Lemon and Poppyseed Breakfast Cake

This is a piece I wrote for Yeo Valley’s Website and was originally posted here

The 80 – 20 rule or how to bake your cake and eat it to!

Last October I put my trainers on and ran my first 5km run. It was taxing, my whole body ached, I wanted it to be over as soon as I started. But then a miraculous thing happened, as soon as I’d finished I thought ‘I want to do that again’. I’ve never been sporty and this came as a complete surprise to me as well as my friend who dragged me along. Since then my madness has continued, and I’ve run numerous ParkRuns, a 10k race and a half marathon, I think we can safely say that I am hooked to running.

Running has led me to make changes in my life, mainly to do with what I eat. This blog has often been used as a good excuse to make a cake and eat most of it myself. Now my body enables me to run these amazing distances, I want to ensure it gets what it needs. I’m not a goddess, nutritionist, health nut or about to tell you to stop eating the good stuff. I simply follow the 80-20 rule. Make sure I eat the right stuff 80% of the time and don’t worry about the other 20%.

I normally spend my runs thinking about my next meal, it’s a good way to make the time go quicker.

I’ve made loads of friends through running and we often go for a post run breakfast on a Saturday morning.  Some Saturdays we deserve an extra treat, and last week I decided to make a classic Italian breakfast cake. With a cup of tea or coffee this cake makes the perfect start to the weekend whether you’ve been for a run or not. Cake for Breakfast? Yes, why not! Life’s too short.

There’s many benefits of running, health, endorphins, fresh air, meeting people, and getting a slice of cake at the end helps too!


Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Number of servings: 8

See Detailed Nutrition Info on


  • 200 g butter, softened. I leave mine out at room temperature for 24 hours.
  • 190 g of golden caster sugar
  • 3 lemons - zested
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice from above lemons (any zested and un juiced lemons should be quartered, put in the freezer and then used as ice in your next G&T)
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 350 ml of Yeo Valley Lemon and poppy seed yogurt
  • 350g plain flour (if you want to be really virtuous use 100g wholemeal flour and 250g plain flour)
  • 5 tsp baking powder


  1. In a large bowl, cream together the butter with the sugar until very light and fluffy, you can do this by hand or with an electric whisk. Then add the vanilla, lemon juice and zest and mix until combined
  2. Stir in egg yolks one by one, don’t worry if it begins to look a little curdled, add a tbsp of the weighted out flour to bring it back.
  3. In a medium bowl, sift the flour with baking powder, and add a third alternately to the butter and sugar mixture with the Yeo Valley Lemon and Poppy Seed yoghurt
  4. Beat the egg whites in a separate and very clean bowl, until stiff and then gently fold into the cake batter.
  5. Pour cake batter into a greased, floured ring cake (I used this one) and bake in a preheated oven at 175 ° C for about 50 minutes. It may need slightly longer/less depending on your oven. So check after 45minutes. A skewer inserted into the cake should come out clean.
  6. Leave the ring cake cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Eat as is, warm or cold. Drizzle over a little lemon icing if you want it to look extra springy like mine!



  1. elliebee42 says:

    Yeo Valley is wonderful. Peter makes me buy their products because they support badgers! He’s obsessed with badgers, but I am obsessed with yoghurt, so it all works out well 🙂 Xx

  2. EJ says:

    Pleased it’s not just me who occasionally succumbs to the lure of breakfast cake 🙂 Love the colour of your lemon icing.

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