Caribbean Rum Cake – the taste of travel – Cruise Traveller

Caribbean Rum Cake – the taste of travel

by Samantha Patton – Product Manager, Cruise Traveller

Get the taste of the Caribbean with our take on this delicious recipe from King Arthur Flour

If you’ve ever been to the Caribbean islands, you will have come across Rum Cake. This sweet, buttery moist treat is something I have tried to copy many times since my trip to Jamaica and I think I have finally found something that is very close to what I had overseas.

Firstly, there is a lot of rum in this cake, so if you are not to consume alcohol for any reason, please do not eat this cake. Similarly, if you have children, please avoid.

I would like to give credit to King Arthur for the starting point for this recipe and for the image above, however, this recipe is a departure from the one they have so kindly posted.

Ingredients: CAKE

  • 1 and a third cups of plain flour
  • 1 cups of white sugar
  • 1 packet of Cottees Instant Vanilla Mix
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 level teaspoon of salt
  • A third of a cup of unsalted butter that has been softened to room temperature
  • A third of a cup of vegetable oil
  • A third of a cup of milk
  • 3 average to large size eggs (or 4 if they are small)
  • A third of a cup of Appleton’s Estate Jamaican Rum (important, using any other type of rum will affect the flavour of this cake – you can use any light Caribbean rum but do not use dark Australian rums or white rums)
  • 1 heaped (a little over flowing) teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • A third of a cup of almond meal

Ingredients: SYRUP

  • A third of a cup of unsalted butter
  • A quarter of a cup of water
  • Half a cup of white sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • A quarter of a cup of the same rum you used in the cake above
  • Half a teaspoon of vanilla extract


  • An electric mixer (or some big muscles)
  • Spatula
  • Oven – preheated to 160 degrees Celsius
  • A bundt pan (circular do-nut shaped tin)
  • Skewer
  • Cling film or something to seal and cover the cake
  • Saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Measuring cups and spoons


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Place the flour, sugar, pudding mix, baking powder, salt, butter, and vegetable oil in a mixing bowl, and mix at medium speed until everything is thoroughly combined and the mixture is sandy looking.
  3. Beat in the milk, then beat in the eggs one at a time. Scrape the bowl thoroughly, and beat briefly to recombine any sticky residue.
  4. Stir in the rum, vanilla, and butter-rum flavor.
  5. Spray a 10- to 12-cup Bundt pan with cooking spray, or grease with butter then sprinkle with almond meal until evenly covered on all sides and shake out the excess for use later.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan/tin and spread level with a spatula. Bake the cake for 50 to 60 minutes.
  7. When done, a cake tester, long toothpick, or strand of uncooked spaghetti will come out clean when inserted into the center. It is important that the cake is dry as you will be adding a lot of syrup later.
  8. Remove the cake from the oven. Leave the cake in the pan to cool while you make the syrup.
  9. In a medium-sized saucepan combine the syrup ingredients, except vanilla.
  10. Bring to a rapid boil then reduce to a simmer and cook (without stirring) for about 5 to 8 minutes, until the syrup thickens slightly.
  11. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla (if you like vanilla, you can double the amount here).
  12. Use a long skewer to poke holes all over the cake. Pour about 1/4 cup 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.
  13. Cover the pan loosely with plastic wrap and allow the cake to sit overnight at room temperature to cool completely and soak in the syrup.
  14. When ready to serve, loosen the edges of the cake and invert onto your serving plate. If the cake won’t release, don’t force it. Place it in the oven, turn the oven to 140 degrees Celsius and warm for about 10 minutes, to soften the sticky syrup. Remove the cake from the oven, and tip it onto the serving plate.

And that our hungry reader, is my version of a Caribbean rum cake that is the next best thing to being on a swaying hammock as you watch the sunset on a Jamaican beach and listen to the sounds of a reggae band in the distance….