Home > Desserts > Lamingtons

Lamingtons

Published: Updated:
This post may contain affiliate links.

Lamingtons are a delightfully iconic Australian dessert made of a soft sponge cake, filled with jam (sometimes cream) and covered in chocolate and coconut. It all comes together to make the perfect combo of a melt in your mouth dessert and is surprisingly easy to make!

Lamingtons - close up of top down shot

Hi! Today we’re digging into the delicious world of Lamingtons. An easy to make Australian dessert that is honestly just a crowd pleaser. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like these little vanilla sponge cubes covered in chocolate and coconut. Other than how delicious they are, they’re so easy to make ahead of time because they stay moist for days making them easy to take to your next BBQ or get together.

I love making Aussie desserts! We have some great ones down under. Some of my favorites include my Pavlova Recipe, Anzac Biscuits, Sponge Kisses and my Butterfly Cupcakes. Oh! And if you love Lamingtons, I have a Lamington Cake Version of this and a Raspberry Lamington Cake which is gorgeous!

What Are Lamingtons?

Lamingtons - top down shot of lamingtons on a cooling rack

Lamingtons are a delightful Australian treat! It’s a soft sponge cake, sometimes filled with cream and jam and is covered in chocolate glaze and coconut. It originated in Queensland and was named after Lord Lamington, the states governor in the late 19th century and has become an iconic Australian dessert loved by petty much everyone here.

Why I Use The ‘Hot Milk’ Vanilla Cake Method For Lamingtons!

This method of vanilla cake is quite unique. It involves making a meringue, adding the dry ingredients, and then adding a hot milk and butter mixture. The result is an ultra-spongey cake that is soft, moist and stays that way for days!

Chilling Your Lamingtons Before Coating!

Lamingtons - super moist filled lamington

The best way to coat this soft and moist vanilla cake is by chilling it in the fridge before even attempting to trim and coat in the chocolate glaze and coconut. Whether you trim and fill your cake with raspberry jam or not, the best way to coat your lamingtons is to get them nice and cold. There’s a lot of butter in the cake which means when it’s trimmed it will stiffen the cake making it easier to trim into squares and coat.

A Thicker Chocolate Glaze That Isn’t Too Sweet!

Lamingtons - chocolate sauce

Lamington recipes typically use a chocolate icing sugar glaze that soaks into the cake and helps stick the coconut to the cake. I tried that and found it way too thin and drippy. Also, it was ridiculously sweet because the only thing used to thicken it is powdered sugar/icing sugar. I opted in for my Chocolate Sauce Recipe which is thicker but still thin enough to soak into the cake! Plus, it honestly tastes way better and the bonus is you get all that lovely chocolate flavor without it tasting like pure sugar!

Why These Lamingtons Are Filled With Jam.

Lamingtons - filled lamington

In the famous words of one of my favorite aussie tv shows:

It’s nice. It’s normal. I mean, are you normal?

Whether you choose to skip filling your cake with jam or even jam (if you’re feeling extra) is up to you. I like the added little dose of sweetness and flavor of using raspberry jam, although you can use any type of jam you like.

Cream? Yeah, you can use cream, but I didn’t test out doing that with this recipe. My opinion is that adding cream in the middle means these need to be chilled and they’re softer when they’re served at room temperature.

Tip – make sure you don’t go overboard when filling the cake with jam otherwise it will slip and slide around as you coat it in the chocolate and coconut. Trust me, I overfilled one test and it was a disaster.

How To Make Lamingtons!

How To Make The Sponge Cake

  • Combine dry ingredients. Set aside.
  • Add eggs to a mixing bowl and whisk until frothy. On high speed, begin adding sugar slowly. Then mix for 10 minutes.
  • Sift in dry ingredients. Fold through using a spatula. It will be very thick!
  • Heat milk and butter in a saucepan or the microwave. Don’t do this ahead of time. Do it right before you’re ready to use it. Add to the batter in three batches
  • Gently folding each time.
  • Pour the batter in.
  • Bake and cool.

How To Fill Your Lamingtons! (Optional)

  • Trim in half using serrated knife or cake leveler (easier).
  • Add filling, I used raspberry jam. Just don’t go overboard with filling. Wrap in plastic and place in the fridge to chill for an hour.
Lamingtons - slicing up chilled cake

Finishing Your Lamingtons!

