This Old Fashioned Fruitcake Recipe is an old family recipe and a holiday classic. Candied fruit and crunchy nuts fill this brandy infused cake that is sure to become a Christmas tradition at your house too!
When is the last time you got to pour booze on bread? Probably not since breakfast, at least. Well, dust off that bottle of brandy, because the holidays are coming! Whatever you don’t swig down to tolerate the in-laws you will want to save to paint your freshly baked holiday fruitcake!
This Old Fashioned Fruitcake recipe has been in my family for years. My mother passed it on to me, and her mother to her. I’m pretty sure my grandma got it from baby Jesus.
Hailing from Wisconsin, my family’s fruitcake recipe features brandy as the primary moisturizer. In my mind, brandy and fruitcake have always gone together like Santa and a bowl full of jelly… but who really eats jelly from a bowl? I’ve seen other recipes calling for rum, or even no booze at all, but I’m fairly certain fruitcake without booze is sacrilegious.
My family always made these fruitcakes in bulk to give away as presents for the holidays, because who doesn’t want to find baked goods in their stockings? Assuming your kids would rather have a PS4 than a booze-infused cake, I scaled the original recipe down for the average home cook. My recipe yields two 8″ fruitcakes, rather than eight. Feel free to scale the recipe up as desired.
My mother says you can use whatever candied fruit you prefer. Stores often sell bags of mixed candied fruit that is perfect for this recipe. She likes purchasing them on on clearance after the holidays to stock up for next year. You can even use sweetened dried fruit if needed, but candied is best.
A true old fashioned fruitcake is marinated in brandy for about a month. My mother recommends storing the fruitcake in an airtight container and basting it in brandy weekly until Christmas. However, if you are short on time, you can enjoy your fruitcake whenever you are ready to consume it. Fruitcakes can also be frozen in double freezer bags, however, do not do so until after a month of basting since the frozen cake won’t soak up any brandy.
I used 8″ aluminum foil loaf pans for this recipe. Their sizing is ideal, plus they allow you to easily give away extra fruitcakes to friends without worrying about losing a good bread pan.
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My Old Fashioned Fruitcake recipe is an old family recipe featuring candied fruit and crunchy nuts filling this brandy infused cake. A true holiday classic.
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup flour (divided)
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup brandy (divided)
- 1 cup chopped nuts (I recommend pecans)
- 1 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup candied pineapple (cut in small pieces)
- 8 ounces dates (chopped small)
- 1/2 cup candied cherries
Cream butter. Add sugar gradually & cream until smooth. Add eggs, one at time, beating well after each.
Sift 3/4 C flour with spices. Add alternately with 2 tbsp brandy to creamed mixture.
Dredge fruit and nuts with remaining flour. Add floured fruit to batter, mix well.
Pour into pan lined with waxed paper.
Bake at 300⁰ for 90 minutes. The fruitcake is done when it is moist but no longer doughy.
Remove from oven and baste with remaining 2 tbsp brandy and let cool.
Store in airtight container and baste weekly with brandy for a month.
You can make your individual fruitcakes big or small, however you will have to adjust the baking time accordingly. Here is how to do so:
1-2 pound fruitcake – Bake approximately 90 minutes per pound
2-4 pound fruitcake – 60 minutes per pound
4-8 pound fruitcake – 45 minutes per pound
8-12 pound fruitcake – 30 minutes per pound
IF YOU LIKED THIS RECIPE you will love my M&M's Christmas Bark recipe too!
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