Best ever British tea party recipes

Our 31 best ever British tea party recipes is a collection of our favourite cakes, biscuits, quiche, sandwiched and afternoon tea recipes to throw the ultimate British tea party

The lightest victoria sponge

Follow these simple steps to get a beautiful, classic jam and cream sponge sandwich that is lighter than air – perfect to go with your afternoon tea.

Light Victoria Sponge Recipe

Black cherry and coconut bakewell slices

Check out our bakewell slices with juicy cherries and crunchy desiccated coconut. This take on the classic bakewell tart is easy to make and perfect with an afternoon cuppa.

Cherry Bakewell Recipe with Coconut

Double lemon, gin and tonic cake

This double lemon, gin and tonic cake combines two of our favourite things. It’s easy to make and sure to please a crowd – what’s more British than gin and cake?! Try our other British cake recipes to add to the spread

Gin and Tonic Cake Recipe With Lemon

Vegan lemon loaf cake

A delicate, zingy vegan lemon cake made without eggs, milk or butter! The key to that lemony tang is a decent lemon extract (we use Nielsen-Massey), ready in just 1 hour!

Vegan Lemon Cake Recipe

Classic vegan carrot cake

Invite your vegan friends for afternoon tea and bake this British classic! Our frosted carrot cake is made with a surprising (vegan) ingredient that guarantees a moist sponge every time.

Easy Vegan Carrot Cake Recipe

Posh sausage roll

Take your sausage roll skills to the next level with our posh sausage roll recipe, with added ginger and coriander spices for a special twist. The ideal British comfort food snack, this sausage roll will go done very well at your tea party

Chocolate éclairs

Take your éclairs to the next level with step-by-step help from the olive test kitchen. Craquelin is similar to a crumble mix, and when baked on top of the choux buns, gives a crackly, crisp top, typical in classic patisserie. Try our strawberry éclairs recipe for a summery twist

Earl grey teacakes

There’s something really comforting about teacakes and this recipe for Earl grey teacakes takes them to the next level. Smother them in butter and add a little lemon curd to bring out the flavour. You can shape the teacakes on a baking sheet, but using a traditional Yorkshire pudding tin gives the teacakes a classic flat-bottomed look

Crab scotch quail’s eggs with mustard mayo

These crab scotch quail’s eggs with mustard mayo make a great twist on a classic British snack. They’re easy to make but look impressive making them perfect to serve with drinks

Watermelon and feta salad with pomegranate dressing

The combination of fresh-tasting ingredients and big flavours make this watermelon and feta salad with pomegranate dressing a winner. We love the salty feta with fresh, juicy watermelon. Here are our favourite salad recipes under 500 calories

Custard cream blondies

Ever thought of adding custard creams to your blondie mixture? It’s genius! Have a go this weekend and let us know how you get on (@olivemagazine). Chocoholics will love our bourbon brownies recipe even more

Scotch eggs

Make the perfect tea party snack from scratch using our easiest ever scotch egg recipe. This method gives you a perfectly cooked yolk, juicy sausage meat filling and a crunchy breadcrumb coating

Easy lemon curd

Making your own lemon curd is easier than you think with this recipe and give you a really fresh, zesty curd. Spoon onto warm crumpets, stir through greek yogurt, or use to sandwich meringues together

Hot-smoked salmon and broccoli crustless quiche

This crustless hot-smoked salmon and broccoli quiche is ready in under an hour and under 300 calories. It looks impressive and can easily be sliced for large parties. We’ve a whole load more savoury tarts and quiche recipes here

Marmite bagels

The ultimate British tea time treat! This recipe for Marmite bagels combines two of our favourite breakfast items in one great bake. Smother them in butter or more Marmite, if you can handle it

Rhubarb pound cake

This recipe for rhubarb pound cake is guaranteed to please at British summer tea parties. We’ve hidden white chocolate chips in the middle, too, for an extra treat

Fish finger doorstep sandwich

Nothing beats a fish finger sandwich. This one, made with our twist on tartare sauce, is the best. Make a load and watch as the neighbours flock

Ham hock rillettes with pistachio salt

This recipe for ham hock rillettes with pistachio salt comes from Salt and Honey in London and makes a tea party savoury snack that is really different

Coffee and walnut cupcakes

Coffee and walnut cake is a teatime favourite. With this recipe, we’ve given it a modern makeover by giving it the cupcake treatment. Pipe the icing sky-high for maximum cake drama. For a larger version, try our coffee cake with pecan brittle


Making your own scones is so easy with this quick and simple recipe. Make a batch to share with family, friends and neighbours. Jam first or cream is up to you

Tear-and-share pizza rolls

These tear-and-share pizza rolls are easy and fun to make and even easier to eat – watch as they disappear when you serve at your tea party

Strawberry shortcake ice-cream sandwiches

These strawberry shortcake ice-cream sandwiches are an easy but impressive summer treat. If you’re planning on making these a day or so ahead, just dunk the sides of the sandwiches into the freeze-dried strawberries before serving

Onion tart

Onion tarte tatin is hugely fashionable, but this tart is more old-school – almost a quiche, with long strands of just-caramelised onion in an unctuous savoury custard. We love it. It matches really well with an off-dry pinot gris from Alsace or nebbiolo, the barolo grape from northern Italy

Posh jammie dodgers

This posh Jammie Dodger recipe gives a childhood favourite biscuit an update, it’s our February issue cover and a really impressive tea time snack. Try our biscuit recipes for more inspiration

Lemon drizzle cake

A classic afternoon tea lemon drizzle cake that sounds as good as it tastes. If you fancy some enjoyable baking, with a great reward at the end, then this recipe is for you

Mini lobster rolls

These mini lobster rolls are easy to make but look impressive – perfect for hassle-free entertaining

Watercress and avocado salad with pink grapefruit and Campari vinaigrette

This fresh, zingy watercress and avocado salad with pink grapefruit and Campari vinaigrette makes a great summer starter. It’s vegetarian, easy and ready in 30 minutes

Banana and passion fruit loaf

This banana and passion fruit loaf is a great way to use up bananas, plus it’s easy and looks impressive. Try our easy loaf cake recipes here for more delicious ideas

Date and rye bread

If you love making you own bread, this recipe is for you! The dark rye flour and sweet dates are a perfect pairing and this dark loaf goes brilliantly with cheese

Try our best ever easy jug cocktails to make it a boozy tea party

Our jug cocktail recipes are extremely quick to make and perfect for entertaining friends and family – try serving them at your next BBQ or on a warm summer night. Choose from marmalade and mandarin mojitos, blood orange Campari cocktails, or a watermelon cooler. Tight on time? make our five-minute clementine ‘last minute’ cocktail or a lime, raspberry and vodka drink

Strawberry dream

The best recipe for strawberry layer cake. This dinner-party dessert is made with vanilla sponge, filled with strawberry mascarpone cream with Italian meringue frosting.

Salted peanut and honeycomb rocky road

These salted peanut and honeycomb rocky road squares are a great twist on a classic and will please everyone. Plus, they’re really easy and only take 15 minutes of work.

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