Sri Lanka Date Cake Recipe: A Sweet Slice of Tradition

If you’re on a quest for a dessert that’s both exotic and comforting, look no further than the Sri Lanka Date Cake Recipe. This delightful treat is a beloved classic in Sri Lankan cuisine, known for its rich flavors, moist texture, and a touch of tropical indulgence. Join us on a culinary journey as we uncover the secrets of this sweet delight and guide you through the process of creating your very own Sri Lanka Date Cake.

The Heartwarming Tradition of Sri Lanka Date Cake

A Taste of Sri Lankan Culture

Before we dive into the recipe, let’s take a moment to appreciate the cultural significance of Sri Lanka Date Cake. This dessert is more than just a sweet indulgence; it’s a symbol of hospitality and warmth in Sri Lankan households. Whether served during festivals, family gatherings, or as a gesture of goodwill, the Date Cake holds a special place in the hearts of the people.

A Fusion of Flavors

Sri Lanka Date Cake seamlessly blends the sweetness of dates with the richness of spices like cinnamon and cloves. The result is a harmonious fusion of flavors that dance on your taste buds, offering a delightful contrast to the tropical heat of Sri Lanka.

Gathering the Ingredients

Before you embark on your culinary adventure, make sure you have the following ingredients at hand:

  • 250g of Dates: Pitted and finely chopped.
  • 200g of Cashew Nuts: Roughly chopped to add a nutty crunch.
  • 200g of Butter: Unsalted and at room temperature.
  • 200g of Sugar: White or brown, according to your preference.
  • 4 Large Eggs: At room temperature.
  • 200g of All-Purpose Flour: Sifted to ensure a smooth batter.
  • 1 tsp of Baking Powder: To help the cake rise and become fluffy.
  • 1 tsp of Vanilla Extract: For a hint of aromatic sweetness.
  • 1 tsp of Ground Cinnamon: To infuse warmth and spice.
  • 1/2 tsp of Ground Cloves: For that distinctive exotic touch.

The Sri Lanka Date Cake Recipe

Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of creating this delectable dessert:

Step 1: Preparing the Dates

Begin by chopping the dates into fine pieces. If they are too dry, you can soak them in warm water for about 10 minutes to soften them up.

Step 2: Creaming the Butter and Sugar

In a mixing bowl, cream together the room-temperature butter and sugar until the mixture becomes light and fluffy. This step is crucial for achieving the cake’s moist texture.

Step 3: Adding Eggs and Vanilla

One by one, add the eggs to the butter-sugar mixture, beating well after each addition. Also, incorporate the vanilla extract, mixing until it’s well combined.

Step 4: Sifting Dry Ingredients

In a separate bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and ground cloves. Gradually add this dry mixture to the wet mixture, gently folding it in until no lumps remain.

Step 5: Dates and Cashews

Now, fold in the chopped dates and cashew nuts into the batter. Ensure that they are evenly distributed throughout the mixture, adding a delightful burst of flavor and texture.

Step 6: Baking

Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F). Grease and line a cake tin with parchment paper. Pour the cake batter into the tin, spreading it evenly. Bake for approximately 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Step 7: Cooling and Slicing

Once baked, allow the Sri Lanka Date Cake to cool in the tin for a while. Then, transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, slice it into squares or rectangles, ready to be served.

Tips for a Perfect Sri Lanka Date Cake

Creating a memorable Sri Lanka Date Cake is all about attention to detail and embracing the cultural nuances of this dessert. Here are some tips to ensure your cake turns out perfectly:

1. Choose High-Quality Dates

Select fresh, high-quality dates for the best flavor and texture. Soaking them briefly in warm water can revive dry dates.

2. Room Temperature Ingredients

Ensure that your butter, eggs, and dates are all at room temperature. This helps in achieving a smooth and uniform batter.

3. Don’t Overmix

When adding the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, avoid overmixing to prevent a dense cake. Mix only until the ingredients are incorporated.

4. Perfect Spice Balance

Adjust the amount of ground cinnamon and cloves to your personal taste. Some prefer a stronger spice flavor, while others may prefer a milder touch.

5. Patience Pays Off

Allow the cake to cool completely before slicing to ensure clean, neat slices.


The Sri Lanka Date Cake is more than just a dessert; it’s a journey through the flavors and traditions of Sri Lankan culture. With its warm spices, sweet dates, and nutty crunch, it’s a slice of paradise on a plate. Whether you’re sharing it with loved ones or savoring it as a personal treat, this Date Cake is bound to evoke feelings of comfort and delight.

So, roll up your sleeves, gather your ingredients, and let the aroma of spices and the sweetness of dates transport you to the heart of Sri Lanka, one delicious bite at a time.

For more ideas, recipes, and cooking tips and tricks, please visit us at Nile Ethiopian.


Q1: Can I use other nuts instead of cashews in the Date Cake?

A1: Absolutely! You can experiment with almonds, walnuts, or even a combination of nuts to add your unique twist to the recipe.

Q2: Can I make this cake ahead of time and store it?

A2: Yes, you can make the Date Cake ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days, or refrigerate it for longer freshness.

Q3: Are there any gluten-free alternatives for the all-purpose flour?

A3: You can use gluten-free flour blends as a substitute for all-purpose flour to make a gluten-free version of the Date Cake.

Q4: Can I use brown sugar instead of white sugar?

A4: Yes, you can use brown sugar to add a deeper caramel flavor to your cake. Just keep in mind that it may affect the color of the cake slightly.

Q5: What beverages pair well with Sri Lanka Date Cake?

A5: A cup of Ceylon tea, coffee, or even a scoop of vanilla ice cream can be delightful companions to your Date Cake, enhancing the overall experience.