Prune cakes are one of our favorite desserts because they’re so tasty.
They have a sweet taste that goes well with almost any meal or snack.
You can also use this recipe as an opportunity to learn about the history behind it by checking out these articles on what prunes are and how they originated.
What Is A Prune Cake?
A prune cake is made from dried plums (prunes) or other types of dried fruit such as apricots or raisins.
The word “cake” refers to a dessert made primarily of flour, sugar, eggs, milk, oil, salt, baking powder, and flavoring agents.
The main ingredient in most cakes is wheat flour which gives them their characteristic texture when baked.
However, you can make a prune cake with almond flour instead if you prefer.
There are two ways to create a prune cake: using dry fruits alone or adding some liquid ingredients to the mix.
This article will focus on the first method where dried fruit is used without added water.
You can find more information on both methods below.
How to make a prune cake
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛teaspoon nutmeg
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated white sugar
- 4 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup chopped pitted dates
- ½ cup chopped dried plums
To prepare the batter, place your dry ingredients into a bowl and whisk until combined.
In another bowl, add the room temperature butter and beat lightly for 30 seconds with a mixer.
Add the sugar slowly while beating constantly.
Once incorporated, continue mixing for 3 minutes.
Make sure the mixture is light and fluffy after 2 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time while continuing to mix.
Whisking continuously between each addition.
After the fourth egg has been added, stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl before continuing to mix.
Incorporate the vanilla extract last.
Finally, add half of the dry ingredients followed by ½ cup of the chopped dates.
Mix everything together thoroughly before adding the rest of the dry ingredients and remaining ½ cup of dates.
Continue mixing until everything is evenly distributed.
Bake the cake in an oven set at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes.
It should be golden brown and spring back slightly when touched.
Remove the pan and let cool completely before serving.
What Are The Ingredients In A Prune Cake?
The main ingredient in a prune cake is prunes.
You may be wondering where those come from, but there are two types of prunes that you should know about.
- Dried plums (or dried apricots)
If your local grocery store doesn’t carry either type of prune, then you can order them online.
While prunes themselves aren’t too difficult to find, finding the right ones for baking might take some time.
When shopping around, look for dark-colored fruits.
That means the fruit is ripe enough to eat without having to cook it first.
Now let’s talk about the other important ingredient — flour! It’s true that most baked goods don’t require all-purpose flour because it contains more protein than whole-wheat flour does.
But when you bake something like a prune cake, you want to keep things simple.
You will need a mix of regular white flour and gluten-free flour.
But before we get into the nitty gritty details of exactly which flours work best for making a prune cake, let’s talk about the final element — eggs.
Eggs help bind everything together, especially if you add milk or yogurt instead of water to the batter.
If you have trouble getting your egg whites whipped up properly, try adding 1 tablespoon of sugar to each egg yolk before whipping them separately.
The mixture will separate less during cooking.
How Do You Make A Prune Cake?
This recipe takes just 15 minutes to prepare.
You will need:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 cup chopped pitted prunes
Start off by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once it has reached its target temperature, grease two 9 inch round pans and set them aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the sugar and baking powder together until it forms a uniform mixture.
Add the flour into another bowl then add the eggs and stir until combined.
Finally, add the oil into the mixture and mix everything together thoroughly.
Now pour the batter evenly between both prepared pans and bake for approximately 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let cool completely before slicing each layer and serving it up.
It doesn’t matter if you slice it too thin because each piece contains multiple layers!
What Is The History Of Prune Cake?
The first recorded mention of prune cakes was in 1879, but the tradition dates back nearly 200 years earlier than that.
The earliest known recipes for the prune cake were written down during the mid-1700s when sugar became widely available from plantations.
These recipes included ingredients like almonds, honey, currants, raisins, and spices.
In addition to being sweet, prune cake recipes had other health benefits too.
Prune cake recipes contained more nutrients than most cookies at the time.
For example, prune cake recipes may have been high in iron content.
By the early 1800s, people started baking their own prune cake recipes instead of purchasing them from stores.
In fact, many families passed along their recipes for generations, which led to variations of the original prune cake recipe.
Over time, the prune cake recipes changed slightly but remained fairly consistent.
Today, there are different types of prune cake recipes including ones made using coconut oil and even vegan options.
When is prune cake eaten?
Prune cake is traditionally served for dessert after dinner parties and special occasions.
