Plum Cake (Pflaumenkuchen)

Plum Cake (Pflaumenkuchen)

This moist, jammy plum cake is what first made me want to start this blog. I first found the recipe on Smitten Kitchen. Deb Perelman’s recipe is a famous one that she found in the New York Times, and then modified to one she liked better. I found her recipe, and I changed it to something I like better.

I realized that I could do this with any recipe, and I wanted to share these recipes I like with others. And so Buttery Basics was born!

This plum cake is as close to effortless as you can get. It’s just a basic rich cake batter, with some plums scattered on top. The magic of this cake is in how the batter folds up and around the plums, turning the plums into tart, jammy fruit pockets.

You can use whatever kind of plums you like, but this cake is always better the second day. This is one of my favorite recipes, and I think you’re going to love it!



1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

large pinch of salt

1 cup sugar plus 1 or 2 tablespoons (depending on sweetness of plums)

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 large eggs

4-7 plums, halved and pitted

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon



First, heat oven to 350° F. Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In a larger bowl, cream butter and 1 cup sugar together with an electric mixer until fluffy.

Next, add the eggs, one a time and scraping down the bowl. Add the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Spoon batter into a lightly greased springform pan, and smooth the top.

plum cake

Arrange the plums, skin side up, all over the batter, covering it. Sprinkle the top with lemon juice, cinnamon, and remaining sugar.

Bake until cake is golden, and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out free of batter, about 45 to 50 minutes. Set out to cool.

Once cool, if you can stand it, leave the cake covered at room temperature overnight.


golden plum cake

Luckily, this dessert is perfect to make ahead of time. The plum cake is even better on the second day, when the plum juices ooze out even more into the cake and turn it into a jammy miracle. Serve alone or with whipped cream. Enjoy!

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