Late Summer Plum Cake

Tested & Perfected Recipes
Plum Cake

Gently spiced, this jammy plum cake celebrates the summer-into-fall season. Serve it as a brunch cake or for dessert topped with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

plum cake

One of the most popular (and easiest, I might add) dessert recipes on my site is Martha Stewart’s lovely fresh strawberry cake. In this variation, I replaced the strawberries with fresh plums, and it worked beautifully. Quartered and nestled into the batter, the plums soften into jammy, mulberry-colored pockets as they bake. Warm spices – like cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom – complement the fruit and celebrate the summer-into-fall season. This cake can be served any time of day, plain or topped with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

What you’ll need to make Plum Cake

ingredients

Step-By-Step Instructions

Begin by whisking the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt together in a large bowl.

dry-ingredients

Next, beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

creaming-butter-and-sugar

Add the egg and vanilla and mix to combine.

adding-eggs-and-vanilla

Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, and beat on low speed until smooth.

mixing-in-milk

Transfer the batter to a greased Springform pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Note that the batter is quite thick.

spreading-batter

Arrange the plums on top, skin side up, in a circular pattern so that they cover most of the batter.

plums-in-batter

Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar over the plums.

plums-sprinkled-with-sugar

Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, until golden on top and set in the center.

baked-plum-cake

When the cake is hot out of the oven, run a knife around the edges of the pan and then remove the springform edge (leave the base in place). Let the cake cool on a rack completely.

cake-cooling-on-rack

Slice and serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.

Plum-Cake-1

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Late Summer Plum Cake

Gently spiced, this jammy plum cake celebrates the summer-into-fall season. Serve it as a brunch cake or for dessert topped with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Servings: 8-10
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 70 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 20 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk (low fat is fine)
  • 1 pound plums, pitted and quartered

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Grease a 9-inch springform pan. (Alternatively, the cake may be made in a 9-inch cake pan or pie pan and served directly from the pan.)
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or beaters, cream the butter and 1 cup of the sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat on low speed until well combined. Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, and beat on low speed until smooth. (Note: the batter will be quite thick.)
  4. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Arrange the plums on top, skin side up, in a circular pattern so that they mostly cover the batter. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar over the plums.
  5. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, until golden on top and set in the center.
  6. When the cake is hot out of the oven, run a knife around the edges of the pan and then remove the springform edge, leaving the base in place (if using a springform pan). Let the cake cool on a rack completely. Slice and serve with ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.
  7. Note: This cake keeps well, loosely covered at room temperature, for several days.
  8. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The cake can be frozen for up to 3 months. After it is completely cooled, double-wrap it securely with aluminum foil or plastic freezer wrap, or place it in heavy-duty freezer bag. Thaw overnight on the countertop before serving.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (8 servings)
  • Calories: 344
  • Fat: 13g
  • Saturated fat: 8g
  • Carbohydrates: 54g
  • Sugar: 35g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Sodium: 231mg
  • Cholesterol: 55mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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Reviews & Comments

  • Hello Jenn I came across this recipe and decided to try it since I had some plums. Boy oh boy, it is delicious! So easy to put together and the spices blend nicely. I ate two slices although I was full….very greedy of me but just couldn’t resist. This is most definitely a keeper. Can’t wait to make another one. Thanks

    • — Rosie on October 11, 2021
    • Reply
  • I tried this recipe a few weeks ago- obsessed! I wanted to try a gluten-free version so some family members can try it, but I’ve never converted a recipe this way, do you have any recommendations?

    • — Claire F on October 6, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Claire, Glad you enjoyed it and I think this would convert nicely to a gluten-free version. I’d recommend an all-purpose gluten-free baking mix like this one from King Arthur. Please LMK how it turns out if you try it!

      • — Jenn on October 7, 2021
      • Reply
  • Morning. I’m looking forward to trying this! I froze the plums. Should they be defrosted first ?
    thanks much!

    • — Lisa Prosko on October 6, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Lisa, I don’t think they need to be defrosted first. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on October 6, 2021
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn,
    Do you have a UK version of this recipe this please? Or can you tell me how to convert to grams? Thanks

    • — Beth on October 4, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Beth, The great majority of my recipes (including this one) include conversions to metric/weight measurements. To view them, scroll down to the recipe, and immediately under the recipe title on the right side, you’ll see a little toggle. If you move it from “cup measures” to metric, you’ll see measurements that will work for you. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on October 6, 2021
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn. I don’t have cardamom, will leaving it out compromise the taste? Is there something else you would recommend instead? Is it okay to use rather soft plumbs? As always, thanks!

