Tea Cakes Recipe & Tea Bread Recipes

Southern Tea Cakes Recipe

This is Paula Deen's tea cakes recipe, that she used on her show about afternoon tea. Give this recipe a try, it gets rave reviews.

  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 sticks of butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl sift flour, baking soda, and baking powder together. Add remaining ingredients and blend well. Dough should be soft. Roll dough out onto a floured surface until approximately 1/4 –inch thick. Cut dough into desired shapes and bake on a lightly greased sheet of 10 to 12 minutes.

Russian Tea Cakes Recipe

These buttery, melt in your mouth cookies are normally made with nuts. But they can also be made without nuts too, if you are allergic to nuts.

  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened (do NOT use vegetable oil spreads in this recipe)
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour (do NOT use self-rising flour in this recipe)
  • ¾ cup finely chopped nuts
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • extra powdered sugar to roll the cookies in

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Mix butter, ½ cup powdered sugar and the vanilla in a large bowl. Stir in flour, nuts and salt until dough holds together. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place about 1-inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until set but not brown. Remove from cookie sheet. Cool slightly on wire rake. Roll warm cookies in powdered sugar; cool on wire rack. Roll in powdered sugar again. Makes 4 dozen cookies.

Lemon Tea Bread

This is a very nice tea bread recipe that is moist, tender, and very tasty! The orange cream cheese spread makes it an extra special treat!


  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup butter or margarine, soften
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup chopped pecans

Lemon Glaze

  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar

Orange Cream Cheese

  • 1 (8oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • ¼ cup sifted powdered sugar

To make the Bread: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.Grease and flour bottom and halfway up the sides of an 8 x 4 x 2Loaf pan; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream the softened butter or margarine and the 1 cup granulated sugar together with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add the eggs and the shredded lemon peel, beat the mixture well. Stir in the chopped pecans. Spread the batter in the prepared loaf pan and bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. If necessary, cover the bread with aluminum foil for the last 15 minutes of baking to prevent over browning.

To make lemon glaze: Stir together the ¼ cup granulated sugar, the lemon juice and the lemon peel. Spoon the lemon glaze over the hot bread. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes.

Remove the bread from the pan and cool on a wire rack.

To make the orange cream cheese: In a small bowl, stir together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, orange juice and orange peel until the mixture is well blended. Serve the orange cream cheese with the lemon tea bread.,br>

Cranberry-Orange Tea Bread

Without the glaze, this tea bread toasts up nicely, add a little butter (could be used in place of the tea cakes recipe) and serve it like a tea cake with morning tea. Add the glaze and it suits afternoon tea to a tee!

Tea Bread:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup cranberries, chopped (fresh, frozen or dried)

Orange Glaze:

  • 1-2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 cup shifted powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Grease the bottom only of an 8 x 4 or 9x 5 inch loaf pan. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, combine milk, orange juice, melted butter, zest and eggs. Stir to combine well. Add dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Gently stir in cranberries and mix just until they are evenly distributed. Pour batter (it will be thick) into pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes, depending on the size of pan used. Loosen sides from pan, remove and let cool completely.

When cool, prepare glaze, if using. In a small bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of the orange juice with powdered sugar, adding a little more juice if needed to obtain a smooth consistency. Drizzle over top of loaf.

You could use the tea cakes recipes above, as well as the tea bread recipes in a single tea party menu. Although you normally want one sweet and one savory item on a tea tray.

The traditional menu for afternoon tea served in the late 1800's was tea, bread, butter and cakes, but the tea menu today usually includes three courses:

  • Savories: Tiny sandwiches or appetizers
  • Scones: Served with jam and Devonshire cream
  • Pastries: Tarts, cookies, cakes and other sweets

Try incorporating one of the tea cakes recipes or tea bread recipes as your Pastry or Sweet. Your guest will love learning about the different kinds of tea cakes and tea breads.

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