Easy Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe

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This traditional Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe (aka Tea Bread) has got to be one of the easiest ever. It is a cross between bread and cake with a little bit denser texture and rather delicious when spread with butter and served with a nice cup of tea!

Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe - Family Favourite!
Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe – Family Favourite!
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I love this Fruit Loaf Recipe that I got from my mum (yes, another one from my mum).  And one of the reasons I love it is the fact that it is sooooo easy.  You can literally throw the ingredients together in a pan, melt the butter, mix it, and pop it in the oven.

Traditional Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe

This is actually a very traditional Scottish recipe that my mum (who is not Scottish but does live in Scotland) had begged from one of the SWRI ladies (Scottish Women’s Rural Institute) quite a while ago.  And believe me, these ladies certainly know how to bake!

It really does make the yummiest fruit bread which your family and friends will love you for.

You can go ahead and use either UK or US cup sizes for this recipe as it will not affect the end results.

(I have also now added cups and grams to the printable recipe card + an explanation about the differences between the UK Vs US Cup sizes)

Easy Fruit Bread Recipe From Scotland

Scottish Fruit Loaf

Course: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Scottish
Keyword: Baking, Fruit Bread, Fruit Loaf
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 12 Slices
Calories: 225kcal
Author: Sam Franklin
This delicious Fruit Loaf (or Fruit Bread) recipe is so easy to make that it will quickly become a favourite go-to recipe.
Print Recipe


  • 2lb Loaf Tin
  • Saucepan
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Greaseproof Paper
  • Measuring Cup
  • Teaspoon


  • 1 cup Raisins (200g)
  • 1 cup Sultanas (200g)
  • 1 cup Sugar (200g)
  • 1 cup Water (250ml)
  • 1 tsp (heaped) Mixed Spices
  • 1 tsp (heaped) Ground Ginger
  • 1 tsp (level) Baking Soda
  • 4 oz Margarine (115 grams)
  • 1 cup Self Raising Flour (120g)
  • 1 cup Plain Flour (120g)
  • 2 small eggs (or 1 large)


  • Add dried fruit, sugar, water, spices, margarine and baking soda into a saucepan
  • Gently heat until the margarine melts and the sugar has dissolved (do not allow to boil)
  • Allow mixture in the saucepan to cool for at least 15 minutes
  • Grease and line the 2lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F)
  • Put the self-raising and plain flour into a large bowl then add the beaten egg and cooled mixture from the saucepan
    Easy Fruit Bread Instructions
  • Gently mix the ingredients until you get a smooth mixture with no lumps of flour
  • Pour the mixture into the loaf tin and place in the center of the preheated oven
    Fruit Bread Mixture In Loaf Tin Ready To Be Put In The Oven
  • Bake until the top has nicely browned (approx 1hr 15 to 1hr 30 minutes). If you have a fan oven you may want to turn it down a little or take it out the oven a little earlier (you can use a skewer to check when it is done – when the skewer comes out clean then the fruit loaf is ready)
  • Take out of the oven, allow to cool a little then turn out on a cooling rack
  • Slice the fruit loaf, spread with generous amounts of butter and enjoy with a cup of tea!


I have checked my cup sizes and they are the same as the UK (also Australian and Canadian) cup sizes which are very slightly bigger than US cup sizes (UK cups = 250ml Vs US Cups = 240ml)
You can go ahead and use whichever cup size you have but it is so minimal that it should not affect the end results. Also as long as you are using the same cups for measuring out the ingredients the proportions will work out the same.
If you do want to adjust the recipe and be more precise then you can always take 2 teaspoons out of the US cups.
If you would like to know more about this there is a very handy explanation and conversion charts over on the delicious magazine site: Cups To Grams Conversion Charts


Calories: 225kcal

Fruit Loaf Variation Idea

Another little variation for this recipe is to replace the water with tea which gives a slightly different flavour.  I like sometimes like to add earl grey tea which gives a lovely fragrant citrus twist to the fruit bread.

