Southern Queensland Country is known for many things; home of Australia’s largest inland city, bearer of four distinct seasons, deliverer of drop-dead gorgeous sunsets, but a lesser-known fact is it’s also the birthplace of an iconic Australian treat – the lamington.
Soft, fluffy and cloudlike, these Australian treats originated in Toowoomba in 1896 and they’ve been celebrated across the region ever since.
While the origin of the humble lamington is as contentious as the question of what came first – pasta or noodles – let us turn back the pages of history and show you Southern Queensland Country’s culinary-claim.
The year was 1896, when Lord Lamington wanted to avoid a hot summer’s day and had a stroke of brilliance, to take his entourage somewhere cooler – Toowoomba.
During their stay, Lord Lamington requested his favourite treat, snowballs, which the kitchen was unprepared for.
Nevertheless, a clever cook improvised by making square cakes covered in chocolate and dipped in coconut, before gingerly serving them to Lord Lamington and his guests.
To her surprise, everyone loved the treats, requesting their name immediately. When she said they didn’t have a name, they were dubbed ‘Lord Lamington cakes’, and the rest as they say, is history.
Lucky for modern travellers, there’s a laming-ton of places to source these fresh treats across Southern Queensland Country – read on to discover where to satisfy lamington cravings.
1. O’Donnell’s Bakehouse
Baking lamingtons in their city of origin warrants high expectations and O’Donnell’s Bakehouse doesn’t disappoint.
Recognised as one of Toowoomba’s top three bakeries of 2022 by Three Best Rated, you know their freshly baked lamingtons, coffees, and other sweet treats are going to be good.
Their two West Toowoomba stores place you a five-minute drive away from the Queensland State Rose Gardens, offering a pretty place to eat your treat.
After more nature-based activities to enjoy with a lamington in hand? Check out these nature experiences in Toowoomba.
Prefer to munch from the comfort of your residence? You don’t need to travel far to get your hands on a fresh lamington, pick up O’Donnell’s Bakehouse goods when you visit the Cobb and Co Museum, Deli Delicious or select corner stores.
As a family-owned and operated business, at Theo’s Bakery, the skill of producing the perfect lamington has been honed for years, amounting to a sponge-to-chocolate-to-coconut ratio that would leave Lord Lamington licking his lips.
Found in Toowoomba’s Grand Central and Southtown shopping centres, run your eyes over a display cabinet packed with award-winning sweet and savoury delicacies before grabbing a lamington to-go.
From Grand Central Shopping Centre, Queens Park is only a 15-minute walk away, offering up over 25 hectares of green space to leave lamington crumbs.
Looking to see the city while fuelled up on coconutty-carbs? Check out these other things to do in Toowoomba.
Keep an eye on their Facebook page because Theo’s Bakery post plenty of seasonal deals, which let you save while savouring their freshly baked lamingtons.
3. Sweet Valley Bakery, Laidley
Lovely lamingtons are found in Laidley – simply add Sweet Valley Bakery into Maps and press play on your favourite Aussie tunes for the hours’ drive from Brisbane or an hour and a half from the Gold Coast.
The Sweet Valley Bakery is best known for its realistic 3D cakes, so rest assured that their lamingtons are of the same quality.
Laidley is surrounded by scenery as sweet as the lamingtons to be found there, so why not add a picnic to your lamington-tasting adventure?
Stop in at the Sweet Valley Bakery, grab a selection of fresh treats, and fold out the rug on the carefully landscaped lawns and gardens of Spring Bluff. Alternatively, add these nature experiences in the Lockyer Valley to your itinerary.
4. Golden Harvest Bakery, Laidley
For a traditional lamington or a treat with a twist, make your way to Golden Harvest Bakery in Laidley.
Tick freshly baked bread, tasty lunches, and delicious deserts off the shopping list with one swift stroke, all while savouring one of Southern Queensland Country’s finest (and fluffiest) inventions.
Looking to spice your lamington tasting game up? Treat your pallet to the moist sponge of a lamington cream topped with jam.
Looking for things to do while savouring your lamington? Check out these activities (best enjoyed with treats at the ready).
Southern Downs & Granite Belt
5. Steele’s Bakery, Warwick
There’s lamingtons, then there’s culinary works of art – Steele’s Bakery in Warwick serves the latter.
Operating for over 30 years, Steele’s Bakery offers tasty fresh bread, a variety of sweet and savoury goodies, and lamingtons that make the calories worth it.
After the two-hour drive from Brisbane and two and a half from the Gold Coast, you’ll be greeted by racks of your favourite baked delights.
If you like your lamingtons served in slabs (read: big portions here!), you’re in for a treat.
Take the opportunity to be the hero of the household and grab some extras to share with mates.
For a taste of lamington history, head for Pringle Cottage at the Warwick Museum.
Built in the late 1860s, savouring a lamington in its quaint grounds brings you back to the same decade your treat was first baked.
