Christmas is never the same without a slice of a heavenly aromatic fruit cake loaded with nuts and candied fruits.
Yet, if it’s your first time baking or you want to save time, knowing how to make fruit cake using a cake mix is what you need.
In this article, I bring you the best and easiest fruit cake recipe to enjoy with your family and friends. So, keep reading.
The following recipe for the perfect holiday treat is ideal for gatherings, as it serves about 16 persons.
With less than 15 minutes of prep time, you don’t need to make it too far ahead of time. The whole process takes no more than two hours anyways.
Moreover, you have the option to add many variations of nuts and dried fruits for a more festive look.
Before you start, take a look at the recipe and make sure to prepare the ingredients you want to use in advance.
- 1 box of cake mix (a 15 1/4-ounce spice cake mix works just fine)
- 1 box (3.5 ounces) of instant vanilla pudding (to make the cake dense and extra moist)
- 3 large eggs
- ¼ cup of flour
- 8 ounces of cream cheese
- ½ cup of vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon of vanilla
- ¼ cup of water
- 4 cups of chopped dried fruit mix (candied cherries, candied pineapples, dark raisins, golden raisins, dates, dried prunes, etc.)
- 1 cup of chopped pecans (you can replace them with walnuts or a mixture of both nuts)
- 8 ounces of cream cheese
- ¼ cup of softened butter
- 1 cup of powdered sugar
What’s amazing about fruit cakes is that you can mix and match all your favorite kinds of additions. So, you can omit some dried fruits you don’t like or choose not to add nuts at all.
What’s more, you may find premixed and chopped fruit cake mixes at your local store.
Whatever your choice is, you should follow these steps.
- Preheat the oven to 275° F.
- In a large bowl, add the chopped candied fruits and nuts with the flour.
- Toss them together until all fruits and nuts are evenly coated in flour and set aside.
- In another bowl, add the oil, eggs, water, and vanilla.
- Beat the mixture at a medium speed with an electric mixer.
- Add the cake mix and pudding mix.
- Keep blending for an extra three minutes until you get a smooth batter.
- Pour the fruit and nut mixture over the cake batter.
- Fold them into the batter until it becomes stiff (don’t worry if you feel the cake batter contains too many fruits and nuts, as this is how it’s supposed to be.)
- Generously grease and flour the 10-inch tube pan.
- Add the batter evenly into the baking pan using a spoon.
- Bake for 1 hour 45 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean.
- Take the cake out of the oven and let it cool completely before flipping it over a wire rack.
- In a medium bowl, add the butter, sugar, and cream cheese.
- Beat with the mixer until fully blended.
- Spread over the cake after it cools down.
- Sprinkle some chopped nuts over the frosting.
- Serve and enjoy.
If you’re not a fan of cream cheese frosting, you can always make other substitutions.
The following sugar glaze recipe gives a sweet, sticky finish to your fruit cake, and it’s super delicious.
All you need to have is granulated sugar, buttermilk, corn syrup, baking soda, and vanilla.
Take a look at the following steps.
- In a small saucepan, add ½ a cup of granulated sugar with ¼ cup of buttermilk and a tablespoon of corn syrup.
- Heat the mixture over a medium flame until it simmers.
- Remove the pan from heat.
- Stir in two teaspoons of vanilla and ¼ teaspoon of baking soda.
- Pour the glaze evenly over the cake after it cools down.
- Whipped cream
- Candied Orange Peels
- Powdered sugar glaze
- Melted chocolate (or white chocolate)
- Simple sugar syrup (brush it over the cake after it cools)
- Chocolate ganache
- Substituting the spice cake mix with any other type is possible, but you’ll need to flavor the cake with some extra spices, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.
- You can use any kind of nuts in this recipe, including almonds, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, or Brazil nuts.
- Make sure to chop all nuts small because large chunks tend to sink to the bottom of the cake.
- Coating the fruits and nuts in flour helps them remain suspended and well distributed inside the cake batter.
- Fold the nuts and fruits gently into the cake batter as they may clump together or lose their flour coating.
- Don’t try to cut down the baking time by turning the heat up, as fruit cakes need to bake at a low temperature for perfect results.
- You can loosely cover the cake with a sheet of aluminum foil if you notice the top is browning more than expected.
- Make sure to keep a close eye on your cake while baking because the baking time varies depending on your oven as well as the size and material of the pan.
- Avoid slicing the cake while it’s still hot, as it may fall apart.
You can store any fruit cake leftovers inside the fridge in an airtight container for up to three days.
Furthermore, you can also keep fruit cake in the freezer for up to one month as long as it’s inside a sealed container.
Although fruit cake isn’t everyone’s favorite, it’s still a delicious and enjoyable type of dessert.
Luckily, you may learn how to make fruit cake using cake mix if you don’t like to start from scratch. Not only does it save you time and effort, but it also guarantees outstanding results.
In all cases, you always get to add your favorite kinds of fruit and nuts to the cake. With many topping options to choose from, you can never go wrong with such a recipe.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.