    • — Diane on September 29, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Diane! It’s totally fine to leave out the cardamom (no need to replace it with anything), and it’s also fine to use soft plums. Enjoy! 🙂

      • — Jenn on September 29, 2021
      • Reply
      • Thanks so much, Jenn and CONGRATULATIONS on another Stunner of a Cookbook! Outstanding work, as always!

        • — Diane on September 30, 2021
        • Reply
        • 💗

          • — Jenn on September 30, 2021
          • Reply
        • Hi Jenn, is it okay to use frozen plums?

          • — Mary on October 4, 2021
          • Reply
          • Yes, Mary, that should be fine. Enjoy!

            • — Jenn on October 6, 2021
    • Hi Diane, It’s fine to omit the cardamom and as long as the plums are not too mushy, they should be fine. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on September 29, 2021
      • Reply
  • I made this twice, so far. It is absolutely delicious and I received a lot of compliments.

    • — Ruth on September 19, 2021
    • Reply
  • Excellent! This is a keeper for sure. My son picked a bunch of plums on a lunch break at his high school. So we doubled this and made two. Delicious. Thanks!

    • — Kat on September 19, 2021
    • Reply
  • Oh my, this plum cake is absolutely delicious! I am making it today for the third time in as many weeks. I bake it in my springform pan and it turns out just perfect. If I ever sell my house, forget putting a pot of potpourri on the stove to simmer, I’ll bake this cake instead – it makes the house smell absolutely wonderful!

    • — Shellie on September 17, 2021
    • Reply
  • My neighbor gave me 3 lbs if plums the other day. I made a double batch of this cake in a parchment lined 11×17 pan (it has to bake a bit longer). It is so delicious!

    • — Judy on September 12, 2021
    • Reply
  • Got fresh plums sent to us may my sister in law. My boyfriend says it’s at the top of the list of things I’ve made. It is surprisingly delicious! Will make it whenever I can

    • — Laurie on September 11, 2021
    • Reply
  • Made this a day in advance to serve tonight. The cake has gotten kind of wet and mushy. Any tricks to bring back the nice crustiness of the top of the cake? Should I warm in the oven?

    Eileen

    • — Eileen on September 4, 2021
    • Reply
    • Yep pop it back in the oven for a bit to warm up 🙂

      • — Jenn on September 4, 2021
      • Reply
      • Absolutely delicious cake, very moist and light with the beautifully delicate spice flavour.
        Easy and quick to make

        • — Jane on September 7, 2021
        • Reply
  • This is an utterly fantastic recipe! Clearly the best plum cake I have ever tried- my husband can’t get enough of it.

    • — Nehamashira on September 2, 2021
    • Reply
  • This cake has a very high deliciousness-to-difficulty ratio — it’s super-easy to make, and tastes wonderful. It’s not extremely sweet, and the different textures make it very satisfying.

    • — Gail on September 1, 2021
    • Reply
  • Simply amazing. One slice is not enough! Thanks again for another great recipe.

    • — Taline on August 31, 2021
    • Reply
  • I made this cake in memory of my mother in law Mimi who always made a late summer plum cake. This was so delicious and easy to make. I hid a small piece and had it for breakfast today. Great with my coffee. Love Jennifer’s recipes.

    • — Susan on August 31, 2021
    • Reply
  • Do you think I could successfully use white whole wheat flour? Any thoughts on how it’d change the texture or density of this cake?

    • — Kat on August 29, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Kat, I do think you could get away with white whole wheat here. The texture will be a bit different with it, so if you’d like the minimize the impact on the texture, I’d suggest using half all-purpose and half white whole wheat. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on August 30, 2021
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn,
    I have made many of your recipes and they are wonderful! I was wondering if sour cream could be substituted for the milk in the recipe for the Late Summer Plum Cake?

    • — Lenore on August 29, 2021
    • Reply
    • So glad you like the recipes! Unfortunately, sour cream wouldn’t be a good substitute for the milk here — sorry!

      • — Jenn on August 31, 2021
      • Reply
  • Jenn,
    What’s your take on recipes that call for unsalted butter but have salt in the recipe? I just use salted butter and cut down on the salt. I’m curious on your thoughts! Thanks.

    • — Kari Powell on August 28, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Kari, The primary reason that recipes call for unsalted butter but also include salt is that the amount of salt in salted butter varies by brand. This makes it harder to calibrate the rest of your seasoning in the recipe. While it varies by brand, most salted butter has approximately 1/4 tsp. salt per stick, so you can use the salted butter and reduce the salt in the recipe as needed. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on August 30, 2021
      • Reply

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