Jamaican Fruit Cake

I don’t drink alcohol,  instead, I substituted grape juice for the alcohol. Red wine, rum or Port wine that is traditionally used. 

I must say with my version you won’t even miss the alcohol, when I serve this to my hubby, he was blown away and told me how I outdid myself and request I make another cake right away to serve along with my Sweet Potato Pudding and Sorrel Drink.

Jamaican Christmas Cake Recipe on a white background topped with pomegranate arils

Jamaican Fruit Cake, also known as, Jamaican Christmas Cake, Wedding cake, Jamaican Black Cake. It is the cake of choice for weddings, parties or any formal occasion in Jamaica. 

This fruit cake is usually made by soaking dried fruits in alcohol. It is soaked for as little as a few days to years, usually, the latter is the norm.

Making this cake brings back childhood memories. My mom making several of this cake so she could share it with friends and family during Christmas. The smell of our home was amazing as she baked them.

step by step images of Jamaican Fruit Cake

For my Jamaican Fruit Cake  I used Bob’s Red Mills Gluten-Free All-Purpose flour, you may substitute flour of your choice, such as oat-flour, rice flour.

For deep brown color, I used molasses but in Jamaica, we used browning as well.  The color was perfect without the use of browning.

How To Make Jamaican Fruit Cake?

To make the cake:

I didn’t have time to soak my fruits so I boiled them in grape just for 10 minutes.

Reserve a small amount to add to the batter as is for the texture.

I used a springform pan for easy release, but a well-oiled baking pan or parchment-lined pan will work fine.

I used a non-dairy butter, Earth Balance Buttery Spread.

For sweetener, I used coconut sugar to help with a deep rich color. You can substitute with a dark brown sweetener like ‘Sucanat’ or turbinado sugar.

Any dried fruit combination can be used but traditionally, its raisins, cherries, mixed peel, prunes, currants but I have made a delicious cake with the addition of Trader Joes Golden Berry Blend.

Jamaican Fruit Cake

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(Per portion)
  • Energy: 257 kcal / 1074 kJ
  • Fat: 12 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Carbs: 34 g

Cook Time

  • Preparation: 20 min
  • Cooking: 1 h
  • Ready in: 1 h 20 min
  • For: 12 servings



  1. Preheat oven 350 degrees F. Spray 9-inch round baking pan and set aside. Place grape juice and dried fruits in a large saucepan on medium heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Allow fruits to cool.
  2. Place 1 1/2 cups of the fruits and remaining liquid in a blender or food processor and puree. Pour in a medium bowl, add molasses, softened butter, almond extract, vanilla, and lemon zest, mix well.
  3. In a large bowl, combine, gluten-free flour, almond flour, sugar, ground flaxseeds, baking powder, allspice, and salt
  4. Mix dry ingredients into wet ingredient and stir well to combine. Add remaining dried fruits and stir. Pour batter into prepare round baking pan. Bake for 60-90 minutes, or when fork is inserted in the center it comes out clean.


Jamaican Fruit Cake Alcohol-Free, Vegan, Gluten-Free
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Michelle Blackwood, RN

Hi, I’m Michelle, I’m the voice, content creator and photographer behind Healthier Steps. I share vegan and gluten-free recipes because of past health issues. My goal is to help you make healthier choices and show you how healthy eating is easy and delicious.