An Easy Neighbor Gift: The Best Rum Cake

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Hi all!  I am super excited to be included in Dear Emmeline’s 25 days of Christmas!


Today, I’m going to share with you one of my favorite things that we make as gifts for our neighbors during the holidays.  This Rum Cake is so easy, inexpensive and unbelievably delicious.


I love to bake and I think it is a must to spend one day in the month of December baking your little heart out in the kitchen & listening to Christmas music.  I mean, am I wrong?  And the wonderful thing about this dessert is that it gets better as it sits because the sauce is able to really soak into the cake, so there is no rushing to get it out the door.  Totally stress free, which is so nice. I will make all of mine (usually about 6) in the morning/early afternoon and then deliver them that evening.  Most of the ingredients are ones that you already have on hand, too.  I would estimate that each cake costs between $4-$5.

Here are the main players:

****There is Rum in this recipe…hence the name Rum cake.  Even though the some of the alcohol is baked off during the process, there may still be trace amounts of it in the cake.  May be best for the crowd over 21 years of age.****


Start by combining the yellow cake mix (18.5 oz box) and the vanilla instant pudding (3.4 oz. package) mix in a bowl.  Add in 1/2 cup of rum, 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup vegetable oil.  Then, you are going to beat in the eggs one at a time (4 total) and after they are all in, continue to beat for 2 minutes until the batter looks like this.


Pour this batter into a greased bundt pan and bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees.  I will usually check mine at around 50 minutes to make sure it’s not burning.


Let your cake cool in the pan for about 20 minutes and then flip it over onto your serving dish to remove it from the pan.  I like buying those ~$1 large round tin platters from craft stores to place the cake on when giving it as a gift.  They usually have quite a few designs to choose from and then you don’t have to worry about collecting dishes from your neighbors.

Next up is the sauce that you will pour right on top of the cake.   And I promise, it is the easiest sauce you will ever make.  You are going to take 1 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of butter, 1/4 cup of water, & 1/4 cup of rum and bring all of it to a boil, stirring continuously.  It will bubble and thicken slightly.


Once it has boiled for a few minutes, remove it from heat and it will look like this.


Take this loveliness and pour it over your cake on your serving dish.


See that sauce just hanging out down there…after a day most of it will be absorbed into the bottom of the cake making it extremely moist (I usually try to avoid that word…but, truly, it is the only way to describe it).  Not in a soggy way, but a ridiculous full of flavor way.  I mean…you guys…it’s crazy good.


Sprinkle some powdered sugar on top if you want, to make it look pretty and you are done!  Trust me when I say that it is better than it looks here…a food photographer I am not. 😉

So many fun bloggers have already been a part of this series so if you have missed it, be sure to check out the interactive advent calendar below!  Have a great weekend, you guys! 😉