bread it goes perfectly with a cup of tea!
Make sure to check out the list of similar recipes below!
- Golden Caster Sugar
- Unsalted Butter
- Boiling Water
- Self-Raising Flour
See recipe card for quantities.
- Dates - I just use ordinary dried pitted dates and chop them up. If you want to use extra special medjool dates then please go ahead.
- Walnuts - any walnuts, whole walnuts, walnut halves or chopped walnuts are fine. You need to chop them up before you add them to the cake mixture anyway.
- Golden Caster Sugar - you can substitute with caster sugar.
- Unsalted Butter - use unsalted rather than salted.
- Boiling Water - no substitute here as the hot water makes the fruits soft and helps to keep the cake moist.
- Egg - a large free range egg or similar is fine.
- Self-Raising Flour - You can substitute with an equal amount of plain flour and 3 tsp. baking powder.
Why This Is A Healthy Date and Walnut Loaf Recipe
It's perfectly possible to enjoy a slice of a lower calorie cake when you bake it yourself.
Most shop bought / coffee shop baked goods (even the ones that look healthy made with nuts and seeds) are overly packed with refined flour and sugar.
They contain very little in the way of any goodness and they come in enormous portion sizes. They're often loaded with additives and colouring too.
I'm not against the odd treat because as you know that's what the 80/20 rule for eating is all about.
However, I do recommend and encourage home baking so that you can save yourself unnecessary calories and sugar by the right kind of healthier bake over another.
Make this healthy date cake and prove to your friends that cake doesn't have to be so unhealthy!
How To Store Date And Walnut Loaf?
- This date and walnut cake will last for up to 3 days stored in an airtight container in a cool day place. It actually tastes even better the next day and it can also be frozen for up to 3 months.
Can I leave out the walnuts?
- Yes, you can leave out the walnuts or swap them with other favourite nuts of your choice. Pecan nuts and brazil nuts would also work well in this recipe.
What size of tin do I need?
- You need a a 2lb loaf tin. Please see equipment list for the one I use.
How To Make Cream Cheese Icing
- In a glass pyrex bowl beat together 20g unsalted softened butter and 30g icing sugar.
- Mix 50g cream cheese in with a wooden spoon.
- When the cake has cooled to room temperature, spoon the cream cheese icing on top of it and smooth it over the top using a palette knife. If you want for decoration you could scatter over some more chopped walnuts.
Please note nutrition data does not include this cream cheese frosting.
For This Date And Walnut Loaf You May Need….
The following links and any links in the recipe card below are affiliate links.
This means that if you click on it and then buy that product, I’ll get a small commission (at no extra cost to you of course).
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This is the basic loaf tin I use.
As you can see it's relatively inexpensive and its perfect for loaf cake recipes.
Plus it's teflon coated and comes with a lifetime guarantee.
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Other Popular Loaf Cake Recipes For You To Try
- White chocolate and raspberry loaf cake is a delicious and simple to make recipe that’s perfect for sharing. Fresh raspberries and white chocolate chips baked together taste amazing!
- Chocolate chip banana bread loaf cake is an easy to make, moist and delicious bake. Great served as a dessert or a coffee morning cake. Everyone will love this!
- Gingerbread loaf cake is an easy and delicious home baked recipe to make. It's soft, moist and topped with a light covering of icing. A perfect holiday bake!
- Lemon blueberry yogurt cake is an easy healthy Greek yogurt cake recipe. Delicious, moist and fluffy. This loaf cake is just packed full of blueberry and lemony goodness!
Date and Walnut Loaf Recipe
The following links and any links in the recipe card below are affiliate links.
This means that if you click on it and then buy that product I’ll get a small commission (at no extra cost to you of course).
If you do click through then thanks for being a part of Neil’s Healthy Meals!
- 175 g chopped dates
- 75 g chopped walnuts
- 75 g golden caster sugar
- 50 g unsalted butter cubed
- 150 ml boiling water
- 1 large egg beaten
- 225 g self raising flour
- Preheat oven to 180C fan and grease a loaf tin.
