We're thrilled to introduce you to our delightful steamed Christmas pudding recipe that promises to add a dash of magic to your holiday celebrations.
Our recipe is not just another Christmas Pud, otherwise known as Figgy pudding or called Plum Pudding. It's the best Christmas pudding you'll ever taste, a perfect blend of tradition and ease.
We've simplified the traditional Christmas pudding recipe for modern-day home cooks to create a masterpiece easily.
This Classic Christmas Pudding is steamed for eight hours on your hob in a large pan or steamer, bringing out sweet, rich, deep, festive flavours.
How to Make Christmas Pudding
We believe that great cooking should be simple and approachable, so we've made sure this recipe is easy to follow, with clear instructions and helpful tips.
Check out the video below.
So, are you ready to dive into the warmth and joy of creating your own Christmas pudding?Jump to Christmas Pudding Recipe Card
Let's get started! Remember, the secret ingredient is always a sprinkle of love and a generous helping of festive spirit.
In the past, Christmas puddings were typically made on "Stir-up Sunday," which is the last Sunday before Advent, usually falling at the end of November. The pudding mixture was traditionally stirred by each member of the family.
The pudding would then be stored and left to mature in a cool place until Christmas Day — a process that can take up to six weeks! This was done to allow the flavours to meld together and intensify, resulting in a rich, aromatic dessert that's truly festive.
Fast-forward to today, and while some families still uphold this tradition, it's unnecessary. It's perfectly fine to eat it straight away after cooking. You'll still get a deliciously moist pudding with a wonderful blend of flavours — fruity, spicy, and slightly boozy if you've added alcohol.
We give advice for both options.
Let's talk about what ingredients are in most Classic Christmas Pudding Recipes. We know some ingredients might be hard to find, so we've provided substitutes wherever possible.
This ingredient is a staple in traditional Christmas Pudding recipes and can be found in all UK supermarkets. While we use beef suet, vegetable suet is also a suitable alternative.
You can substitute it with vegetable shortening or butter if you cannot find it. It is best to freeze and grate before adding. Use the same weight.
We like to use Soft Dark Brown Sugar, which gives the pudding a rich flavour and a dark colour.
Substituting with other brown sugars affects the flavour and texture. Muscovado sugar will give it a more treacly flavour, while Demerara sugar will give it a slightly crunchy texture. Light brown sugar will make the cake a lighter colour and not as rich.
For our Christmas pudding recipe, we use self-raising flour. This type of flour combines all-purpose flour, baking powder, and a pinch of salt. Self-raising flour helps give the pudding a slight rise.
You can use plain flour instead, add a pinch of baking powder and salt too.
We use mixed spice in Christmas pudding, embodying the festive season's warm and aromatic blend. Mixed spice typically contains cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, with possible additions of mace, cloves, coriander, and ginger.
Each spice contributes a unique flavour and aroma, creating a melody of taste in your mouth.
You can add more spices if you want to add a personal touch. For instance, if you're a big fan of cinnamon, you might want to add more.
It's all about finding the best balance for your family's palate!
In our recipe, we use large eggs. Eggs act as a binding agent, holding all the delightful ingredients together and giving the pudding its firm yet soft texture.
Fresh breadcrumbs give a soft texture to the Xmas Pudding. I do not recommend using dried breadcrumbs.
We make our breadcrumbs for the Christmas pudding recipe using sliced white stale bread blitzed in the blender.
However, don’t fret if your bread isn’t stale! Fresh breadcrumbs work out just as well. Give it a quick pulse in a blender or food processor.
Mixed Dried Fruits
Our recipe calls for mixed dried fruits, a combination of raisins, sultanas, and currants, with candied mixed peel.
This is where you can get creative, feel free to use whatever combination of dried fruits you like. Some popular additions include chopped apricots, prunes or cranberries.
We recommend using a good cooking apple for our Christmas pudding recipe. A variety like Bramley, known for its tart and tangy flavour, works wonderfully in this recipe.
If you don't have a Bramley apple, don't worry! Various apples will work just as well; it's all about personal preference and what you have in your fruit basket.
Grate it for a lovely, fine texture in your pudding. Or, finely dice your apple instead if you prefer a bit more bite. It's your pudding, after all!
An orange is one of the key ingredients that will impart a wonderfully fresh and tangy taste to your Christmas pudding. We use both the zest and juice from the orange in our recipe.
