Jamaican Christmas Cake Recipe
Jamaican Christmas cake, which is also referred to as Jamaican black cake has long been the most popular Jamaican dessert in Jamaica. Jamaican black cake is thought to be derived from the British figgy pudding, but with an island twist. While it has traditionally been thought of as a Christmas cake, it is actually baked and eaten all year round. It is also frequently used as a wedding cake.
This recipe is the holy grail of Jamaican black cake recipes. It was handed down from my grandmother to my mother and then to me. It has been in my family for over 100 years (as far as I know). This cake has been served at every family occasion throughout my life. This recipe has always been a big hit, not just with family members, but with anyone who’s ever tried it. It is with great honor I present to you a piece of my family’s culinary history. My grandmother’s Jamaican black cake.
To learn how to decorate your cake like the one pictured, please click here.
Jamaican Christmas Cake
- 16 oz Dark Brown sugar
- 16 oz Unsalted Butter
- 12 Large Eggs
- 2 tbsp Vanilla
- 2 tbsp Rose Water
- 2 tbsp Mixed Essence
- 6 oz All Purpose Flour Sifted
- 6 oz Bread Crumbs Plain
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 2 tbsp Baking Powder
- 2 tbsp Cinnamon
- 2 tbsp Ginger Grounded
- 1 tbsp Mixed Spice
- 1 tbsp Nutmeg Grounded
- 1/2 tbsp Cloves Grounded
- 1/2 cup Raisins Dried
- 1/2 cup Currants Dried
- 1/2 cup Cranberries Dried
- 1/2 cup Prunes Chopped and Pitted
- 1/2 cup Dtes Chopped and Dried
- 1/2 cup Candied Cherries
- 1/2 cup Candied Mixed Peel
- 2 cups Red Port Wine
- 1 cup Jamaican White Rum Wray and Nephew brand
- 2 tbsp Molasses
- 4 tbsp Browning
- 1 tbsp Baking Soda
- 2 tbsp Almond Flavor
- Cream 16 oz of dark brown sugar and 16 oz of unsalted butter in an electric mixer until smooth.
- Add 12 large eggs to your creamed butter and sugar mixture (Add 3 eggs at a time until they are all incorporated into your mixture).
- Add 2 tbsp vanilla, 2 tbsp rose water 2 tbsp mixed essence and 2 tbsp of almond flavor to your mixture.
- Combine in a bowl, 6 oz all-purpose sifted flour, 6 oz plain bread crumbs, 1 tsp salt, 2 tbs baking powder, 1 tbs baking soda, and cinnamon, 2 tbs ground ginger, 1 tbs mixed spice, 1 tsp nutmeg, and 1/2 tsp ground cloves.
- Now it's time to prepare your dried fruits.Simmer over low heat, 2 cups of port wine and 1 cup of Jamaican White Rum, add 1/2 cup dried raisins, 1/2 cup dried currants, 1/2 cup dried cranberries, 1/2 cup chopped pitted prunes, 1/2 cup chopped dried dates, 1/2 cup candied cherries and 1/2 cup candied mixed peel.
- When all liquid has evaporated let your fruits cool.
- Alternate your flour and fruit mixture to your cream mixture and blend in your electric mixer (Do not beat).
- Add 2 tbs molasses, and 4 tbs browning to your mixture and blend slowly in your electric mixer. (Do not beat).
- Grease and line 2 eight inch baking pans with butter or nonstick spray
- Fill pans 3/4 full, Heat oven to 350 degrees (Do not preheat).
- Bake until done (approximately 45 mins)
- Remove from oven while still hot, mix together 1/4 cup port wine and 1/8 cup white rum and pour over cakes.
- Leave cakes in pan to cool.
I loved your Oxtails recipe so I will definitely give this one a try. It sounds a bit like a spanish fruit cake (that one uses orange blossom water instead). There are quite a few ingredients but none of them are hard to get. I can’t wait to taste this cake !
Hi Mike, I guarantee you will not be disappointed in this recipe. Please let me know how it turns out. How did your oxtails turn out?
I appreciate you trying my recipes. You must share that Spanish cake recipe with me.
Well that cake sounds amazing and making it does not look complicated.
Can you share how the cake in the top photo is decorated? Is the cake normally served ‘plain’ (i.e un-iced) or decorated? I would love to take a cake like this to a pot-luck and surprise everyone 🙂
Hello Irma, it is usually iced for a special occasion, ie: birthday, wedding, etc. Typically it is served un-iced though. I will share how to decorate the cake in a future post (coming very soon).
This cake looks amazing! I bet the smells from your kitchen are phenomenal when baking it! I have a question, I am a high altitude baker and always add additional eggs (usually 2 more then required) when baking, I see that you would need 12 eggs for this recipe, do you think that I should add 4 or 6 more eggs? Or is the count of 12 already for added moisture and that should do? Thank you for sharing your family recipe!
Hello Elizabeth, the 12 eggs should be enough to keep the cake moist (even at high altitudes). If you decide to try this recipe, please let me know how it turns out. I’m very interested in your altitude experiment.
I love this site. Big up my yute. I grew up in JA myself with my grandmother and remember all these great dishes. I tried the papaya or “pa paw” as we say in JA and shrimp. Mi lik mi finga bredrin. Keep them coming.
Hi Jahlive, thanks for dropping by and checking out my site. I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe. Keep coming back, as I post more recipes.
This my Brother!!! I’m saying this cake can’t be better the. mom’s why is he sending me this!
Now sis, you know thats the best black recipe on the internet. 🙂
Hi I’m interested in baking this cake I must ask there are some ingredients you state in the list and the step by step but in you video I didn’t see you use did you omit them in the video ?
Beautiful cake but is 6ozs of flour enough for this cake. Just making sure.Please let me know. Thank you.
will try your Christmas cake
Made this cake 2 days ago. Wanted something different Christmas. Well, let me tell you, this cake does not disappoint and is an absolute delight. Tender, moist, luscious and many other superlatives still does not do it justice.
This is simply the best Christmas cake I have ever made and eaten, with ice cream. The smell in my entire house while baking was so wonderful. My whole family loves it. Thank you for sharing your fantastic recipe.Wishing you a very Merry Christmas
This cake was delicious….I did the 3x due to the amount of cake I baked and they came out perfect! Thanks
I look forward to trying this recipe!! It would be helpful if you had a recipe for Browning too. I had to look up what it is.
I noticed you have different measurements for your dry ingredients in the instructions than you do in the ingredients list. Which one is correct?