How to create the ultimate Easter afternoon tea
Treat friends or family to an afternoon tea with an Easter twist – try our seasonal suggestions for the best table décor, finger food and festive bakes
Treat loved ones and dine in style in the comfort of your home with an Easter afternoon tea. Throwing your own party makes for easy entertaining – it'll help you keep to a budget and lets you to choose your own finger food, bakes and cocktails.
Since it's Easter, don't feel as though you have to stick to traditional recipes. Slather seasonal rhubarb preserve onto scones, mix up a hot cross bun-infused cocktail or shake things up with our Easter bakes.
Read our tips for how to put on a Easter-themed afternoon tea party in style below, then check out our collection of afternoon tea recipes, Easter bakes and desserts. Vegans needn't fret, either – we have plenty of inspiration with our Easter vegan menu.
Set the scene
Transform your dining space into a beautiful Easter wonderland, filled with pastel-coloured and floral-themed décor.
Dust off your tiered cake stand or use your fanciest crockery, plus delicate doilies and floral-patterned napkins. Decorate your table with a pretty table runner: this simple white design won't distract from your Easter feast, with a floral meadow pattern adding spring-like colour. There's a whole range of matching kitchenware in this pattern, too – we like the floral melamine platter if you're dining alfresco.
Make every guest feel special with these simple bunny rabbit place settings, personalised with your choice of names. Go the extra mile with these adorable gingham rabbit napkin rings, pastel Easter crackers and raffia placemats – choose from beige, pink, blue or calming sage to match your Easter vision.
If you're starting from scratch, take yourself charity shop hunting for affordable chinaware, from teapots and teacups, to cutlery and cake slicers. You can't go wrong with the traditional tearoom aesthetic; however, a hodgepodge of colours and rustic patterns will look visually pleasing.
Find more inspiration, including cake stands and kitchenware, with our best Easter table décor ideas.
Before guests arrive, set out a bowl of sugar and milk jug, ready to pour your guests a cuppa as they arrive. For tea, include as many as you see fit, including (but not limited to) earl grey, english breakfast, chai, peppermint, fruit and herbal. You could also make a cafetiere of hot coffee; check out which coffee beans we're currently loving.
Present a cold jug of peach iced tea for a fruity refresher that's perfect for sunny weather, finished with real peach slices and fresh mint. For a boozy tipple, you could crack open the fizz and serve up a kir royale, or make a fancy Aperol mimosa for an Italian twist on the traditional buck's fizz.
For post-feast sipping, use up any leftover hot cross buns in this festive Easter cocktail, offering a tantalising Easter-spiced twist on an amarreto sour.
It's best to supply plenty of savoury morsels to avoid sugar overload. Get ahead by prepping your sandwich fillings in advance; simply assemble just before guests arrive to avoid soggy sarnies.
The choice is yours when it comes to finger food – a plate of neatly-cut finger sandwiches filled with creamy coronation chicken will never go amiss at afternoon tea, and sandwich fillers such as egg and cress or smoked salmon are fail-safe winners.
Scones are the beating heart of any afternoon tea – their soft, fluffy centre is the perfect base for clotted cream and heaps of jam. Although scones are best eaten the day they're made, you can make them ahead, freeze, then defrost in a low oven on the day.
Making your own jam is deceptively easy (and any leftover jars can be taken home as gifts). Our simple strawberry jam recipe is a brilliant place for jam novices to start, as it requires only three ingredients. Or, level up with our juicy strawberry jam, pepped up with Pimm's (you'd be missing a trick if you didn't serve it in this strawberry bowl!).
Afternoon tea is not complete without a dazzling display of sweet treats, such as cupcakes, blondies and buns – all with an imaginative Easter twist.
Individual portions are key for the afternoon tea aesthetic, so bake a generous batch of dinky Easter cupcakes, prettily decorated with mini eggs and chocolate shavings. Take your love of Creme Eggs further with our Creme Egg cupcakes, featuring a stand-out yellow frosting.
Showcase your Easter decorating skills with our Easter rocky road, Easter blondies and Easter cookies, loaded with Malteser’s Mini Bunnies, Galaxy Golden Eggs and M&M’s Eggs. These recipes all take less an hour, so you can make them the night before or on the morning of your event.
Popular at Easter, you're sure to wow guests with these beautiful sticky iced buns, topped with a zesty blood orange icing and pretty edible flowers for a springtime feel. Every afternoon tea needs some pizzazz: scotch creme eggs are a stand-out novelty bake that guests won't forget any time soon, or pull out all the stops with our beautiful white chocolate Easter cake.