Rum Cake with Butter Rum Glaze

An easy homemade recipe for moist and delicious Rum Cake with topped with Butter Rum Glaze perfect for any occasion!

Today I’m sharing a recipe from Holiday Thyme!  It was a hard decision to pick just one since I love all the recipes I created for the book but I decided to share with you my Rum Cake with Butter Rum Glaze.  Unlike most rum cake recipes, this one does not come from a box cake mix (not that there is anything wrong with that) and oh my goodness is it amazing.

Rum is another flavor that reminds me of the holidays so what perfect way to celebrate the season than with a rum cake.  This smells so good when it is baking.  After it has cooled slightly, top it off with a butter rum glaze for a great dessert to serve at your holiday gatherings.  I always like to reserve a little of the glaze to also drizzle on the slices right before serving as well.

Holiday Thyme is filled with recipes like these.  Need dinner ideas?  Try my Maple-Glazed Pork Tenderloin or even an easy recipe for Sicilian Chicken that you can also find in this book and also great for any holiday dinner parties you may be hosting.  And you don’t want to miss my recipe for homemade Eggnog, or one of my favorites Processo and Cranberry Mojitos, great for ringing in the New Year.

In the meantime lets enjoy the Holiday Thyme and a warm piece of Rum Cake!

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Rum Cake with Butter Rum Glaze

Moist and delicious rum cake topped with a butter rum glaze is the perfect ending to your holiday dinner.

  • Author: Jennifer
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings


  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3.4 ounce box instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup light rum
  • Butter Rum Glaze
  • ½ cup 1 stick butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup light rum
  • ¼ cup water


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Generously spray a standard 10-inch bundt pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle walnuts evenly on the bottom of bundt pan and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl stir together flour, pudding mix, baking powder, baking soda and salt and set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer cream butter and sugar. Stir in vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla extract and rum.
  4. Gradually add in flour mixture to wet ingredients until blended. Pour batter into bundt pan on top of nuts.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 55-60 minutes until cake tester comes out clean. Cool completely before inverting.
  6. Butter Rum Glaze
  7. In a small saucepan combine butter, sugar, rum and water over medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 3-4 minutes stirring constantly. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
  8. Using a toothpick poke small holes all over cake. Generously brush cake with glaze. Drizzle remaining glaze on top of cake. Reserve a small amount to pour on slices when serving.

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      1. My Mom made this cake ( or a slight variation of it) and it was always a hit. Watch out for the rum! Mom always added a bit more and the effects were notable with all who went back for a third slice 😀 You just can’t stop eating it.

  1. I made this several days ago to take to work, and it was just out of this world delicious !! Everyone loved it, and wanted the recipe ….
    I plan on making it my go to recipe for Rum cake for Christmas. Thank you for sharing Jennifer.

    1. Hi, I have never tried it with cake flour but you can substitute cake flour for ap flour. You will need to add 2 tablespoon cake flour more for every cup of of AP flour, so you will want to add about 6 tablespoons more cake flour on top of the 3 cups the recipe calls for. Let me know if you have any other questions!

  2. This cake looks amazing! I have been searching for a rum cake recipe and have found many with different amounts of ingredients and some with different ingredients all together. This will be my first cake from scratch and i plan to make it for christmas. Some recipes call for 1/2 cup of milk instead of the baking soda. Do they serve the same purpose in a cake? I also found some recipes add rum flavor along with dark rum. Do you think that would be too rummy? Any advice would be appreciated.

    1. Hi Angela. I don’t know why some of the recipes would call for 1/2 cup milk instead of baking soda. Baking soda is a leavening agent. I can’t answer your question about the recipes that require both flavor and rum as I don’t know what other ingredients are in the recipe to check for proper balance. I can tell you, that I think you will be very happy with this recipe for my rum cake. It’s got great flavor and texture. Follow the recipe as I instruct and I’m sure it will be a success for you! Enjoy and happy holidays!

  3. This is in my oven now, but in a springform pan as I don’t yet own a bundt. Hope it still inverts okay. Assuming the glaze goes on when the cooled cake has been inverted (well, flipped in my case). Plan on using an embroidery needle to poke the holes. Don’t judge!! This will hopefully be a hit with family.
    Smells divine!!

  4. This is a great recipe, very simple and easy to follow. The cake came out moist and the density was perfect. The only issue I had was that the glaze did not seep all the way through the cake – but I can probably mitigate that the next time I bake it. This recipe rivals the Rum cakes from Honey Baked Ham.

