Laura’s Old Fashioned Prune Cake

Laura’s Old Fashioned Prune Cake with dried plums and a buttermilk glaze comes from a cherished family heirloom recipe.
Laura's Old-Fashioned Prune Cake

Laura’s Old-Fashioned Prune Cake

by Sue Lau | Palatable Pastime

One of  the favorite family get-together recipes from extended family when I was growing up as a child came from my cousin Sandy Payne, who received the recipe from her mother, Laura Wyatt, and in time, passed it along to her own daughter, Lisa Walton.

It was a much guarded secret for many years but has since found its way into daylight for all to now enjoy.

And if you think you might not enjoy it when you hear the word “prune” you might be amazed after the first bite. While prunes bring to mind images of old grandmothers coaxing their grandchildren to eat large wrinkled dry fruits for their better health, nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, prune cake is more like an old-fashioned spice cake with nuts and raisins, even if the raisins are slightly different. It is like a dessert version of raisin bread, something all of us, I imagine, enjoyed as children, even with our grandparent’s approval.

With fond memories we can look back to our grandparents as well, remember all sorts of old-time recipes such as fudge, molasses crinkles, salt-water taffy, raisin bread, and even  prune cake. What are your favorite memories with your grandparents? Join me Sunday evening at 7 est on twitter for a great chat involving this very subject. #SundaySupper

And on a sad note, it is sad indeed that this very day, another of Lisa’s grandparents has passed away and her heart has that deep ache. Again, it will be memories which fill the emptiness and make her whole again. My own grandparents have been gone for many years, but I still think  of them and the foods they shared. My grandfather Alfred and I always could agree on the sheer awesomeness of a baby coke in a 6 ounce bottle. It just tasted different!

I think he would have liked this prune cake as well, even though it hails from different sides of the family. I know I always enjoyed eating it and will treasure the recipe (Thanks Lisa for sharing it!). And as for sharing recipes, the Sunday Supper group has shared a boat load of their favorite recipes to help celebrate Grandparent’s Day. Check out the links below and be sure to pin all your personal favs.


Sunday  Supper

Grandparent’s Day Recipes

As part of the Sunday Supper Movement, I and a host of other food bloggers are pleased to present to you some of our favorite recipes from grandparents, family & friends to enjoy with grandparents, family and friends for Grandparent’s Day.

Sweets that are the Sweetest

Savory Meals with Special Memories

Laura's Old-Fashioned Prune Cake #SundaySupper

Laura's Old-Fashioned Prune Cake

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Laura's Old-Fashioned Prune Cake

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup melted butter (or vegetable oil if you prefer)
  • 3 pastured organic eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup chopped toasted pecans
  • 1 cup dried chopped plums (prunes)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Paste or Extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

Buttermilk Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  • 12 pecan halves, or as many as you like


  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Butter and flour an oblong baking pan or coat with Baker’s spray.
  3. Whisk together ingredients to form a smooth batter.
  4. Pour batter into pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted can be removed cleanly.
  5. Allow cake to cool.
  6. Cut cake into squares and leave in pan.
  7. Whisk together glaze ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil; boil 3 minutes, then spread over cake in the pan and allow the glaze to set.
  8. Garnish with pecan halves if desired.

From the kitchen of

Laura's Old-Fashioned Prune Cake #SundaySupper

Join my recipe group on Facebook for  more recipes from blogger friends around the world!

Palatable Recipes

You might also like:

Apple Butter Banana Bread

Apple Spice  Dump Cake

Old-Fashioned Buttermilk Pie

27 responses

  1. Lovely cake and recipe! My mother-in-law makes a prune tart this time of year and your post reminded me of it! It’s delicious, but sometimes people get ideas in their heads about prunes and there is no changing their minds. 😉

    • Not sure why—doesn’t taste much different than having raisins in oatmeal raisin cookies. Baking with prunes (plums) is not the same as eating one out of the box, but I do know what you mean about those food phobias! My husnad likes hamantaschen with prunes and also kringles. I think all of them are excellent!

  2. I am marking this one to try Sue! It reminds me of something my own grandmother made and I haven’t found that recipe. I’m sorry to hear of yet another loss in the family. Your post is lovely and your story very sweet. Memories are wonderful, aren’t they?

  3. Hi Sue — you are right, I would not have thought “prunes” but this looks great — cathy from Delaware Girl Eats

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