Don’t Worry, Bee Happy – Heather Honey Steamed Sponge Recipe

Coinneach MacLeod, also known as the Hebridean Baker, shares his recipe for a pudding that’s inspired by and takes its main ingredients from the Scottish moors

Heather Honey Steamed Sponge

Scottish heather honey is produced from bees who have had access to the nectar moors in Scotland. They take the nectar from the heather and convert it into honey. I love Scottish bees. The unique flavour and amber colour of their honey is perfect for this classic steamed sponge.


  • 90g heather honey
  • 70g butter
  • 70g sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 75g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder


  1. Put 2 tablespoons of the honey into a buttered 1-pint (570ml) pudding basin.
  2. Add the butter, sugar, eggs, flour, baking powder and remaining honey into a bowl and blend with a hand-mixer for 2 minutes. Pour the mixture into the pudding basin, on top of the honey.
  3. Lay a piece of baking parchment on top of a sheet of foil, making a large pleat in the middle, to allow the pudding to rise. Cover the pudding basin foil side up, crimp around the sides and secure tightly with string.
  4. Place the basin in a large saucepan filled halfway with boiling water. Allow that to simmer with the lid on for an hour. Keep an eye on the pan and top up the water if necessary.
  5. Once you remove the foil, place the pudding basin upside down on a plate and serve immediately with vanilla custard.

The Hebridean Baker: Recipes and Wee Stories from the Scottish Islands by Connieach MacLeod is published by Black and White, out now, £20.

Follow him on TikTok and Instagram, @HebrideanBaker