Hidden Surprise Cinnamon Loaf

This hidden surprise cinnamon loaf is the perfect Easter weekend bake! It’s also suitable for pretty much any other occasion too, so a great recipe to have in the bank. It’s completely plant based, super easy to make and has a delicious blend of warming spices and rich chocolate cake! 

The special part of this cake, is of course the fact that there’s a hidden bunny shape in the centre! This is such a cute way to jazz up a really simple cake and of course, you could mix things up and create any shape you like. 

Why you should make this Hidden surprise cinnamon loaf

  • Easy to make 
  • Completely plant based recipe 
  • Can be made with simple, store cupboard ingredients 
  • Is perfect for Easter or spring occasions 
  • Has delicious flavours of warming spices and rich cocoa
  • You can mix things up and experiment with different shapes to fill the centre 
  • It’s perfect for sharing and easy to slice into portions
  • Without the frosting, this cake can be frozen and heated up in the toaster! 

What will you need to make this recipe?

  • Self raising flour: this recipe calls for self raising flour. This will help to achieve that fluffy texture and really nice rise in the sponge! 
  • Olive or rapeseed oil: to keep this recipe plant based and dairy free, I use one of these oils in place of butter. I always opt for a light and mild variety of olive oil, so to not overpower the other flavours. I find that using one of these oils instead of butter, really helps to add a lightness to the sponge cake and creates the perfect texture! 
  • Cocoa powder: this will be needed to create the centre part of the cake. As always, I like to select a high quality cocoa powder to create that deliciously rich flavour. 
  • Caster sugar & brown sugar: this recipe uses both brown sugar and caster sugar to add sweetness. I love the slightly caramelised flavour that using brown sugar adds! 
  • Cinnamon: they key to any good Easter recipe! This recipe uses the warming flavour of cinnamon throughout the main part of the cake to add those delicious warming flavours. 
  • Soy milk & apple cider vinegar: this combination is what I use to create a vegan buttermilk. By combining these, they react and curdle to create an excellent buttermilk alternative. 

making the chocolate surprise centre

To create the chocolate centre of the loaf cake, we’re going to bake a simple chocolate sheet cake and then use this to cut out our chosen shapes. We then place these into the centre of the loaf pan and pour the cinnamon mixture around it. This would work with a variety of different shapes and styles and you could also experiment with flavours and colours! 

Hidden Surprise Cinnamon Loaf

A simple vegan cinnamon loaf cake with a hidden surprise shape in the centre!
Prep Time35 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Baking


Chocolate sponge cake

  • 70 ml olive or rapeseed oil
  • 80 g light brown sugar
  • 130 ml soy milk
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 30 g cocoa powder
  • 120 g self raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch salt

Cinnamon sponge cake

  • 90 ml olive or rapeseed oil
  • 120 g light brown sugar
  • 60 g caster sugar
  • 220 ml soy milk
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 220 g self raising flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch salt


Chocolate Loaf Recipe

  • Preheat your oven to 180c and line a brownie tin with greaseproof paper.
  • To begin making the chocolate sponge, start by combing the soy milk and apple cider vinegar together and stir to combine. Leave these to thicken for 5 minutes to create your vegan buttermilk.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the caster sugar, light brown sugar and oil and beat the together using a wooden spoon. Once combined, stir in your buttermilk mixture.
  • Sift the dry ingredients and fold these together with the wet mixture. Pour the batter into your lined tin and bake this for 30 minutes.
  • Once cooked remove from the oven and allow to cool. I would recommend placing this in the fridge for an hour to make it easier to cut out the shapes.

Cinnamon Sponge Recipe

  • Meanwhile, for the cinnamon loaf cake batter, start by combing the soy milk and apple cider vinegar and stir to combine. Leave these to thicken for 5 minutes to create the vegan buttermilk.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the caster sugar, light brown sugar and oil. Cream these together until light and fluffy, then whisk in the milk mixture.
  • Sift the dry ingredients and fold these into the wet to create a smooth batter.
  • Line your loaf tin with greaseproof paper and preheat the oven to 180c.


  • Use a cookie cutter to cut your shapes from the cooled chocolate sponge. Spread a small amount of your cinnamon mixture into the base of your tin and line the chocolate sponge shapes long the centre.
  • Pour the rest of the batter around them and place the loaf into the oven for 40-45 minutes.
    Once cooked through, allow to cool thoroughly before decorating and slicing.

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