It’s usually paired with coffee and tea, but some people eat it straight up without anything else.
However, if your family doesn’t know how to enjoy prune cake, then you should definitely teach them!
You can serve it alongside breakfast items like pancakes and waffles.
If you want to go all out, try pairing it with ice cream for a fun treat.
How Did Prune Cake Get Its Name?
This dessert got its name from the fruit itself.
Prunes come from the dried plums called prunus domestica.
The word “plum” comes from the Latin for grape, which means you can guess why we call them prunes!
The word prune actually refers to the shape of the fruit when it’s ripe.
When fully mature, prunes look like grapes. But before they become full-sized fruits, they’re small, round, and seedless.
So the original meaning of the word was “seedless grape.”
It wasn’t until later that people started using the term prune instead of plum.
Nowadays, most people just say prune cake without thinking much about where the name came from.
However, there’s another reason why the dish gets its name from the fruit.
As mentioned earlier, prunes are made up of two parts – stone and pulp.
In fact, the pulp is more important than the seeds, since it contains the sugar that makes the whole thing taste good.
That’s why many people refer to this part as the core of the prune.
When cooking prune cake, you need to make sure that your core has enough moisture.
If it does not have enough water, then it will dry out quickly and won’t be able to hold all those juicy bits inside.
You could end up with a dry piece of cake rather than something that tastes great.
To avoid problems like this, always cook the cake at low heat and add extra liquid if needed.
To do this, check the instructions on the box or package of ingredients you buy.
Some may even tell you to soak the prunes overnight before baking the cake.
Doing this allows the prunes to absorb more water during the process, making sure that your cake stays moist.
Different types of prune cake
There are different kinds of prune cake depending on who you ask.
There are several different names for the same type of cake.
- Grape Cake – These versions are usually cooked with raisins and sometimes other dried fruit as well.
- Pineapple Cake – Usually cooked with pineapple juice and raisins.
- Sour Cream Bread Pudding – Sour cream adds richness and flavor while bread pudding gives it a nice texture.
- Cherry Clafouti – Cherry clafouti uses cherries instead of prunes.
We’ll focus on prune cake today, but remember that whatever kind of prune cake you choose, it should always include both the core (the center) and the skin (the outside).
What Are Some Popular Prune Cake Recipes?
The following list includes all of the most common prune cake recipes you will find online today.
These include recipes for prune cake bars, prune cake cookies, prune cake muffins, prune cake breads, prune cake brownies, and more!
- Apple Prune Cake Cookies Recipe
- Chocolate Prune Cake Muffins Recipe
- Prune Brownie Cupcakes Recipe
- Fruit-Infused Prune Cake Bread Recipe
- Easy Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars Recipe
- Cheesecake Prune Cake Recipe
- Buttercream Frosting for Prune Cake Recipe
- Coconut Cream Pie with Prune Cake Crust Recipe
- Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe With Prune Cake Crust
- Banana Brown Rice Breakfast Pudding Recipe With Prune Cake Crust
A prune cake recipe using honey instead of sugar
This recipe uses honey instead of white sugar which gives it a rich flavor.
If you don’t like the idea of adding extra sugars into your food then try substituting honey for the sugar in this recipe.
It tastes just as good.
What Are Some Variations Of Prune Cake?
There are many varieties of prune cake recipes but you may not know all of them.
You can find several different types of prune cake recipes online, such as those using almond flour instead of regular flour, using coconut oil instead of vegetable oil, adding spices like cinnamon or nutmeg, and even baking it without eggs!
But here are three of the most common types of prune cake recipes you will see online.
All of them make a great dessert and each has its own unique flavor.
Some of them include raisins or other dried fruit too, which makes them even more flavorful.
- Almond Prune Cake Recipe – It uses almond flour (ground almonds) instead of regular flour. Almonds add a nice texture to the cake while still keeping it moist enough to eat. The almond prune cake recipe calls for two cups of ground almonds plus 2/3 cup of brown sugar. After mixing both ingredients together, the batter needs to be refrigerated until ready to bake.
- Coconut Prune Cake Recipe – Coconut oil adds a lot of healthy fats to your diet when you bake something with coconut oil. Plus, it tastes good on just about anything.
- No Egg Prune Cake Recipe – This type of prune cake doesn’t need eggs either. If you don’t want your prune cake to turn out egg-y, then this might be the right choice for you.
As you can tell, there are plenty of options when it comes to prune cake recipes.