- Place the dates, walnuts, sugar and butter in a bowl and gradually stir in the boiling water until the butter has melted.
- Stir in the beaten egg and fold in the flour.
- Pour all of the mixture into the loaf tin and bake for about 35 - 40 minutes. Use a wooden skewer to insert into the cake which should come out clean if the cake is cooked through.
- Remove from oven, allow to cool slightly in the tin before tipping out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Then slice into 14 slices and store in an air tight container for up to 3 days.
Nutritional information provided below is calculated using paid for online tools and the exact ingredients and quantities used above.
Rate The Recipe
If you’ve made this healthy date cake recipe, or any other recipes on Neil's Healthy Meals, then please let me know.
I’d love to hear what you think of my recipe in the comments below and please do rate my recipe 5* if you like it! 🙂
David @ Spiced
Wow, this bread looks fantastic, Neil! I've always been a huge fan of quick breads like this one, and the flavors sound excellent. I've baked with dates a couple of times, but I should do it more often! I love cutting a slice of bread like this, tossing it in the toaster oven to lightly toast it and then sitting back with a cup of coffee. I used to do that and watch the news. Now I do that and watch Mickey Mouse cartoons. Hah! Thanks for sharing this one! Looking forward to next week's sweet potato recipes, too!
Ha ha, thanks David. I reckon Mickey Mouse cartoons are much more entertaining and cheerier than the news anyway, so I'm with you on that front!:-)
Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
Perfect little soft and sweet bite for some bunching 😀
A tasty satisfying delight! Thanks Rebecca, hope you are well! 🙂
This is very timely. I have received some dates and walnuts from a friend was actually looking for recipes and see possibilities for this healthy snack. A loaf would actually be perfect. I am making this on Saturday. Thank you for sharing this recipe.
That's excellent Sheila! Glad you found my recipe. It's such a tasty bake. Just great for easing you into a relaxing weekend.
I like dates so much, that I'm trying not to keep them at home. Otherwise I might end up eating the whole package (been there!) Also, I've just realized that I don't recall any baked goods I made with dates...or maybe I made it once and immediately experienced a blackout (while eating the whole thing) 😉 Anyway, I happen to like the date/walnut combo too, so this loaf sounds delicious to me!
Ha ha! Sorry to hear that you can't resist eating all the dates when you have them in your home Ben! I'll maybe just have to send you a slice of this as it doesn't sound like you'll be able to resist the temptation of eating it all once baked! 😉
Shashi at SavorySpin
Neil, you made this for me - right?! THIS is so my kinda cake-loaf! So so love the date and nut combo! Once when I was a teenager, I ate so many dates I ended up in the hospital throwing up uncontrollably - I think I avoided dates for like a week after that and I was back to feasting...err... enjoying them again and I couldn't be able to hold back from at least 2 pieces of this!
Absolutely Shashi, I most definitely made this for you! 😉
Although after your story about eating so many dates once, and ending up in hospital I think I should take charge of the dishing out of this Date and Walnut Loaf to you, if that's OK! 😆
I bought a large tub of dates, got sick of eating them (not really sick)., so decided to look for a recipe which would utilise them, I found your recipe and made it. it is so nice to eat with butter and a coffee. Nowi made 3 today to give to my 3 friends and I hope they will enjoy it too. Unfortunately on 1 I Left out some of the flour so not sure how Jr is going to turn out. Thank you for this recipe. Lina
This is a great recipe for utilising any leftover dates Lina, and you certainly did that by making 3 loaves! Nice of you to give them to your friends too. Thanks so much for making my recipe, rating it and commenting on it too. Take care! Neil
Good to find a healthy choice cake that is so simple to make. This turned out really well on my first making. Thank you.
Glad you enjoyed it Dot. And thank you so much for taking the time to write a review and rate the recipe. 🙂