As part of our plan to inspire you with some plant-based interpretations of Christmas classics- we asked Greencity’s very own star-baker Leigh to provide us with a winning recipe for a show stopping Christmas Cake. And believe us, she did not disappoint! Unlike a Christmas pudding which might require feeding, this cake can be made and eaten the very next day so there's plenty of time to make one for Christmas if you so wish.



Golden Ginger Vegan Christmas Cake by Leigh, Head of HR @Greencity Wholefoods

Prep & cooking time: 3h 30min        
Serves: 12 portions, keeps for 2-3 months


  • 300g soft dried apricots, chopped
  • 200g sultanas
  • 100g dried cranberries
  • 200g candied peel
  • 100g glacé cherries, rinsed, dried and halved
  • 125g stem ginger in syrup (drained weight) from a jar, dried and chopped
  • 4tbsp golden syrup
  • Finely grated zest and juice of 2 limes
  • 1tsp each mixed spice, ground cinnamon and ground ginger
  • 100ml ginger wine, plus 4tbsp to drizzle
  • 250g vegan butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 225g (8oz) self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 125g ground almonds
  • 250g light muscovado sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 23cm (9in) round cake tin 7.5cm (3in) deep


Place the apricots, sultanas, cranberries, candied peel, glacé cherries, stem ginger, golden syrup, lime zest, lime juice and spices into a large bowl. Pour in the ginger wine, stir and cover with clingfilm. Leave overnight for the fruits to soak up the wine.

Grease the cake tin and line with baking paper, include the sides of the tin.

Preheat the oven to 150°C/fan 130°C/ gas 2

Sift the flour and salt together into a large bowl, then stir in the ground almonds and the bicarbonate of soda.

In a separate bowl, whisk the vegan butter and sugar until pale and fluffy then add the vinegar and add a spoonful of the flour mixture.

Using a large spoon, fold in the remaining flour before stirring in the dried fruit, do this as quickly as possible. Spoon the mixture into the tin and level the surface using a spatula, then bake on the top shelf of the oven for 2½-3 hours until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin.

Using a skewer, prick the surface of the cake all over and drizzle with the extra ginger wine.

Wrap the cake in baking parchment and foil (only do this once the cake is fully cooled, this will take ages) and store somewhere cool and dry until ready to decorate.

The cake will keep for 2-3 months undecorated, longer if you lace it with a spirit, instead of ginger wine.



I like to do a “naked” cake, by rolling out marzipan for the top, you can stick this on with warmed apricot jam.

If you want to show off, you can then add cinnamon sticks and fruit (clementines) to the top of the cake, using the apricot jam as glue.

If you want to really show off, you can use edible gold leave to gilt the fruit (use tweezers to handle the gold leaf, I didn’t, and ending up with gold plated fingernails!)

Or you can go full retro, and decorate the cake with edible models of Santa, snowmen, penguins, llamas! anything you like.

If you don’t like ginger wine, then you can substitute for a spirit of your choice, I like Grand Marnier.

Use the biggest bowl you own for mixing, to avoid spillage and tears.

Use the left-over syrup from the stem ginger for cocktails:

Using a skewer, prick the surface of the cake all over and drizzle with the extra ginger wine.


Dark and Stormy Cocktail:

  • 50ml Spiced Rum
  • 2 tablespoons ginger syrup
  • Juice of a lime, and 1 lime quartered

Pour over ice in a cocktail maker, add ginger beer to taste- give it a right good shake. Enjoy!

Thanks so much to Leigh for providing these luscious recipes!!