The latest cake trends and hot drink inspiration

Spruce up your bakes and make the most of your hot drinks for three big autumn events

September and October bring some exciting opportunities to welcome new and old customers into your venue with Macmillan Coffee Morning (24 September), National Baking Week (14-19 October) and UK Coffee Week (18-24 October). Put on your very best show with our top tips, new trends and recipe ideas.

Drip cakes

This eye-catching trend has more than 2.9 million tags on Instagram, making it a must for your cake display. Create the perfect drip with this easy method.

  1. Make a ganache from chocolate and cream and let it cool for 8-10 minutes.
  2. Put the mixture in a squeezy bottle with a small nozzle or use a piping bag and snip off the end.
  3. Slowly squeeze the ganache around the edge of the cake, allowing it to run down the sides.
  4. Then squeeze the remaining amount over the top of the cake and spread with a spatula.

Try the technique out on this gluten-free chocolate cake.

Tiered drip cake with fresh fruit

Get nostalgic

Nostalgic flavours are back! We’ve seen the return of the sprinkle-laden traybake, made famous by many a school kitchen, and flavours such as banoffee, raspberry ripple and Black Forest are appearing on supermarket shelves and menus across the country. It’s time for a bit of retro!

Bring a touch of nostalgia to your outlet and your bakes by adding a swirl of raspberry sauce or jam to a vanilla cake batter or buttercream. Chocolate cupcakes with a dollop of cherry jam in the middle, topped with buttercream and a fresh cherry, would look super tempting.

Excite your customers with this banoffee millionaire’s shortbread…you know they’ll love it!

Banoffee Millionaire’s Shortbread
“83% of Craft Bakers Association members believe nostalgic flavours will be popular in 2021”
- Craft Bakers Association survey

Adventurous flavours

New flavours create special bakes – think gin, rum or limoncello-soaked sponges or a dash of fruit liqueur in icing. The caramelised spiced biscuits, speculoos, are popular and lend themselves well to being crumbled on top of cheesecakes, sponge cakes or doughnuts. Alternatively, use speculoos spread to fill a cake or sandwich between cookies.

Recreate summer vibes with this coconut, lime and rum loaf cake.

Get ready for Macmillan Coffee Morning

Planning to host a Macmillan Coffee Morning on 24 September? Nestlé Professional is donating £1 to Macmillan Cancer Support with every purchase from the NESCAFÉ Original Professional range* between 1-15 September. Just visit for further information and to purchase your NESCAFÉ tin. *T&Cs apply

Coconut, Lime & Rum Drizzle Cake

4 tips for showstopping hot drinks

1 CHOCO CHOICES – Real flaked chocolate or buttons melted into milk is irresistible. Offer dark, milk or a mix. Melt in a little hazelnut spread for a nutty twist. If you’re celebrating the coffee morning or week in a care home or school, consider Marvel’s Instant Hot Chocolate, which is fortified with extra nutrients, making it ideal for the elderly and young.
2 PERFECT TEMPERATURE – If you want to get serious about serving top tea, look at your temperatures and brewing times. Food blog The Spruce Eats recommends 75-80C and 1-2 minute brewing time for green tea; 80-85C and 2-3 minutes for oolong; and for black tea – 100C with the bag or leaves left in for 2-3 minutes. For coffee, aim for 80C water for the best flavour.
3 FRESH WATER – If feasible, brew fresh water for each cup of coffee. Experts Nescafé say that each time water is boiled, it loses oxygen which alters the taste. So, just heat what you need to improve flavour (and reduce electricity use!). Apparently, soft water tastes better than hard, so consider using filtered water if this affects your supply.
4 SPICY UPGRADE – Turn a simple coffee into something special with an autumnal syrup. Cinnamon, pumpkin spice and gingerbread are all delicious. Top the drink with whipped cream and a dusting of the appropriate spice. These syrups also work well in hot chocolates. Almond, cinnamon, mint, orange and ginger all complement chocolate.
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