June 26, 2017

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Every Caribbean island has its version of black rum cake. I associate black cake with traditional Jamaican wedding cake, but for many it’s the cake they bake at Christmastime. My “black cake” recipe isn’t as dark as some. What makes a black cake dark is how much browning you use and how long you soak the fruit in liquor. Many people soak their fruit for a year! As soon as Christmas is over they buy more fruit to soak for the next year. Fruit that is soaked that long will get very dark if not black. It doesn’t even need to be ground because it will dissolve into a thick fruit puree.
For my recipe, all you have to  do is soak the fruit  in rum overnight, simmer it the next day and grind it into a puree. You can then use browning to make the batter darker.  I think you’ll really be pleased with this recipe because it’s full of flavour and it’s super moist. For those who like a smooth almost sticky black cake infused with rum … this one’s for you!

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I’ve been cooking Jamaican food for my family for more than 50 years! Now I'm teaching my daughter Angela and you how to cook my treasured family recipes! I'm happy to be of service and love hearing from you so don't forget to leave a comment below.



  • Reply
    December 9, 2012

    Thanks so much for this recipe! I absolutely love your website and stumbled upon it by accident when looking for a recipe for sweet potato pone. This is my second Christmas season of making Jamaican fruitcakes and my family loves them. Your tips on making browning were excellent. The first time I tried to make my own browning it came out like taffy so I just used molasses. This year I forgot it altogether, although, my cakes still came out good. Next time, I will definitely try your browning recipe. Thanks again and please keep the recipes coming!! Have a blessed Christmas!

    • Reply
      March 1, 2013

      Wonderful website!
      Do I have to use white rum? Can I use dark spiced rum instead?

      Many thanks

      • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
        Cook Like A Jamaican
        March 2, 2013

        Hi Jen,
        Yes, no problem, you can use any rum … just make sure it’s Jamaican, LOL! Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    December 10, 2012

    Hi Fay, your Caribbean Black Cake recipe also didn’t mention how many eggs should be used.

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      December 10, 2012

      Hi Sharon,
      Oops … you need 5 eggs. It will be added to the recipe now. Thanks, Angela

  • Reply
    December 11, 2012

    Thanks Mummy Fay for all the wonderful recipes and the videos especially. What can i do if I don’t have a microwave? I really would love to make this for New Years Eve. Thanks for showing us how to make REAL browning – especially the tip about using the food tins. Ella x

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      December 11, 2012

      Hi Ella,
      If you don’t have a microwave it’s just a step you’ll have to skip. Consider soaking the fruit in the rum for 2 or 3 days instead of just overnight before simmering on the stove as instructed. I’m sure you won’t notice a difference. Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    December 11, 2012

    Hi Ms. Fay,
    I love your videos! I have one question…What is port????? Thanks again, and GOD bless!!!!

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      December 11, 2012

      Hi Theresa,
      Port is a fortified wine like sherry. However, port is sweeter and has a higher alcohol content than sherry. You should have no problem finding it at your local liquor store. Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    December 13, 2012

    Loved this one 🙂
    Thanks very much Aunty Fay

  • Reply
    December 14, 2012

    Hi Ms Fay,
    Thank you , thank you, thank you for black cake recipe.
    I have been looking for this for AGES!!
    I’m now ready to soak my fruits in Jamaican rum (my partner has just brought me two bottles from JA)
    Can’t wait to make my cake….will let you know how it turns out.
    Bless up and Happy Christmas to you and yours xx

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013

    Hi Miss Fay,
    I hope you dont mind me adding the miss! I felt compel to do so. anyways , I am a Jamaian living in Canada and I have learnt to bake just last year. I want to make a black cake and I think you recipe will be spot on.
    Thank you very much!!!

  • Reply
    March 6, 2013

    Thanx a lot Fay, great recipe! 😉

  • Reply
    May 9, 2013

    Hi Fay,
    I attempted the cake and it came out with a fabulous taste, super rich but the texture was very moist almost pudding like. It is more like a Christmas pudding. I think I may have poured too much liquor when it cooled. I just wanted to know if the longer I store the without adding any more liquor will the texture firm up and what is the longest the cake can be stored without spoiling?

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      May 12, 2013

      Hi Jackie,
      Thank you for reaching out. Black cake is generally dense and pudding like but it should be firm. You can store it outside of the fridge for weeks in a cool place. Just wrap it in foil and put it in a tin. Yes, don’t add more liquor and it should dry out some. Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    May 24, 2013

    Hi Fay
    in the black cake recipe, my family does not like the taste of the candid peel. if i leave out the candid peel, would the cake turn out ok

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      May 25, 2013

      Hi Joy,
      I’m a big supporter of doing what’s right for you when cooking, even if it’s not 100 percent traditional. Please be creative and have fun! It will still taste great!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2013

    The recipes for this cake are MANY and varied! This is the one that comes closest to the cake I remember from childhood, so I’ve chosen it to make for my parent’s 40th anniversary.

    Do you have any tips or recipes for icing this cake?? Thanks!

