The best and worst supermarket Christmas cakes - including Tesco Finest rich fruit cake and Waitrose Christmas fully iced classic Christmas cake

Iced fruitcakes are a traditional and delicious winter snack but which ones are worth picking up when shopping in the supermarket this Christmas?

Published 19th Dec 2023
Updated 19 th Dec 2023

If you are partial to a slice of Christmas cake over the festive season there’s no need to make your own - here are our reviews of some of the best and worst supermarket cakes on offer for Christmas 2023.

Waitrose Christmas Fully Iced Classic Christmas Cake, £6.60

best Christmas cake

Nicely decorated with edible red snowflakes, Waitrose’ fully iced Christmas cake (there’s also a version that only has icing on top), was one of the tastiest cakes we sampled.

It’s let down slightly by overly–brittle icing that makes cutting it neatly a challenge.

We’d also have liked to have seen a higher marzipan-to-icing ratio.


Tesco Top Iced Fruit Cake, £6.50 

best Christmas cake

This cake can be bought for the bargain price of £5 by Tesco Clubcard holders and has the perfect balance of marzipan and icing, topped with an edible decoration announcing Santa’s seal of approval.

The cake itself was the driest we tasted though, with an overly-strong flavour of orange, while the icing is pretty bland.


Asda Extra Special Brandy-soaked Fully Iced Fruit Cake, £10

best Christmas cake

The first cake we tasted with a decent slog of brandy included, it feels like you should give it an hour before getting behind the wheel after a slice.

The icing is delicious, there’s a good layer of marzipan and, even eaten on its own, the cake is tasty and moist.

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It does include nuts, which might not be to everybody’s tastes - or allergies.


Lidl Luxury All Over Iced Christmas Cake, £7.99

best Christmas cake

This is described as being ‘infused with brandy’ but we couldn’t detect any discernible flavour of booze, just a slightly burnt aftertaste.

The icing is very thick and brittle, meaning the marzipan flavour is lost. It looks very pretty, with a single large golden snowflake decorating the icing, but it tops off a below average cake.


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Marks & Spencer Top Iced Christmas Cake, £8

Simply decorated with an edible sprig of holly leaves and berries, M&S’ Christmas offering has the perfect balance of cake icing and marzipan which taste delicious when eaten together.

Taken by itself though, the fruitcake is a little flavourless without added sweetness and, as it’s only iced on top, not every mouthful will have the required icing.


Sainsbury’s Top Iced Fruit Cake, £6.75

The fruitcake component of this is pleasingly moist but lacks depth of flavour and is very crumbly, meaning it’s tricky to pick up and eat without cutlery.

It has a very thick layer of marzipan which wouldn’t be a problem if it wasn’t topped by a meagre covering of icing which adds little in the way of flavour.

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Tesco Finest Rich Fruit Cake, £9

Tesco’s premium Christmas cake is decorated with a golden star - and was the star of our taste test. The cake itself is absolutely delicious - very moist and boozy with nuts adding extra texture.

The icing is beautifully soft, combined with the perfect amount of marzipan, to make a cake that’s unlikely to last much beyond Boxing Day.


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