Are you looking for an easy, delicious, festive dessert recipe that won't have you slave over? Our slow cooker Christmas Pudding is a classic treat that's been simplified for cooking in the slow cooker.
We've taken the fuss out of steaming Christmas Pudding by using a slow cooker. You can set it, forget it, and focus on other Christmas preparations.
Our Christmas pudding is rich, moist, and filled with your favourite holiday flavours. From mixed spice to dried fruit, mixed peel to brandy, each ingredient adds a layer of flavour that makes this dessert special.
And the best part? You can customize it to suit your taste. Prefer whiskey to brandy? Go ahead and make the swap. Want to add some nuts for extra crunch? Feel free to do so.
Alcohol-Free Christmas Pudding Version
Great news for those who prefer an alcohol-free version of our Slow Cooker Christmas Pudding! You can easily substitute the brandy with extra orange juice. This swap will keep the pudding moist and flavorful while ensuring it suits all ages and preferences.
- Alcohol-Free Christmas Pudding Version
- How to Make Christmas Pudding in a Slow Cooker
- Kitchen Foil and Parchment Paper
- Optional Extras
- Prepping the Pudding Basin
- Sealing the Pudding Basin
- Slow Cooker Preparation
- Slow Cooker Cooking Time for Christmas Pudding
- How to Serve Christmas Pudding
- Serving Suggestions
- 📖 Step by Step Recipe
- Optional Extras
- Storing Christmas Pudding
- Where to Store
- More Slow-Cooker Recipes
- 💬 Reviews
We also have a recipe for the traditional steamed Christmas Pudding if you would rather use that method.
How to Make Christmas Pudding in a Slow Cooker
To help you along, we've provided a step-by-step video that is easy to follow.
Use the above recipe link to skip the writing and get started on this Christmas pudding recipe.
Read on for plenty of tips, tricks, and substitute options to ensure your pudding turns out perfectly every time.
When should I start making Christmas Pudding?
You might be surprised to learn that the optimal time to make your Christmas pudding is six weeks ahead of the big day. This timeframe typically falls around Stir-up Sunday, the last Sunday before Advent.
The six-week period allows the flavours in the pudding to mature and develop complexity.
However, if you've missed the Stir-up Sunday, fret not. You can still make your Christmas pudding closer to Christmas Day.
While the flavours might not be as deeply embedded, the pudding will still taste delicious and embody the festive spirit. So don't stress, there's flexibility in your Christmas pudding preparation.
When is Stir Up Sunday?
It falls on the last Sunday before Advent, usually the last Sunday of November. This year Stir Up Sunday falls on the 26th of November 2023.
Getting your tools ready for this Slow Cooker Christmas Pudding is a breeze! Here's what you'll need:
This is where your pudding will take shape. Choose one that fits comfortably inside your slow cooker.
We have used a Mason Cash 900ml pudding basin. There is enough mixture to make 2 x 900 grams Christmas puddings.
|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|
If you don't own a pudding basin, a similar-sized heatproof bowl will do the trick. You need it to have a small rim to help tie the string around. A deep glass Pyrex bowl will work.
The slow cooker is the star of the show. It will do all the hard work, on low heat giving you more time to relax and soak in the holiday cheer. Make sure it is large enough to fit the pudding basin in. Ours is a 6L Slow Cooker.
Kitchen Foil and Parchment Paper
Cooking string will help secure the aluminum foil and paper around the pudding basin, ensuring no water can reach the pudding.
We use a grater for zesting the orange and grating your apple.
Let us break down the ingredients you need to make a delicious slow cooker Christmas pudding. I will give substitute suggestions here, too.All the measurements are found here in the full recipe card.
Part of the base of Christmas Pudding is breadcrumbs. Any type will do, from a leftover baguette to your everyday sandwich loaf.
Give it a blast in the blender or food processor to make it into breadcrumbs. Always use made fresh breadcrumbs. Avoid using the dried breadcrumbs available at grocery stores, as they will not give desired results.
This provides richness and moisture to the pudding.
If you can't find it, substitute with grated frozen butter or vegetable shortening as a good substitute. Beef Suet can be used instead. However, it will make it unsuitable for vegetarians.
Dark Brown Sugar
This adds a deep, molasses-like sweetness. Light brown sugar can work, if that's what you have on hand it will result in a light pudding colour.
Dried Mixed Fruit
You can use any combination of raisins, currants, sultanas, and candied citrus peel. Feel free to add other dried fruits such as dried apricots, glacé cherries or figs.
