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Our recipe for Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is a quicker, easier version of the classic British dessert, but with all of the spicy delicious flavor!

Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce


This is Jack sharing today’s recipe.  First things first…a word to any British citizens out there who are reading this recipe, holding their heads and screaming about this easier ‘Americanized’ version of a traditional Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce dessert…  What can I say? Most of us are just too busy to make a dessert that takes 12 hours to bake and a day to set up? (Maybe we are bit lazy as well…)

Actually, I would be the first guy in line – jumping at the chance to spend all day baking a traditional British dessert, and I’d be very happy doing so. But I recognize that I am pretty much alone in that desire – especially at this time of year when everyone is so busy.  So with that being said, I decided to make our quick American version because this is one delicious dessert that everyone will love.  (I know, I know…What? No suet or citron? … Blasphemy!)

Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce

I had a traditional Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce recipe in one of my very old cookbooks that we used years ago in food service. With Christmas approaching, I decided to dust the recipe off and give it a try. The original recipe was meant to make 50 servings and was cooked in a steamer, which is a massive, heavy steel commercial steam jacket that was used quite often in a professional kitchen.

My task was to reduce the Christmas Pudding recipe to make just four servings, and also to modernize it a bit to appeal to today’s busy home cook.  So – I made this recipe twice. The first practice version was delicious, but the texture was a bit too soft. So – with batch number two – I made a number of changes to the recipe and the result is a super moist but firm cake (or as the Brits would say ‘pudding’) loaded with dates, raisins, and walnuts with a sweet and spicy flavor of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.


Our recipe for Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is a quicker, easier version of the classic British dessert, but with all of the spicy delicious flavor!

To top our Christmas Pudding, I also made a Hard Sauce – a firm, hard sauce that is simply a mix of butter, powdered sugar, lemon extract and boiling water.  The hard sauce is scooped and placed on top of the warm-out-of-the-oven cake, where it melts into the pudding.

This Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is rich and delicious, and a wonderful addition to your holiday dessert menu.

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Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce

Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce

  • Author: Jack
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


Our recipe for Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is a quicker, easier version of the classic British dessert.


3 tablespoons butter, placed in the freezer (one piece)

Butter to grease ramekins

½ cup grated carrot, using small grate on a box grater

1 cup any type of grated potato, using small grate on a box grater

¾ cup golden raisins

½ cup pitted dates, chopped the same size as the raisins

¼ cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

1 egg beaten

¾ cup granulated sugar

¼ cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground cloves

½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg

Pinch of salt

¼ cup plain bread crumbs, (we used plain Panko)

Hard sauce

1 stick unsalted butter

2½ cups confectioner’s sugar

¼ teaspoon lemon extract

About a tablespoon of boiling hot water

Cinnamon, for dusting top of dessert


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Have a teapot with boiling water standing by.

Cut a single piece of butter from a stick of butter, three tablespoons long and place in freezer for later.

Butter four 8-ounce ramekins with additional butter.

Take a piece of parchment paper and cut a strip off one end about as wide as the opening of one ramekin. Then cut that strip into four and cut each into a round circle and place in the bottom of each buttered ramekin. Butter or spray the top of the parchment and set the ramekins aside. Keep the remaining large piece of parchment for later.

In a large bowl, add carrot, potato (including liquid from potato, don’t squeeze out), raisins, dates, walnuts and egg and mix to combine.

In a separate smaller bowl, add sugar, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt and bread crumbs and stir to combine.

Add dry to wet mixture and combine.

Remove butter from freezer and using the small holes on a box greater, grate the frozen butter into the bowl, mixing as you grate.

Divided the mixture between the four prepared ramekins and place each one into a pan, about 9X9 or sized to fit your ramekins.

Pour hot boiling water from tea pot just ¼ of the way up the side of the ramekins. The water is to steam the pudding, not to provide a water bath but it actually serves both purposes.

Cover with the reserved parchment and foil and bake 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, remove foil and parchment and remove ramekins to a rack to sit for five minutes.

While pudding is baking, make hard sauce by mixing butter, powdered sugar and lemon extract to a thick paste. Then add one tablespoon of hot water and stir. The mixture should be very thick but runny enough to pour off the end of a spoon. If still too thick and pasty, add a tiny bit more of hot water.

Place this in a wide topped bowl that will give you room to pull your scoop across the top when serving and refrigerate until serving.

To serve, invert a ramakin onto a small dessert dish and lift. There may be a suction so if needed, insert the tip of a small knife into one side so the pudding falls out upside down onto the plate. Remove the piece of parchment.

Fill a one-ounce scoop of hard sauce and place over pudding then dust with a little cinnamon.

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White Christmas Pie


Our recipe for Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is a quicker, easier version of the classic British dessert, but with all of the spicy delicious flavor!

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  • Mary wrote:

    Goodness, sounds amazing and looks fantastic. Pinned for making soon! Thanks so much for this wonderful treat.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you Mary! Hope you enjoy the recipe!

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