Lords were interviewed by not-for-profit sector advisory group nfpSynergy for its third Parliamentary Monitor study, and were asked to recall charities that had impressed them over the past six months. Cancer Research UK came top, followed by Christian Aid.
Peers were then given a list of charities and asked to rate their overall effectiveness in tackling their cause, in which Cancer Research came joint top with Macmillan Cancer Relief.
When asked to recall recent charity campaigns, media coverage or advertising, Cancer Research was beaten to first place by Make Poverty History, but its Reduce the Risk campaign was ranked fifth in terms of awareness.
Maxine Taylor, executive director of policy and communication at Cancer Research, said engaging peers with the charity's aims was important for its influence in Parliament.
Head of volunteering Annette Breeden said coming top in a poll such as this helped to get people involved with the charity's work.
'The increased coverage raises our presence in the media and gets our name and brand recognised more, especially when we are featured alongside a high-profile cause such as Make Poverty History,' said Breeden.