Turn your tasting into a sightseeing trip with these seven things to do in Warwick.
6. Foxy’s Bakery, Stanthorpe
If you’re serious about your lammos, there’s one name in the Granite Belt synonymous with their iconic flavour, Foxy’s Bakery in Stanthorpe.
The large lamingtons are hand cooked, coated and rolled in coconut in sizeable portions to satisfy even the hungriest of customers.
Set on Stanthorpe’s main street, take your fresh lamington to-go and peruse the neighbouring boutique stores and cafes, or take a seat in their outdoor eating area beside the French streetscape mural to snack with a European flair.
Turn the day into an adventure and nibble on your lammo while exploring the towering rock formations of Girraween National Park. As the perfect fuel for a hike to Balancing Rock or final touch to a picnic in the grassy day use areas, get your fix of sweet treats and nature scenes in one go.
7. Batsey’s Bread Basket, Goondiwindi
For a (laming)totally delicious treat, Batsey’s Bread Basket in Goondiwindi has you covered.
This store in the heart of the Goondiwindi township just celebrated its 24th year of operation. Starting as a team of four, the store is now manned by Batsey children, spouses, friends, and even grandkids and is a full-blown family affair.
Grab yourself a lamington (or five) and turn left for a short stroll to Goondiwindi town park to enjoy the sunshine. After some post-snack retail therapy? Turn right at the door and savour the snack while wandering down Goondiwindi’s main shopping street.
If nibbles in nature takes your fancy, tuck into your lamington at these stunning nature spots in Goondiwindi.
8. Albert Street Bakery, Inglewood
One bakery you knead to know about is Albert Street Bakery in Inglewood.
Bite into a traditional lammo fresh from the oven, or spice things up with a pink raspberry flavoured lamington or lamington cream. Trouble deciding? Ask yourself “what would Lord Lamington do?”, and then continue to purchase all three.
Once you’ve secured yourself a treat, take a stroll along Inglewood’s Olive Walkway to eat in the shade of the town’s olive trees and learn the region’s history from the interpretive signs along the track.
9. Maces Hot Bread, Miles
A lamington is only as good as the place you savour it, and Maces Hot Bread in Miles offers the full experience from cabinet to plate.
Stop in at the yellow building in the main street to peruse rows of baked goods before picking out your lamington of choice.
For Maces Hot Bread, flour power extends beyond your snack to their open-air courtyard, where you can sit and savour your lamington amongst the vibrantly coloured flowerpots and tables.
After filling your belly, shake off the food coma with a walk through the immersive 1800’s streetscape of the Miles Historical Village Museum.
10. Tara Woolshed Bakery, Tara
If you’re travelling through Big Sky Country, be sure to stop and smell the flavours at the Woolshed Bakery in Tara.
Found in Tara’s main street, the Woolshed bakery offers a selection of cakes, bread, pastries, and of course, lamingtons.
Want to chew with a view? Grab your lamington from the bakery in the late afternoon, then punch the Tara Lagoon Parklands into the GPS. As you eat, wander the over-water boardwalk, and settle on the banks of Undulla Creek to watch the skies light up with a country sunset.
Want to make a lamington at home?
For an authentic country lamington, check out this recipe used by the Queensland Country Women’s Association (QCWA) who celebrate their 100th anniversary in August 2022.
½ CUP BUTTER 1 ½ CUPS SRF
1 CUP SUGAR ½ CUP MILK
BEAT BUTTER AND SUGAR TO A CREAM. ADD EGGS, BEAT WELL. ADD FLOUR AND MILK ALTERNATELY FOLDING IN CAREFULLY. POUR INTO A GREASED TIN 24X28cm AND BAKE AT 170 DEGREES FOR HALF AN HOUR. TURN OUT AND COOL. PREFERABLY KEEP IN FREEZER OVERNIGHT BEFORE CUTTING INTO SQUARES AND ICING.
2 CUPS SUGAR; 3 TABLESPOONS COCOA; 2 EGG WHITES; ½ TEASPOON VANILLA; PINCH OF CREAM OF TARTAR; GOOD ½ CUP COLD WATER; COCONUT.
PLACE SUGAR, COCOA, CREAM OF TARTAR AND WATER IN SAUCEPAN AND BRING TO BOIL. BOIL FAST FOR FOUR MINUTES. REMOVE FROM HEAT AND ADD STIFFLY BEATEN EGG WHITES AND VANILLA AND BEAT WELL. WHILE STILL HOT DIP SQUARES OF FROZEN CAKE INTO MIXTURE; SHAKE OFF EXCESS AND PLACE ON WIRE COOLER PLACED OVER A TRAY TO DRAIN. ROLL IN COCONUT. IF MIXTURE GETS COOL — STAND IT IN HOT WATER OR WARM AGAIN.
2022 National Lamington Day social media promotion: Terms and conditions