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Rich Brown Christmas Fruit cake in a rectangular aluminium pan with a yellow ribbon on top. Slices of cake on a cooling rack with a yellow knife
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5 from 1 vote

How to make rich Christmas Fruit cake -Easy Recipe

Step by step instructions to make a rich Christmas Fruit cake filled with dried fruits and nuts, all the way from soaking the fruit to baking the cake, or to make it without having pre-soaked the dry fruit.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 20 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, british
Servings: 12 slices
Author: Sujata Shukla


For the rich Christmas Fruit cake

  • 800 gms mixed chopped dry fruits 4 - 6 cups -check my recipe for how to soak fruits, for quantities -link given below
  • 500 ml soaking liquid - alcohol or unsweetened juice 2 cups- liquid just to cover the fruits plus extra for topping
  • 300 gm butter unsalted at room temperature
  • 200 gm dark brown sugar
  • 4 Eggs at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons molasses substitute with treacle- see notes above
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon Orange zest
  • 300 gm flour plain flour / maida or a mixture of plain and whole wheat
  • 1 tea spoon baking powder
  • 150 gm almond -ground
  • 150 gm walnut chopped small

For the Spice mix

  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 1 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon clove powder a Pinch
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg


  • Combine the butter with sugar, in a food processor (or mix by hand) until fluffy and creamy, as fluffy as you can make it.
    Cream butter and sugar till fluffy_PepperOnPizza.com
  • Crack the eggs (I do this one by one in separate bowl) and add one by one to the butter sugar mixture.
    Add eggs to the batter_PepperOnPizza.com
  • As the mixture may tend to curdle, it would help if you added a tea spoon of flour or almond flour to the mixture along with the egg. Stir till just combined. Add the molasses, lemon and orange zest, vanilla extract and gently fold it in. Too much of mixing can harden the cake, so fold in the ingredients without stirring the batter.
    Add flour to the eggs before mixing_PepperOnPizza.com
  • Add the almond flour, flour with baking powder, spice mix and fold it in. Fold in the chopped nuts. Finally fold in the soaked fruits.
    Fold in the soaked fruits_PepperOnPizza.com
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin, till it reaches about 3/4 of the tin. Stir while pouring to expel any air bubbles.
    Pour batter in prepared tin_PepperOnPizza.com
  • Place the tin in the oven and bake for about 2 hours. I baked it at 160C for an hour and then reduced the temperature to 150 C. It took 2 hours and 15 minutes for my cake to bake.
  • Check by inserting a small wooden skewer -if it comes out clean or with only a few moist crumbs, your cake is done! If the skewer comes out with sticky crumbs attached, the cake has to remain in the oven for some more time.
  • After removing the cake from the oven, when it is still hot, carefully drill a few small holes on top with a wooden skewer. Brush with alcohol or whatever soaking liquid you have used. Set the cake to cool on a wire rack. When completely cool, remove carefully from the tin, separate and remove the parchment papers.
  • Wrap the cake with clingfilm and then in a double layer of foil, making sure you have access to the top of the cake for moistening with liquid later on. Do no directly use foil on the cake as the alcohol or citrusy liquid could react with the foil.
  • Store the packed cake in an airtight container in a cool dark place. Every 2 weeks till before the last week of Christmas, pour a little alcohol or juice on top to keep the cake moist.
  • Use the same liquid in which you soaked the fruits, for moistening it. Eg if you soaked the fruits in rum, top the cake with rum and not other alcohol, to keep the flavours consistent.
  • Alcohol infused cakes do not require refrigeration as the alcohol acts as a preservative. If well wrapped, the cake should keep for several weeks.