Grandma Ellen's Trinidad Rum Cake #CakeSliceBakers

This cake was unlike any rum cake I'd ever had before. It is chock full of dried fruit, seasoned with warm spices, and sweetened with molasses. It seems similar to a Trinidad Black Cake though that recipe usually has cherries or cherry liquor as well.  Zoe's recipe calls for an optional topping of marzipan which I was unable to find and therefore left off.

The batter has rum in it, and the dried fruit is supposed to be soaked in rum for at least 24 hours. Mine soaked for 4 hours and seemed pretty strong. I used a mixture for dried dates, cherries, currants, and cranberries.

The batter is very thick and just about fills the cake pan. It took about an hour and twenty minutes to bake. The cake gets it's first brushing with rum as soon as it comes out of the oven. It then sits in the pan until cool. Then you remove the cake from the pan onto a plate, brush the sides and top with more rum, cover the bottom and sides with wax paper, and place into a clean cake pan. The top of my cake was a little overdone, so I took this opportunity to rename top bottom and bottom top.

At this point, the instructions say to brush the top with 2 T rum every couple hours until the rum is gone or you've decided it's drunk enough. I brushed mine one more time, let it sit for a couple hours, and then removed from the pan to sample.

The author warns that this is a bit of boozy cake, and she is not kidding. Thankfully, the smell was enough to keep my 10 year old from wanting to try it; otherwise, I'm not sure what we would have done. The cake was tremendously moist, and the gingerbread-like taste from the molasses and spices went well with the dried fruit and rum.

The member of my family who tried this cake all liked it, but it's definitely not for folks who abstain from alcohol or who do not like the taste of it. But if you're looking for a fruit cake that can be done in a day or two, this is a good option.

Each month The Cake Slice Bakers are offered a selection of cakes from the current book we are baking through. This year it is Zoë Bakes Cakes by Zoē François. We each choose one cake to bake, and then on the 20th - never before - we all post about our cake on our blogs. There are a few rules that we follow, but the most important ones are to have fun and enjoy baking & eating cakes!

Follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest pages where you can find all of our cakes, as well as inspiration for many other cakes. You can also click on the links below to take you to each of our cakes. If you have a blog and are interested in joining The Cake Slice Bakers and baking along with us, please send an email to thecakeslicebakers at gmail dot com for more details.

The Cake Slice Bakers also have a new Facebook group called The Cake Slice Bakers and Friends. This group is perfect for those who do not have a blog but want to join in the fun and bake through this book.

It is a new year and a new book - Zoë Bakes Cakes - and our choices for November 2022 were ~

Vanilla-Bean Pound Cake

Grandma Ellen's Trinidad Rum Cake

Mod Yule Log


  1. Rum is not my friend. Ha. But I will definitely make this for the people in my family who are friends with that booze. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Hilarious about your 10-year old! Sounds like the perfect holiday cake!

  3. I had a bad run-in with rum a long time ago and can't do it anymore, unfortunately. But this sounds like it would be versatile and you could possibly leave it out. Looks terrific!

    1. As I was making it, I was thinking you could probably use apple or orange juice to soak the fruit in and then make a fruit-flavored simple syrup to brush it with.

  4. This was going to be my cake this month but then I had a birthday party for a friend who abstains so I went with the pound cake. I still hope to make this over the holidays.


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