Baking cakes & creating desserts: my five key recipe ideas for Easter

Easter dining table

Easter is fast approaching, and I couldn’t be happier about it! I’ve had more than enough of freezing, wet weather and endless winter colds. I love the longer days and lighter lights that spring brings. I’m also looking forward to hosting my family at Easter, and am having great fun researching recipe ideas in my Caple kitchen.

Regular readers will know that while try to follow a (mostly) healthy diet, I can’t get enough cake! What can I say, it’s a weakness of mine. But at Easter, it’s almost obligatory to indulge in chocolate, sweet treats and indulgent desserts, which is probably why I enjoy it so much. If, like me, you love baking cakes for family gathering, read on for some new-season inspiration. This latest recipe round-up combines my trusty, go-to favourites – and a few newer discoveries that are simply too good not to share!

Flowers and candles on Easter table

My Easter egg cheesecake

I realise that not everyone enjoys baking cakes as much as I do. So first of all, here’s an easy no-bake recipe that’s fast, fuss-free and tastes absolutely fabulous. This Easter Egg cheesecake recipe from BBCGoodFood is actually a dessert, not a cake, and I’ve just made mine for Easter. Did I mention that it includes Cadbury mini eggs? Seriously, what more could your guests want?

Cake baking and dessert making my Easter egg cheesecake
Sometimes less is more: If you prefer eating cakes to making them, this speedy, no-bake Easter egg cheesecake is the ideal option for any family gathering

The process is really simple. Crush some biscuits for the base, then mix with melted butter. For the filling, combine half the mini eggs (try not to eat the rest – I find this part so difficult!) with sugar, eggs, soft cheese, vanilla bean paste and double cream. Spoon this over the base, chill well, and then decorate with the remaining mini eggs.

Top tip: This really needs to chill overnight, so plan accordingly. However, this cheesecake freezes really well too, which is why I’ve made mine so well in advance. If you’re feeling organised too, why not do the same? Just remember to allow enough time for defrosting!

My spring lamb cupcakes

I love baking cakes, which you can easily make with younger members of your family. And these spring lamb cupcakes – courtesy of delicious magazine – are equally popular with the young at heart, too. They are also easy to make, and perfect if you’re cooking for a crowd. Start by making the cupcakes in the regular way, then allow to cool before decorating. You’ll need some black and white sugar paste to make the sheep’s faces. To make the sheep’s fleeces, mix up some buttercream frosting. Then simply spread this over your cakes, and top with white mini marshmallows and cheat with pre-made edible eyes.

My spring lamb cupcakes with my Dualit hand mixer
My trusty Dualit hand mixer is perfect for whipping up a batch of these cute spring lamb cupcakes

Top tip: If you don’t work quickly enough, your sugar paste pieces will dry out, which means they won’t stick to each other. Remedy this with a little cold water, which ‘reactivates’ the adhesion.

Lemon and pistachio celebration cake

I do like to experiment with new flavours when I’m baking cakes, so I was thrilled to discover this lemon and pistachio celebration cake recipe, by Bonne Maman. I always try to start the day with a healthy breakfast. And, in the evenings, I’m never without a jar in my fridge for a spoonful to dress my Greek yoghurt. This cake looks seriously impressive, so it would be perfect if you’re keen to try something different for a special Easter centrepiece. But, I promise, it’s actually pretty simple to make!

Baking cakes with lemon and pistachio
This moreish, mouth-watering sponge cake features a clever lemon and pistachio flavour combination that ensures it tastes as good as it looks!

The cake batter is an easy all-in-one method. All you have to do is mix, bake and cool. Then ‘build’ your cake, alternating layers of sponge, cream and conserve. Top with your favourite berries, a sprinkle of icing sugar, and any leftover pistachio crumbs.

Top tip: always sift your sponge ingredients. This adds air, which creates a lighter cake.

Simnel cake

Simnel cake is considered to be the traditional Easter cake. If you find yourself baking cakes for guests with special diets or food allergies/intolerances, you’ll be pleased to know this recipe from delicious magazine just happens to be gluten-free, too. Fans of Bakewell tart should also rejoice, because this version features glacé cherries, plus an extra hit of almond.

Baking cakes for Easter with a traditional simnel
Food allergies and intolerances rule out so many cakes and bakes. That’s why I was pleased to find a gluten-free Simnel cake recipe – but I promise you can’t ‘taste the difference’, in the best possible way!

Simnel cake does require a bit of time and effort to put together, but I think the end result is always worth it, especially for a once-a-year treat.

Top tip: You might not be familiar with it, but don’t be tempted to omit the xanthan gum. It really does improves the texture and shelf life of gluten-free bakes. You can find it in the baking aisles of most large supermarkets.

Hibiscus raspberry galette

I’d been baking cakes for years before I attempted my first galette. The term is used in French cuisine to describe a flat, round cake, which can be sweet or savoury. I’ve made this KitchenAid recipe for hibiscus raspberry galette a few times now – and it’s always been rapturously received! I think that adding crushed amaretti cookies is such a clever way to add a subtle almond flavour, which always works so well when paired with fresh raspberries.

Baking cakes with the Hibiscus Raspberry Galette
If you’re confident baking cakes, why not give this galette a go? I can never resist an extra slice of the crisp pastry topped with juicy, jewel-like berries

I like that this particular recipe requires minimal kneading. To assemble, you simply roll out your cooled dough, add your filling, and then fold the edges over to create your galette crust. Finish with the glaze, and ideally serve while still warm, topped with ice cream or whipped cream.

Top tip: Lots of people find pastry intimidating. The secret to success is to work quickly, and keep your dough cool. Moving your dough while rolling it out will also help to prevent it sticking.

Baking cakes for Easter and setting the table
Hope you have a wonderful Easter with friends and family!

Looking for more food inspiration? Then why not head to the food category on my blog now!