Looking for quick and easy baking recipes to try at home? Need an easy cake ready in under an hour? Try one of our quick and easy baking recipes, including easy cupcakes, cheerful traybakes and indulgent chocolate cakes. For keen bakers, check out our best stand mixers to buy.


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Quick and easy baking ideas

Easy chocolate brownies

A classic, gooey chocolate brownie recipe ready in forty five minutes that can be ramped up with added ingredients. We’ve included three suggestions of additional ingredients for more opportunities (excuses) to bake this wonder.

Best Ever Classic Chocolate Brownie Recipe

Triple chocolate chip cookies

You can’t beat the smell of freshly baked cookies wafting through your kitchen – these luxurious ones combine dark, milk and white chocolate.

Triple chocolate chip cookies

Fairy cakes

For an easy spot of afternoon baking, you can’t go wrong with light and spongy fairy cakes. Jazz them up with extra decorations of your choice, if you like.

Vanilla fairy cakes with white icing displayed on a ceramic cake stand

Chocolate drip cake

Take your love of chocolate cake one step further with this impressive chocolate drip cake, where chocolate sponge is slathered in chocolate buttercream and topped with a layer of glossy ganache.

Chocolate cake with a glossy chocolate ganache dripping down the sides, sat on a white cake stand on a green background

Biscoff cupcakes

A batch of these malty, biscuity cupcakes are easy to whip up – they require less than an hour of hands-on time. Check out more Biscoff recipes for you to try.

A wooden board and ceramic plate topped with cupcakes on a blue wooden surface

Sugar cookies

Taking just 30 minutes to make, check out these charming vanilla-flavoured biscuits topped with a light frosting.

Circular biscuits topped with white icing and multicoloured sprinkles on a textured green background

Classic marble cake

A cake that requires very little effort, the trick here is not to over-swirl the mixture as you want a clear definition between flavours. Of course this cake can be made with different flavours and colours, but we stand by the classic pairing of chocolate and vanilla.

A round marble cake with three slices cut out on a cake stand

Apricot Swiss roll

The classic sponge gets a seasonal twist, using apricots in a juicy compote as well as in an accompanying boozy syrup.

Four plates of apricot swiss roll slices

Vanilla cupcakes

Bake these sweet and fluffy vanilla cupcakes for a celebration or simply as a treat with your afternoon cuppa.

A cake stand full of cupcakes with creamy piped frosting on a white linen table cloth

Chocolate chip banana bread

Take banana bread to the next level by topping with an indulgent chocolate sauce and caramelised bananas. Even better when served with a morning brew.

A banana and chocolate chip loaf cake on a white serving board, with a slice cut from the end

Chocolate mug cake

This nifty microwave mug cake recipe is the perfect bake for impatient chocolate lovers, ready in just five minutes.

two rustic, handmade mugs on a side plate filled with chocolate sponge

Cardamom buns

Check out this cheat’s version of classic spiced buns. Bread mixes make a genius shortcut – just add butter and spices for the ultimate swirl bun.

A wooden platter of cardamom buns with a mug of black coffee


Silky, creamy fudge is offset by a smattering of chunky sea salt flakes in this speedy recipe.

Easy Fudge Recipe on a marble board

White chocolate, tahini and pretzel cookies

Tahini gives a lovely sweet/salty kick to these crisp, grown-up cookies, while pretzels add extra crunch.

White Chocolate Cookies with Tahini and Pretzels

Rock cakes

A rustic version of scones, have a go at baking these easy-to-make rock cakes for a sweet treat to enjoy at the weekend.

Rock Cakes on a cooling tray with two mugs of coffee

Classic Swiss roll

Enjoy a light and airy sponge, coated in crunchy sugar and bursting with fruity jam for a vintage teatime treat.

A swiss roll on a white board with empty side plates on the side and a dessert knife

Classic millionaire's shortbread

This is the perfect trio of buttery shortbread, gooey caramel and thick, sweet chocolate. Ideal for enjoying with an afternoon cup of tea, keep you biscuit tin filled to the brim with these moreish beauties.

A pile of millionaire's shortbread squares on a plate

Classic vegan carrot cake

Invite your vegan friends for afternoon tea and bake this British classic, ready in just 1 hour! Our frosted carrot cake is made with a surprising (vegan) ingredient that guarantees a moist sponge every time.

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Vegan carrot cake topped with walnuts on a white cake stand

Almond cake

An easy bake recipe to have up your sleeve, this cake pairs beautifully with fresh berries and cream and, of course, a hot cuppa. No ground almonds? Not too worry, grinding the same amount of blanched whole or flaked almonds will do the trick.

