Totally from Scratch Rum Cake

Rum cake from scratch – there’s no pudding or cake mix involved and it’s even more delicious than the cake mix version! Can be made with all-purpose flour or with whole wheat pastry flour for a 100% whole grain version.

The special thing about this rum cake, other than being the most awesome rum cake ever, is that you don’t need a bunch of processed junk to make it. Most rum cakes call for cake mix and pudding mix, neither of which I really want to use.

I remember when I moved to Germany, where we don’t have the same cake and pudding mixes, 6 years ago and spent hours looking for a rum cake recipe from scratch. No luck.

Totally from Scratch Rum Cake – there's no pudding or cake mix involved and it's even more delicious than the cake mix version! Can be made with all-purpose flour or with whole wheat pastry flour for a 100% whole grain version.

But Alejandra from Always Order Dessert has solved that problem with her rum cake from scratch! Now the whole world can enjoy rum cake. :)

The original recipe calls for 1 cup of homemade pudding mix. The recipe for the pudding mix yields 2 1/2 cups and since I didn’t want any pudding mix left over, I scaled down the pudding recipe to what was needed just for the rum cake and it worked perfectly!

I also wanted to try subbing coconut oil for the vegetable oil in the original but I chickened out and used olive oil. Since coconut oil is solid at room temperature (at least in cold winter kitchens), I was worried that it’d make the cake too firm.

If you taste the batter and can taste the olive oil, don’t panic! The olive taste bakes away, or perhaps it’s just all the rum in the syrup that totally covers it up.

Totally from Scratch Rum Cake – there's no pudding or cake mix and it's even more delicious than the cake mix version! Can be made with all-purpose flour or with whole wheat pastry flour for a 100% whole grain version.

The first time I made this rum cake, I made it for a birthday party that I wasn’t even going to, and it smelled so unbelievably amazing that I had to cut into it. And then I cut into it some more.

And then we just cut the cake into slices, made some whoopsie-I-ate-most-of-the-cake-brownies and Mr. Texanerin brought a few cake pieces to the party.

This cake is so ridiculously boozy. Some folks don’t like a strong alcohol taste in their goodies. Not me. I want my cake to be swimming in booze.

Totally from Scratch Rum Cake – there's no pudding or cake mix involved and it's even more delicious than the cake mix version! Can be made with all-purpose flour or with whole wheat pastry flour for a 100% whole wheat version.

If you love boozy desserts, you also have to try my Irish cream brownies. There’s 3/4 cup of Baileys in there!

And this thing is SO moist. I suppose that’s not too surprising considering the amount of butter that goes into it. In addition to what’s in the cake, you also make a butter rum syrup, poke holes in the cake, and then you pour the syrup all over it.

If a whole bundt cake is too much for you, check out my Irish cream bundt cake. It’s basically this recipe, halved to fit a 6-cup bundt pan, and with Irish cream. Just use rum instead and you’ll have yourself a cute little bundt cake. :)

Totally from Scratch Rum Cake (with a 100% whole grain option)

♥♥♥♥♥
Rated 4.9 by 12 readers
Totally from Scratch Rum Cake
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 12-15 servings

Ingredients

    Cake:

  • 1 3/4 cup (219 grams) all-purpose flour or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup (55 grams) dry milk powder (whole milk or fat-free work)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (42 grams) cornstarch
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (112 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups (350 grams) granulated or raw sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons (160 milliliters) olive oil (canola oil or another vegetable oil would work, too, but I don't recommend coconut oil)
  • 3/4 cup (177 milliliters) milk
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (177 milliliters) dark rum
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Rum Syrup:

  • 1/2 cup (112 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) water
  • 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated or raw sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) dark rum

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F (162°C). Spray a 12-cup bundt pan very well with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, dry milk powder, cornstarch, baking powder and salt. Set this aside.
  3. In a large bowl with an electric mixer or stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy. Add the dry flour mix to this. It will resemble fine crumbs.
  4. In the bowl that just had the flour mix, whisk together the oil, milk, eggs, rum, and vanilla extract. Add this to the crumb mixture and beat until well combined. The batter will be quite thin.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and bake for 48-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  6. When there are about 15 minutes remaining on the timer, start the butter rum syrup. In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat the butter, water, sugar and salt until the sugar has dissolved, stirring occasionally. Take the saucepan off the heat and stir in the rum (it'll bubble).
  7. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then invert onto a wire rack. Wash and dry the bundt pan and place the cake back into the pan. Poke holes into the cake (I used a meat thermometer to do this) and pour the syrup slowly over the cake. Let soak for 1-2 hours and then invert the cake back onto a serving platter. Cover and store at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Notes

  • For German bakers: German flour and American all-purpose are not interchangeable but I've had great luck using 50 grams Type 550 and 169 grams Type 405 in this cake. You could also try whole spelt but I think it'd taste a little whole grainy.

Adapted from Rum Cake from Scratch on Always Order Dessert

Recipe by  | www.texanerin.com

This post was originally posted in 2012. Here’s the original picture for kicks and giggles. :D

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135 comments on “Totally from Scratch Rum Cake” — Add one!

  • Lisa Ann LaRock says
    June 19, 2017 @ 12:29 am

    I substituted 1/2 cup sour cream for the dry milk…the cake is delish!

