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GrandMa's Traditional
Jamaican Christmas Cake 

The Recipe

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Jamaican Christmas Cake (Jamaican Christmas Pudding)Traditional Jamaican Christmas Cake | Jamaican Christmas Pudding

You feel it in the air - the weather changes (it gets nicer), the blossoms and even the fresher, gentler breeze, Christmas is coming baby! And that means it is time to prepare the fruits for the the most treasured cake of the year, the Jamaican Christmas cake - laced with fruits and rum!

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I have the recipe for you, but just before I share it, how about a bit of history of Christmas pudding in Jamaica? 


Great... let's go!

Jamaican Christmas Cake - The History

According to Donaldson, our local Christmas Cake is actually a reworking over the centuries of the traditional English plum pudding.

The dried fruit ingredients are put to soak for weeks and even months in advance of baking in December.

And actually, speaking of baking, the ingredients were actually steamed instead of baked! 

In some Jamaican homes, fruit is kept soaking all year round  always ready for use! At minimum though, the fruits for the pudding are soaked at least one month before use.

Historically, they are made the first week in December to allow them time to ‘ripen‘ or mature for the Yuletide season.

The fruits traditionally used are ground raisins, currants, dates and prunes soaked in rum and port wine. Spices and citron may also be added.

It is traditionally served cold with hot brandy sauce or rum butter. The cakes (puddings) were keep for several months, and were often sent to relatives and friends overseas.

And now... here is the recipe (below)!

Traditional Jamaican Christmas Cake Recipe

Jamaican Christmas cake - a slice from my sister's baking :-)Sliced Jamaican Christmas cake - from my sister's baking :-)

This recipe make a 4 pound cake


  • 1/2 pound butter
  • 1 teaspoon almond flavoring 
  • 6 ounces bread crumbs
  • 1/2 dozen eggs
  • 1 tablespoon mixed spice
  • 1/2 pound granulated sugar
  • 4 cups mixed fruits (raisins, currants, prunes, citron, cherries, dates)
  • 6 ounces flour 
  • 2 cups port wine
  • 1 cup white rum
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 tablespoon browning 
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2  teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons lime (or orange) rind
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt



  1. Prepare tin by lining sides with 2 thicknesses of paper and the bottom with 4 thicknesses of brown paper and 1 of grease-proof paper.
  2. Grease with shortening
  3. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  4. Mix in the browning, vanilla and almond flavoring, lime juice and rind
  5. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat in well
  6. Add soaked fruits, cherries, dates and nuts
  7. Mix breadcrumbs, flour, baking powder, salt and mixed spice
  8. Add alternately with rum and port wine
  9. Pour into the prepared baking tin
  10. Bake at 250°F for approximately 2 hours. 
  11. Remove and cool.

We have another version as well, titled, Jamaican Fruit Cake. Pick your choice, 'all a dem nice'!

I Should Tell You....

  • This same recipe is used for the traditional Jamaican wedding cake, which is covered with a layer of marzipan (almond paste) and decorated with royal icing.

If not yet done, be sure to check out our mouth-watering Sweet Potato Pudding and Cornmeal Pudding Recipes, right here.

Watch Video! Jamaican Christmas Cake

Maisie, from Grace Kitchen, shows off her version of our Christmas cake via YouTube. Click the Play Button below to watch!

Get More Free Jamaican Recipes here

Now over to you! Please be sure to share a comment below to let me know how you did :-)  HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!!

You might like these as well

Return to Food From Jamaica from Jamaican Christmas Cake 
Return To My Island Jamaica Homepage from Jamaican Christmas Cake

Other Pages Related To Jamaican Christmas Cake


  • Senior, Olive, Encyclopedia of Jamaican Heritage, Published 2003
  • Spence, Wenton, Recipes From Old Jamaican Grandmothers, Published 2015
  • Donaldson, Enid, The Taste Of Jamaica, Published 1993

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