Self-Raising Flour helps the pudding hold its shape. You can use plain flour (all-purpose flour) with a pinch of baking powder and salt, it works just as well.
A blend of warm spices that give the pudding its classic Christmas flavour. Containing ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice combined together.
You can make your own mix of the above spices if preferred. Or add extra of what you like the most.
Gives a fresh, tangy twist. Any apple variety will do, but ones suitable for cooking work best.
Adds a bright, citrusy note. You will be using both the juice and the peel of the orange.
Brandy: Gives a warming kick to the pudding. Whiskey or rum are great alternatives if you prefer.
The eggs help bind all the ingredients together.
Used to grease the pudding basin to ensure the pudding doesn't stick.
A handful of nuts can add a pleasing crunch to your pudding. Finely chopped or chunky, it's up to you. Ground almonds are a favourite of mine for their subtle flavour.
First, we must prepare the Christmas pudding batter for slow cooker recipes.Jump to the printable Recipe Card for all the measurements.
Mix Dry Ingredients
Gather your dry ingredients vegetable suet, soft dark brown sugar, self-raising flour, dried mixed fruit, and mixed spice.
Add these all into a mixing bowl and give them a good stir to ensure they're well combined.
Stir in the grated apple and orange zest.
Let's bind this together with some whisked eggs.
In with the orange juice.
And brandy (use more orange if making alcohol free version)
Give everything a thorough stir to make sure all the flavours meld together.
Set the mixture aside as you prepare the pudding basin. For a richer flavour, consider letting the mixture soak overnight.
Prepping the Pudding Basin
Let's get our pudding basin ready for action!
Flip your basin upside down onto a sheet of parchment paper and trace around the rim. Cut out your circle - this will top your basin. If you're planning to store your pudding, make two of these.
Grease your parchment circle and the inside of your basin with some butter.
Now, spoon your Christmas pudding mix into the basin. Make sure to leave about 1 inch of space from the rim.
Flatten the top and place your greased parchment circle on top of it.
Sealing the Pudding Basin
Lay a sheet of greaseproof paper on your worktop, then place a similarly sized piece of foil on top.
Fold the foil and paper together in the middle, then fold it back again, leaving a small pleat.
This pleat allows for expansion during steaming.
Place this over your basin, keeping the pleat flat, and wrap the remaining foil over the sides.
Secure it firmly under the rim with string, leaving plenty of extra length. Repeat this process with another piece of string on the opposite side,
Use the leftover strings to tie a handle above the basin.
Trim away any excess foil and parchment.
Slow Cooker Preparation
Place a small plate or saucer at the base of your slow cooker - this will keep the basin from touching the direct heat.
You can cook more than one at a time if there's room, with no change in cooking time.
Place your Christmas pudding basin/s into the slow cooker.
Pour boiling water from the kettle until it reaches halfway up the basin. Be careful not to get any water into the mixture!
Top it off with the slow cooker lid.
Halfway through cooking, top up the water if needed.
Slow Cooker Cooking Time for Christmas Pudding
Set your slow cooker on low and let it do its magic. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of your basin:
|650 ml / 1.1 pint||900 ml / 1.6 pint||1750ml / 3 pint|
|8 hours||9 hours||10 hours|
Once your pudding is cooked, carefully lift it out of the slow cooker using the handle.
Remove the foil and both parchments, flip the basin onto a rimmed plate, and lift the basin away.
Voila - your Christmas pudding is ready to enjoy!
You can dig into your pudding immediately or cook it and keep it for up to 6 weeks before the big day. Either way, it's sure to be a hit! Read on for serving suggestions or jump down to storage advice.
How to Serve Christmas Pudding
So you've patiently cooked your pudding, and now it's time to serve it up. Here are a few of our favourite ways to do just that. They are all optional, do whatever you feel comfortable with.
Consider lighting your Christmas pudding if you're after a bit of drama (and who isn't at Christmas?).
Heat some brandy in a pan, then carefully pour it over the pudding. With a long-handled lighter or match, ignite the alcohol. Remember, safety comes first!
Why not top your pudding with some homemade brandy sauce?
It's the perfect complement to the rich flavours in the pudding. Our easy-to-follow recipe is coming soon, so stay tuned!
Add a festive touch with a few holly leaves. If you're using real holly, remember it's for decoration only - it's not edible!
