Christmas Cake - EASY moist fruit cake

20 servings


4 hours 45 minutes

total time


300g / 10 oz raisins

150g / 5 oz diced dried apricots (, chopped 8 mm / 1/3")

75g / 2.5 oz mixed peel (, diced 5mm / 1/5)

150g / 5 oz glace cherries (, chopped 8 mm / 1/3")

180g / 6 oz dates (, diced 5mm / 1/5")

1 cup + 2 tbsp apple juice, OR 1/3 brandy + 2/3 juice ( (Note 2))

115g / 8 tbsp unsalted butter (, softened (1 US stick))

1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar (, packed (Note 3))

1/2 cup vegetable oil ((or canola, peanut, grapeseed))

3 tbsp molasses or golden syrup ((Note 4))

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp all spice

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

3 eggs

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 2/3 cups plain flour ((all purpose flour))

3/4 cup walnuts (, chopped (optional))

500ml / 1 pint pouring custard (, homemade or store bought (Note 5))

250g / 8 oz "ready to roll" marzipan

250g / 8 oz "ready to roll" white fondant

Cherries dusted with icing sugar

Cherries or other fruit dusted with icing sugar ((on plain cake, looks very pretty!))

Drippy white glaze ((directions below))


Fast Soaked Fruit:

Place dried fruit and juice/brandy in a large microwavable container. Microwave 1 1/2 minutes on high or until hot.

Stir to coat all fruit in liquid. Cover then set aside for 1 hour (to plump up/soak and cool).


Preheat oven to 160°C / 320°F (140°C fan). Grease and line a 21 - 22 cm / 8 - 9" round cake pan with baking paper (parchment paper) (7 cm / 2.75" tall).

Using an electric beater, beat butter and sugar until smooth and creamy (about 1 minute on speed 5).

Add oil and molasses, beat until combined.

Add salt, spices and baking powder - beat until incorporated.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just incorporated

Stir in the flour.

When mostly incorporated, stir in the fruit mix (including all the extra liquid in bowl) and walnuts (if using).

Pour into cake pan, cover with foil and bake for 3 hours 15 minutes, removing foil the last 45 minutes. Skewer inserted into middle should come out clean with no batter on it.

Remove from oven and cool for 20 minutes before transferring to cooling rack. Cool completely before serving.

Cake is moist and so full flavoured, it can be eaten plain. But see below for decorating and serving ideas (traditionally served with pouring custard).

Cutting: Either cut into thin wedges, or cut cake into thin strips (2cm / 0.75" or so), then cut those strips into serving size pieces.

Christmas Cake Decorating options:

Traditional White Christmas Cake (pictured in post) - Marzipan and fondant, see Decorating Note.

Simple - pile top with fresh cherries or other fruit, dust with icing sugar (powdered sugar). Wrap a ribbon around the cake for extra touch!

Drippy white glaze - use the glaze in this Lemon Cake recipe, but leave out the lemon juice (ie make a plain sweet white glaze). Flip cake upside down for flat surface then glaze per that recipe.

Serving - serve with custard for a traditional experience! Either homemade custard or store bought pouring custard (jazz it up by mixing in vanilla seed paste!).


Serving Size



388 kcal

Total Fat

15 g

Saturated Fat

9 g

Unsaturated Fat


Trans Fat



38 mg


127 mg

Total Carbohydrate

64 g

Dietary Fiber

3 g

Total Sugars

37 g


4 g

20 servings


4 hours 45 minutes

total time
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