Dutch Breakfast Cake (Ontbijtkoek)


Dutch Breakfast Cake (Ontbijtkoek) | Koekbook

I did a small survey on my blog’s Facebook page asking what kind of bakes/recipes people would like to see on the blog and Dutch breakfast cake was a clear winner! It turns out there are a LOT of recipes available, some with rye, some with buckwheat or wheat or even spelt flour. The most genuine version of this cake is made with whole rye flour so I chose a recipe using only that. It might look weird using whole rye flour in a cake, but trust me, it works!

Dutch breakfast cake is basically a heavier kind of ginger cake, which you can add dried fruits, stem ginger, sugar or nuts to. Our supermarket shelves are filled with many varieties, even sugar-free cakes using xylitol. The cake is eaten with breakfast of course, but is also a beloved afternoon snack with a cup of coffee, slathered in (real) butter.

Dutch Breakfast Cake (Ontbijtkoek) | Koekbook

I used speculaas spices in this cake but if you want, you can substitute them for mixed spice, or mix up another “koek” spices recipe. I like my breakfast cake with stem ginger as I can get a little nauseous in the morning, but of course you can mix in whatever addition you like! Pearl sugar sprinkled on top is a must in my opinion, as the cake itself is not very sweet, and I have a bit of a sweet tooth! I hope you’ll enjoy this Dutch breakfast staple as much as I do!Dutch Breakfast Cake (Ontbijtkoek) | Koekbook

Recipe Dutch Breakfast Cake

Source: Gezond leven van Jacoline, adapted by Handmade Helen

Tools: whisk, 30x12cm loaf tin (greased and lined with baking parchment)


200 ml full-fat milk
1 egg
100 grams (liquid) honey
90 grams apple butter
250 grams whole rye flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
pinch of salt
2 tablespoons speculaas spices 

50 grams stem ginger, chopped (optional)
pearl sugar (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to 160C/320F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together (by hand) milk, egg, honey and apple butter. Mix flour, baking soda, salt and spices in a separate bowl and add to the wet ingredients in increments, making sure to whisk well after each addition. Mix the stem ginger in with the last increment of flour.
  3. Pour batter into the tin. Sprinkle pearl sugar on top (optional). Bake for about 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  4. Take cake out of the tin immediately after baking and place on a wire rack to cool completely. The cake tastes even better 2 or 3 days after baking! Best served slathered with butter.

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