This no added sugar fruit cake is packed with sweet, juicy dried fruits, so you really won't notice that there's no additional sugar in the cake mixture. It tastes delicious, and it's much healthier.
This fruit cake is my go-to cake recipe. Like most fruit cake recipes, it’ll store for a few days. It also travels well (I know from experience it makes a perfect high energy snack for swimming galas!)
As an everyday fruit cake, I make this quantity which is perfect for a 1lb loaf tin. For an easy no sugar Christmas fruit cake however, I make the double the quantity and cook the mixture in a 9 inch round tin (or you could use a 2lb loaf tin if you prefer). Extend the cooking time by half an hour.
You can use an electric hand whisk to make the cake if you like. But don't use a food processor with a chopping blade, otherwise the dried fruit will become chopped.
Optional ingredients for your low sugar fruit cake
I often just use a standard mixture of dried mixed fruit, but it’s also delicious with other dried fruits such as prunes, figs and dried apricots. If you are making a no sugar Christmas fruit cake, you could add a festive twist by soaking the fruit in brandy rather than orange juice. I've have also use rooibos tea and that adds a lovely rich flavour.
If you like nuts in your fruit cake, feel free to add those in. Around 50gr of your favourite chopped nuts would be good.
You can also adjust the spices to taste. Use mixed spice if you prefer, or maybe try adding some ground cardamom.
I've also tried replacing half of the flour with wholemeal flour for this recipe. It was nice, but slightly drier so for a Christmas or celebration fruit cake I'd probably use white flour. I have also made it with gluten free flour, and that works perfectly.
I don’t ice the cake as I think it detracts from the rich fruit flavour (as well as adding heaps of sugar!). However, there are still plenty of options if you are making a no sugar Christmas fruit cake. I use dried fruit and nuts to add decoration. You could also use almond and honey marzipan. And of course a bright ribbon around the outside gives a festive touch.
You could also use this recipe to make an Easter Simnel cake. For a traditional look, decorate with 11 almond and honey marzipan balls.
You might also like to see our other healthy and delicious Christmas recipes here
If you'd like to try a lighter carrot-cake-style recipe, try carrot apple and sultana loaf, which also has no added sugar. Or if you are looking for a fat free fruit cake (also sugar free), then this recipe uses applesauce to keep the cake moist and delicious.
And for other ways to reduce the amount of sugar in your diet, take a look at How to eat less sugar
No Added Sugar Fruit Cake
- 375 g mixed dried fruit
- ½ orange or 1 clementine
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 large eggs
- 100 g butter, well softened
- 150 plain flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon milk
- Preheat the oven to 160/140 fan.
Preparing the fruit
- Zest the orange and squeeze the orange juice, and make up to 100 ml with water. Add to a pan along with the dried fruits and spices. Bring to a gentle simmer for 5 minutes or until most of the juice has been absorbed. Leave to cool.
Preparing the tin
- Whilst the fruit is cooling, prepare the tin. Line the bottom and sides of a 1lb loaf tin with buttered greaseproof paper or baking parchment.
Mixing the cake
- Beat the eggs, and add the softened butter, flour and baking powder. Stir in the milk. Add the cooled soaked dried fruit and mix well. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top level
- Bake for 1 hour. If you are making double the quantity, increase the baking time to one and a half hours. The cake should be lightly browned, and if you insert a skewer if should come out clean.
Please note nutritional information is for guidance only