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Hazelnut Fig Cake

This sophisticated Hazelnut Fig Cake is gently spiced, full of flavors including dried figs, fresh figs and dark brown muscovado sugar, and is finished with a decadent fig cream cheese icing. You don’t want to miss out on this cake!

cake topped with figs and hazelnuts on a white background with a bowl of figs

It was last fall when I was first introduced to dried figs.   I was enjoying an evening at my friend Fanette’s house and she had a charcuterie with delicious cheese, bread, nuts and dried figs.

sliced figs and hazelnuts

I knew I would enjoy the cheese and bread, but what in the world were these dried little fruits!?

At first, I was scared to take a bite… but let me tell you as soon as I did… I WAS HOOKED.  I loved these dried figs! A slice of cheese, chuck of bread and half a dried fig together and I was in heaven!

fig and hazelnut cake on a stand with a slice of cake on a plate and a bowl of figs

It was then that I decided that I MUST come up with a recipe that included figs and this Hazelnut Fig Cake was born!

I did a bit of research to find a fig based cake on Google and Pinterest, but didn’t find many cakes that were the style I was looking for.  Most had fresh figs in the cake similar to how you make a pineapple upside down cake and I wanted to make a layer cake.

hazelnut and fig cake on a cake stand with a white background

Finally, I found a recipe from BBC Good Food for a spiced fig, hazelnut and coffee cake that not only looked delicious, but the recipe looked amazing!

Let me tell you about my Hazelnut Fig Cake.

slice of hazelnut and fig cake on a blue plate with a hazelnut and fig cake on a cake stand

First, not only is my Hazelnut Fig Cake is packed full of figgy flavor, nutty undertones a touch of sweetness from the cream cheese fig frosting, it is flavored with coffee.

Yes, you read that right… I said coffee!  Coffee adds such a rich balance to the sweet fig and the roasted hazelnuts that’s undeniably delicious!

slice of hazelnut and fig cake on a blue plate with a hazelnut and fig cake on a marble stand

The fresh figs and roasted hazelnuts that top the cake add another dimension of flavor and texture that is sure to please your palate!

From the first bite of this Hazelnut Fig Cake, you will seriously feel like you have died and gone to Heaven.

slice of hazelnut and fig cake on a blue plate with fresh sliced fig and chopped hazelnuts

So if you love fig… you are going to LOVE this Hazelnut Fig Cake!

Photography by Frenchly Photography. 

Hazelnut Fig Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog

Hazelnut Fig Cake

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes



  • 6 dried figs, chopped into small pieces
  • 75ml hot strong coffee
  • 200g blanched hazelnuts
  • 200g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 225g dark brown muscovado sugar
  • 50g greek yogurt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 200g all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp salt


  • 100ml strong coffee
  • 15 dried figs, chopped into small pieces


  • 250g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1lb powdered sugar
  • 4oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3 tbsp fig filling
  • 1/2 tsp sald
  • 10 fresh figs
  • roasted hazlenuts



  1. Put the 6 dried figs and hot coffee in a cup together and let sit while preparing the batter.
  2. Heat oven to 350 F degrees.
  3. Grease and flour two 8in round cake pans.
  4. Once the oven has heated, place the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and roast for about 7-8 minutes or until they begin to turn golden brown. Remove from the oven and pulse 75g of the nuts in a food processor until finely chopped. Set aside the rest to garnish the cake with later.
  5. Add the 75ml of coffee and figs and whizz the food processor until combined.
  6. Add the butter, brown sugar, yogurt, eggs and vanilla bean paste and turn the food processor on for 10-15 seconds. Take the blade out, scrape the bowl down and whizz for 10 more seconds.
  7. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt.
  8. Pour the wet ingredients into the large bowl. Fold together until combined.
  9. Pour half into each prepared baking pan.
  10. Bake for 24-26 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for at least 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.


  1. Chop the 15 dried figs and combine with the strong coffee. Let sit for 15-20 minutes. After the figs have soaked in the coffee, pulse them in a food processor with the coffee until it becomes a paste. Set aside 3 tablespoons of the mixture for the frosting.


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter, vanilla extract and cream cheese and beat until smooth.
  2. Add half the sugar and mix until combined.
  3. Add the reserved 3 tablespoons of fig paste and mix until combined. Scrape the bowl down and mix again.
  4. Add the salt and mix to combine.
  5. You may not need all the sugar, so start slowly adding the remaining sugar. Add a few tablespoons at a time and mix gently until combined, checking the consistency of the frosting. More sugar makes cream cheese frosting softer, so be gently with adding it and beating.


  1. Place the first cake layer, top up, on the cake stand. Spread a thin, even layer of frosting over the top to the edges.
  2. Spoon the fig mixture onto the frosting and spread out leaving about one inch of the edge with no fig.
  3. Place the second cake layer top down on top of the frosting. Press down gently.
  4. Place a thin layer of frosting around the outside of the cake. This is called the crumb coat. Chill the cake for 20-30 minutes allowing the crumb coat to firm.
  5. Use the remaining frosting and cover the entire cake with an even layer.
  6. Keep chilled until ready to serve. Once ready to serve, take the cake out for 10 minutes and prepare the fresh figs and remaining hazelnuts.
  7. Slice the fresh figs and top the cake with them. Gently chop the remaining roasted hazelnuts and add them to the top of the cake.


Adapted from BBC Good Food

Did you make this recipe?

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Saturday 23rd of March 2019

I love this cake! It's so beautifully done too...BUT.. I hate coffee so is there something else I need to use or maybe tea or plain water? Thanks in advance for your assistance. I'm a fig addict them fresh, grilled, dried or my preserves are delicious. Your cake is a thing of beauty.

Betsy Eves

Tuesday 26th of March 2019

The coffee is there to enhance the flavor - it isn't a coffee flavored cake. I can't guarantee the outcome of the cake if you don't use the coffee.


Monday 30th of July 2018

Just the texture of this cake and the fact that it has figs in it has sold me. You did a great job. No doubt this is delicious. Thanks for sharing.

Betsy Eves

Tuesday 31st of July 2018



Sunday 18th of March 2018

I love love love love figs. But, I've only had them raw and in a form of a jam. I never thought of making a cake, honestly.

Do you think the sugar could be cut down and replaced with some honey or chopped dates?

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