  • Trim your cake into cubes.
  • Coat in my easy to make Chocolate Sauce Recipe
  • (optional, but recommended!) Allow to chill in the fridge for 20 minutes on a cooling rack to set.
  • Coat in unsweetened desiccated coconut. Serve!
Lamingtons - stacked on a plate

Tips and Tricks For Recipe Success!

  • Measure out using kitchen scales – measuring ingredients out by weight and not cups is the best way to get consistent results every time! I wrote all about this in my post about using digital kitchen scales!
  • When making the meringue – make sure the sugar is added slowly so it has time to dissolve into the meringue. About 1 tbsp at a time.
  • When heating the milk– make sure you heat it at the right time and don’t let it cool and form a skin because that skin won’t dissolve into the batter as it bakes.
  • Cool your cake – before slicing into cubes to make it easier to cut and coat with chocolate sauce and coconut.
  • Use shredded coconut or desiccated coconut. Just make sure it’s unsweetened.
  • Make sure your chocolate glaze has cooled to room temperature before coating the cakes.
  • Don’t overfill your cakes with jam otherwise it will slip and slide around as you’re coating it, even if it’s chilled.

Why does my cake have little brown spots on the outside?

This is an issue I ran into when testing this cake, and I tested it 8 times! This method of cake is the hot cake method. It uses a hot milk and butter mixture that is added to the cake as a last step before it’s baked.

Through a process of elimination, I found that if the milk and butter and heated too early the butter forms a skin and that skin doesn’t dissolve in the cake when baked. Weirdly, these spots don’t show on the inside of the cake, just the outside.

I tried greasing the pan with butter and oil in separate bakes to make sure that wasn’t the issue, and it wasn’t. I also made sure the sugar was fully dissolved in the meringue as some of you on Facebook were sure it was the undissolved sugar granulated and it wasn’t. Does it taste bitter? No. so that led me to believe it wasn’t an issue with the baking powder not being dissolved.

Frequently Asked Questions about Lamingtons

How to store your lamingtons

Store them in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. The vanilla stays moist for days because of the hot milk method. It’s like magic!

Can I use a traditional chocolate icing with these?

Yes if you like, it works just fine. Like I said, I tested it out and found it far too sweet.

How far in advance can I make lamingtons?

You can make the sponge itself up to three days in advance (with or without filling) Just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge until you’re ready to coat them.

What’s the best way to cut up lamingtons?

Use a serrated knife for best results. For super even results use a straight sided square baking tin. If your cake tin is on an angle, just trim the sides off to straighten them. I went as far as using a ruler to get even sized cubes.

Why is my chocolate coating too thick?

It’s most likely because it’s cooled down. Pop it in the microwave and microwave for 10 seconds. You want it runny, but not hot.

Why is this recipe is in grams and not cups?

The short answer is accuracy! It is far easier, more accurate and you get more consistent results when you measure ingredients by weight, especially in dessert and bread baking! I wrote all about this in my post about using digital kitchen scales!

Gave this a go? Don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! Hungry for more? Join me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and TikTok for more great recipes!

More Aussie Dessert Ideas!

Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @thescranline on Facebook and Instagram!

Lamingtons - thumbnail

Lamingtons

These classic Aussie Lamingtons are a delightfully soft sponge cake, filled with raspberry jam and coated in chocolate glaze and coconut.

Serves 12

5 from 3 votes
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Chill: 2 hours
Total: 3 hours
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Australian
Calories: 734kcal

Ingredients

Vanilla Cake

  • 250 g all-purpose flour, plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 195 g caster sugar / superfine sugar, see notes
  • 185 g milk, full fat
  • 80 g unsalted butter, cubed
  • 22 g vegetable oil, can use canola oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate Glaze

  • 400 g dark cooking chocolate, semi-sweet
  • 60 g unsalted butter
  • 20 g brown sugar
  • 310 g heavy cream, whipping cream

