Jamaican ginger sponge pudding

Enjoy this decadent, sticky ginger sponge as an alternative to Christmas pudding. Top with a luscious rum caramel and serve with a dollop of cream to make it extra special 

  • Prep:25 mins
    Cook:3 hrs
  • Serves 8
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 618
  • fat 29g
  • saturates 17g
  • carbs 77g
  • sugars 58g
  • fibre 2g
  • protein 6g
  • salt 1.2g


  • 150g frozen unsalted butter, plus extra at room temperature for the basin
  • 120g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 120g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1½ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 150g stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped, syrup reserved for the sauce
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 100g light brown soft sugar
  • 250g black treacle
  • 100ml milk
  • extra-thick double cream or vanilla ice cream, to serve
  • 120ml syrup from a 350g jar stem ginger
  • 70ml spiced rum
  • 30g salted butter
  • 4 tbsp double cream


Make it ahead

Cook the pudding according to the method up to one week ahead. Steam for 40 minutes to reheat.


  1. Butter a 1.2-litre pudding basin, then press a disc of baking parchment into the base. Heat 4cm water in a heavy-based pan and add a trivet or upturned bowl or saucer to the base.

  2. Sieve the flour, baking powder and bicarb into a large bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, ginger, allspice, cinnamon and ½ tsp fine salt and stir everything together. Wrap the end of the frozen butter in foil and, holding it by the foil end, coarsely grate the butter into the dry ingredients. Unwrap and discard the foil to grate the last piece. Fold everything together so the butter is evenly distributed. Mix in the stem ginger, eggs, treacle, sugar and milk. Spoon into the pudding basin, leaving a small gap for the sponge to rise, and cover with a disc of parchment. Seal the pudding basin with a tight-fitting lid or a double layer of foil, sealed tightly around the basin and tied with cook’s string. Set on top of the trivet, cover with a lid and steam for 3 hrs, topping up with water so it doesn’t boil dry.

  3. Pour the syrup into a shallow frying pan, bring to the boil and cook until the syrup is turning a deep golden brown. Quickly whisk in the rum and butter, then whisk in the cream and bubble for 2 mins. Gently tip the sponge pudding out of its basin and onto a serving plate. Pour over the rum sauce and serve with thick cream or vanilla ice cream, if you like.