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asked February 18th 2019

rum and orange cake

Have been asked to do a rum and orange wedding cake with rum and orange flavoured buttercream. Will this taste /work ok just adding rum and orange zest/juice to my usual Mrs Jones sponge recipe?


Hi Jlo

Personally, I would not simply add rum and orange to a sponge cake. Some spirits work better than others. Rum is very strong and can sometimes leave a horrible metallic taste. It's fine to add orange rind to the batter but I wouldn't recommend using the rum. It burns off during the baking process anyway so you won't be getting a true rum hit. For a fresher taste, I normally make simple syrups with chosen liqueur and brush it over each layer of the cake. Simple syrup made with equal quantities of water and sugar brought to the boil and cooled, then add liqueur. I can't really recommend the amount of rum, it would have to be to taste so it doesn't spoil the cake. As a guesstimate, try 10% rum to the whole quantity of the syrup. That's how much I use for my brandy cakes and add a bit more if it's too dilute.
There are some good whole orange recipes online which you may also find interesting for a deeper flavoured cake.

For the orange buttercream, either add the zest of oranges or use flavoured icing sugar as sold by Sugar and Crumbs. Alternatives to flavoured icing sugar would be a good natural food flavouring. Foodie Flavours have a good selection, including liqueur flavours. Rum can be added to the buttercream, again with caution. It's best to let flavours develop for several hours before adding more if required.

Hope some of the above suggestions help. Please post again if you'd like more information. 🙂

It would be a good idea to have a small selection of trial cakes for tasting for you and for the client.


Thanks for the information which all sounds like good advice. Bake regularly but had reservations about the rum for flavouring , particularly in an ordinary sponge cake.
Thanks again.