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Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Rum Raisin Fruitcake. A simplified recipe for your choice of a a spiced or un-spiced cake, featuring no other fruit than raisins, which have been soaked overnight in rum.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

This Rum Raisin Fruitcake came about as the result of a question from one of our long time followers. There are no shortage of questions from readers at the height of the Christmas baking season but this one got me thinking.

Of course there is always a debate about fruitcake. No question about it, there is no grey area to be found. You either like fruitcake or you do not.

Often, I think you have to be brought up with it to hold any affinity for it at all. I don’t think there are many people who suddenly develop a love of fruitcake later in life.

It probably has to be intrinsically tied to memories of mothers and grandmothers baking at the Holidays. For most, I think, it’s about reminiscences of wonderful Christmases past.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Once you get past the debate over love and hate though, there are also big gaps in fruitcake preference. Some people prefer a dark fruitcake like my Nut Lovers Fruitcake or a lighter un-spiced fruitcake like our Orange Brandy Fruitcake.

Then there are some that don’t like a particular fruit in it like currents or dates. Or, some won’t enjoy specific spices, like cloves, or specific flavours, like citrus.

The personal preferences are endless.

Rum and Raisin Fruitcake. A “plain” fruitcake?

The question I got though, was if I had a recipe for a more “plain” fruitcake. Now what in the world did this writer mean by that?

Rum Raisin Fruitcake ready for the oven.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake ready for the oven.

Upon further enquiry, the lady who messaged me wanted a recipe for what was essentially something akin to a boiled raisin cake. She wanted a cake with a rather straightforward, quick, unfussy method.

Her father was not fond of very dark, too molasses-y cakes, and he hated spices, nuts and any hint of citrus too.

A little molasses was fine she said, but not too dark like our recipe for Old English Fruitcake.

What about booze, I asked, “does he like a little rum in there?” That unsurprisingly was not a problem.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake just out of the oven.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake just out of the oven.

Suddenly this was a fruitcake that I might just be able to get behind! A rather “plain” Rum Raisin Cake now sounded like a great idea.

I took a molasses cake recipe I once modified as the base. Then, I changed the balance of brown sugar and molasses, soaked plenty of raisins in plenty of rum and set out to make the cake.

Raisins for Hot Cross Buns shown in a white bowl.

Sultana Raisins are great in this recipe but you can use any kind you like. Golden raisins are also a good choice.

Spiced or unspiced?

Now, I was a little if-fy on the spices, because I knew Spouse would prefer them in this cake. So, why not make two as an experiment?

I made a smaller cake of half the size, with the spices noted in this recipe, in a 9×5 inch loaf pan and it was wonderful too.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

It’s great to have a choice for a spiced cake or an un-spiced cake to suit your own preference.

Size is also a big preference when it comes to fruitcake. So, the option to make half the recipe as a large loaf cake is great too rather than the quite substantial 10 inch cake size.

You’d probably get 3, small disposable loaf sized cakes out of this recipe, if you prefer. That size makes it an ideal recipe for gift giving too. 

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out our entire collection of Favourite Newfoundland Christmas Cakes here.

Best Newfoundland Christmas Cake Recipes

Like this Rum Raisin Fruitcake recipe?

If you’re looking for other food gift ideas for the Holidays or just lots of seasonal recipe suggestions for both cooking and baking, be sure to browse our Christmas Recipes Category.

It’s easy to keep up with the latest home style cooking & baking ideas from Rock Recipes. Be sure to follow Rock Recipes Facebook Page and follow us on Instagram

Plus you’ll see daily recipe suggestions from decadent desserts to quick delicious weekday meals too. 

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

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Rum Raisin Fruitcake
Yield: 40 Servings or more depending on size.

Rum Raisin Fruitcake

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 25 minutes

Rum Raisin Fruitcake - a simplified recipe for your choice of a a spiced or un-spiced cake, featuring no other fruit than raisins, which have been soaked overnight in rum.


  • 4 cups sultana or golden raisins
  • 1 cup rum, any kind, I used amber (If making a no alcohol version use white grape juice or apple juice)
  • 3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon, optional
  • 1 tsp nutmeg, optional
  • 1 tsp allspice, optional
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves, optional
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups light brown sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/4 cup fancy molasses
  • 1/2 cup additional rum if you do the additional rum soak


  1. This recipe starts 24 hours in advance with the soaking of the raisins in the rum. I soak them in a shallow airtight glass or plastic container. Stirring them several times during the day. After 24 hours the raisins should have soaked up practically all of the rum. You can do this days or weeks in advance if you want. It makes no difference as long as they are stored in an airtight container.
  2. Grease a 10 inch springform pan well and line it with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
  3. Sift together the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda (and the spices if you are including them). Set aside.
  4. Cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  5. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  6. Next blend in the molasses until well combined.
  7. Fold in 3 /4 of the dry ingredients mixture, until almost incorporated. A few streaks of flour should remain, so that it isn't over mixed.
  8. Add the soaked raisins and any remaining rum. There should be very little if any left.
  9. Fold the raisins for several turns before adding the last of the dry ingredient mixture. Fold until the batter is smooth.
  10. Add the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 2 hours or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Test it with a clean wooden toothpick at two or three points near the centre to be absolutely sure the cake is baked.
  11. Let the cake cool in the pan for 20 minutes before releasing the sides of the pan and sliding the cake onto a wire cooling rack to cool to room temperature.
  12. Store the cake well wrapped in a cool place.
  13. At this point you can poke small holes in the top and bottom of the cake with a fork and pour on 4 ounces of dark rum or your favorite whiskey, half on the top, wait ten minutes, then flip it over and pour the remaining half on the bottom.
  14. Soak several layers of cheesecloth in additional rum if you like and wrap completely around the cake, then cover with several layers of plastic wrap and store in a COOL place.


This recipe can easily be made non alcoholic by using the suggested substitution of grape juice or apple juice to soak the raisins. The cake would not be soaked in anything after baking. It still makes a very nice raisin cake with a very straight forward preparation method and with no need to boil the dried fruit.

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

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Rock Recipes a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. Our product recommendations are almost exclusively for those we currently use or have used in the past.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size

40 Servings or more depending on size.

Amount Per Serving Calories 193Saturated Fat 3gCholesterol 36mgSodium 71mgCarbohydrates 31gSugar 20gProtein 2g

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Tuesday 2nd of February 2021

Hi Does this really take two hours to bake? Doesn’t the cake dry up


Thursday 26th of November 2020

I made this most excellent cake with 1/2 the amount of raisins (seedless thompson raisins soaked in Kracken spiced rum) and it was the best cake. I brushed on any remaining rum/raisin juices after the cake came out of the oven, all surfaces. I had great feedback from other home cooks, and was especially good after thawing the chunks of cake I had frozen (it's a lot of cake- thank goodness because it is so good). I rave about this cake, better than the elaborate cheese cakes that I make. Who knew that you could bake a cake at a low recipe for a long period of time and it turns out with a light texture that rises so perfectly. Thanks Barry, I appreciate your generosity to share this and many other fantastic recipes.

Kate MacKinnon

Friday 20th of December 2019

I would like to bake this in a jumbo muffin tin so my dad can freeze/thaw them at his leisure. Thought she on baking time or why this might not be a good idea? Thank you! PS - your cherry pound cake is an absolute favourite here

Auldith Moore

Friday 15th of November 2019

I am going to try it for the holidays


Monday 4th of November 2019

Can I leave out the molasses?

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