How Long Can You Keep Fruit Loaf?

Fruit loaf keeps really well and you can keep it in an airtight container for a few weeks (I normally wrap mine in greaseproof paper before placing it in the container).  In fact, when my mum gave me the recipe she told me to wait a few days as the taste and texture actually improves.  We, however, can hardly wait for the fruit loaf to cool before helping ourselves to large chunks – yum!. 🙂

How To Freeze The Fruit Bread

This fruit bread freezes well and I very often make 2 at a time and throw one in the freezer for a later date.  I like to freeze mine already sliced so that I can grab a few slices at a time.

To freeze it I normally take the fruit bread out of the Loaf Tin and allow the loaf to cool on a rack, slice it, then wrap the individual slices tightly in Cling Film and then seal in a freezer bag or plastic container.

Simple Scottish Fruit Bread Recipe (aka Tea Loaf)
Simple Scottish Fruit Bread Recipe (aka Tea Loaf)

What I really love about this Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe is that it is very cheap to make and I always have the ingredients sitting in the cupboard.

I often enjoy a slice at breakfast time or give it to the kids as a snack when they come home from school.

Serve It During A High Tea

The fact that this recipe is so yummy and it can be made ahead it’s also rather nice to serve it together with other cakes and sandwiches during a High Tea (my Dutch Apple Pie, Cinnamon Rolls, & British Flapjacks recipes are also nice for this).

If you do go ahead and make this recipe I’d love to know how you get on because I’m sure it will become a firm family favourite.

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16 thoughts on “Easy Scottish Fruit Loaf Recipe

    • at

      Thanks Gro! Yes it really is.

  • at

    I’ll have to give this a try! It looks awesome!

    • at

      Thanks Katie! Let me know how you get on if you do.

  • at

    You do know there are two errors in the recipe given above for this loaf? It mentions margarine as an ingredient and then the second line of the directions call for you to gently heat until the butter (don’t you men margarine?) and sugar melt, but line one doesn’t mention putting the butter (or what should be margarine according to the ingredients) into the pan.

    • at

      Hi Julie,

      Thanks for pointing this out, you are indeed correct. I have now updated the recipe – hopefully, I haven’t confused people too much 🙂

    • at

      #NitPickingMuch ??

      You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to work it out!!

      Honestly, some people.

      Sam, it is a lovely recipe, I made this for years. I use a raspberry tea in place of water, or sometimes fresh orange juice and sock it overnight.

      A dodgy of marmalade goes well in the mix too.

      Take care.

      • at

        5 stars
        *That should read SOAK not sock!! (Ewww ?)

        And then a DOLLOP not dodgy of marmalade.


      • at

        Hi Linda,

        Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment and sorry for the late reply (I have been out of action due to illness – but getting back on track now 🙂 )

        (#NitPickingMuch) Haha, I normally add both but I think I forgot on this one. I am in the process of updating everything so will be adding conversions anyway.

        Mmm, I like the orange juice idea, I am definitely going to try that next time I make it.

  • at

    5 stars
    Just wondering how many grams is a cup.

    Thank you

  • at

    Please can you put the weight of the ingredients instead of cups please? There are so many different cup sizes,many thanks.

  • at

    What size are the cups or would they be about 4 oz

  • at

    5 stars
    Best easy fruit loaf I have ever made, the fact that it freezes well is a bonus.

  • at

    5 stars
    Best fruit loaf ever, so easy to prepare & the fact that you can freeze it is a bonus

    • at

      Hi, I just double-checked and I used the European cup size (which is also the same as the UK/Australian/Canadian sizes ) which is 250ml per cup. In the US it is a little bit smaller – 240ml.

      The difference is so small that for most of my recipes, it really would not make a difference. Also as long as you are using the same cup size the proportions will be correct.

      I have added more information about this to the Scottish Tea Loaf printed recipe card. There are instructions if you want to be more precise and a link to a conversion chart. I hope this helps 🙂


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