A Spicy Perspective

Fresh Plum Cake

A rustic Fresh Plum Cake is a fabulous dessert option for summer picnics and parties. Serve warm with ice cream!

fresh plum cake

My kids love to be in the kitchen. I don’t blame them! The aromas wafting from the oven are hard to beat. There’s not another room I’d rather be in…

The other morning we woke up and shuffled downstairs to our usual weekend morning routine. Breakfast, lounging around in our jammies, talking about what we are going to do the rest of the day…

On this particular day the kids wanted to bake!

plum cake recipe

We didn’t even bother changing out of our jammies. We headed straight for the pantry to assess our options. Chocolate chips? No. Shredded coconut? No. Peanut butter? No.

What was this kitchen coming to???

fresh plums

All the essential elements for our favorite go-to treats were missing. We took a breath, and regrouped.

We had fresh summer plums, butter, sugar and flour. A Fresh Plum Cake in the making. I could tell we were on our way to greatness.

Plenty of “kiddy treats” make their debut at our house. You know the kind… Rice crispy treat variations, cookies decorated like zoo animals, candy suspended in jello. (You should see some of the things we crank out around Halloween.)

how to make plum cake

Yet it’s nice to teach children some classic, and slightly more sophisticated recipes. They pick up baking techniques quickly and appear to enjoy the mature deserts just as much.

Plus, these are recipes they can take with them throughout life; a spring board to greater meals and ideas. A little token of mommy.

easy rustic plum cake recipe

This particular Fresh Plum Cake is great for summer stone-fruits such as plums, peaches and apricots, yet with a rustic quality that carries through to fall.

A hearty, yet elegant cake that needs no cream or sauce to perfect it.

The plums add a juicy tang to this dense buttery cake, so it’s flavorful enough to stand alone.

easy plum cake

That makes this Fresh Plum Cake a perfect dessert to take to a barbecue or summer party when stone fruit is fresh and in season. This is just the kind of dessert I’d wrap up and put in my picnic basket for an evening concert at the park. No hassle, big impact.

You can also make Fresh Plum Cake, with peaches or apricots instead of plums!

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Fresh Plum Cake

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Fresh Plum Cake – A rust yet elegant cake that is easy to make and easy to love! Serve it in the summer with seasonal plums, and around the holidays.
Servings: 12



  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place a sheet of parchment paper over the bottom disk of an 8-9 inch spring-form pan. Fasten the ring around the disk with the parchment paper secured in between. Cut off the excess paper. Grease the sides of the pan.
  • Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice.
  • In the electric mixer, cream 1 cup of sugar with the butter. Add the eggs one at a time. Slowly add the flour mixture. Scrape the bowl and mix again.
  • Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Slice the plums into eighths. The easiest way I’ve found to do this, is to run a knife around the plum to halve it, then do the same to quarter it. Split each quarter in half. The little sections should pop off the pit with your knife.
  • Place the plum slices around the top of the cake in a pretty pattern. Make sure they are close together. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice over the plums. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Make SURE not to over bake! Cool for 15 minutes in the pan, and another 10 minutes out of the pan before serving!


*Try with fresh summer peaches, nectarines or apricots!


Serving: 1piece, Calories: 288kcal, Carbohydrates: 34.1g, Protein: 3.2g, Fat: 16.4g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 81mg, Sodium: 172mg, Potassium: 0mg, Fiber: 0.9g, Sugar: 21.3g, Vitamin A: 0IU, Vitamin C: 0mg, Calcium: 0mg, Iron: 0mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Sommer Collier

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68 comments on “Fresh Plum Cake”

  1. Fresh Plum Cake: Excellent recipe and instructions! It even looks like yours. Rescued our newly planted damson plums from our garden critters to make it. I am lately shy of cinnamon and other spices because so many recipes and foods are saturated with spices so much so you cant taste the fruit and they all taste alike! I loved your restraint! My spirngform pan leaked – not sure if it was the parchment And the ‘cake’ seemed a bit dry–seemed to have followed the instructions regligiously. But love it – thanks so much! Look forward to more of your creations! barb.

  2. Pingback: August Seasonal Produce Guide - Raspberries and Kohlrabi

  3. Great, simple, and fast. I didn’t have softened butter or oil, so I used an overripe banana instead: it tasted great! I added a couple tablespoons more flour while folding into the mashed banana/egg/sugar to take up the extra moisture. Can’t wait to try this with peaches, figs, etc. 

  4. Beautiful, delicious, and easy! This was a big hit with my friends! I used Plumcots (plum/apricot hybrid) and swapped the pumpkin pie spice for chai masala.

    Although the cake is moist with a fairly delicate crumb, it’s sturdy enough for picnic food. We didn’t have forks handy, and were able to just cut a slice and hold it to eat.

