Plum Cake

Whisking Wolf
by Whisking Wolf
6 servings
1 hr

Celebrate the changing seasons with this perfectly sweetened Plum Cake. Filled with fresh, juicy plums, ground cinnamon and zested lemon this single layer cake is both simple and impressive.

I’ve decided not to have kids. My son is taking the news hard, but he can air his grievances with the governor. I know my rights; Florida is an at-will employment state so I can bow out at any time without my firstborn filing a lawsuit. Normally I’m not a quitter but keeping this kid alive is better suited for an Army medic than a mother. I’m talking two surgeries, more trips to the ER than I can count, broken bones and an ambulance ride after a concussion left him thinking it was the 4th of July instead of New Year’s Day.

Before you judge, I’m not the first to abandon him. His guardian angel is in a mental ward with her wings bound in a white jacket that ties in the back. It looks a bit snug, but it has a super cute belt. I’m asking my psychiatrist to go a size up when ordering mine. Honestly, I wouldn’t need to be adding a straight jacket to my wardrobe if my son had been born with a warning label. Caution: high proclivity for accidents, may cause parental insanity and alcoholism.

The thing about my son is that his momma didn’t raise a fool. A crash test dummy, maybe, but no fool. Now he’s throwing around phrases like “child abandonment” and “unlawful desertion” like he’s Judge Judy’s understudy. But since desertion sounds like dessert-ion all I can think about is cake. Committing a felony can wait, cake cannot. Especially when the cake in mind is a rustic cake with fresh plums.

Single layer and minimal effort, this plum torte is ready from start to finish in one hour flat. Made with juicy plums, cinnamon and hints of lemon zest this fall cake is a forkful of the season’s best flavors. I recommend covering your slice with powdered sugar and covering your child with bubble wrap. Or vise versa. The cake will be good either way, the kid not so much. (Don’t ask me how I know this.)

Before sharing the recipe for Plum Cake, here are a few tips and tricks to help you out:

Ingredient Tips and Tricks

Let butter soften at room temperature. It should be soft to the touch but not melty. Trust me, it matters.

Eggs should also be at room temperature. If you forgot to take them out of the refrigerator ahead of time then you can speed up the process by placing them in a bowl of warm water.

I used a combination of black and red plums for this cake, but Italian plums are also great for baking. For best results, choose shiny plums that are firm when squeezed. If plums are soft and squishy then they are overripe and not recommended for baking.

Preparation Tips and Tricks

If you notice your cake overbrowning before the timer goes off cover the top with aluminum foil until baking is complete.

When are Plums in Season for Plum Cake?

Peak plum season runs from July to October in the United States, therefore prime plum season is upon us. Take full advantage of these juicy, stone fruits while you still can.

Storage and Freezing Tips for Plum Cake

Cover leftovers then store at room temperature up to 3 days.

This cake will freeze well for up to 3 months if double-wrapped then placed in an airtight container.

I hope you enjoy this Plum Cake recipe. Please leave a comment and rating at the bottom of this blog if you like plum season, too. And, while you’re at it, sign up for my weekly Recipe Newsletter so you never miss a tempting recipe.

Finally, if you like breakfast cake check out this recipe for Blueberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake. Packed with moisture and bursting with blueberries, this crumb-topped breakfast cake will wow you with its textures and flavors.

Recipe details
  • 6  servings
  • Prep time: 15 Minutes Cook time: 45 Minutes Total time: 1 hr
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  • 1 cup all-purpose flour unbleached
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt fine
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 8 Tbsp unsalted butter room temperature
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar packed
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 tsp lemon zest freshly grated
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract pure
  • 4 – 5 plums pitted and halved
  • powdered sugar (optional garnish)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan then set aside.
In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, beat softened butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and thickened – approximately 5 minutes.
Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until combined.
Add lemon zest and vanilla then mix until incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
Reduce mixer speed to low. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet then beat on low speed until just combined, taking care not to overmix.
Pour batter into the greased springform pan, smoothing and leveling the top with a rubber spatula when complete.
Arrange plum halves skin-side-up in springform pan, pressing gently until they are nestled into the batter.
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Place pan on a wire rack and let cake to cool for 30 minutes before releasing the springform ring then allowing the cake to cool completely.
If desired, dust cake with powdered sugar then slice and serve.
Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.
Whisking Wolf
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  • First, love your writing style! My maternal grandmother used to make something similar and I learned as it was a taste and feel type recipe as there was no exact measuring. And it's been decades. Your recipe looks really good and I like it since it is not sickeningly sweet. Missed the Italian prune plum harvest this year, it's such a short window. Considering growing my own tree, but with the extreme drought, I am worried that it will not get enough water and be sickly or perish, or like my 3 fig trees, produce fruit, but inedible. Thanks for sharing!

    • See 2 previous
    • Whisking Wolf Whisking Wolf on Oct 16, 2021

      How exciting! I hope you have a green thumb and get years of purple plums as a result.

  • Kim-Donna Compton Kim-Donna Compton on Oct 16, 2021

    I am 82 and reading this made me remember that growing up we had a plum tree in our backyard. My mom used to make plum coffee cakes that we would absolutely inhale! Momma couldn’t make them fast enough and the tree couldn’t produce enough and the sun couldn’t ripen them fast enough! Bonus for us animals we used the pits as ammunition 😁

    • Whisking Wolf Whisking Wolf on Oct 16, 2021

      What a wonderful story! Your mom must've been a fabulous baker if everyone was inhaling her cakes the second she made them! I'm happy this recipe brought back sweet memories for you.