Rum Cake

Rum-soaked perfection. Buttery, melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness! Possible the best thing I have ever eaten! Just a few ways to describe this incredible rum cake.

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This ultra-moist cake soaked in rum is guaranteed to have you dreaming of white sandy beaches even if you’re surrounded by two feet of snow! This cake is ridiculously boozy-as any good rum cake should be. 🙂

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I’ve always loved a good rum cake-in fact I love it so much that we actually had a rum cake for our wedding cake. I’ve tried multiple times to recreate a “blog worthy” bundt-style rum cake and have never found a great recipe until now. Seriously, folks you have to make this!

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This cake comes together in no time at all. The most important thing to remember while making this cake is to take your time pouring on the rum syrup. You want all of that boozy perfection to soak right into the cake and not pool on the bottom of the serving plate. Pour it very slooooowly and don’t be shy when it comes to poking holes in the cake. Just when you think you’ve poked enough holes, poke a few more. Seriously, the more holes the better, as the rum syrup will seep right into the cake. I’m sure I poked at least 200 holes (if not more!) into this cake! The whole glazing process should take ten to fifteen minutes or so. Just be patient. You really want the glaze to sink into that cake.

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I found this cake to taste best the next day as the flavors have melded and the rum syrup has had time to seep into the cake. Now, don’t get me wrong, this cake is great the day that it is baked. But wait a day…oh man! :)

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This easy, yet oh so elegant dessert would be a huge hit at a New Year’s Eve party. Just make sure the kids don’t get a hold of this one! 😉 If you plan on serving it to guests on New Year’s I suggest you make it one day before serving so the cake has had time to soak up the rum syrup. Happy New Year everyone!

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Rum Cake

Rum-soaked perfection.

Yield: 12-15 servings


For the Cake:
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
4 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup whole milk, room temperature
3/4 cup dark rum (recommended: Diplomático Rum)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 (3.4-ounce) package of instant vanilla pudding

For the Rum Syrup:
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup dark rum


1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour 12-cup nonstick Bundt pan. Sprinkle the chopped walnuts around the bottom; set aside.

2. Combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl.

3. In small bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, rum, 1/2 cup canola oil, and vanilla extract.

4. Using stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the flour mixture and the remaining 3 tablespoons of canola oil, and mix on medium-low speed until the mixture looks like wet sand, about 1 minute. Add the pudding mix and mix again on medium-low speed until combined. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed until thoroughly combined, about 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

5. Pour the cake batter into the prepared Bundt pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

6. When the cake has about 10 minutes left to bake, start making the rum syrup. In a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Once it is melted, add the sugar, water, corn syrup and salt. Bring to a boil then reduce to a low simmer and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and stir in the rum. Once it is mixed in, return it to medium heat for about 30 seconds.

7. When the cake comes out of the oven, immediately pour one-third of the rum syrup over the bottom of the cake. Pour slowly so it has time to seep into the cake. Using a fork or a skewer, poke holes all over the bottom of the cake. Let it sit for 5 minutes.

8. Invert the cake onto a serving platter. Using a fork or a skewer, poke holes all over the cake (the top, sides, and around the inside). The holes ensure that the rum syrup seeps into the cake evenly. Very slowly pour the remaining rum syrup over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. You want to do this step very slowly so that the syrup seeps into the cake and doesn't just pool on the bottom of the serving dish.

9. Allow the cake to cool to room temperature before serving. Leftovers can be kept, tightly wrapped, at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Source: adapted from Brown Eyed Baker, originally adapted from Always Order Dessert

Disclaimer: I was asked by Diplomático Rum to highlight a rum cake recipe that features their Añejo Rum. While I have been compensated for my time, my opinions are my own, and I have not been paid to post positive comments. Visit for more information about the rum and cocktail recipes.

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4 Responses to “Rum Cake”

  1. #
    Laura Henschen — December 30, 2014 @ 10:08 am

    This sounds like such a tasty cake recipe. Can I use Sailor Jerry spiced rum instead? Have always enjo yed all your recipes you’ve posted. Have a great 2015!

    • Christina replied: — December 30th, 2014 @ 5:19 pm

      Hi Laura,

      Of course you can use your favorite type of rum! 🙂 I hope you enjoy it as much as we did! If you give it a try I would love to hear how it turns out for you! Happy New Year!!

  2. #
    Jeannie Speakman — January 1, 2015 @ 9:11 am

    I just got your e-mail with the recipe tis morning and I made it right away. The timing was perfect because we just happen to be talking with neighbors about wanting a recipe for rum cake or rum baba, so I made it for them.
    It is fantastic and the rum is in perfect balance with the other flavors. Sometimes the rum flavor is overpowering or maybe it’s the rum I used. Myers Rum Original Dark is what I usually buy and it was just the ticket. I will make it again for sure, and very soon I think. I followed the recipe exactly and loved it. I was wondering about using coconut vanilla instant pudding next time, what do you think?
    If you are wondering how I tasted it if the cake was for neighbors….my husband had to have a piece first, so I cut portions and took about five portions down to them, and kept the rest. It was just too good to resist.

  3. #
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea — January 2, 2015 @ 4:30 pm

    By the photos and the ingredients I think this really really would qualify as ‘The Best’ . It looks so moist, yet still fluffy. Happy Happy New Year!!! I enjoy your blog immensely.

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