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Lisa Ann LaRock
      June 19, 2017 @ 6:49 am

      Oooh! That sounds delicious. And great to know about that sub! Thanks a ton for sharing. :)

      Reply
  • Lesia says
    June 8, 2017 @ 3:21 pm

    I made this cake for my sister and thought aw that’s way too much glaze, however I had dry areas in my first cake slice so I warmed the remainder of the glazed and put it on the cake and it ended up being perfect and she loved it…this is a keeper…thanks so much

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Lesia
      June 11, 2017 @ 10:25 pm

      Haha. It really is the right amount. ;) I’m happy you didn’t throw away the glaze! I’m happy you enjoyed the cake. Thanks for your comment. :)

      Reply
  • Charlene Pilon says
    June 4, 2017 @ 4:46 pm

    I made this cake for my son’s birthday (he’s 30) on Friday. I was really psyched to make this cake from scratch as I have always made it from a cake mix and pudding mix. When it came out of the oven I noticed it didn’t rise as expected but I went ahead with pouring the syrup on the cake. Unfortunately the cake did not meet my expectations. It was very heavy and dense. I reviewed the ingredient list to ensure I did put everything in. I did not leave anything out.

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Charlene Pilon
      June 5, 2017 @ 9:09 pm

      I’m sorry it didn’t come! Out of all the reviews I’ve gotten for this cake, this is the first saying that it didn’t work out. Could it be that your baking powder has expired? This cake is far from heavy and dense so I’m afraid there must either be an ingredients issue or you accidentally added too much or too little of something (I do this myself all the time!). Or, is your oven perhaps off? That could also be the issue!

      Reply
  • Clare says
    May 25, 2017 @ 5:27 am

    Heyy I am about to try this recipe! Do you think I can reduce the amount of dark rum and subtitute it with rum extract + water??

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Clare
      May 25, 2017 @ 12:15 pm

      I haven’t tried it but I think it’d work as long as the amount of liquid is the same. I have no idea how much extract to use, though. Hope you’ll enjoy it!

      Reply
  • Kaitlyn says
    May 21, 2017 @ 4:05 pm

    Would you be able to sub the bob’s red mill 1-1 gluten free flour in this? I have to be gluten free and was hoping I could still try this recipe as it looks delicious and I’m not a big fan of coconut which is in your other rum cake recipe.

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Kaitlyn
      May 21, 2017 @ 9:43 pm

      I’ve had good luck with that flour but since I haven’t tried it with this recipe, I can’t say. I think at the very least you might have to be it a little longer and that it’ll be more difficult to get out of the pan. But I’m really not sure. Sorry about that!

      Reply
  • Rosie says
    May 19, 2017 @ 1:16 am

    Good evening,

    This is a fantastic rum cake recipe. If I wanted to convert it to a chocolate rum cake can you give me some idea of how I can convert? Thanks for your help!,

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Rosie
      May 20, 2017 @ 10:51 pm

      I’m so happy you liked it! Unfortunately, converting this to a chocolate cake would require a lot of experimenting so I can’t give you an answer. I have absolutely zero idea of how much cocoa powder you’d need to add and how much flour you’d have remove. :/ Sorry about that!

      Reply
      • Rosie replies to Erin
        May 22, 2017 @ 11:27 am

        Thanks for your response.. Not a problem

        Reply
  • Samantha says
    May 15, 2017 @ 3:09 am

    Hi Judy! I made this cake for the first time a few weeks ago. It’s awesome! I found the milk power at my local Walmart and bought their brand. I hope you can find it!! Best of luck!

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Samantha
      May 16, 2017 @ 8:15 pm

      Thanks for the tip, Samantha! Hopefully Judy was able to find the milk powder. :) I’m happy to hear that you liked the cake! Thanks again for your comment.

      Reply
  • Judy says
    May 7, 2017 @ 8:48 pm

    Hello – I was searching for a “from scratch rum bundt cake” and landed here. I wish to bake this for Mother’s Day / my dad’s birthday (just 2 days apart this year). I just bought a new bundt pan (on order, should arrive this week!) and my question on this recipe is about the “dry milk powder” – I live in a more rural area, and I am not familiar with this ingredient. I bake from scratch fairly often, and I am not afraid to try out new things, but I don’t know if this is something I would be able to find locally (for me) – if not, is there some way to substitute for this ingredient? I don’t wish to purchase a bulk amount, and have it clutter up my panty…. so if there is anything else I could use, at least the first time, I would be grateful for this information. Thank you so much! I am looking forward to trying out this recipe!

    Reply
    • Erin replies to Judy
      May 7, 2017 @ 9:57 pm

      Hello! Do you have a full-sized grocery store? If so, they should have it. I did some googling and couldn’t find a good sub and you unfortunately can’t just leave it out, either. Sorry about that! I hope you’ll be able to find it and that people will enjoy the cake. :)

      Reply
      • Judy replies to Erin
        May 8, 2017 @ 3:12 am

        THANK YOU so much for the prompt answer! I appreciate the information; and I am glad to know and understand that the dry milk powder is an essential ingredient — so I must find some to bake this cake. The recipe is very appealing, and I definitely plan to make it before the week is out — I can search in my regional ares for a grocery store that will sell this, I think I’ll find it, even if I make a bit of a drive – from the reviews, I think it’s well worth it! Again, thanks for being so helpful! (I’ll have to come back and visit here more!)

        Reply
        • Erin replies to Judy
          May 9, 2017 @ 10:16 pm

          Could you order it online? They have it on Amazon! And it may be in a weird place at the store. Always ask – if it’s a full-sized store, they should definitely have it. :) I’m happy to hear that you’re going to try out the cake and that you’ll be back again!

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