Extras

  • 200 g raspberry jam
  • 300 g desiccated coconut, unsweetened


Instructions

Sponge Cake

  • A note before you begin – please make sure you follow this recipe exactly as it is written. Measure the ingredients by weight using scales and follow the steps in the exact order written.
  • Preheat a fan forced oven to 150C / 300F (170C / 340F for no fan). Position the rack in the middle of the oven. Spray the bottom and sides of a 22 x 22cm / 9 x 9-inch square baking tin with oil spray. Line with the bottom with baking paper.
  • Combine dry ingredients – To a medium sized mixing bowl, add the flour, baking powder and salt. Use a whisk to combine. Set aside.
  • Beat the eggs – Add the eggs to a large mixing bowl and use an electric mixer to beat until frothy. This can also be done in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. While the mixer is on high speed begin slowly adding the sugar. This should take about a minute. Once it’s all in there, continue beating on high speed for about 6 minutes until it’s pale and thick and tripled in size.
  • Hot milk and butter -. Add the milk and butter to a saucepan and heat on medium heat, stirring continuously until small bubbles begin to form on the sides of the pot. Do not let the butter form a skin as it will not dissolve in the cake batter.
  • To finish the batter – Add the dry ingredients to the eggs and use a spatula to fold through until no dry ingredients are showing taking care to scrape from the bottom where the dry ingredients like to hide. The batter will be quite thick.
  • Add 1/2 of the hot milk mixture and all of the oil and vanilla extract. Use the spatula or whisk to gently fold through. Add the remaining milk mixture and fold through until the mixture is well combined and even in texture. It will be thin, with a little volume and fall out of the bowl into the cake pans in a thin ribbon.
  • To bake – Add mixture to the cake tin. Tap gently on your workbench 3 times to release air bubbles before baking on the middle rack of your oven for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Once baked, allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before carefully running a knife around the sides to release it. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely to room temperature.
  • To trim and fill the cake – This part is optional. Use a large serrated knife or cake leveller to trim the cooled cake in half. Add the raspberry jam to one half and spread as evenly as you can. Then sandwich with the other cake half. Wrap in plastic and place in the fridge to chill for one hour.

Chocolate Glaze

  • Add all ingredients into a heat proof bowl. Double boiler method: add the bowl on top of a pot of gently simmering water making sure the bottom of the bowl isn’t touching the water. Stir until melted. Use oven mits to take off the pot and allow to cool until warm. Microwave method: microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring each time until smooth.

To Assemble

  • To cut into cubes – Trim the cooled cake in 4 x 4 squares. You will have 12 cake squares.
  • To coat – Place a cooled cake square on a fork and dip into the glaze coating all sides. Then lift out of the glaze and allow as much excess to dip off. Optional: place on a cooling rack with baking tray underneath to catch the drips and allow to set in the fridge for 20 minutes (less messy when coating in the coconut). Next, place in a bowl of coconut. Toss to coat. Continue until all squares are coated. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes to set.

Notes

Storage – Lamingtons can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days.
Nutrition – is an estimate and is based on per lamington.
A note on measurements – this recipe is offered in weight measurements. This is in an effort to offer the most accurate way to get the best results. Cup measurements simply aren’t accurate enough for a recipe that needs precision and cup sizes differ depending on where you are in the world. To learn more about how to measure ingredients using digital kitchen scales, click here!

Nutrition

Calories : 734kcal
Carbonhydrates: 69g
Protein: 9g
Fat: 51g
Saturated Fat: 36g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g
Monounsaturated Fat : 11g
Trans Fat : 0.4g
Cholesterol: 103mg
Sodium: 197mg
Potassium : 241mg
Fiber: 8g
Sugar : 41g
Vitamin A: 761IU
Vitamin C: 2mg
Calcium: 89mg
Iron: 2mg
Nutrition Disclosure
Gave this recipe a go?Mention @thescranline or tag #thescranline!

3 comments

Nick Makrides March 15, 2024 - 8:06 pm

5 stars
I’m so excited to get to share these with you guys! THey’re so soft and moist.

Reply
Michelle March 15, 2024 - 11:14 pm

Hello, is it alright to use gluten free flour? If so, what are the adjustments? I would like to make these for my Aussie friends.

Reply
Nick Makrides March 22, 2024 - 11:29 pm

Hi Michelle! I haven’t tested these with gluten free flour. If you try it, please come back and let me know and I’ll add a note to the recipe! N x

Reply
5 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating