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Sticky Toffee Pudding Recipe

Sticky Toffee Pudding: A traditional English dessert with a moist date sponge cake topped with a mouthwatering silky rich toffee sauce.

Sticky Toffee Pudding has long been a favorite dessert of mine. I’ve watched Gordon Ramsay make this no less than 500 times over the years on television. I could watch him cook forever. He makes it look so effortless! This version is different than his, but It’s so delicious. Rick and I may or may not have been rather vocal when enjoying it! It did not last long in our house!

What is Sticky Toffee Pudding?

The exact orgins of Sticky Toffee Pudding are unclear. However, it is said to have originated in the 1940’s in England. It is a moist sponge cake with dates and sweetened further by a delicious, rich, and silky toffee sauce. Typically, Americans think of pudding of a creamy semi-liquidy dessert. This cake will have you asking “Jell-O Who?!”

I know what you’re thinking…”Um, dates?” Yep, dates. I promise you that they make everything about this dessert incredible. Plus, they’re puréed, then added to the cake batter. They add the best subtle sticky sweetness!

Ingredients

Date Cake
Pitted Medjool Dates – creates the ‘sticky’ in Sticky Toffee Pudding
Water – used to help soften the dates before being puréed
Flour – used to create the base of the cake
Baking powder – used to help the cake form and rise
Baking soda- used to help the cake form and rise
Salt – adds additional flavor
Unsalted butter – allows you to control the salt in the recipe
Light brown sugar – creates a depth of flavor to the cake
Egg – binds the ingredients together
Vanilla – adds another layer of flavor

Toffee Sauce
Heavy cream – the creaminess of the sauce
Dark brown sugar – gives that delicious deep toffee flavor – you cannot substitute granulated sugar here. it would create caramel and we want toffee
Unsalted butter – creates the buttery flavor (obviously) of this homemade toffee sauce
Salt – helps balance the sweetness
Vanilla – just another level of flavor

How to make Sticky Toffee Pudding

Date Cake: In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder then, whisk together and set aside.

Next, over medium-low heat in a small sauce pan add the diced dates and water. Stir occasionally and allow most – but not all of the water to evaporate – leave about 2 tablespoons of liquid with the dates. Then, add dates and remaining liquid to a food process or blender and purée. It’s OK for the mixture to not be completely smooth.

Cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the date purée and mix until well incorporated. Next, gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Careful not to over mix. Evenly distribute batter between 4 large or 6 small ramekins.

Note: This can also be made in an 8×8 pan. If deciding to use a cake pan, bake at 350*F for roughly 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center of the pan clean.

Toffee Sauce: While the cake is baking, add sugar, butter, and salt to a medium sauce pan. Over Medium heat allow butter and sugar to full melt together – do not stir. Constantly stirring will lead to a grainy sauce. Once the sugar has melted, turn off the burner and slowly whisk in the cream and add vanilla. When the cream has fully incorporated, move the sauce to a cool burner and allow to sit until ready to serve.

Can I freeze Sticky Toffee Pudding?

Unfortunately, I do not recommend freezing this recipe. Sticky Toffee Pudding is best served fresh. It is a light moist sponge cake. The longer it sits, the drier it becomes. It can be reheated the next day but, expect it to lose some moisture and gain density.

If you chose to store overnight, cover container tightly and store in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, microwave for roughly 60 to 90 seconds until nice and warm, but not piping hot.

Tips for the best Sticky Toffee Pudding

  • Be sure to leave a little bit of liquid when softening the dates. This helps emulsify the dates in a blender or food processor. If you find that too much liquid has been cooked out, add 2 tablespoons to the dates and blend smooth. I find it helps to dice up the dates before softening.
  • Do not substitute out for different sugars. Typically, this is OK to do, however, for this particular recipe, the specified sugars lend best to the overall depth of the flavor profile.
  • Heavy cream is a must in developing the toffee sauce. Because it is a full fat cream this helps bring the sauce together.
  • Before taking the cakes out of the oven, ensure that they are done baking. To do this, use a toothpick to test the center of the cakes. If there is still wet batter, allow to cook for another 90 seconds at a time until the center is cooked through. If the center of the cake is not fully cooked, the center of the cake may fall after it is removed from the oven.
  • Allow to cool for roughly 15 minutes before serving.
  • Feel free to use a toothpick to poke some hole in the top of the cake to allow the homemade toffee sauce to seep deeper into the cake.
  • There are several different ways to enjoy this – as is, with a dollop of whipped cream, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or even a drizzle of heavy cream (a traditional English finish) or any other way you think would be incredible!
  • Beware – you will want to drink the sauce with a straw. I only recommend this AFTER you have enjoyed your sticky toffee pudding! 😉

Here are some other amazing comforting dessert recipes you should put on your radar: Apple Pie Bars, Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookies, Buttermilk Blueberry Muffins

Toffee Sauce being poured onto Stick Toffee Pudding

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Yield: 4 large or 6 regular cakes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Sticky Toffee Pudding: A traditional English dessert with a moist date sponge cake topped with a silky rich toffee caramel sauce. 

