Caribbean Rum Cake

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Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 1 large bundt cake

Recipe photo

If you've ever traveled to the Caribbean, chances are you've had the amazing rum cakes that the islands are famous for. Sadly, these cakes are not often found in northern latitudes but this recipe is the closest we've ever had to the "real" thing.
Yes, there is a lot of rum in this cake, definitely not for the faint of heart but the texture and flavor are unbeatable. Moist, rich and deeply satisfying. Whisk yourself away to white sandy beaches with this incredible cake.

Caribbean Rum Cake

star rating (73) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time: Overnight,
Yield: 1 large bundt cake
Published: 09/28/2012


Rum cake base

  • 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup pastry cream filling mix or instant vanilla pudding mix, dry
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup white or golden rum
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon butter rum flavor (optional but excellent)
  • 1/4 cup pecan or almond flour, for dusting baking pan

Rum soaking syrup

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup white or golden rum
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


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1) Preheat oven to 325°F. Spritz a 10 to 12 cup bundt pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle on the pecan or almond flour and turn the pan to coat evenly. Set aside.

2) Place all of the cake ingredients except the rum, vanilla and butter rum flavoring in the bowl of your stand mixer and blend on medium speed for 2 minutes. Be sure to scrape down the bowl after one minute.

3) Add the rum, vanilla and flavor if using to the batter and blend for another minute. Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and spread level with a spatula.

4) Bake the cake for 50 to 55 minutes. You may smell the nut flour toasting at first, especially those not covered in cake batter. When done, the cake will test clean on a cake tester. Bundt cakes are difficult to test properly with a short toothpick. Instead try a piece of dry uncooked spaghetti or linguine.

5) Leave the cake in the pan to cool slightly while you make the soaking syrup.

6) In a medium-sized saucepan combine the syrup ingredients, except vanilla. Bring to a rapid boil then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 5 to 8 minutes, until the syrup thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

7) Pour about 1/4 of the syrup over the cake (still in the pan). Allow the syrup to soak in, then repeat again and again until all the syrup is used.

8) Cover the pan loosely with plastic wrap and allow the cake to sit out overnight to cool completely and soak in the syrup. When ready to serve, loosen the edges of the cake and invert on to your serving plate.

9) Serve with hot coffee or tea. The cake is very moist, fragrant and potent.

Yield: one large or two small bundt cakes. Cake freezes very well.


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  • star rating 04/20/2015
  • Helena from
  • star rating 03/19/2015
  • Missy from Cedar Grove, WI
  • Super Tasty!
  • star rating 03/11/2015
  • Bhargavi from Monroe, NY
  • I made this cake for the first time and everyone just loved the taste. The only issue I had was the cake would not release from the bundt pan and broke in the middle. It was probably not enough almond flour which I made myself? Except for that my family wants me to make it again.

    Bundt cakes are notorious for sticking--be sure to use a strong non-stick spray, such as Ever Bake Pan Spray, as well as dusting the pan with a bit of flour. Make sure you get all the nooks and crannies as this is what can make the cake refuse to come from the pan. We hope you make this recipe again. Happy baking! --Kye@KAF

  • star rating 03/03/2015
  • Anthony from Clearwater, FL
  • OMG, this is fabulous. And so easy. I got a my frst KitchenAid for Christmas and decided to make two of them for two different groups, Both groups LOVED it. The first one, I did the traditional way, cream the butter, mix in the eggs (one at a time), sift together the dry ingredients and add them alternating with the milk/oil/rum mixture. By the time I go to making the next one, I had had a few glasses of the rum, so I just dumped it all in the bowl and mixed. I swear the second one was better... :D p.s. used pecan meal to "flour the pan." Made a wonderfully dark crust on the outside.
  • star rating 02/24/2015
  • Tami from Lake Havasu City, AZ
  • Fantastic!!! I used coconut rum instead of vanilla and when soaking the cake I also sprinkled on straight coconut rum. Oh man, I made this for my birthday cake and it was so easy, tasty and heavenly. I also used fat free, sugar free instant pudding mix and it worked great.
  • star rating 02/18/2015
  • Victoria from NY
  • Delicious, moist and yummy! Will make it again for sure! A WINNER!!!!
  • star rating 02/05/2015
  • Lisa from Jamestown, NY
  • I just got back from a cruise in the Caribbean, which prompted me to attempt making this. I actually bought a small rum cake in Cozumel, Mexico for my dad. After he ate it, I had him try this cake & he liked it way better!! Delicious! I've had nothing but compliments!!
  • star rating 01/18/2015
  • Jean from Australia
  • I halved the recipe and baked for 25 mins in a round cake pan, and it is amazing! Not the prettiest thing I've ever made, but the taste and texture are divine. Not as sweet or boozy as I feared it might be (though I did add just a bit less sugar than called for). Super easy to make, although I did have to substitute custard powder for the pudding mix, as I had none on hand.
  • star rating 01/08/2015
  • Gisel from Guilford, CT
  • Loved it!! I made this cake for my Mom's birthday and it was a big hit. Reminiscent of rum cakes you'd find in Cuban bakeries in Miami, Florida. Lovely, moist texture with the smooth kick of real rum. I made a rum flavored vanilla cream and merengue to top it off.
  • 01/07/2015
  • Sharon A from Minocqua, WI
  • No rating yet - haven't tried it - though it sounds wonderful! Need to know if this could be adapted to gluten free by using the GF Yellow Cake mix and adjusting it a bit?
    Sorry, Sharon, we would not recommend this particular recipe as gluten free, the structure would suffer greatly. ~ MJ
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