A round almond cake topped with almonds on a pale pink cake stand

Quick and easy chocolate fudge cake

Need to bake a last-minute birthday cake? Our chocolate fudge cake recipe is super quick and easy to make so it is perfect for a simple yet decadent cake for a special occasion. You don't need to use a chocolate with a high % for this, just standard dark chocolate is fine.


Biscoff cookies

Chewy, golden cookies with crunchy biscuit crumbs and a melting Biscoff middle. These mouth-watering cookies will disappear in a flash.

Biscoff Cookies Recipe

Vegan lemon loaf cake

A delicate, zingy vegan lemon cake made without eggs, milk or butter! The key to that lemony tang is a decent lemon extract (we use Nielsen-Massey), ready in just 1 hour!

Vegan Lemon Cake Recipe

Quick Victoria sponge

A classic, simple Victoria sponge is one of the recipes that you should have in your repertoire as it's ready in under an hour. This traditional sponge cake uses an all-in-one method making it quick, easy and the perfect party cake. Once you master this, bake sales and afternoon tea will no longer be daunting, and making variations will be easy. Try our easy cake recipes here...

Victoria Sponge Cake Recipe

Classic chocolate tiffin

We use the word ‘baking’ loosely here, as classic chocolate tiffin is known as the perfect no-bake treat. Requiring a handful of ingredients, it just needs time to set in the fridge before serving.

A tray of chocolate tiffin with swirled white chocolate and normal chocolate topping

Chocolate muffins

Is there anything better than a soft, spongy, oven-warm chocolate muffin with melting milk chocolate chunks? Our foolproof recipe shows you how to make them in just 35 minutes.

Easy Chocolate Muffins Recipe

Portuguese custard tarts

Portuguese custard tarts made easy with with step-by-step help from the olive test kitchen. Use ready-made puff pastry to make this recipe ready in under an hour. Dusting the pastry with icing sugar gives the tarts a golden, caramelised crust when cooked.

Portuguese custard tarts on a cooling rack

Ultimate chocolate fudge cake

Enjoy a slice of heaven in under an hour! Our decadent chocolate cake is covered in silky smooth frosting and we teach you how to create dark chocolate curls for an artisan finish.

Chocolate Fudge Cake Recipe

Cheat’s ginger, salted caramel and rum cake

Transform simple ginger loaf into this boozy cake in just 25 minutes by soaking in rum and caramel then layering with boozy caramel cream.

Rum and Ginger Cake Recipe with Salted Caramel

Quick cinnamon buns

Check out our easiest ever cinnamon buns that are quick to make because they use ready made puff pastry. Bake and enjoy now or save for a weekend breakfast – just make sure to eat them warm from the oven.

Easy Cinnamon Bun Recipe

Apricot and white chocolate cookies

These apricot and white chocolate cookies are really quick and easy to make but taste delicious. They are ideal for a bit of baking and only take 40 minutes. Try our biscuit recipes here.

Apricot and White Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

Salted caramel and pear blondies

Check out these moreish blondies with salted caramel and pears. Whip these up in under an hour for an easy treat to serve friends or family.

Salted Caramel Blondie Recipe with Pears

Cherry bakewell tart

Our cherry bakewell tart is an exceedingly good tart – serve with a cup of builder’s tea for a proper English teatime treat, perfect to serve when guests come for tea last minute.

Cherry Bakewell tart Recipe

Quick coffee cake

Classic coffee cake is one of our all-time favourite afternoon treats. In this recipe, we've given it a modern twist to include deliciously crunchy pecan brittle. It makes a quick baking recipe that's really impressive.

Coffee Cake Recipe with Pecan Brittle

Croissant cinnamon buns

Check out these easy-to-make, moreish cinnamon buns. This simple cinnamon bun recipe uses Jus-Rol croissant dough making them extra flaky and extra crispy.

12 croissant cinnamon rolls served on a cooling rack on a dark blue board

Butterfly cakes

These little cakes make a perfect gateway to baking, requiring minimal effort with fun results. They make a great addition to parties or afternoon tea.

A selection of butterfly cupcakes on a wire cake stand

Jammie Dodger blondies

Check out these super easy super fun blondies using a children's classic biscuit, Jammie Dodgers. These fudgy moreish white chocolate blondies are a great alternative to a traditional chocolate brownie, and will go perfectly with your afternoon cuppa.

White Chocolate Blondie Recipe with Jammie Dodgers

This chocolate chip cookie pizza is super easy to make and great fun with all the family. Crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside, this giant cookie makes for a great alternative to a birthday cake that's quick to make.

Salted caramel shortbread

Sweet and salty flavours are an ongoing trend and this shortbread recipe is the perfect way to blend these flavours. It's quick and easy baking and will please a crowd. Find our quick and easy traybake recipes here...