The quintessential festive ingredient, brandy, adds warmth and depth to the flavours in your Christmas pudding.
We use it in the mixture before steaming. The alcohol will cook off during steaming, leaving only its delightful warmth behind. Then, we add more on top when serving. But that is optional!
We have kept the amount used fairly low. If your family likes a stronger brandy Christmas Pudding, add more and use less orange juice.
We use butter to grease our pudding basin. Greasing the basin ensures that your pudding doesn't stick to the sides and comes out easily after steaming.
There are other popular ingredients that can be added to personalise your Christmas pudding.
Nuts are a common addition to the Classic Christmas Pud, whether fine or chunky. Ground almonds are a popular choice.
You can use other spirits, such as whiskey and rum, instead of Brandy.
One of our favourites is spiced rum, such as Captain Morgan's.
We used our Christmas Pudding mixture to make two puddings using the 900ml size pudding basin.
The recipe we have given can be used to make various amounts and sizes of Christmas Puddings. Here are some measurements to help you decide which size you want to cook.
|Pudding Basin||650 ml / 1.1 pint||900 ml / 1.6 pint||1750ml / 3 pint|
|Dimension of Basin|| 14cm x 14cm |
|16cm x 16cm|
|20cm x 20cm|
|Weight of Cooked Pudding||650 grams||900 grams||1.7kg|
|How Many Each Will Serve||4-5||6-8||12-15|
|Our recipe will make||3 x 650g Puddings||2 x 900g Puddings||1 x 1.7kg Pudding|
We have given cooking times later on the post
We use a Mason Cash pudding basin S36. It holds 900ml (1.6 imperial pint), and measures 16cm x 16cm x 9cm.
A similar-sized heatproof bowl will do the trick if you don't have one. A glass Pyrex bowl will work, but it will not be as tall.
You could make one large pudding using a Mason Cash pudding basin S24. It holds 1.75l (3 imperial pint), and measures 20cm x 20cm x 11cm.
Make sure you have a pan big enough to steam it in!
Or you could make 3 smaller puddings using Mason Cash pudding basin S42. It holds 650ml (1.1 imperial pint), and measures 14cm x 144cm x 8cm.
Before diving into the recipe, gathering all the necessary equipment is essential. Don't worry—we've kept it straightforward, just like our recipe.
This is a deep, round dish for making steamed puddings. It's the traditional bowl used for Christmas puddings, contributing to their iconic round shape.
A steamer is key to achieving the moist, dense texture that makes a Christmas pudding delightful.
If you have a 3 tier steamer, you can cook two puddings simultaneously. Or, if using a two-tier, place one in the water and one in the steam basket.
A large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid can be a great alternative if you don't own a steamer. Ensure the pan is deep enough to hold the pudding basin and some water.
You'll need this to secure the greaseproof paper and foil around your pudding basin. Any strong, food-safe string will work.
Greaseproof Paper & Foil
You'll need greaseproof paper (or baking parchment paper) and kitchen foil to safeguard your pudding during the steaming process and prevent moisture from spoiling its texture.
These materials work together to seal in heat, ensuring your pudding cooks evenly and perfectly.
A fine grater is needed to zest the orange and grate the apple in our Xmas pudding recipe. The zest adds a fresh, tangy flavour that beautifully balances the pudding's richness.
This Christmas Pudding recipe consists of multiple steps, I won't delve too deeply into it here.
For comprehensive instructions, along with precise measurements and visual aids, please refer to the recipe card.Jump to Recipe
Start by making breadcrumbs out of white bread in a blender. In a mixing bowl, combine these breadcrumbs with suet, soft dark brown sugar, self-raising flour, dried mixed fruit, and mixed spice. Stir well to mix the dry ingredients.
Next, grate the zest from a large orange, carefully avoiding the bitter white pith. Halve the orange and squeeze out the juice.
Add brandy to the orange juice until they measure 150ml together. Adjust the ratio based on your preference for alcohol content, or use only orange juice for an alcohol-free version.
Peel and grate a cooking apple, or finely chopped if you prefer. Whisk two large eggs in a small bowl.
Add the apple, brandy, orange juice, zest, and whisked eggs into the dry mixture and stir well.
Set aside the mixture while you prepare the pudding basin. Optionally, you can let the mixture soak overnight for a stronger flavour.
Pudding Basin Preparation
Turn the empty basin upside down onto parchment paper and draw around the top to create a disc. Cut around the circle and generously butter the basin and the parchment.
