Prune Cake with Buttermilk Glaze

Old Fashioned Prune Cake with Buttermilk Glaze has an amazing spice cake flavor and moist texture. Whether for breakfast or dessert, you’ll love this comforting cake.

If there’s one recipe that has a home in almost every one of my old church cookbooks, it’s prune cake. I never run to make it, but it always intrigues me. Several of you have asked for a recipe, so I decided to try it…and guess what?

It was actually good. Like “I better give this cake away because I’ll eat it all” kind of good. I’m honored to share this vintage prune cake recipe with buttermilk glaze today.

piece of prune cake with whipped cream

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • uses cake flour to keep the cake tender
  • buttermilk in the cake and in the glaze
  • old fashioned spice flavor
  • ready in under an hour
  • no frosting needed

What does prune cake taste like?

Prune cake tastes like a homemade spice cake. Can you taste the prunes? I honestly can’t that much, but if you use cooked prunes then you may see the texture in the cake somewhat similar to raisins.

However, with cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice, it mostly tastes like spice cake.

overhead view of prune cake with glaze

How to Make Prune Cake

Prune cake bakes in a 9×13 pan. You do need two bowls to mix the dry and wet ingredients separately, but you’ll find it is not too difficult.

How to Cook Prunes for Cake

The first step in making this cake is to cook prunes. Place the prunes in a small saucepan and cover them with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 8 minutes until they are softened. Then drain the prunes and mash them with two forks. Or if you want them really smooth, run them through a food processor.

Make the Cake

  • In a large bowl, mix together the oil, sugar and eggs.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
  • Add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, stirring just until combined.
  • Fold in the pecans and the mashed prunes.
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.

Make the Buttermilk Glaze

  • In a small saucepan, combine all of the sauce ingredients. Cook and stir for about 10 minutes over low heat. Keep the heat over low and keep the bubbles simmering on low. Stir just slightly every now and then but don’t scrape the sides of the pan while simmering. The color will be bubbly a creamy butter color. It will start to thicken very slightly into a syrup.
  • Use a table fork to poke a few holes in the top of the warm cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. Pour the warm glaze over the cake while it is still hot.

What to Serve on Prune Cake

We like this cake with a simple dollop of whipped cream and an extra sprinkling of pecans. It is delicious served warm with ice cream also.

Is there frosting that goes well with prune cake? Yes! A cream cheese frosting or whipped mascarpone would go amazing with this cake.

piece of pecan prune cake with glaze
piece of pecan prune cake with glaze

Prune Cake with Buttermilk Glaze

5 from 3 votes
Old Fashioned Prune Cake with Buttermilk Glaze has an amazing spice cake flavor and moist texture. Whether for breakfast or dessert, you'll love this comforting cake.
Servings 15
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients
 

For the Cake:

  • 1 cup prunes
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 ¼ cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

For the Buttermilk Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions
 

  • Spray a 9×13 baking pan with cooking spray or line with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350º Fahrenheit.
  • Place the prunes in a small saucepan and cover them with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 8 minutes or until they are soft and can be mashed with a fork.
  • Drain the water, place the prunes on a plate and mash them. They do not have to be totally liquified. It’s ok if there are little chunks.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the oil, sugar and eggs.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
  • Add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, stirring just until combined.
  • Fold in the pecans and the mashed prunes.
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  • While the cake is baking, prepare the buttermilk sauce.
  • In a small saucepan, combine all of the sauce ingredients. Cook and stir for about 10 minutes over low heat. Keep the heat over low and keep the bubbles simmering on low. Stir just slightly every now and then but don’t scrape the sides of the pan while simmering. The color will be bubbly a creamy butter color. It will start to thicken very slightly into a syrup.
  • Use a table fork to poke a few holes in the top of the warm cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. Pour the warm glaze over the cake while it is still hot.

Notes

The calories shown are based on the cake being cut into 15 pieces, with 1 serving being 1 slice of cake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information.**

Nutrition

Calories: 441kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 239mg | Potassium: 172mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 371IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 441
Keyword comfort food, old fashioned, vintage
prune cake with a bite out of it

Frequently Asked Questions

Does prune cake have to be refrigerated?

This cake is fine to store at room temperature for 3-4 days. Store in an airtight container.

Can prune cake be frozen?

Yes! This cake freezes well. Just make sure you defrost it completely before opening the container. This will keep the cake fresh.

About Julie Clark

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