Desserts, Parve, Rosh Hashana

Honey Cake

honey cake

Not everyone likes honey cake, but for those who like it, there’s a feeling of being cheated if it isn’t served for a High Holiday dessert. Honey cake lovers like the deep flavor, soft texture, and gooey top of this sweet treat. Plus, honey cake is High Holiday tradition. My suggestion? Make honey cake for the purists, and make apple or plum cake for everyone else.

Honey Cake

Yield: 3 loaves (27 servings)


  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 cup unsalted margarine, softened
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • Juice of half a lemon, equal to 1 ½ tablespoons


  1. Sift together dry ingredients, set aside
  2. Cream margarine and brown sugar
  3. Add egg yolks and honey. Mix well.
  4. Add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the coffee
  5. Add lemon juice and beat well.
  6. In separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold into batter.
  7. Pour batter into 3 loaf pans and bake at 350°F for 27-35 minutes or until set and a few moist crumbs cling to toothpick inserted gently into center of cake. Cool on racks.

Note: This cake ages very well, even out of the freezer, and will improve in taste on standing. The honey in the cake acts as a preservative. The loaves will keep well covered for at least two weeks, in my experience. Any longer and it’s probably better to freeze them.