Pour the pudding mixture into the basin, leaving about 2 cm of space from the rim. Flatten the top and cover it with the greased parchment paper.
Place a sheet of greaseproof paper and an equally sized sheet of foil on a flat surface. Fold them together in the centre to create a crease for the pudding to steam and rise.
Secure this over the basin with string, creating a handle with the excess string. Trim off any excess paper and foil.
Place the prepared pudding basin in a steamer over a pan of simmering water or in a large lidded pan filled with boiling water halfway up the basin.
Ensure no water gets into the mixture. If you're cooking multiple puddings, use a multi-tier steamer.
Steamed Christmas Pudding Cooking Time
Maintain a gentle simmer to generate steam.
Cooking times vary based on the size of your pudding
|650 ml / 1.1 pint||900 ml / 1.6 pint||1750ml / 3 pint|
|6 hours||8 hours||9 hours|
Check and top up the water as it evaporates. Once cooked, remove the pudding, let it cool slightly, and then tip it onto a plate.
Serve or Store
Enjoy your freshly cooked Christmas pudding straight away (see serving suggestions below) or if you've prepared your pudding ahead of time, it's easy to store. See the info below the recipe card for more storage advice.
Serving your Christmas pudding on the day it's cooked is a delightful experience.
For an added touch of festivity, you can warm brandy (or other spirits) in a pan and carefully light it with a long-handled lighter or match before pouring it over the hot pudding. Be careful!!
Decorating with holly or a sprinkle of icing sugar can also add to the festive presentation.
When serving, cut the pudding into thin slices and pair it with your choice of Brandy Butter, Brandy Sauce, Cream, Ice cream, or Custard for a deliciously indulgent treat.
Seen here served with our homemade brandy butter.
📖 Step by Step Recipe
Steamed Christmas Pudding Recipe
- 115 g White Bread
- 110 g Shredded Suet
- 225 g Soft Dark Brown Sugar
- 50 g Self Raising Flour sifted
- 2 teaspoon Mixed Spice
- 500 g Dried Mixed Fruit
- 1 large Orange zest and juice
- 1 Cooking Apple grated
- 2 large Eggs
- 50 ml Brandy
- 1 teaspoon Butter for greasing
To Serve your choice of the below
- Brandy Butter
- Brandy Sauce
Christmas Pudding Mixture
- Just to confirm our recipe will make enough to fill 2 medium size 900ml (1.6 imperial pint) Pudding Basins. Or one large 1.75 litre (3 imperial pint).
- Blitz 115 g White Bread in a blender to make breadcrumbs.
- Add all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. 110 g Shredded Suet, 225 g Soft Dark Brown Sugar sift the 50 g Self Raising Flour, 500 g Dried Mixed Fruit and 2 teaspoon Mixed Spice.
- Give them a good stir.
- Gently grate or zest 1 large Orange outer layer of the peel, avoiding the bitter white pith. Then, halve the orange and squeeze out the juice into a measuring jug, it should make about 100ml.
- Add the 50 ml Brandy to the orange juice until they measure 150ml together. If you like a stronger liquor taste you can use less orange juice and more brandy.Or for an Alcohol-free Christmas Pudding version use 150 ml of just orange juice.
- Peel and grate the 1 Cooking Apple. Or finely chopped if prefered.
- Whisk the 2 large Eggs together in a small bowl.
- Add the grated apple, brandy, orange juice, zest and whisked eggs into the dry mixture.
- Now everything is added, all that's left to do is stir the Christmas Pudding mixture well.
Pudding Basin Preparation
- Cover and put the mixture to one side while you prepare the pudding basin. Optional - You can leave the mixture overnight to soak up the liquid and add a few splashes more brandy splashes before cooking, if you want a stronger flavour.
- Turn the empty basin upside down onto parchment paper. Draw around the top of the basin.
- Cut around the circle to create a disc the size of the top of the basin. (If you plan to store the pudding, cut two discs.)
- Grease the basin and a parchment disc with 1 teaspoon Butter.
- Add the Xmas pudding mixture into the pudding basin. Do not overfill it, I leave about 2 cm of space from the rim.
- Flatten the top to make sure it doesn't cook wonky! Add the greased parchment paper on top
- Lay a sheet of greaseproof paper on a flat surface, followed by an equally sized sheet of foil on top. Fold both the foil and greaseproof paper together in the centre.