    Rustic and lovely. I highly recommend. :)

  5. I am new to your blog and I am so glad I found this amazing recipe! Made this for hubby’s bday today since I had a fresh batch of plums just harvested from our tree and he loves baked goodies that include fruit. This was sooo quick and easy to put together. It came out absolutely delicious! This is going to be a keeper!

  6. Hello! So having extra plums i decided to go for this recipe and it was a great pick! Super delicious and moist. Definitely a keeper thanks.

  7. What do I use if I don’t have pumpkin pie Spice?
    Can I make the cake without it?

    • Hi Anne!

      Pumpkin pie spice is a blend of mostly cinnamon, then a little ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves. You can mix a small amount for this recipe, or just use cinnamon instead. :)

  8. I have the exact same recipe without the pumpkin spice and have made it 30 times. It disappears in no time and is a never fail recipe. Just a suggestion to substitute about a tablespoon or two of cornmeal into the flour. Totally changes the texture and you will never go back!! I have had soooo many complements!

  9. I made this with Italian plums and it was delicious. The mix was very dry though; I added at least half a cup of full-fat yogurt after combining the dry and wet ingredients, just to get it wet enough to mix. Wondering if there’s a missing ingredient (milk?).

  10. I was specifically looking for a plum cake yesterday to take to a BBQ & found this. It was so simple & basic & it was a hit! I brought some vanilla ice cream to top it as 1) I thought it would compliment it (it didn’t need it) & 2) I thought maybe the plums were too tart (they were tart but worked so well with the cake…still no need for the ice cream!) This is the recipe I have been searching for to use it for Apple cake & so much more! For my taste I would increase the spice, especially for fall baking. I can’t wait to try more fruit! Thank you so much…this is a keeper.

  11. Perfection. Used fresh plums I had frozen from the Summer.  Let them dethaw and used juice to make a syrup to go on top of ice cream. Cake was perfectly moist. Company loved it and it didn’t take long to make.

  12. Just took my first bite out of a warm piece of this delicious plum cake. I used a 10 Inch Springform and 7 plums . Awesome – this is a keeper !

  13. This is in my oven baking as I comment!  It smells so yummy and the batter was delicious so I’m sure it isn’t going to be fantastic! Thank you for the recipe!! I was just wondering if anyone has tried it with frozen plums (like buy fresh but cut and freeze the slices of plum)! 

  14. woooow. This looks like a delicious plum cake and I’d love a slice

  15. I just make the cake, had to use canned plums as its winter here and none available! Served it with home made yummy custard and Tip Top vanilla pod ice cream and it all disappeared! Thank you for the brilliant and easy recipe!

  16. Just looking at the very first picture made me hungry. Baking with kids must have been all the more fun :)

  17. Love this! Plums aren’t used nearly enough. This is stunning…

  18. I make a cake like this so I know how good it is! GREG

  19. Delicious! I love plums and your patience to bake with the kids!

  20. I love the Ava Junior Chef t-shirt! Too cute! Kids in the kitchen is always a happy time! :)

  21. What a fabulous cake – love this!

  22. Your summertime routine sounds exactly like ours. I agree that there is something to be said for teaching kids to appreciate the classic desserts. This plum cake is beautiful!

  23. Hey! I made this sometime ago, except mine was an eggless version and I did an upside down take on it. And yet, it looks so much like yours! :) Your kids are so adorable! I can’t wait for mine to grow up so I can bake with them!

  24. That is one beautiful cake!!

  25. Your cake looks so delicious with the pretty design of plums on the top. This would be perfect for my Sunday brunch. Your photos are lovely and your kids are just precious.

  26. Awww! I love it when kids get into the kitchen :)

    Plums are just gorgeous to cook with – I love how they bleed so beautifully into everything, especially cake!

    Your potos never disappoint and I just love that white washed table!

  27. What a great looking cake! Fresh fruit is always a good baking go to plan :)

  28. The cake looks so pretty! And your kids are adorable! Great little helpers.

  29. Great photos and I love the plum cake. It wreaks of summer.

  30. ooo! That does look wonderful. I keep forgetting to buy plums but after looking at those pics of the plum cake I don't think I'll be forgetting them this week. I can't wait to bite into some plum cake!