  5. This is the second time that I have made this cake, and it is so good. I have been looking for a Rum cake that was not made from a box cake for a long time and now I’m so glad I found it. Thanks for sharing this recipe with us.

  6. Hi Jennifer, I need help. In making bundt rum cake. Make the glaze per instruction, vacuum packed cake, two weeks later open cake and it seems the sugar has crystalized inside the cake. What have I done wrong ?

    1. Hi Judy, I’m sorry to hear that happened. I have never vacuum sealed this cake before to be able to determine what might of happened. My only suggestion is maybe next time seal the cake without the glaze and add the glaze before you are ready to serve.

  7. hello Jennifer, thanks for sharing, can I use brandy instead of rum? I thinking in making a 3 layers 8″ round cake with the recipe, do you think will turn out ok? Thanks.

  8. Hi! This cake looks amazing! I grew up on Effie Marie Vanilla Rum cakes – they were out of this world! I’ve been searching for a rum cake to make for Christmas! I hope this is it! Do you know if the glaze turns into a crust? The Effie Marie cakes were so moist and the glaze gave it a crunch when eating it…from the sugary womderfulness! ?. Any idea if this is similar? Can’t wait to make!!

  9. I baked this cake this week just to give it a trial run to see how it would be for the Holidays. I substituted the Rum with Cognac. This cake came out perfect, it almost melted in your mouth. My husband waited for the cake to get out of the oven and I cut him 2 big slices. He didn’t even eat dinner. Him and I loved the cake and so did my adult children. This will be my go-to-cake for the Holidays and beyond. Thank you Jen for sharing this wonderful recipe!!

  10. I did this rum cake yesterday, and is so far my favorite recipe. I add some personal taste like a mix of nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and clove. Also I did the the butter rum glaze with brown sugar and the exterior color is amazing.
    Thank you for the details.

  11. I made this cake last year but today I realize that there are 2 mistakes that could lead an inexperienced person to a bad result of such a great recipe!! Where you say 1 cup 2 sticks unsalted butter you mean 1 cup OR its equivalent (2 sticks) since 2 cups of butter would be too much. However it must be said that this is the best rum cake recipe!!!!!!!!.

  12. I have made this now about 5 times to rave review. The only change I made was to add a little more rum. I used spiced rum and it was amazing! A try favorite!!!

  13. Gurrl!!
    I decided to do the brave thing and actually bake on Christmas Day :{ (I know right?)
    This recipe was simple, pantry ready, and the perfect satisfaction for a holiday sweet tooth crave!

  14. I just made this cake. It doesnt say whether or not it needs to be stored in the refrigerator.

  15. Absolutely love this recipe! I added 4.6 oz of pudding and everyone thought it was a hit. Drinkers & non drinker

  16. Wonderful cake! I made it for New Year’s Eve. No major switches–just pecans because I can not do walnuts and French vanilla instant pudding because that’s what I had. I’ll definitely make it again. Thanks so much!

  17. Made this cake for the first time…came out fantastic…super moist…everyone loved it….will definitely make again

  18. I have made this several times for coworkers. It is a hit every single time I make it. Very good cake. Super easy to make. Thank you sharing a wonderful recipe.

  19. If I use King Arthur Gluten Free Measure for Measure Flour, would you recommend that I do anything different, or just follow the recipe as is?

  20. Hi, I’m an older gentleman that likes to Bake. Unfortunately, I don have a mixer. Can I use box cake mix?

  21. This is the BEST Rum cake Ive ever made. Ive used the box mix, but this is sooo much better! Its moist and rich and has so much buttery flavor. Thank you so much for sharing!
    Its an easy recipe, so no excuses.

  22. I absolutely love this rum cake! It is a hit with everyone that tries it. Delicious 😋

  23. I’ve been making this recipe for quite a few years now, and it’s amazing. My grandmother always made rum cakes for the holidays and this recipe reminds me of hers. The only thing I do differently is that I use a dark rum— myers rum. My grandmother always used this rum so it’s very nostalgic, and tastes amazing with this recipe.

  24. It looked great, but too dry without a ton of the rum sauce on it. Next time, I’m going to add a little buttermilk or sour cream to correct that. Otherwise, a decent recipe.

  25. This cake is utterly delicious! I made it last weekend. The rum flavor is definitely there but it does not taste like alcohol at all. Very yummy and I’m glad I gave it a try!

  26. I’m a little confused. The notes say it’s made without cake mix but then uses vanilla pudding mix. What is that? Do you have more exact measurements for making this outside of the US? Either in grams or oz? This cake looks amazing and I really want to try it.

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