- Then fold back again to create a crease of about an inch in the middle. This allows the pudding to steam and rise.
- Position the paper over the basin, making sure the pleat is centered. Push down with your hands keeping the pleat flat.
- Secure it firmly under the rim with string, leaving ample length. Repeat the process with another piece of string on the opposite side, also leaving extra length.
- Finally, tie the two excess strings above and across the top of the basin to create a practical handle.
- Trim off any excess paper and foil.
- Place the prepared pudding basin in a steamer over a pan of simmering water.
- Or, put the basin into a large lidded pan filled with boiling water to come halfway up the basin. It is important to not allow water to get into the mixture.
- Add a well-fitted lid to the steamer or pan.If cooking two puddings, you can use a three-tier steamer.Or if you only have two-tiers, like we have put one in with the water and the other in the steamer basket.
Cooking Time for Christmas Pudding
- The water should be kept at a gentle simmer so it generates steam. 6 hours for 650ml (1.1 imperial pint)8 hours for 900ml (1.6 imperial pint).9 hours for a 1.75l (3 imperial pint).
- Check the water is simmering, and top it up with boiling water as it evaporates.
- When the pudding has cooked, remove from the steamer.
- Remove the foil and greaseproof paper and leave to cool slightly.
- Once cooled enough to touch, tip the basin upside down onto a rimmed plate.
Serving on the Day it is Cooked
- Optional* Warm 50 ml Brandy in a pan, light it with a long-handled lighter.
- Then very carefully pour the flaming Brandy over the Christmas Pudding.
- Optional* Add some holly for decoration and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.
- Cut into thin slices.
- Serve with Brandy Butter, Brandy Sauce Cream Icecream or Custard.
Storage if Made Ahead.
- Christmas Pudding can be steamed and stored for 6 weeks prior to the big day. Transfer the pudding to a plate. Wrap the christmas pudding with cling film.
- Clean the basin. Pop the basin back over the top.
- Place the spare parchment disc on top and seal the whole basin well with cling film and foil. Store in a cool, dry place. For upto
- Microwave: The easiest method to reheat is to remove the foil it is stored in. Place a plate on top and microwave for 5 minutesRe-steam To re-steam on the hob, unwrap and repeat steps 7-12 for Pudding Basin Preparation in recipe card above. Then steam for 1 ½ hours to reheatIndividual SlicesAnother option is to reheat each slice individually in the microwave in 30-second intervals until heated through.
Optional ExtrasOther popular ingredients can be added to personalise your Christmas pudding.
NutsNuts are a common addition to the Classic Christmas Pud, whether fine or chunky. Ground almonds are a popular choice.
Other SpiritsYou can use other spirits, such as whiskey and rum, instead of Brandy. One of our favourites is spiced rum, such as Captain Morgan's.
If you are making Christmas Pudding ahead of time. Allow the pudding to cool completely. Wrap the cooled steamed pudding in cling film, clean the basin, then cover the pudding with it.
Add a parchment disc on top and seal with cling film and foil. I usually place mine in the fridge, but it can be stored in a cool, dry place for up to 6 weeks.
Place your Christmas pudding in a freezer-safe container to freeze it for up to a year. When you're ready to enjoy the wonderful flavour. Thaw overnight at room temperature and reheat gently, ensuring it's piping hot through.
How to Reheat Steamed Christmas Pudding
Feeling puzzled about how to reheat your Christmas pudding? Worry no more, we've got you covered! Here are three easy ways to warm your pudding and ready to serve.
Quick Microwave Method
Remove the foil from your pudding and place it on a microwave-safe plate. Pop it into the microwave and heat for approximately 5 minutes. It's as simple as that!
Classic Re-Steam Method
If you'd like to stick to the traditional way, re-steaming your pudding is the way to go. Just unwrap your pudding and follow the Pudding Basin Preparation as before. Then, let it steam for about 1 ½ hours.
Individual Slice Method
This method is perfect if you only want to heat a slice or two. Place your slice on a microwave-safe serving plate and heat in 30-second intervals until it's heated.
More Christmas Recipes
Get ready to spread some holiday cheer with our easy-to-follow Christmas recipes.
We want to wish you the most delightful and delicious Christmas dinner and dessert. May your holiday season be filled with warmth, laughter, and good food. From our kitchen to yours, Merry Christmas!