  31. That is a work of art. I also just love your kids' aprons!

  32. Wonderful cake, beautiful photos and adorable kids :)

  33. This looks delicious and you have some great little helpers there!

  34. Hey Sommer, your little boy looks just like you-very cute! Oh, and the cake looks great too. That's a buttery, decadent cake!
    p.s. red wine vinegar serves as an acid reacting with the baking soda causing for rise (hence my domes). Baking powder is baking soda added to a dry acid, so vinegar or lemon juice is not needed when using powder. The acid can lose it's effectiveness though, hence all the warnings about using old powder and such. You may already know this, but, if not, it's a 'foodie fact' worth knowing I think (smile)…

  35. Sommer…that plum cake looks amazingly scrumptious. I make a similar apple cake like this too. Isn't it great how this cake lends itself so well in versatility.
    So…you actually seem to have a few more cute hands in the kitchen…no fair ;o) They are such adorable little elves ;)

    Have a great weekend and flavourful wishes,

  36. The good things in life are basic recipes like this that just make every memory that more special. Your special bakers are adorable !

  37. Sommer,I swear in that picture they look just like you. They are beyond adorable:) What a wonderful cake…and what a fun morning!

  38. So sweet, kids and the plum cake, what a nice post, your plum cake looks amazing!

  39. Beautiful Plum Cake. Great to see your kids spending time with you in the kitchen.

  40. The plum cake looks delightful. It's great to have kids that enjoy cooking and baking too.

  41. Sounds like a fun time with the kids. The plum cake looks amazing. Would be great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream too!

  42. that is one beautiful cake!! I love plums and you really don't see them much in baked goods….I am always torn about leaving the skin on, but I think you just made up my mind to leave it on…your cake is perfect….
    and your girls are so precious, I am so happy to hear they enjoy cooking with mom!

  43. OMG your kiddos are goregous!!! imaginary souffles, oh I would have cried also…I love plum cake..it's s perfect summer treat..great recipe..

  44. Wonderful cake. Love the use of pumpkin pie spice. Lucky you have many willing helpers.

  45. What a lovely cake. What beautiful assistants. I hope you all have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  46. Oh, your children are so adorable – they will forever be indebted to your culinary genius! ( ; The plum cake cake sounds so delicious, Sommer!

  47. Your kiddies made one beautiful cake! It looks so tasty and light. How fun… and so wonderful that they are budding pastry chefs!

  48. Your kids are so cool, yeah!!

    Your plum cake looks outstandingly beautiful!!

    MMMMMM,..I so love fresh plums!

  49. Lovely treat. No wonder why your kids love to be in the kitchen.

  50. That plum cake looks amazing – well done you and the kids! I chuckled when I read about you feeling emotional that your daughter was making imaginary souffles. My son (4) is my sous-chef and when I told him yesterday that he would be a great cook one day, he replied "Oh THANK you for saying that Mommy!" like it was the best compliment he could get. Awwwww… aren't kids the best?! :-)

  51. OMG! What beautiful kids you have, they are adorable. And kitchen helpers…how lucky you are. This cake looks beautiful When I saw the first picture I was just wondering how the plum slices were all on top. Then thanks to your step by step, now I know. Its awesome.

  52. How cute are you kids?! I can definitely figure out the prankster from the exacting one. That cake is beautiful. Tell your kids they did some really nice work!

  53. wow great cake and so nice helpers.

  54. This plum cake looks fantastic!

  55. Cake looks yummy! So good to see pics of the kids. Maybe I'll make this with their cousins here

  56. Gorgeous photos, cute kids and lovely cake.

    I'll be making this soon, as we are just about to be buried under a mountain of ripe plums from our trees. Thanks for the inspiration!

  57. What a delicious cake and sweet helpers you have in your kitchen!
    I love any plum cake that doesn't ask for a yeast dough. Pumpkin spice sounds great in it.

  58. What fascinates me so about raising children is to notice the kinds of things they retain out of the mountain of concepts and information we try to pass on to them; cute that your child was impressed by soufflés!
    This photo shows the most adorable kids ever!
    As for your cake, I will be making it soon as we are getting a bounty of peaches, nectarines and plums from our orchard.

  59. This looks like a great plum cake! I'd love a slice right about now, please :)

  60. Your kids are adorable, I cant wait for Indy to really bake with me.

  61. Tell the kids they did an awesome job! I've never made anything with a plum. You've all inspired me.

  62. I love plums. I could so see this with Plums, peaches and nectarines.

  63. That looks seriously good and your cut out circle is so neat!

  64. looks delicious! My kids love the kitchen too – it's always a great way to spend time together.

  65. Oh your kids are so cute with their little aprons! what a beautiful cake, especailly with the plums that are in season, I wish I could taste a slice right now, I am craving for something sweet!

  66. Plums and prunes are about in season here…love to use them make the coffee cake. Recipe bookmarked! Thanks!

  67. Oh my goodness! We use to make this when you were a tiny little thing living in San Diego. I know you don't remember it Sommer, but we made it with delicious California grown plums. We also made it with the local peaches or blueberries. It was a family favorite. I am so glad my precious grandbabies got in the photo shoot today.