    • Reply Cook Like A Jamaican
      Cook Like A Jamaican
      June 28, 2013

      Hi Tamara,
      I haven’t iced a black cake in years. But I do think it’s a good idea for a future cooking lesson. Usually there is a layer of marzipan and then royal icing. Blessings, Fay

  • Reply
    Fran from Bronx, NY
    July 15, 2013

    I just took a look at your black cake recipe and it almost like the way my late Tia Jo and Ket made theirs. They didn’t have microwave back in those days but they used to put the raisins and other fruits (minus the peels) in a large jar filled with port. I can remember just getting high off the vapor when the jar was open for baking… Thanks for the memories. Now I can finally bake the cake. Hope to do so before my mother passes, so that I can give her a little comfort.

  • Reply
    August 24, 2013

    Thank you so much for this recipe! This will be a pleasant surprise for my husband! Also you are truly a blessing to women all over married to Island men! It’s a beautiful thing to be able to cook dishes that remind them of home! Your website and Youtube videos are thoroughly appreciated in this house! Blessings

  • Reply
    September 28, 2013

    I have watched your cooking tips on youtube.. I love it all. I enjoy your style of cooking, because many of the things you do, i was taught the similar way, i love my kids and my G-mother, who has pass away for years now.. when i found your page it remind me of the way she was.. Thank you and god bless

  • Reply
    November 1, 2013

    Hi Fay, Seems like you had a wonderful time in Jamaica. Nice at you are back in the kitichen. I would like to use your recipe to make a black cake. I have had all my fruits soling for years now. I think from 2009 hihi. I just keep affinitet more fruits. My question to you is this how many cups of my wine/fruit mixture would be equal to your wine/ fruit mixture? Hope my question is clear.

    Could you consider a rundown recipe.

    SHARON , jamaican living in Noway.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2013

    Hi Fay

    Thanks for the black cake recipe, tried making black cake for the first time & needless to say, it was awesome!!!!!!! Thanks and have a safe & blessed holiday.

  • Reply
    Hope Clennon
    January 28, 2014

    Hi Ms Faye,

    You remind me very much of my godmother back home who also shares the same name. Thank you so much for this recipe! I haven’t seen rum cake made for over 10 years now since I was a little girl and I’m planning to make one for my birthday this year to share with my family. Two questions:
    1. If I decide to soak the fruits for longer, say for 2 to 4 weeks, will I need to make any changes to the recipe?
    2. Do I need to soak the fruits in the fridge or is on the kitchen counter fine?

    Thanks so much for all your recipes. I recently made both red peas soup and stew beef with rice and loved them both although I need to make my stew beef a little thicker and darker.

    God bless,


    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      August 24, 2014

      Hi Hope, I just noticed that I had not responded to your questions earlier! Forgive me. If you’ve been soaking the fruit for week you don’t have to “cook” them in the microwave. That works well when you don’t have time to pre-soak them. Because of the alcohol you actually don’t have to put them fruit in the fridge, but if not keep it in a cool or at room temperature place. Fay

  • Reply
    Kas Hibbert
    February 5, 2014

    Hi Aunty Fay, I left Jamaica 13 years ago and I am just so happy to find your site 🙂 thank you so much for you recipes.
    you bring back so many wonderful home memories with every dish!
    my question is : was there also a steam version for the fruit cake as well? I thought I remembered one but I am not sure.
    I made 4 of these already following your instructions and they were a hit! but I just wanted to know if I can steam in the oven as well?

    Thank you so much for bringing REAL Jamaican eating back to me!
    🙂 Kas.

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      May 26, 2014

      Hi Kas,
      Steamed fruit cake is called plum pudding. Give it try and let me know how it turns out. Fay

  • Reply
    August 6, 2014

    Hi Fay, Love watching you and reading your recipes, I’m also Jamaican, however my mother doesn’t cook like Jamaican any more, I guess she’s in Canada too long. I love to cook and sometimes forget how to cook certain dishes and I just wanted to let you know, I do appreciate your channel and your cooking and to remind us of hour Heritage. Sincerely, Orchid

  • Reply
    Kwf Foy
    October 3, 2014

    Hi Mrs. Fay, Do I have to have a pay pal account to be a gold member ? Cause I click on the website you send me and I did everything it ask except for the PayPal account I did not set up. I thought I could use my credit card to be a gold member. Do I need to set up a pay pal in order to see the gold member recipes ?

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      October 6, 2014

      Hi Karen,
      Thank you for your interest in becoming a gold member. Currently we take payments via Paypal only. Just follow their instructions to set up an account with the credit card you want on file. It’s very easy.
      Blessings, F&A

  • Reply
    Sheelagh Henson
    November 23, 2014

    30 years ago I was Nursing in England. My close friend Wendy’s mother would post this cake to us from The West Indies. The memories of this has stayed with me forever. As I write this my own cakes are slowly baking and the memories of the flavour are back with me. Thank you so much.

  • Reply
    Eunice Williams
    December 13, 2014

    Eunice Williams trying to get your black fruit cake recipe thank you

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      December 20, 2014

      Hi Eunice,
      Sorry that we’ve left you confused. This recipe is one of our recipes that you can access as a gold member only. Why not try our Free 7-day trial to see what it’s all about: https://www.cooklikeajamaican.com/register

  • Reply
    January 19, 2015

    how are you? I love your recipe 🙂 Please or you tube your Jamaican Black rum cakeBest Lesma

    • Reply Fay & Angela
      Fay & Angela
      January 21, 2015

      Hi Lesma,
      Thank you for your request. We will be sharing a video for rum cake soon. Fay

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