You will truly love this SOFT and tender lemon Chia Seed Cake, speckled with healthy chia seeds and subtly flavoured with lemon. The cake is made with YOGHURT which gives it a supremely soft texture and it is enhanced with a deliciously tangy LEMON SYRUP soak and LEMON icing. Perfect with a cup of tea or a slice for breakfast!
Want to up the HEALTHY elements of your baking?
Chia seeds are the answer!
"In terms of nutritional content, a tablespoon of chia is like a smoothie made from salmon, spinach, and human growth hormone. As tiny as those seeds are, they’re superpacked with Omega-3s, protein, calcium, iron, zinc, fiber and antioxidants.”Van Zandt, Monica, Chia Seed Superfood: How to Use Chia Seeds for Weight Loss, Raw Dieting, and Overall Health
Need I say more?
In summary dear friends, these little beauties are virtually tasteless BUT they are bursting with goodness!
One of my favourite loaf cakes is my Easy Lime Drizzle Cake with Lime Frosting, it's so easy to make and so delicious that I decided to use it as the basis for a Chia Seed Cake. Swapping out limes for lemons and, hey presto, and we have a Chia seed lemon drizzle cake!
Oh boy, truly delicious!
Why make this Chia Cake?
Full of healthy chia seeds, lemon and yoghurt ✔️
Really easy, the cake is made in just 3 steps! ✔️
Topped with tangy lemon syrup and lemon frosting ✔️
Light yet moist cake✔️
Great for lunchboxes or breakfast✔️
- Greek yoghurt
- Chia seeds
- Self-raising flour
- Baking powder
- Fine salt
- Unsalted butter
- Caster (superfine) sugar
- Icing (confectioner's) sugar
Chia seeds come from the plant Salvia hispanica which originates from Mexico.
A serving of chia seeds can contribute to a healthy and balanced diet. They are an antioxidant and are packed with omega 3 and omega 6, calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, folate, vitamin A and copper.
Clinical trials have shown chia seeds can increase the amount of HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL (bad cholesterol).
Pretty impressive for a tiny little seed!
Why makes this the perfect lemon drizzle cake?
A lemon drizzle cake that isn't moist and oozing with lemon flavour is always a great disappointment to me, so in order to avoid this we follow these steps:
The cake itself should be lemony and soft
A perfect lemon drizzle cake needs to have the right texture it should be soft and full of lemon flavour, in order to achieve this yoghurt is added to the cake and lots of lemons are used.
A lemon syrup for added flavour and moistness
As soon as it is out of the oven the cake is pricked all over with a skewer and then a simple lemon flavoured syrup made with heated sugar and water and flavoured with lemon juice and zest is poured over and allowed to soak in. This syrup permeates the cake and gives it additional moistness and sweet lemon flavour.
Lemon icing for a zingy frosting
Lemon icing, made with just lemon juice, icing (confectioner's) sugar is then poured over the top of the cake and allowed to trickle down the sides. This icing is very lemony but also nice and sweet.
See end of post RECIPE CARD for precise quantities and instructions.
Chia Seed Cake
Beat together butter and sugar until soft and paste-like.
Mix together Greek (or natural) yoghurt, chia seeds and lemon zest and juice until fully combined.
Add the yoghurt mixture and beat in on a low setting until fully incorporated. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together.
Add a spoonful of flour mixture along with an egg and beat in on low thoroughly to ensure the egg is each fully incorporated. Repeat with remaining eggs.
Add the rest of the flour mixture and give the cake batter a good beat for 10 seconds but no more, don't overbeat.
Transfer to a lined loaf tin and bake for 40-45 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Hint: loaf tin liners are ideal to save the hassle of lining a tin.
10 minutes before the cake comes out of the oven heat together sugar and water until the sugar dissolves. Prick the hot cake all over, stir lemon juice into the sugar syrup and then pour over the cake. Allow to soak in whilst the cake cools then remove to a cooling rack.
Hint: keep tipping your saucepan to the side to see if sugar granules still remain on the base.
Sift icing (confectioner's) sugar in order to remove lumps and then mix in lemon juice and zest until a smooth icing is formed.
Spread the lemon icing over the cooled cake and then sprinkle over more chia seeds for decoration.
Hint: if your icing is runny simply mix in more sifted icing sugar, you do need it to quite thin though so that it just provides a thin glaze rather than a thick icing.
Did you try this recipe?
Please leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating in the Recipe Card below.