When it comes to serving, thin slices work best. This way, everyone gets a taste of the deliciously moist interior.
Don't forget to serve with extra brandy sauce for those who want extra indulgence!
More Topping Options
But don't stop at brandy sauce. We also suggest trying these delicious options:
- Cream: A dollop of fresh whipped cream adds a light, sweet contrast.
- Custard: Warm vanilla custard is a classic pairing that never disappoints.
- Ice Cream: A scoop of vanilla ice cream melting into the warm pudding? Yes, please!
- Brandy Butter: Check out our recipe for brandy butter to serve with pudding. Yum!
📖 Step by Step Recipe
Slow Cooker Christmas Pudding
- 115 g Bread
- 110 g Vegetable Suet
- 225 g Soft Dark Brown Sugar
- 50 g Self Raising Flour sifted
- 2 teaspoon Mixed Spice
- 500 g Dried Mixed Fruit
- 1 Cooking Apple peeled and grated
- 1 Large Orange zest and juice
- 50 ml Brandy can use other spirits
- 2 Large Eggs
- 1 teaspoon Butter to grease basin
To Serve your choice of the below
- Brandy Sauce
- Brandy Butter
Christmas Pudding Mixture
- This recipe will make enough scrumptious pudding to fill:3 x small 650ml (1.1 imperial pint) pudding basinsor2 x medium-sized 900ml (1.6 imperial pint) pudding basinsor1 x large 1750ml (3 imperial pint) pudding basin
- Tear up 115 g Bread into smaller pieces and into the blender, pulse until fine breadcrumbs
- Add breadcrumbs with all the following ingredients into a mixing bowl. 110 g Vegetable 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 all the ingredients a good stir so evenly combined.
- Peel and grate the apple. Grate the outer peel of 1 Large Orange only the orange part avoid the white.Add both to the bowl.
- In a small bowl, whisk the 2 Large Eggs and add to the mix.
- Now chop the orange and squeeze out the juice. It should make about 100ml. If making a Alcohol-Free Christmas Pudding version use 150 ml of orange juice.
- Next add 50 ml Brandy /Whiskey/Rum to the orange juice until they measure 150ml together. You can use less orange juice and more brandy. If you like a strong taste. Remember you can add more after it is cooked too!
- All that's left to do is stir the Christmas Pudding mixture well.
- Set the mixture aside as you get the pudding basin ready. Optional * Consider letting the mixture soak overnight for a richer flavour.
Pudding Basin Preparation
- Put the basin upside down onto parchment paper. Draw around the rim of the basin. Cut out to create a circle for the top of the basin. (If you plan to store the pudding, make two.)
- Grease the parchment circle and basin with 1 teaspoon Butter.
- Spoon the Christmas pudding mix into the basin. Leave about 2 cm of space from the rim.
- Make sure the top is flat. Add the greased round paper on top.
- Place a sheet of greaseproof paper on the worktop, with the same size foil on top. Fold the foil and greaseproof paper together in the middle.
- Fold it back again, leaving a 2½ cm pleat in the middle. (see picture) This pleat allows for a some movement during steaming and prevents the foil from splitting during cooking.
- Place the pleated foil and paper over the centre of the basin, and keep the pleat flat whilst you wrap the remaining foil over the sides of the basin.
- Secure it firmly under the rim with string, leaving plenty of extra length. Repeat the process with another piece of string on the opposite side.
- Use the leftover strings to tie a handle above the basin.
- Cut away excess foil and parchment.
Slow Cooker Cooking Method
- Place a small plate or saucer on the base of the slow cooker for the basin to sit on, to avoid the direct heat of the base.
- Place the Christmas pudding basin/s into the slow cooker. If there is enough room, you can cook more than one at a time, with no change in time. It is important not to get water into the mixture. So, only fill with boiling water from the kettle halfway up the basin.
- Add the slow cooker lid.
Slow Cooker Cooking Time for Christmas Pudding
- Cook on Low for:650ml (1.1 imperial pint) - 8 hours900ml (1.6 imperial pint) - 9 hours1.75l (3 imperial pint) - 10 hoursHalfway through, check the water level and top it up with boiling water if it evaporates.
- When the pudding has cooked, remove it by the handle from the slow cooker.
- Remove the foil and parchment.
- Place a rimmed plate over the basin, tip it upside down and now lift the pudding basin away. Use oven gloves!Christmas Pudding can be slow-cooked and eaten straight away or cooked ahead and kept for 6 weeks prior to the big day.
