Three cupcakes with white icing in gold paper cases

Christmas cake cupcakes

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(25 ratings)

Prep: 40 mins Cook: 45 mins


Makes 12

These beautiful and classy little fruitcakes make lovely gifts, and kids will enjoy decorating them too.

Nutrition and extra info

  • Can be frozen un-iced


  • kcal833
  • fat29g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs139g
  • sugars125g
  • fibre3g
  • protein9g
  • salt0.44g


    For the batter

    • 200g dark muscovado sugar
    • 175g butter, chopped



      Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

    • 700g luxury mixed dried fruit
    • 50g glacé cherries
    • 2 tsp grated fresh root ginger



      Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

    • zest and juice 1 orange



      One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

    • 100ml dark rum, brandy or orange juice
      Dark rum cocktail with a lime slice



      Rum is a type of spirit based on sugar cane. First produced in the 1600s on slave plantations in…

    • 85g/3oz pecan nuts, roughly chopped
      Pecan nuts



      Related to the walnut, pecans are native to America, and grow enclosed in a glossy, browny-red…

    • 3 large eggs, beaten



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

    • 85g ground almond


      arr-mund or al-mund

      Sweet almonds have a subtle fragrance that lends itself well to baking and also works well with…

    • 200g plain flour
    • ½ tsp baking powder
      Baking powder

      Baking powder

      bay-king pow-dah

      Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

    • 1 tsp mixed spice
    • 1 tsp cinnamon



      A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

    For the icing

    • 400g pack ready-rolled marzipan (we used Dr Oetker)
      Marzipan cake



      One of mankind’s oldest sources of sweet pleasure, marzipan needs to contain only ground…

    • 4 tbsp warm apricot jam or shredless marmalade



      A relative of the peach, nectarine, plum and cherry, apricots are fragrant, with a soft, velvety…

    • 500g pack fondant icing sugar
    • icing sugar, for dusting

    You will also need

    • 6 gold and 6 silver muffin cases
    • 6 gold and 6 silver sugared almonds


      arr-mund or al-mund

      Sweet almonds have a subtle fragrance that lends itself well to baking and also works well with…

    • snowflake sprinkles


    1. Tip the sugar, butter, dried fruit, whole cherries, ginger, orange zest and juice into a large pan. Pour over the rum, brandy or juice, then put on the heat and slowly bring to the boil, stirring frequently to melt the butter. Reduce the heat and bubble gently, uncovered for 10 mins, stirring every now and again to make sure the mixture doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pan. Set aside for 30 mins to cool.

    2. Stir the nuts, eggs and ground almonds into the fruit, then sift in the flour, baking powder and spices. Stir everything together gently but thoroughly. Your batter is ready.

    3. Heat oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Scoop the cake mix into 12 deep muffin cases (an ice-cream scoop works well), then level tops with a spoon dipped in hot water. Bake for 35-45 mins until golden and just firm to touch. A skewer inserted should come out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

    4. Unravel the marzipan onto a work surface lightly dusted with icing sugar. Stamp out 12 rounds, 6cm across. Brush the cake tops with apricot jam, top with a marzipan round and press down lightly.

    5. Make up the fondant icing to a spreading consistency, then swirl on top of each cupcake. Decorate with sugared almonds and snowflakes, then leave to set. Will keep in a tin for 3 weeks.

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    Comments, questions and tips

    Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
    11th Dec, 2016
    The hardest thing with this recipe will be finding DEEP MUFFIN cases in gold and silver.
    1st Apr, 2014
    This is a very belated review as I made these as part of my GCSE coursework last December! Although the ingredients are expensive to buy, I think it was totally worth it because these cupcakes not only looked great, they tasted better than any store bought christmas cake I have ever eaten!! I couldn't find the sugared almonds anywhere so I used edible soft gold and silver balls...and I also sprinkled them with a little edible sugar sparkle dust which looked really effective. I found that this recipe made quite a lot, but they froze really well. Would make again this year!! :)
    16th Dec, 2013
    Great recipe and very easy, perfect for using up all the ingredients leftover from your mincemeat and Christmas cake recipes. I made a batch for my daughter's school bake sale and they all went really quickly. Substituted walnuts for the pecans and used ordinary good quality cupcake liners with matching toppers instead of the foil and they came out perfectly. Looked and tasted lovely. Will definitely be using this again and again.
    27th Nov, 2013
    These look delicious but are they really 833 calories per cupcake??
    mamarazzi's picture
    16th Dec, 2012
    These Christmas cupcakes are very nice. I replaced the cherries with candied orange peel and the pecan nuts with wallnuts. We doubled the amount of baking powder and got the perfect consistency. Will certainly do them again next year.
    21st Sep, 2012
    this really works i tried it and it was perfet
    28th Aug, 2012
    Im doing a bake sale. does any body have any suggestions for either chocolate cupcakes or vanilla??? Thanks!!
    9th Jan, 2012
    These were very tasty and made excellent presents for people. I did find that the mixture made a lot more than 12 as I did them more cupcake than muffin size and they didn't rise very much. But otherwise nice and easy to make and decorate.
    23rd Dec, 2011
    I loved this recipe - it was so easy! Like most people's comments I also made 20 muffins. I soaked the fruit, ginger & orange zest overnight in the rum & orange juice, instead of heating it, then added the butter melted with the other ingredients. I also used 4 medium eggs instead of 3 large, which made it easier to half the recipe!
    17th Dec, 2011
    These look amazing can you do it without fruit


    Dimitta's picture
    19th Dec, 2018
    Can this be made in a Bundt form instead individual cupcakes?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    21st Dec, 2018
    Thanks for your question. We haven't tested this in a bundt tin so cannot recommend a tin size or timings. However, we do have a collection of bundt cakes here:
    Deepa Philip's picture
    Deepa Philip
    21st Nov, 2018
    Is there any substitute for the ground almonds in this recipe? Can I just replace it with plain flour?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    22nd Nov, 2018
    Thanks for your question. Ground almonds produce a slightly moister and fragrant result but in this recipe we think it'll work well as a substitute.
    9th Nov, 2016
    how long will these keep? trying cupcakes instead of christmas cakes.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    14th Nov, 2016
    Thanks for your question. These will keep in a tin for 3 weeks.
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