Make sure to check out each one carefully before deciding if it sounds appealing to you.
There are no wrong choices though.
What Are Some Tips For Making A Perfect Prune Cake?
If you love prune cake but want to make sure you get it right every time, keep reading.
Here are some tips to help you create the best prune cake possible!
1. Use fresh ingredients
One way you can tell if your prune cake is good is to look at its texture.
If it feels dry and crumbly, then chances are it needs more moisture.
You can add water to the batter to achieve that goal.
Another option is to bake your cake longer than usual.
The extra baking time will allow for better absorption of the liquid into the cake.
This method works especially well when using dried fruits like dates or raisins.
2. Make sure you measure everything correctly
When mixing together liquids such as milk, eggs, oil, etc., be careful not to over-mix them.
Over-mixed batters tend to result in tough cakes.
When measuring flour, don’t forget to sift it first before adding the other ingredients.
3. Don’t overcrowd your pan
The same applies here too – don’t put too many things inside the oven.
It might seem tempting to fill up your cake pan, but don’t do it.
Instead, divide the mixture evenly between two pans.
4. Bake until done
Most recipes say “until golden brown,” but we recommend going a little further and letting the top turn light yellow before removing from the oven.
5. Let cool completely
Once cooled, wrap your cake tightly in plastic wrap and place it back in the fridge.
Doing this allows the cake to firm up and retain its shape better.
How Do You Store A Prune Cake?
A prune cake should be kept refrigerated at all times since it contains both eggs and dairy products which will make it dry if stored too long.
It’s best eaten within two days after baking but it can last up to five days if stored properly.
Refrigerate your prune cake immediately after taking it out of the oven
The reason why is that the moisture from the batter rises during the baking process while the outside of the pan gets hot enough to melt the butter inside.
As soon as it comes out of the oven, take it right away to let it cool down before putting it into the fridge.
Also, don’t try to re-bake it once cooled off.
If you want to eat it later, just put it back into the refrigerator until the next day.
Make sure there aren’t any cracks in the top layer
If the top layer isn’t smooth, it won’t be able to hold its shape as it bakes and therefore, may cause holes to form on the surface of the prune cake.
You can easily check whether or not this has happened using a knife or spoon.
If there are any gaps between the pieces, you need to fix them before storing it.
What Are Some Common Mistakes When Making A Prune Cake?
The most important thing to know before beginning your baking adventure is that prune cake recipes vary from person to person depending on personal preference and regional influences.
If you find yourself having trouble following the steps outlined below, don’t worry—it happens to everyone!
The good news is that we’ve got you covered with helpful tips for making your own prune cake at home.
- Do not underbake your cake. If you bake your cake too long, then your cake will be dry.
- Use fresh ingredients whenever possible. This means using unsalted butter instead of salted butter, organic sugar instead of white sugar, and whole eggs instead of egg whites.
- It’s okay if you add a pinch more flour than stated in the recipe. You want to make sure that your cake isn’t too dense after baking.
- Baking time varies based on oven temperature, altitude, humidity, and other factors. Always check your cake after 25 minutes to ensure that it doesn’t need to cook longer.
- As mentioned above, your prune cake should never go over 30 minutes. When you see that the top has browned but there’s still liquid inside the pan, take it off the heat immediately.
- For best results, let the cake cool completely before decorating.
- Make sure that your decorations adhere properly to the surface of the cake. Some decorations may come loose during storage, which could result in them falling onto the floor.
When to serve your prune cake
A prune cake is very versatile and can last up to two weeks in your refrigerator (if stored correctly).
So, you can enjoy several slices per week without worrying about wasting anything.
Because of its ability to keep, though, it’s best to consume your prune cake within 24 hours of baking.
Otherwise, the texture of the cake will begin to deteriorate and become stale quickly.
- 1 cup prunes
- ½ cup water
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups white sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 eggs lightly beaten
- 1 ½ cups chopped pecans
- Bring prunes to a boil, turn off the heat, and let them cool slightly.
- Most of the prunes should be cut into small pieces. Keep a couple aside for decorating.
- When the butter, sugar, and eggs are well combined, add the heated prune liquor that has already been mixed with the bicarbonate of soda.
- Prunes and the dry ingredients have been sifted.
- Spread into a cake pan that has been greased, and bake for 45 minutes at 175C. Prunes held back are used to cool and decorate.