Yule / Winter Solstice / Christmas cake. Gluten, dairy and citrus free

Living in a house full of allergies and coeliac disease means certain treats can be hard to come by and although it’s fairly easy to get gluten free christmas cake, It’s impossible to find one that is citrus free as well.  So I make my own (and alot of other things as well).  My husband has a citrus allergy and nearly all of the christmas food is full of citrus peel, so I thought I’d post my recipe for other sufferers.  Always check your ingredients for hidden allergens, I use a berry mix and dried apricots to simulate the colours of mixed peel and some crystalised ginger to increase the depth of flavour.  I’ve made this cake four years in a row and it’s universally loved.  This makes one eight inch cake.


500g dried fruit e.g. the following
75g Currants
75g Sultanas
50g chopped dried apricots
50g chopped crystalised ginger
50g dried berries/cherries
200g raisins
150ml brandy
2 tsp cider vinegar
vegetable oil or spray for oiling tin
150g gluten free flour (I use Doves Farm)
1 tsp gluten free baking powder
1 tsp xanthum gum
1 tsp mixed spice (½ cinnamon, ½ ginger)
1 tsp ground allspice
150g butter
150g dark brown sugar
3 medium eggs
50g ground almonds
2 tablespoons soya milk
50g whole blanched almonds chopped
1 tbsp treacle or maple syrup
1 tbsp clear honey


1. Start yesterday. Add the dried fruit, brandy and vinegar to a pan and heat to simmering point, take off the heat and cover. Leave to soak over night.
2. Preheat the oven to 150° C.
3. Oil and line the base of a 8″ round or square cake tin.
4. Sift the flour, baking powder, xanthum gum and spices together.
5. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
6. Gradually add the eggs and flour, alternately, a little at a time.
7. Mix in the ground almonds.
8. Stir in the milk.
9. Add the soaked dried fruit
10. Add the chopped almonds.
11. Finally stir in the treacle and honey.
12. Give the whole mixture a good stir.
13. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and smooth.
14. Bake for 1 ½ to 2 hours until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
15. Leave to cool in the tin.

Wrap in greaseproof paper and foil in an airtight container. Will keep for one month or freeze, allow 3 to 4 hours to defrost.


I usually make this about 3 weeks before I need it, then add marzipan and fondant icing.

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