Ingredients

  • Date Cake
  • 8 pitted and diced Medjool Dates
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Toffee Sauce
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • small pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon quality pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. DATE CAKE
  2. Preheat oven to 350*F
  3. Prepare ramekins by lightly spraying them, place on cookie sheet and set aside
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder then, whisk together and set aside
  5. Next, over medium heat in a small sauce pan add the diced dates and water
  6. Stir occasionally and allow most - but not all of the water to evaporate - leave about 2 tablespoons of liquid with the dates
  7. Then, add dates and remaining liquid to a food processor or blender and purée until mostly smooth
  8. In a stand mixer, cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy
  9. Add egg and vanilla and combine thoroughly
  10. Add the date purée and mix until well incorporated
  11. Next, gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined
  12. Evenly distribute batter between 4 large or 6 small prepared ramekins
  13. If using 4 large ramekins - 350*F for 30 minutes
  14. If using 6 small ramekins - 350*F for 20-22 minutes
  15. Before removing from the oven, check the center of the cake with a toothpick. When it comes out clean it can be removed. If removed too early the center of the cake may fall.
  16. TOFFEE SAUCE
  17. While the cake is baking, add sugar, butter, and salt to a medium sauce pan
  18. Over medium heat allow butter and sugar to full melt together - do not stir frequently, allow the ingredients to meld together in the pot mostly untouched
  19. Once the sugar has melted, turn off the burner and slowly whisk in the cream and add vanilla
  20. When the cream has fully incorporated move the sauce to a cool burner and allow to sit until ready to serve

Notes

This can also be made in an 8x8 pan. If deciding to use a cake pan, bake at 350*F for roughly 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center of the pan clean.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 714Total Fat: 41gSaturated Fat: 25gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 148mgSodium: 369mgCarbohydrates: 87gFiber: 2gSugar: 80gProtein: 4g

The nutritional values above are auto calculated by a nutrition program and can vary based on brands of ingredients used. We cannot guarantee their total accuracy.

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20 Comments

  • Janelle
    September 17, 2020 at 5:13 pm

    it’s hard to resist sticky toffee pudding, and this was no exception

    Reply
  • Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry
    September 17, 2020 at 5:17 pm

    This looks like such a delicious sticky toffee pudding! I have to admit that sticky toffee pudding has to be one of my favourite desserts, especially during the winter!

    Reply
    • Kerri
      September 17, 2020 at 8:43 pm

      same here!

      Reply
  • Sara Welch
    September 17, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    What a delicious treat and perfect for fall! Looking forward to giving this a try; looks too good to pass up!

    Reply
  • Charla
    September 17, 2020 at 5:40 pm

    I absolutely LOVE sticky toffee pudding. It’s one of my favourite British desserts and nothing beats slurping the leftover sauce with a straw. Love that tip!!

    Reply
  • Amanda
    September 17, 2020 at 6:32 pm

    Toffee pudding is something I need in my life! I can’t wait to try!

    Reply
  • Patty at Spoonabilities
    September 17, 2020 at 7:01 pm

    I am literally drooling and slobbering! This looks so delicious and absolutely beautiful! I can’t wait for my serving!! (Or servings!!)

    Reply
    • Kerri
      September 17, 2020 at 8:42 pm

      i mean… we at it ALL…. at once. LOL!

      Reply
  • Shadi Hasanzadenemati
    September 17, 2020 at 7:02 pm

    This is such a delicious recipe! Can’t wait to try it!

    Reply
  • Shelley
    September 17, 2020 at 9:12 pm

    Ooooooh … so excited about this recipe! I’ve really been wanting to try Sticky Toffee Pudding – now, no more excuses! I have to say, though, I was super surprised to learn that it probably only dates back to the 1940s. Huh! Anyway, thank you so much for the easy to follow recipe and all the tips, so I can get this exactly right. Gorgeous photos, too!

    Reply
    • Kerri
      September 17, 2020 at 9:19 pm

      Thank you! I hope you get a chance to try it!

      Reply
  • Erin | Dinners,Dishes and Dessert
    September 18, 2020 at 1:51 am

    This Sticky Toffee Pudding looks absolutely delicious! Yummy!

    Reply
  • Beth
    September 18, 2020 at 10:08 am

    This looks so delicious and scrumptious! I can’t wait to make this! My family is going to love it!

    Reply
  • Toni Dash
    September 18, 2020 at 12:52 pm

    This treat quickly became a favorite at my house!

    Reply
  • katerina @ diethood.com
    September 18, 2020 at 2:54 pm

    Such a fantastic treat! YUM!!

    Reply
  • Beti | easyweeknightrecipes
    September 18, 2020 at 2:55 pm

    My family is gonna love this dessert!! It looks absolutely AMAZING!!

    Reply
  • Suzy
    September 18, 2020 at 6:18 pm

    Loved this traditional dessert! It was so easy to make and tasted delicious!

    Reply
  • April
    September 28, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    Am I totally missing where/when it says to add the egg and vanilla?

    Reply
    • Kerri
      September 28, 2020 at 2:18 pm

      Not crazy! Thanks for catching that. It is now corrected and in step 9. Thanks for letting me know!

      Reply
  • Sanna
    October 4, 2020 at 6:29 pm

    Delicious recipe. Can’t wait to try it out…

    Reply

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