Storage if Made Ahead.
- If making ahead, wrap the cooled Christmas pudding with cling film. Clean the basin. Pop the basin back over the top of the cooled pudding.
- Place the spare parchment you cut earlier on top and seal the whole basin well with cling film and foil. Store in a cool, dry place for up to 6 weeks. Follow reheat advice when ready to serve.
How to Light Christmas Pudding (Optional)
- Heat another 50 ml Brandy in a pan. Carefully pour over the Christmas Pudding
- Immediately, use a long-handled lighter or match to light the alcohol. Be careful!
Brandy Sauce Topping (Optional)
- We use our brandy sauce recipe (coming soon) to pour over the Christmas pudding when serving.
- Add some holly leaves for decoration. (We used artificial leaves, if using real holly make sure no one eats the holly as it is poisonous!)
- Cut the pudding into thin slices to serve. Serve with more
Other Serving Suggestions
- Instead of Brandy Sauce you could add a sprinkle of icing sugar on top.Serve with Cream Icecream, Brandy Butter or Custard.
- Microwave: The easiest method to reheat Christmas Pudding is to remove the foil and cling film, place a plate on top and microwave for 5 minutesRe-steam Unwrap and prepare the pleated foil and parchment as before. Then steam for 1 ½ hours.Individual SlicesYou can reheat slices individually in the microwave in 30-second intervals until heated. (time will vary depending on serving size)
Optional ExtrasFeel free to put your own spin on this classic Christmas pudding with some additional ingredients.
NutsMany people love adding nuts to their Christmas pudding for some extra crunch. You can choose to include them finely chopped or in larger chunks. Ground almonds, are my favourite choice.
Other SpiritsWhile Brandy is traditionally used in Christmas pudding, you're not limited to it. Feel free to experiment with other spirits like whiskey or rum. Try spiced rum - Captain Morgan's is a good one we often enjoy.
Storing Christmas Pudding
If you're a plan-ahead person, this Christmas pudding recipe is perfect for you. Not only can it be made well in advance, but it also stores beautifully. Here's how to do it:
Wrap the Pudding
Once your pudding has cooled, wrap it snugly in cling film. This will help keep it moist and fresh.
Next, clean out the basin you used earlier. Place it back over the top of the wrapped pudding.
Then, seal everything up tight with another layer of cling film and a layer of foil. This double barrier helps keep air and moisture out, preserving the flavor and texture of your pudding.
Where to Store
Now, find a cool, dry spot in your house to store your pudding. A cool pantry or cupboard is usually a good choice. Your Christmas pudding will stay fresh and delicious for up to six weeks.
When you're ready to serve your pudding, just follow our easy reheating advice.
If you've made your pudding ahead of time (good on you for being so organized!), you'll need to know how to reheat it. Don't worry. We've got you covered. Here are some easy methods.
The Microwave Method
This is the quickest and easiest way to get your Christmas pudding hot and ready to serve. Here's how:
Remove the foil and cling film from your pudding. Pop a plate on top of the basin and flip it over. Heat in the microwave for 5 minutes. And that's it! Your pudding is ready to be devoured.
The Re-steam Method
If you'd like to reheat your pudding the traditional way, you can re-steam it:
Unwrap your pudding. Prepare the pleated foil and parchment just like you did before.
Steam for 1 ½ hours. This method takes a lot longer, but it helps to keep your pudding moist and flavorful.
Reheating Individual Slices
You can easily reheat individual slices in the microwave while serving single portions. Just pop each slice in for 30-second intervals until they're nice and warm. The exact time will depend on the size of your slice, so keep a close eye on things.
Remember, the goal here is to warm your pudding, not cook it further. So whether using a microwave or steaming, heat gently to preserve all those delicious flavours.
The tradition of the Christmas pudding dates back to medieval England. It has been known as plum pudding and figgy pudding and gradually evolved into the rich, fruity dessert we know today.
Steeped in tradition and loaded with symbolism, every element of the Christmas pudding — from its round shape to the hidden coin promising luck — makes it a truly festive treat. To dive deeper into the fascinating history of Christmas pudding, check out Simon Walsh's post, where they also sell silver pudding coins to add to the pudding.
More Slow-Cooker Recipes
We know the joy and convenience slow cookers bring to your kitchen. It's a magical appliance that allows you to come home to a warm, hearty meal after a long day. We have an array of tantalising slow cooker recipes just for you.