Don't have all of the ingredients listed for this Chia Seed Cake? Don't worry, here are some substitutions:
- Chia seeds: can be replaced with poppy seeds as in my Pink Gin and Poppy Seed Loaf Cake, or left out altogether for a lemon drizzle cake recipe.
- Caster sugar: can be replaced with golden caster sugar or granulated sugar.
- Greek yoghurt: can be replaced with plain natural yoghurt.
- Self-raising flour: can be replaced with plain/all-purpose flour, if so add 2 teaspoons of baking powder in total.
- Lemons: can be replaced with limes.
This Chia Seed Cake will keep for 5-7 days if stored in an airtight container.
This cake freezes well, slice it up first and then freeze it in slices, then you can defrost a slice at a time when you fancy a piece.
- Make sure your eggs are at room temperature they amalgamate into the mixture far better and also ensure the final texture of your baked cake is perfect.
- Loaf tin sizes vary, as a rule of thumb stop filling your tin with cake batter is a maximum of 2 centimetres below the rim of the tin so that it has plenty of room to rise.
- Don't be tempted to overbeat because it will ruin the texture on the final cake.
- Run a knife around the edge of your tin before removing your cake to ensure it does not stick.
Fancy trying another cake? Here is a little selection of popular cake recipes on Ellas's Better Bakes...
The most popular recipe on Ella's Better Bakes! This is a moist, soft cake subtly flavoured with coffee and ground walnuts for a full but gentle flavour.
Fancy a change to the traditional lemon drizzle cake? This is a zingy lime drizzle cake that is incredibly easy to make and absolutely delicious!
Rhubarb and banana are packed into these gorgeous muffins, perfect for a snack or to brighten up breakfast!
Chia Seed Lemon Drizzle Cake
Here's what you'll need...
- Small saucepan
Ingredients you'll need...
Chia Seed Cake
- 180 g self raising flour (1 Cup and 4 tablespoons) or use plain/AP flour and add add 2 teaspoons of baking powder in total
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 80 g unsalted butter softened (⅓ Cup)
- 225 g caster (superfine) sugar (1 Cup)
- 90 ml natural or Greek yoghurt (6 level tablespoons for just over ⅓ Cup)
- 1½ tablespoon chia seeds
- 2-3 teaspoon lemon zest (roughly 3 small/medium lemons)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (roughly juice of 1 small/medium lemon)
- 3 large eggs at room temperature (US = extra large)
Lemon Syrup Soak
- 35 g caster sugar (2½ tablespoons)
- 30 ml water (2 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 150 g icing (confectioner's) sugar sifted (13 tablespoons)
- 1½ tablespoon juice of 2 lemons
- zest of 2 lemons
- 2 teaspoon chia seeds
Here's what we do...
- Set your oven to 350°F/180°C/160°C/Gas mark 4
- Line the base and sides of your loaf tin with greaseproof paper and grease the exposed ends of the tin (see picture in main blog).
- Sift together your flour, baking powder and salt.
- Using the paddle attachment fitted to your stand mixer or beaters for your hand mixer, beat your butter a few times to ensure nice and soft.
- Add your caster sugar and beat until a dry paste is formed.
- Mix together your yoghurt, chia seeds, lemon zest and lemon juice and then add it all to your beaten butter and sugar. Beat a few times until just combined and wipe your bowl down with your spatula intermittently to ensure everything is equally mixed.
- Add one egg and a heaped dessertspoonful of your sifted flour mixture and beat on a low setting until combined.
- Repeat twice more until the eggs are all mixed in.
- On a low setting beat in the remaining flour until just combined, again wiping down with your spatula to ensure all of the batter is mixed in.
- Give the mixture a fast beat on medium-high for 10 seconds and no more. It should look smooth and silky when ready,
- Pour the mixture into your prepared tin and level out.
- Place in the centre of your oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden on top and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- 10 minutes before your cake is due to come out of your oven make your lemon syrup.
- Stirring continuously, heat your water and sugar in your small saucepan over a low heat until all of the sugar crystals disappear.
- As soon as your cake is out of the oven, use a skewer to prick holes in the cake all over.
- Mix your lemon juice into your sugar syrup and then immediately pour over your cake whilst it is hot, leave it to cool in the tin for 20 minutes.
- Remove to a cool rack to continue to cool.
- Once your cake has completely cooled make your icing.
- Mix together your sifted icing sugar and lemon juice until fully combined.
- Hold a dessert spoon full of icing over the centre of the cake and allow to naturally drizzle over the cake and drip down the sides,
- Sprinkle over chia seeds.