Food & Drink The best Easter simnel cake for 2024, tried and...

The best Easter simnel cake for 2024, tried and tasted


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Devilishly hard to cut and, lo and behold, the cake is terribly dry. Large glace cherries offer welcome relief but can’t save the cardboard-textured marzipan lid and bland flavour.

Daylesford Organic simnel cake

The squidgy marzipan balls are extremely dull in flavour and the cake is mealy-textured, like softened couscous. Apricot jam dominates the flavour and while the fruit has been soaked in Earl Grey tea it’s all rather puny. Not at all joyful.

Sainsbury's Simnel Cake

The ruler-straight lattice top is too firm and the cake itself is dry and bitter, dispensing itself in loose crumbles. We’re hard-pressed to note any seam of almond paste running through it, so miserly is its distribution.

M&S Simnel Cake

If you love that potent apricot-kernel-almond flavour you’ll get it in spades here. There’s a bitterness to the bake but it’s not unpleasant; more like a grown-up rich tea cake, the marzipan top is its finest feature.

Asda Simnel Cake

A handy bar that can be easily sliced. Despite the miniature size, it’s well proportioned – not skimping on fruit and actually delivering a belt of soft almond paste. Extremely citrussy; this could pass as an orange cake. Nothing showy here but for the price it’s a good tea-time option.

Waitrose simnel cake

Chocca with juicy sultanas, raisins and currants which, along with a generous slick of almond paste through the centre, keep the already moist buttery crumb super succulent. We love the retro-style design, too.


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