Salted Caramel Shortbread Recipe

Quick apricot and hazelnut pastries

Check out these flaky apricot pastries with creamy fresh custard and sweet apricots, the perfect weekend breakfast treat ready in 35 minutes.

Apricot Pastry Recipe with Hazelnuts

Tottenham cake

This easy traybake combines a light sponge recipe with raspberry icing, making it a very pretty addition to any gathering.

Squares of pink Tottenham cake on a board

Texas sheet cake

Our birthday traybake works brilliantly as a base for any kid's birthday cake. It's actually a 'sheet cake', a standard baking treat in Texas. We've added a chocolate topping here, but you could it personalise it any way you like. Try our epic birthday cake recipes for everyone here...

Chocolate sheet cake cut into squares

Jaffa cupcakes

Check out these fun and easy orange cupcakes with silky smooth chocolate frosting and old school Jaffa cakes. Make these cupcakes for an impressive alternative to a showstopping birthday cake.

Jaffa Cake Cupcakes Recipe

Easy white chocolate fudge cake

Our white chocolate fudge cake is easy to make, looks fantastic and is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser.

White Chocolate Fudge Cake Recipe

Peanut butter and jelly scones

Peanut butter and jelly is a classic American flavour combination. This combined with an English classic to make peanut butter and jelly scones is sure to be a new favourite.

Peanut Butter Scones With Jam

Sticky honey cakes

This recipe for sticky honey cakes is really easy to make and they look great. The combination of honey, lemon and ginger works really well together and they're surprisingly low-cal.

Honey Cakes Recipe

Ginger shortbreads

Try our easy shortbread recipe for triple ginger biscuits. These crumbly ginger shortbreads are perfect for elevenses with a hot cup of tea or alternatively with strawberries and cream for dessert.

Shortbread Recipe for Ginger Shortbread Cookies

Salted maple brownies

How do you make brownies even better? Add sea salt and maple of course! This recipe is really easy to make but looks impressive and delivers big flavours. Our top brownie recipes are here

salted maple brownies

Jam tarts

This is a perfect tea-time recipe for the whole family. Recruit the kids to help you dolloping jam into the delicate pastry cases and use different jams to get a multicoloured plateful.

Mini jam tarts on a serving plate, with multicoloured jam fillings

Piña colada tarts

Add a Caribbean twist to your baking with pineapple, coconut and rum flavours of piña colada. Use ready-baked tarts if you want to make this dessert even easier.

Pina Colada Dessert Recipe

Peanut butter thumbprint cookies

These peanut butter thumbprint cookies use the classic peanut butter and jam (or jelly) combination in a fun new way. They're best eaten the day they're made.

Peanut butter thumbprint cookies

Bourbon biscuit brownies

What's better than a chocolate Bourbon biscuit? Chocolate Bourbon brownies! This is one of our favourite recipes of 2016 - trust us, you'll need to make a double batch.

Bourbon Biscuit Chocolate Brownies Recipe

Frosted lemon fairy cakes

These cute little lemon cupcakes would work equally well for a kids party, baby shower or just a treat to serve with afternoon tea. If you are short of time make the sponges ahead and store in an airtight box then ice on the day.

Easy Lemon Cupcakes Recipe

Cobnut and chocolate shortbreads

Chocolate shortbreads, our favourite biscuit already, but add cobnuts (part of the hazelnut family) and your teatime treat just got a whole lot better.

Cobnut and Chocolate Shortbreads Recipe

Coffee and walnut cupcakes

Coffee and walnut cake is a teatime favourite. With this recipe, we've given it a modern makeover by giving it the cupcake treatment. Pipe the icing sky-high for maximum cake drama.

Coffee and Walnut Cupcakes Recipe

Custard cream blondies

Ever thought of adding custard creams to your blondie mixture? It's genius! Have a go this weekend and let us know how you get on (@olivemagazine).

Custard Cream Blondies Recipe

Salted peanut and honeycomb rocky road

These salted peanut and honeycomb rocky road squares are a great twist on a classic and will please everyone. Plus, they're really easy and only take 15 minutes of work.

Honeycomb Rocky Road Recipe with Peanuts

Classic banana bread

kay, so this perhaps takes a tiny bit longer than an hour, but it's super simple and requires just six ingredients. A real classic, and perfect for a teatime treat or breakfast snack.
For more baking ideas and recipe inspiration, try our banana recipes and banana bread recipes.

Sliced banana bread loaf

This week on the olive magazine podcast, the cookery team talk about next-generation food gifts, including gin and tonic dip dabs and giant pizza cookies.

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