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Easy Welsh Cakes Recipe!




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Welsh cakes

Welsh Cakes ~ they’re cooked on a griddle like a pancake, but can be eaten out of hand like a scone ~ these sweet, buttery little breakfast cakes are a Welsh tradition that deserve a spot on your brunch or tea table!  

A stack of Welsh cakes.

What are Welsh cakes ( Pice ar y maen) ?

It’s always fun to make something entirely new, and if you’re not from Wales, you’ve probably never encountered Celtic cakes (aka bakestone cakes) before ~ they’re a little bit hard to describe! They’re similar to scones and biscuits (but thinner,) fried on both sides like pancakes, and you eat them like an English muffin. 

The combination of the currants and the subtle but noticeable hint of nutmeg gives these cakes a really interesting and unique flavor that I totally fell in love with. It’s not a combination of flavors or textures that you’re likely to find in any coffee shop or bakery in the US, which is exactly why you need to make them.

Making Welsh cakes.

I was surprised by how sweet these cakes are. They may look humble and even “wholesome” but they are actually quite a sweet treat, perfect with a cup of coffee in the morning or at tea-time.  

The little currants makes these cakes extra special.  Look for them with the raisins and other dried fruit in your supermarket.  For an American variation you might try dried cranberries.

Welsh cakes on a plate with butter.

How to cook Welsh cakes 

You’ll cook these cakes like pancakes, on the stove.  

  • I think the trickiest part about making these Welsh cakes is getting your pan temperature right. Plan on a test-cake or two and you (and your cakes) will be golden!
  • They’ll need a couple minutes on each side to cook through, which means you don’t want the pan to be too hot and brown them too much before they’ve had a chance to cook. Oh, and no butter or oil on the pan necessary!
  • I found that somewhere between medium/medium-low on my stove was perfect, and I recommend a cast iron pan if you one because they keep a nice even heat. You might have to play around a bit to find the sweet spot on your stove. 

A plate of Welsh cakes with butter.

What to serve with Welsh cakes ~

These cakes can be dusted with sugar and a little extra spice once they are baked and simply eaten as is, or you can serve them with a variety of toppings.  

To reheat Welsh cakes

  • The easiest way is to pop them in the toaster!

Welsh cakes in a bowl.

More breakfast treats ~

Welsh cakes with butter.
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5 from 6 votes

Welsh Cakes

Welsh Cakes ~ they're cooked on a griddle like a pancake, but can be eaten out of hand like a scone, these sweet, buttery little cakes are a Welsh tradition that deserve a spot on your brunch or tea table! 
Course Breakfast, brunch, Dessert
Cuisine Welsh
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Yield 18 cakes

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup currants
  • 2 eggs plus enough milk to make 3/4 cup liquid.
  • extra sugar plus a little nutmeg or cinnamon for dusting (optional)

Instructions

  • Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg in a mixing bowl.
  • With your hands, mix the cold butter into the flour mixture until the butter is well dispersed and the whole mixture is crumbly. It's ok to have some small chunks of butter.
  • Add the currants and mix to combine.
  • Briefly whisk the eggs with the milk, and add the liquid to the flour and butter mixture. Mix until everything is just combined. The dough will be very sticky.
  • On a floured surface, pat the dough into a disk and gently roll out until it's about 1/4 to 1/3 of an inch thick. You can divide the dough in half and keep half of it in the fridge until you're ready for it if your rolling surface and frying pan/griddle are on the smaller side.
  • Cut out the cakes with a 3 or 3 1/2 inch biscuit cutter, and lay them on a baking sheet or a piece of parchment paper until you're ready to cook them.
  • Preheat a heavy pan or griddle (cast iron works great here because of its even heating) to medium/medium-low heat, and dry fry (no oil) the cakes. They'll need about 2 or 2 and a half minutes or so on each side. You'll want to make sure your pan is the right temperature so they don't burn on the outside before they get cooked through in the middle, so you might need to do a test-cake or two. Cook them until they're lightly golden and spring back when gently touched.
  • Mix a tablespoon or two of extra sugar with a pinch of nutmeg and/or cinnamon, and dust the finished cakes, if desired. Serve warm with butter, jam, clotted cream, or eat them as is!

Notes

These cakes are fairly sweet, you can definitely reduce the sugar to about 2/3 cup without any problems.
Recipe from King Arthur Flour.
 

Welsh Cakes pin.

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9 Comments

    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    Rhonda
    March 8, 2020 at 9:12 am

    5 stars
    We loved t the welsh cakes even made with old baking powder.
    Will make again with fresh baking powder and Costco dried blueberries. Craisins were good but I think the blueberries will be awesome.

  • Reply
    Laura
    March 5, 2020 at 10:21 am

    I’ve never heard of Welsh Cakes, but they look like something my family and I would absolutely love! Pinning so I can give them a try!

  • Reply
    Cindy L Masek
    March 4, 2020 at 10:26 am

    Has anyone tried an electric skillet or griddle where you can set an exact temp? I’m just thinking that might take some of the guess work out. And yes – I will try less sugar! We spent 2 weeks in Europe a few years ago and returned with a totally different palate. I dislike how sweet – and overly large – everything is here in the US. I also learned to eat vegetables with breakfast! Sliced tomatoes, peppers, and cheese & sliced meat with breakfast just seemed bizarre – but now it doesn’t seem complete without them.

    • Reply
      Beth
      March 4, 2020 at 3:34 pm

      I baked Welsh cakes on March 1 (3 days ago because it was St. David’s Day) but from a Mary Berry recipe, with tweaks from Welsh websites for authenticity. Used far less sugar. No currants, so chopped raisins instead. Used mace and a pinch of cinnamon instead of nutmeg, as the Welsh ladies said mace was authentic. Used an electric griddle (my well-used Cuisinart Griddler) on 325 F. Cooked longer on each side to make sure they were baked through. They were delicious – ate some plain, and some with a smear of honey – nice subtle flavors. Reheating is easy in a toaster oven.

  • Reply
    Abbe@This is How I Cook
    March 4, 2020 at 9:48 am

    These sound fabulous Sue! Can’t wait to try them!

  • Reply
    Joycelyn
    March 4, 2020 at 9:47 am

    Unfortunately, KA flour tends to “Americanize” their posted “authentic” recipes which always results in calling for too much sugar. Being Canadian I questioned KA some years back about a so called authentic Canadian recipe they’d posted, as it was so far from the original it was an insult to Canadian bakers/cooks.
    The amount of sugar being called for in this KA flour recipe being a perfect example. Highly suggest if making this recipe to follow Sue’s advice to reduce sugar amount.

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 4, 2020 at 10:18 am

      Definitely reduce the sugar if you like, for sure, Joycelyn. The American palate is used to a slightly higher sugar content, thanks to Starbucks et al ;)

  • Reply
    Phyllis Bergst
    March 4, 2020 at 9:23 am

    5 stars
    Haven’t made these yet, but I know I will. You are always sharing so many great ideas and recipes so I just have to pay you back. I have to watch my salt intake so when I found Pawpa Flavor at a farmers market in a Kaiser Hospital parking lot, my wishes were granted. I love the Lemon Lime Pepper and use it on EVERYTHING. They are local to Northern Calif, but do ship. PawpaFlavor.com

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 4, 2020 at 10:19 am

      I haven’t heard of that, thanks Phyllis!