Gingery Christmas cake

Gingery Christmas cake

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(26 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 30 mins Plus overnight soaking


Cuts in 12 slices
A good glug of ginger wine makes this cake a little different from the norm. It's also lighter than its predecessors, so you can have two pieces!

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal470
  • fat19g
  • saturates10g
  • carbs67g
  • sugars54g
  • fibre2g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.42g
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  • 350g raisin
  • 125g currant
  • 125g sultana
  • 200ml ginger wine, plus 4tbsp
  • 200g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 200g dark muscovado sugar
  • 4 egg



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 200g plain flour
  • 50g ground almond
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp freshly grated root ginger
  • 1 tbsp treacle


  1. Tip the raisins, currants and sultanas into a bowl. Pour over 200ml ginger wine, then cover and leave to sit at room temperature overnight so that the fruit plumps up.

  2. Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Using the bottom of a 20cm, loose-bottomed cake tin as a template, cut out 2 circles of baking parchment. Then cut 2 thick strips (about 2cm deeper than the tin) that will fit around the inside of the tin. Make small cuts along one of the edges, about 2cm apart. Grease the tin, then place one parchment circle at the bottom. Place one strip inside the tin, making sure the cut side is at the bottom, as this will help you to fit it inside. Do the same with the remaining strip, then place the second circle on top (see step-by-step).

  3. Put the butter and sugar into a mixing bowl and whisk with an electric beater until creamy and light, about 5 mins. Add the eggs, one at a time, making sure you stir well after each addition, then mix through the flour, ground almonds and spices. Stir in the soaked fruits, and any liquid left over, with the fresh root ginger and treacle until everything is well combined.

  4. Spoon in the mixture and smooth the top, then use a spoon to make a slight dip in the centre. This will ensure the cake has an even surface when finished. Bake for 30 mins, then lower the oven to 150C/fan 130C/gas 2 and bake for another 2 hrs until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Skewer the cake all over, then drizzle over the remaining 4 tbsp ginger wine. Leave the cake to cool in the tin, then peel off the lining paper. To store, wrap first in baking parchment and then in tin foil. The cake will keep in a cupboard for up to 3 months or can be frozen for up to 6 months.

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Comments (56)

Butterhandbag's picture

Made this for Christmas and got lots of comments on how good it was. Very easy to make and really nice change from more traditional fruit cakes

helen1702's picture

This cake is fab!! Ive used this recipe not just at christmas but for a fruit wedding cake and it's great, but i always use sultanas, dates and apricots. Works well as cupcakes too. I do however soak my fruits for at least 24 hours for extra flavour.

laonie's picture

I should have mentioned that I also included about 100g of finely diced glace ginger. Even with that, the cake still isn't dominated by ginger: it's surprisingly subtle.

laonie's picture

This is a really lovely cake. This year I wanted my Christmas Cake to be a little lighter (in colour) than my usual recipe, so I chose this one and substituted brown sugar for golden castor sugar. I added plenty of finely diced top-quality dried peaches to the fruit mixture and soaked all of it in the ginger wine for a week. I more or less doubled the recipe, and it made 2 lovely deep cakes with enough batter left over to make a small 'test loaf'. The cakes came out of the oven moist, golden and fragrant and once it was cool enough to eat, the 'tester' lasted about 5 minutes. The other two are nestled at the back of the pantry and I can't wait to bring them out at Christmas. I'm seriously considering making another 3 or 4 to give away as gifts.

fawcett001's picture

A fantastic alternative to the traditional Christmas cake. A much lighter cake ad wonderfully spiced. I now use this recipe each year

sania25's picture

This was my 1st time baking a Christmas fruit cake .. used brandy instead of ginger wine.wat ever dry fuits i had (currants,raisins,mixed fruit) totaling the weight used in d recipe.didnt have treacle .it came out very moist .. coudnt wait to taste it had a slice after 2 days of baking.will keep it longer now .for a week or more ..before eating..thank u soo much for a fabulous cake..Tip:i did put a bowl of water below the cake pan while baking to prevent it from drying..

vlees1's picture

YUMMY with the zesty orange marzipan and fondant icing. just enjoyed it with a cup of tea in a china teacup.

cagwlogan's picture

Absolutely delicious, would highly recommend. Lighter than normal Christmas cake and no need to keep adding booze. Would definitely make again next year.

princessdaisy's picture

This is absolutely gorgeous. I made it a month ago and fed it ginger wine for a couple of week. Made a square one which I cut into quarters as presents. Very easy to make and one of the most delicious moist Christmas cakes I've ever eaten.

dgnacro's picture

Is the list of ingredients missing Baking Powder?

I made this on Monday night, following the recipe to the letter and double checked it, but my cake has not really risen as I'd expected - has anyone else found this?

wolfette's picture

baked this last night, so we haven't tasted it yet - but the smell in the kitchen was fantastic! Kind of got creative with the dried fruit, as I had 250g of basic "mixed dried fruit" from a supermarket budget range, and 250g of a fancier mixed fruit including dried apricots, sultanas and cranberries - should be interesting.

nickythomas42's picture

This was my first attempt at making my own Christmas cake last year and it was amazing! Everyone loved it and it turned out beautifully! Just in the process of making it again for this year!

vlees1's picture

I've made an 8" round cake and 2 x 4" round cakes and 1 x 6" square the 8" I have adapted slightly omitted treacle and substituted root ginger with 3 balls of preserved ginger will have to see how they turn out but they are fresh out of the over and I have just skewered and drizzled and they smell luscious If I was just rating from smell it would be 5* but I will wait until xmas when it is decorated and tasted to rate

lkrc87's picture

I'm in the process of making this cake using the recipe from the magazine, but in there it says 1tbsp freshly grated ginger, on here it says 1tsp and now I don't know how much to put in :(

jennylucas04's picture

Ive made this for the last 3 years running it's so delicious! Although this year I left the stem ginger out and added nuts instead as half of my family aren't big fans of ginger. I feed it weekly with ginger wine though and the result is just brilliant. I'll be making this for years I feel!!

minkykiwi's picture

Well, it smells, fantastic, it looks fantastic and....

Didn't have the right type of fruit, so used a mixture of raisins, sultanas and currants, as well as me some mixed fruit. I didn't bother pouring the additonal Ginger Wine over the cake though.

Delicious. Not too rich (I loathe traditional Christmas cake), and not too gingery either. Really pleased with this cake.

ruthiebe's picture

Baked this as a birthday cake for our best man last year as he's a ginger fiend. Am told it disappeared like SNOW OFF A DYKE !

lauranlou's picture

cooked this cake last year .... was lovely ..... an its gonna grace our table again ... great cake yummy x

bevrea's picture

cake made smells wonderfull did read comments and added extra ground ginger and chopped stem ginger and made up fruit weight with raisins sultana and cherries

mouseico's picture

This was fantastic! I don't normally like Christmas cake but loved this, as did my family. Being a ginger fanatic helps!


Questions (1)

Maria-Teresa's picture

Hi, I have made this cake for a few years for family and friends and I've started preparing for this years batch. Has the recipe changed since last year? Maria

Tips (1)

princessdaisy's picture

This was such a success last year I'm making it again. I've tweaked it a bit though. I've used half wholemeal half white flour and added some crystallised ginger, and it's syrup. I shall spike the cake with ginger wine too. I did that last year and it enhanced the gingeriness (is that a word?) without making it heavy.